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For seven years, my summers were eaten up by training for Ironman Canada. The triathlon was held at the end of August, so in preparation for a 2.4 mi swim, 112 mi bike ride and 26.2 mi run, I would ramp up my mileage at the beginning of June. In July, I would add speed training, and then in August, I would begin to fine-tune and taper in preparation for the race. So my summers were fully consumed by training. I loved it.
During those summer months, which were comprised of 40-hour training weeks, I began to appreciate the role food plays in fitness progress. Exercise breaks down muscle tissue, and with the right nutritional building blocks, the body quickly overcompensates and becomes stronger than it was. Exercise and nutrition are symbiotic.
I believe that to discuss training in a responsible manner, we must also discuss nutrition. The Summer 2017 issue of alive magazine explores the benefits of thoughtful training combined with mindful eating. For starters, we’re featuring three top-level athletes—Madi Serpico, Tia Blanco and Rebecca Soni—who’ve shown that eating a plant-based diet can, in fact, be a performance advantage.
This issue also features my friend Amanda Crew. Among other things, she talks about her newfound love of fitness and shares her results-based program with us. She’s clearly ready to start her action-film career. Amanda and I first met on the set of a food-focused web show that I was working on called Thrive. We made plant-based burgers. They were delicious.
Also, I’ve been a fan of Gena Hamshaw’s blog The Full Helping for nearly 10 years now. She has the uncommon ability to pack loads of plant-based nutrition into simple, flavor-balanced meals made from easy-to-find ingredients. I appreciate that. We share a few of her recipes here.
May your summer be spent exercising outside and eating delicious plant-based food!
PHOTO BY Dan Barham