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Strength and Training for Plant-Powered Ladies

Weight Training to the Rescue: Simi Collins Get Fit for Summer with Workouts that Work! Summer Salad Redux: Recipe Contest Winners! An Inside Look at CrossFit and the Paleo Vegan Diet

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summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com

features 27 The Dawn of the Paleo Vegan


Slide Into Fitness


The Vegan Invasion of CrossFit


Learn about the common ground between

paleo and vegan. They don’t have to be at odds! BY ELLEN JAFFE JONES

55 Squat vs. Lunge

It’s a showdown! Which one will come out on top for building a better butt? BY ERIN FERGUS

67 The Only Thing We Kill is the Stage: The PlantBuilt Team

The story of how the team we love came to be! BY DANI TAYLOR


Interview with Simi Collins: Weight Training to the Rescue

Summer Salad Redux: Contest Winning Recipes

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Staples 05 Our Team 07 Note from Christy

Summer 2014 » Vol 1 » Issue 2 FITNESS

45 In Jo’s Kitchen

17 Featured Bodyweight Workout: Slide into Fitness 23 Q&A with Vegan Athlete: Anne-Marie Campbell 27 The Vegan Invasion of CrossFit 55 Squat vs. Lunge: Build a Better Butt 73 Featured Athlete Interview: Simi Collins 85 Featured Lifting Workout: Workin’ 9 to 5

79 The Real Deal


11 #instagramlove 15 Fuel for Your Body & Mind 17 Bodyweight Workout

85 Lifting Workout 97 Say What?

what is Definition? [def-uh-nish-uhn] noun

1» The act of making distinct or clear. Example: That is a clear definition of sustainable living.

2» The condition of being clearly outlined, defined, or distinct. Example: Her biceps have great muscle definition.

Connect with Us

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08 The Blender Girl: Creamy and Crunchy Spuds Recipe 13 20 Grams of Plant Protein (Part One) 37 Do You Have the Guts? Digestive Issues on a Vegan Diet 51 Jazzy Vegetarian: Make Your 4th of July an Eco-Picnic 59 Summer Salad Redux: Contest Winning Recipes 63 How to Revamp Your Salad into a Nutrition-Packed Meal 79 The Real Deal: What’s Carb Cycling? LIFESTYLE

33 The Dawn of the Paleo Vegan 35 Paleo Vegan: Plant-Based Primal Recipes 41 Featured Guide: Sports Bra Test Drive 67 The Only Thing We Kill is the Stage: The PlantBuilt Team 70 Goal Setting 101 TRANSFORMATION STORIES

44 Plantsformation: Elana Priesman 49 Gaining Confidence: Lacy Davis 81 Slow & Steady Progress: Ines Isabel

who is Definition? Strength and Training for Plant-Powered Ladies

Definition is for the woman who is passionate about her health and fitness. We empower women of all shapes and sizes to get off the car-


dio bandwagon, lift heavy weights,

Christy Morgan

embrace their strength, build their

Erin Fergus

muscles, nourish their bodies, and

Dani Mouser

encourage them to do so with

Belinda Jansen

the plant-based vegan lifestyle.






Holly Noll


Esther Oakley

Contributors The Vegan Invasion of CrossFit, Corey Barnes, Amber Sperling, and Carolyn Napier Q&A with a Vegan Athlete, Anne-Marie Campbell Featured Athlete: Weight Training to the Rescue, Simi Collins Gaining Confidence, Lacy Davis In Jo’s Kitchen, Jo Hudson Slow & Strady Progress, Ines Isabel The Dawn of the Paleo Vegan, Ellen Jaffe Jones The Blender Girl: Creamy and Crunchy Spuds Recipe, Tess Masters

Definition contains insightful interviews with vegan athletes, nutritional guidance, workout tips, fitness gear reviews, positive lifestyle topics, inspirational transformation stories, and of course, recipes for quick and tasty wholesome meals. We provide the framework for building a fit, healthy, compassionate life.

Plantsformation, Elana Priesman Paleo Vegan: Plant-Based Primal Recipes, Alan Roettinger How to Revamp Your Salad into a Nutrition-Packed Meal, Brooke Rosenfeld Do You Have the Guts? How To Deal With Digestive Issues on a Vegan Diet, Emily Segal The Only Thing We Kill is the Stage: The PlantBuilt Team, Dani Taylor

In short, Definition is a magazine for strong plant-based women, without the junk—because nobody has time for junk.

Jazzy Vegetarian: Make Your 4th of July Celebration an Eco-Picnic, Laura Theodore

Reading the Fine Print Please use the content of Definition Magazine wisely: It is intended to educate and inform, not to replace the care of a health professional. Content of this magazine cannot be used without express written consent. Copyright © 2014 by Definition Magazine, Vegan Ladies Who Lift, and the individual authors.

On the Cover

This issue features the one and only Simi Collins. Read her article and interview on page 67! Photograph by Mark Hillyer; Model Simi Collins.

Christy Morgan Editor-in-Chief Vegan chef, author, educator, personal trainer, world traveler, cat snuggler, tea drinker, dumbbell slinger. Lover of plantpowered food and helping others find their bliss. Vegan since 2002, became obsessed with fitness and lifting heavy stuff in 2013. One bodybuilding show, two adventure races, and two triathlons under her belt with more adventures on the horizon. The Blissful & Fit Chef Âť Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

Erin Fergus Lead Columnist Trainer of personal trainers, vegan for a year, vegetarian for 13 years, Virgo, left-handed, alpha female who plays piano, devours books, bakes cupcakes and journals. Gets adrenaline rushes from adventure racing, setting PRs in the gym during the week, and waterfall hiking on weekends. Competed in figure in 2013, but current goal while on PlantBuilt team is to be the vegan-version of physique champ Dana Linn Bailey. Train like a beast (without eating any) to look like a beauty! Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

Dani Mouser Creative Director Plant-Powered Health Coach, broccoli lover, taste tester, fitness instructor, yogi, weightlifter, photographer, designer, and master recycler. Active volunteer in her hometown, awarded Junior First Citizen. An ex-obese junkfoodetarian, she transformed her health and wellness through nutrition and exercise. Founded Cherry City Vegans group to promote local plant-based options. Vegetarian since 1996. Vegan since 2012. Changing the world, one person at a time. Sweet Potato Health Âť Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram 5

summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com

our team

Belinda Jansen Art Director Her love of animals makes a vegan lifestyle the only logical choice. She’s also passionate about nature, art, running, and health & fitness. Her sport is distance running, but when she’s not hitting the pavement, she’s in the gym lifting heavy things. Website | Instagram | Twitter

Holly Noll Associate Editor Lifelong chef creating everything from cupcakes to raw cookies to protein waffles and all things in between. Internationally published food writer, health educator, lifestyle coach, teaching chef, blender addict and weight-lifting gym junkie who races shifter karts. Cohost of the lifestyle and cooking show/blog Vegan Shortcake. Eight year vegan for ethics and health, certified in Plant Based Nutrition from Cornell, puppy mom and coffee enthusiast. Finding harmony in food and fitness to inspire evolution in the world and smash outdated perceptions of what can or can’t be done. Vegan Shortcake » Website | YouTube | Instagram | Facebook

Esther Oakley Associate Editor Vegan personal chef, baker, instructor, lifestyle coach, menu consultant, speaker, rock climber, triathlete, pole dancer, hiker, reader, traveler, and sun lover! Vegan since 2009, she dove into fitness shortly after (literally—swimming is my first love) and hasn’t looked back. Her latest obsession is lead climbing, so between that and pole my main lifting is: herself! She loves seeing others get out there and find the way of movement that is the way that makes them say “Yes, I love this!” ABC Vegan » Website | Facebook | Twitter | Joy of Vegan Living » Website summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com


Note from Christy

You Really Like Us!

Our first issue released with a bang! We were floored by the wonderful response we received about the magazine and wanted to thank you for your kind words. Also, thank you for sharing it with your friends and family. This magazine helps both those already vegan learn more about optimal performance and encourages those on the fence that you can do anything you set your mind to on a plant-based diet. As you know there is no other magazine available today that reaches out to women who are passionate about training hard and eating cruelty-free. We are filling a gap in the market for those hungry for knowledge and support on their journey. If you want to show your appreciation for this amazing project we’ve added a donation button to our website. Give whatever you think a subscription would be worth! We’ll continue to offer the magazine for free this year and then we hope to grow the magazine next year with a subscription option and a few more issues.

A lot has happened in the lives of our team since the last issue. I sprained my ankle and couldn’t compete in my second bodybuilding show. Many of us are having personal

If you thought the last issue was amazing you’ll be floored

transitions. It’s a summer of growth, reflection, rest, and

by what we put together for our summer debut. We’ve got

self-care. Having an injury can be soul-crushing, but con-

recipes that will rock your summer picnic or BBQ. You’ll find

necting with vegan ladies who lift and bringing this issue to

some killer workouts, articles that improve your health, amaz-

fruition keeps me going and makes me feel alive. I hope you

ing transformation stories, and features on female athletes we

enjoy our summer issue as much as we do!

admire. I had so much fun developing and photographing the weighted workout in this issue. We’d love to hear from you on what kind of things you’d like to see in future issues, so shoot us an email or leave us a note on Facebook!


Christy Morgan, Editor-in-Chief

summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com

Creamy and Crunchy Spuds


The Blender Girl summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com


Creamy and Crunchy Spuds intro by Christy Morgan

One of my favorite vegan cookbooks to hit shelves this year is The Blender Girl by Tess Masters. It has 100 gluten-free recipes from snacks, soups, salads, mains, desserts, and drinks. I met Tess through her wildly delicious food blog and fell in love with her charming Australian accent the first time we met in person at a conference. When I received her cookbook I just knew it was going to be a winner. The recipes are inventive, flavorful, and nutritionpacked. You won’t find a boring lentil loaf in there! We bet you’ll find many favorites to add to your weekly repertoire and won’t even know you’re eating healthy. Tess walks you through soaking, sprouting, and dehydrating; proper food combining; and why it’s important to eat raw, probiotic-rich, and alkaline foods. You feel healthier just flipping through its pages! In honor of our Summer Salad Redux Contest and our desire to help you have the most wicked vegan 4th of July ever, Tess shares her Creamy and Crunchy Spuds recipe with us today. It is the perfect side dish to take to any summer gathering.


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potatoes 2 3/4 pounds (1.2kg) potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch (2.5cm) cubes 1 tablespoon natural salt, plus more to taste 1 bunch green onions (white and green parts), finely chopped 1/2 cup (75g) diced red onion 1 cup (140g) diced red bell pepper

Directions: To cook the potatoes, place them in a large pot and add cold water to cover. Add the salt and bring the water to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to medium and simmer the potatoes for about 8 minutes, just until fork-tender. (You don’t want to overcook your potatoes, or you will end up with a mash rather than a chunky salad.) Drain the potatoes, rinse them with cold water, and drain them again thoroughly. Allow them to cool completely. To make the dressing, put the mayonnaise, mustards, vinegar, and salt into your blender. Blend on high for about 1 minute, until smooth and creamy. Tweak fla-

1 cup (132g) diced celery (about 4 large ribs)

vors to taste (you may like more mustard, vinegar, or salt).

1 cup (150g) julienned broccoli stalks or

To assemble the salad, transfer the cooled potatoes to a large bowl. Add

commercial broccoli slaw, or 1 cup (145g)

the green onions, red onion, red bell pepper, celery, broccoli, and parsley.

peeled, seeded, and diced cucumber

Pour on the dressing and fold in gently, keeping the potatoes as intact as

1 bunch flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped Freshly ground black pepper

dressing 1 1/3 cups (310g) your preferred brand of mayonnaise

possible. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve chilled or at room temperature. The salad will keep in the fridge for up to 5 days. Serves 8; the dressing makes 1 ¾ cups (410g) Nutrition per serving: Calories: 393 Fat: 25 g Carbohydrates: 31 g Fiber: 4 g Net Carbohydrates: 27 g Protein: 4 g

2 1/2 tablespoons Dijon mustard,

Australian-born Tess Masters is a cook, writer, actor, voiceover artist and author of The

plus more to taste

Blender Girl cookbook. She shares her enthusiasm for plant-based foods on her popular

2 1/2 tablespoons stone-ground mustard,

Zeste and on Glamour.com, Chow, Epicurious, and AllRecipes, among other publications

plus more to taste 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar, plus more to taste

website The Blender Girl. She has been featured in the LA Times, Vegetarian Times, and and websites. Away from the blender, Tess enjoys a diverse performance career. She has toured internationally with stage productions, worked in film and television, and lent her voice to commercial campaigns, audiobooks, and popular videogame characters.Follow The Blender Girl online, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, YouTube, and Google+

1/4 teaspoon natural salt, plus more to taste

Recipe reprinted with permission from The Blender Girl: Super-Easy, Super-Healthy Meals, Snacks, Desserts, and Drinks--100 Gluten-Free, Vegan Recipes! by Tess Masters, copyright © 2014. Published by Ten Speed Press, a division of Random House, Inc. Photo taken by Anson Smart © 2014

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LOVE #definitionforladies #veganladieswholift Thanks for showing us your best salad photos for the #definesalad contest! To the right are our favorites! Want to be featured in a future issue of Definition Magazine? Simply tag your toughest, sweatiest, heaviest, pumping iron workout photos or your delicious plant-powered meal with #definitionforladies and #veganladieswholift!


summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com

#instagramlove @frayedendz13 It’s like a rainbow in a bowl! Greens, strawberries, oranges, hazelnuts, peppers, and chocolate balsamic drizzle.

@evesfca Check out this artful presentation of greens, apples, beets, tomatoes, rice balls, and pepitas.

@cassielynnet 300 pound hip thrusts? Not a problem for vegan ladies who lift!

@sweetpotatosoul This heaping spicy mango guacamole salad was created for Memorial Day.

@catnee So many first place trophies for these badass plant-strong ladies!

@plantstrongvegan Delicious and nutritious. Greens, purple cabbage, carrot, diced veggie burger, onion, sprouted pepitas, hemp seeds, and agave. Yum! Keep an eye out for our Fall issue featuring vegan powerlifters! •



Part One

of Plant Protiens Think it’s hard to get enough protein on a plant-based diet? Protein is found in so many plant foods, from beans to whole grains to nuts to even your leafy greens, so as long as you are eating a well-balanced plant-based diet based on whole foods, you will easily meet your daily needs. To get you started, here’s 10 examples containing around 20 grams of protein each! By Esther Oakley

Hemp Seeds 6 tablespoons 340 cal 26 g fat 6 g carbs 6 g fiber

Edamame 1 1/4 cups 250 cal 8 g fat 23 g carbs 10 g fiber


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Extra Firm Tofu

1/2 block (7-8 oz) 200 cal 10g fat 2.5 g carbs 0g fiber

Vegan Jerky 2 strips (2 oz) 200 cal 6 g fat 16 g carbs 2 g fiber

Gardein Chik’n Scallopini 1 1/3 pieces 147 cal 6 g fat 5 g carbs 2.5 g fiber


Almond Butter

Nutritional Yeast

4 tablespoons 180 cal 3 g fat 15 g carbs 10 g fiber Photography by Belinda Jansen.

2.5 tablespoons 238 cal 23 g fat 15 g carbs 15 g fiber

1/2 block (4 oz) 240 cal 11 g fat 8 g carbs 4.5 g fiber

Black Beans 1 1/4 cups 300 cal 0 g fat 55 g carbs 15 g fiber

We all know that workouts aren’t just about the physical. Your mental focus and drive to finish is almost more important. It’s necessary to get the last set in and push past the pain. For me, it’s all about what’s coming through my headphones and this has been my favorite playlist recently. Goddess Iggy Azalea Hard Rihanna We Own It 2 Chainz, Wiz Kalifia I Run This­—Original Mix Luminox Disparate Youth Sanitgold

For Your

300 Violin Orchestra Jorge Quintero I Can’t Stop Flux Pavilion

Protein-Packed Soft Serve

Impossible Is Nothing Iggy Azalea

by Holly Noll

Soft serve ice cream, for me, is a quintessential part of summer! When you’re seeking nutrient-dense food that meets your macros, this summertime treat can get relegated to the rare cheat meal. Being the sweet-toothed fitness and health nut I am, I decided this just would not do. I created a low in carbohydrates, high in protein, creamy, sweet and delicious soft serve recipe meeting my physical and emotional desires.



summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com

This is your base for all things protein soft serve. From this you can make any flavor combination your heart desires. Use your imagination and make your favorite sweet frozen treats with a healthier, more goal-oriented nutrition composition.

Want more ideas? If you don’t feel like going on a culinary adventure, a few of my favorite spins on this base are below.

Ingredients: 1/2 cup (125 ml) unsweetened vanilla almond milk

PB2&J Using vanilla protein, top with 2 tablespoons of PB2 mix or 1

1 (4.8 grams) teaspoon chia seeds

tablespoon peanut butter, and

1 (30 grams) scoop protein powder

5 raspberries warmed for 30

1/4 medium frozen banana 2 frozen strawberries 1 (5 grams) teaspoon maca powder 1/2 (7.5 ml) teaspoon vanilla extract 5 large ice cubes

seconds in the microwave. Almond Joy Using chocolate protein, add 1 teaspoon cacao, top with 1 tablespoon each toasted coconut shreds / chocolate chips / almond butter and 5 chopped roasted, salted,

Directions: Add milk to Vitamix (or whatever blender you have) on its lowest setting; let it run while you add seeds, maca, protein and extract. Let sit for 5 to 10 minutes. Add the banana, strawberry, and ice cubes while blender is stopped, and then run the blender on medium high while using the plunger attachment to keep the ingredients moving. Blend until smooth. Makes 1 serving •

almonds. Holly’s Nightly Ritual Using chocolate protein, plus 1/2 cup spinach, top with 1 tablespoon Lily’s Stevia Sweetened Chocolate Chips, 1 tablespoon large flaked toasted coconut, 1/4 teaspoon

Nutrition per serving:

cinnamon, 1/8 teaspoon

Calories: 188 Fat: 6 g Carbohydrates: 10 g Fiber: 7 g

nutmeg, and 1 tablespoon raw

Net Carbohydrates: 3 g Protein: 27 g

almond butter.

Find Holly online: Check out the Our Team page

summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com



by Erin Fergus

into fitness

UPPER BODY » Lat Slides

Start in the same position as modified push-up. Contract core muscles as you slowly slide the discs away and out so your body forms a “Y.” Keep arms straight (with a slight bend in the elbows) and squeeze upper back to slide the discs back to start. This movement is similar to an ab wheel roll out because it engages the lats and core at the same time. Add-On Challenge For Lower Back » After completing the Lat Slide, come down on your stomach, and move your arms in a breaststroke pattern for five strokes. The higher you can lift your upper body as you slide out during the “breaststroke,” the more your lower back will be challenged. Make sure all movements are smooth and controlled and that you are not swinging your upper body up with momentum. »

featured bodyweight workout For this issue, we’re bringing you something different and fun. Slider discs are an interesting, cheap piece of equipment that are becoming visible in more gyms. Your hands or feet will be in contact with the discs as you slide them along the floor. They add a stability factor as well as changing the range of motion and allowing for new variations of standard exercises. Slider discs come in various forms and are meant to glide along carpet, hardwood, or other gym surfaces to add balance challenges and variations to standard exercises. Furniture movers and even paper plates (which were used in our shoot) can be substituted if slider discs aren’t available. Your core is your balance and power center, so make sure to keep your abs contracted and your back in a neutral position during the following exercises. This is a full body workout, but you have options of how to complete it: • Alternate between 2-3 sets of upper body before moving on to 2-3 sets of the lower body and finishing with the 2-3 sets of core! • Start from the top and complete 2-3 sets! • Choose one from each section as many times as you’d like! Aim to complete 10-15 reps of the upper body and core work and 20-30 reps total (10-15 reps each leg) for the lower body work. Begin with fewer reps if you are having trouble with balance and stabilization. »


Place the palms of hands on the center of each disc and get into full or modified plank position with your hands under your shoulders instead of a wider traditional push-up position. Slide the discs out as you bend arms to 90° and exhale as you straighten arms and slide the discs back together until they touch each other or come close. Add-On Challenge » Tricep (yoga) Push-Up: After your bring your hands together bend your arms with elbows tucked in close to your body (so arms graze your sides). Touch belly down and push straight back up keeping neck in line with your spine the entire movement. »

FULL BODY & CORE » Mountain Climbers

Get into a full plank/push-up position, but this time place the sliders under your toes. Slide one knee to your chest at a time and back while maintaining a straight line from shoulders to hips to knees. You can do this fast for more intensity or slow and controlled for more core focus. Add-On Challenge » After completing one set of the regular mountain climber, pull both knees in together and tuck into a tight ball. This will engage the hip flexors more as well as the lower portion of the abs.

Add-On Challenge » Walking Plank: This will work your upper body and core all at once. Begin in the same position as Mountain Climbers and really engage core. Imagine sucking your belly button into your spine. Continue to look down in between your hands and “walk” your hands forward one hand at a time while your toes stay on the sliders and your legs drag behind you. Only go as far as you can without letting your hips drop. Push hard against the floor with hands so your shoulders stay strong and don’t sag. »


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featured bodyweight workout Advanced Challenge For Obliques Âť Cross Body Mountain Climbers: Spread feet out wider than shoulder length apart. Pull one knee in across your body toward the opposite elbow and slide back. Switch sides. Âť

LOWER BODY » Reverse Lunges

Lunging with sliders is much more challenging than regular lunging, so hold onto something for balance if needed. Stand with one foot on the ground and the other foot next to it with the toes on a slider. Push the slider back as you bend both knees to 90 degrees. Straighten the standing leg and slide back up to start. When you are comfortable doing this on one leg, progress to standing on both sliders and alternating the sliding leg with each rep. Add-On Challenge » Hold dumbbells and add a Biceps Curl at the bottom of the lunge. Advanced Challenge » Forward Lunge, followed by Alternating Forward Lunges: When that becomes easy progress to forward “Walking” Lunges. »

featured bodyweight workout LOWER BODY » Squats

You can work your way into squats the same way as lunges. Stand with feet together, one on a disc and the other on the floor. Choose to plant either the front or back half of your foot on the disc (placing the whole foot over it will be too slippery). Slide the disc to the side with toes pointing to the front or out just slightly, bend both knees, center your weight, and stop in the position for a normal air squat. Squeeze and straighten both legs to return to starting position. Advanced Challenge » Plié Squat: Turn your toes out to a 45° angle (or slightly more), slide out farther than the regular squat with knees pointing out. Squeeze the inner thighs as you bring the legs back together. Once you are comfortable using one foot on a slider at a time, progress to using both feet on sliders. Alternate sliding out with each leg. Warning: You can try to slide both feet out at once, but you may accidentally slide into a split! •

Workout by Erin Fergus; Photography by Dani Mouser; Model Amanda Underwood; Top by Vegan Yogi Unicorn.

with a Vegan Lady Athlete: Anne-Marie Campbell

Anne-Marie Campbell is a vegan athlete and animal rights activist. She has been a competitive athlete since age nine and currently trains in martial arts, with a black belt in Tae Kwon Do. A big part of her mission is to spread awareness and information about the vegan lifestyle while leading by example. She is the founder of MeatFreeAthlete.com, a blog and resource for vegans. Her motto is “Eat Kind Be Strong.”

What made you want to be vegan? I became aware of the exploitation and cruelty involved with the use of animals in our society. I always considered myself an animal lover, but I never thought about where my food or boots came from. In 2010, I saw a post online about the cruelty on factory farms, and it marked the beginning of my journey to making the connection. I started researching online and found out that the way we use and exploit animals is horrific and unacceptable. I didn’t want anything to do with it. I became vegetarian and also cut out eggs and milk. Soon after, I became vegan. Living a vegan lifestyle is much more than what I eat. It’s a holistic lifestyle that allows me to match my actions with my morals. For my mind, body and soul, being vegan is one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.



summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com


Do you have any tips for getting started with veganism and/or fitness? It’s all about perspective! Being vegan is a good thing, for the animals, your health, and the planet! Be happy about your decision to go vegan, and stay focused on what you can have, not what you are avoiding. Enjoy trying new products, learning about vegan nutrition, and veganizing your favorite meals. If it all seems overwhelming, take steps, like cutting out meat, then dairy, and so on. Everyone’s journey is different and individual. The important thing is that you are on that journey! Also, take advantage of the great vegan community online! There are so many great people who will share tips, advice and experiences. Plus, I’m always happy to help in any way I can, so connect with me on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram!

What’s your nutrition program look like? Any special dietary guidelines? The way I fuel my body is based completely on listening to my body. I’m very in tune with what my body wants, so I eat what my body asks for. I focus on eating a balance and variety of foods, and I try to eat as many colors each day as possible. I don’t restrict calories or portions. My priority is to nourish my body to perform its best and to be its healthiest, and I think for that to be accomplished I have to respect my body enough to give it what it wants without preset restrictions.

What vegan meal gives you the most energy for your workouts? I’ve been a competitive athlete since I was nine years old, and only when I became vegan did I finally find the foods that gave me the best energy for training and competition! I keep it super simple and clean. One of my favorite energy-boosting meals that works great for me is mixed beans or quinoa, raw spinach and raw mushrooms drizzled with a little balsamic. That’s it! It’s simple, cheap, nutrition-packed, and provides me with tons of energy to train 1-2 hours a day. Other foods that I like before training are tofu or tempeh, veggies or salad, and potatoes. I also make sure to stay hydrated and avoid all processed foods throughout the day when I’ll be training later that night.

What drives you? When it comes to competition or my own skill development, my drive solely comes from me trying to be a better version of myself. I am my only true competition. In martial arts, there can be a lot of ego, and I avoid all of that. If someone is good, that’s great for him or her. Being better than them isn’t what motivates me. I’m all about being the absolute best I can be, no excuses, no distractions, and no ego. Ego will become a weakness if you allow it to drive you.

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summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com

interview Do you compete in bodybuilding or another sport? What excites you most about competing? I was a competitive gymnast for 8 years, a competitive hockey player for 10+ years, and now my passion is martial arts, so I’ve started training and competing in Tae Kwon Do. Currently I’m 8 wins and 0 losses. Competing is just as much mental as it is physical. No matter how many years I’ve been a competitive athlete I still get nervous before I compete, but when it’s go time all of that disappears. I don’t see or hear anything around me (except my coaches), and I’m no longer nervous. I’m 100% in my zone with only one focus… to give everything I’ve got and push through at my maximum effort. I’m very goal oriented, so winning a trophy or medal is very rewarding for me. That’s what excites me about competing. Plus, every single competition fight I’ve had has taught me so much and has helped me grow as an athlete. I learn so much during competition, about myself and about technique, and it’s just different from when I’m training. Currently, competing is a secondary focus for me, and earning my 2nd Degree Black Belt is my main goal. • Find Anne-Marie online: Website | Facebook | Twitter

summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com


the vegan invasion of

crossfit by Holly Noll

CrossFit. A term that either makes you pumped for the workout of your life, scared of what’s about to happen, annoyed about the paleo movement, or a little of all three. Whatever your preferred fitness method, CrossFit has definitely changed the world of workouts, especially for us ladies.


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PlantBuilt team member Amber Sperling remembers her

crucial aspect of community drives women to work hard

first experience: “I wanted to die. I wasn’t sure if I would

and has certainly changed the face of female fitness as

puke or pass out.” Not exactly a glowing review unless you

more and more ladies compete publicly with six-packs and

are a lady who likes to push hard and overcome anything.

heavy barbells overhead. Carolyn explained, “I love the

CrossFit was so new to the fitness world when Carolyn

sense of community; the encouragement everyone gives

Napier, another PlantBuilt team member and long-time

each other during and after the workouts. I loved the idea

CrossFitter went to her first WOD (“Workout of the Day”).

that the workouts could be changed to meet anyone at

It was just in some guy’s hot garage with only a few pieces of

any fitness level.” So while it’s blood, sweat, and tears,

equipment, but still, she was hooked. “The workouts never

women support women to go further. Ladies in fitness

get easier; you just get stronger,” Amber said.

now have some strong role models who are proving every

For those who are new to this sport, here’s a quick run-

day that strong is indeed the new sexy.

down. According to the official site: “CrossFit itself is

But what about us ladies who are also plant based? Many

defined as that which optimizes fitness (constantly varied

CrossFit women heavily promote “paleo,” otherwise »

functional movements performed at relatively high intensity).” To most who partake it is a community as well as a workout that combines high intensity interval training, Olympic lifting and gymnastics, as well as other workout styles to “forge elite fitness.”

Women are not excused to the five pound

One crucial part of CrossFit is that it openly expects

dumbbells on the other side of the gym or

women to be as badass as men. Women are not excused

to the treadmills; they are encouraged to

to the five pound dumbbells on the other side of the gym or to the treadmills; they are encouraged to move weight,

move weight, push hard and, allowing for

push hard and, allowing for the physical differences, be

the physical differences, be just as strong

just as strong as their male counterparts. Additionally, the

as their male counterparts.

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known as the self-positioned arch nemesis of veganism. It’s a diet that relies primarily on whole foods but is most publicly supportive of high meat consumption. These strong women we looked up to for being badass were wearing knee high socks proudly proclaiming “bacon” on them. Needless to say, a vegan can feel out of place in the CrossFit community. This can create those same feelings of isolation we were so excited to break down in the fitness world. Corey Barnes, owner of Corey’s Gym/Northbay CrossFit in San Rafael, CA described the biggest obstacle on her fitness journey as “the paleo diet.” She is commonly pitted against these myths, pointing out, “there is no science behind the paleo diet” and that “meat causes inflammation,” which is definitely something athletes are doing their very best to avoid. But with so many preaching the unfounded gospel myths of paleo, who are also performing well, it’s quite difficult even for those who are dedicated to the vegan lifestyle. “Diet was discussed (at the CrossFit certification) and the instructor would say that vegans and vegetarians can’t be strong and won’t be good at CrossFit. I didn’t really know what to think.” Carolyn explained further, “I was torn between wanting to be strong and good at CrossFit and wanting to eat and live cruelty-free.” Time and time



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again, however, instead of being a hindrance, plant-based athletes like Carolyn describe veganism as giving “the ability to recover faster, becoming much less sore than the non-plant-based members of my gym.” Performance and recovery are enhanced by being vegan, but regarding strength: “I’m every bit as strong as a non-vegan.” Corey said this drive even creates a “bit of a different purpose, and sometimes a bit more pressure.” Knowing that they inspire others with a vegan diet compels these women of CrossFit to push past boundaries that may have simply been walls without this motivation. “As a vegan athlete, it’s my mission to break stereotypes,” Amber said.


From changing expectations of what it means to be a strong and fit woman, to pushing the boundaries of the ideal athletic diet, the plant-based ladies of CrossFit are indeed forging a new vision of elite fitness. These women are the proof that with every workout, every PR (personal record), and every time they perform better than their meat-eating counterparts; a vegan diet is the best for performance and for the animals. If you have a desire to try a paleo version of the vegan diet, Ellen Jaffe Jones and Alan Roettinger’s Paleo Vegan cookbook can guide you along the way. They share a little about the book and recipes to get you started. • Find Holly online: Check out the Our Team page.

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the dawn of the

paleo vegan

By Ellen Jaffe Jones

I was on a high from speaking at Orlando’s Earth Day. What better way to save the planet than eating a vegan diet? Vegans use far less land and water, not to mention the countless other benefits. Later, I joined friends at a restaurant when the waitress remarks, “I used to be vegan. But now I’m paleo and I’ve lost so much weight.” Before I could say, “Of course, any highprotein diet will cause weight loss, at the expense of your heart, kidneys and other organs,” she was gone, leaving my friends asking “What’s paleo?” How could they not know? In my fitness universe, everybody knows. That’s 34 years of running, racing, being on the board of running clubs, being a certified personal trainer and certified running coach. Increasing numbers gush about the paleo diet and their CrossFit gyms. I thought to myself, another vegan myth needs busting. That was two years ago and now Paleo Vegan has come to life. Meat-based paleo books are written by those who looked at anthropology and drew conclusions. But there was no Instagram back then. Animal bones fossilize better than plants. There is evidence that plant eating dates back into the Paleolithic period, anywhere from two million years ago to about 7,000 years ago. The paleo craze developed as people asked, “What did our ancestors eat?” Many romanticized ways to incorporate what they believed was our genetic destiny.



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There is significant common ground between paleo and vegan: •  Whole, unprocessed plant foods •  Healthy fats •  No dairy (with some paleo author’s exceptions)

Wild boar didn’t run through our backyards three times a

Athletes, vegan or not, can’t imagine doing a marathon

day as meat-based paleo books would have you believe. We

or bodybuilding without the strength and slow burn only

were more gatherers than hunters. The odds of boys going

acquired from plants. Endurance and sprint runners find

out on a hunt and finding, let alone capturing and health-

that plants speed recovery and help prevent injury. A plant-

fully eating animal protein weren’t great. It all depended on

rich, unprocessed diet, a paleo vegan diet, is an athlete’s

location, availability and hunting prowess.

dream. •

Women were generally tending the home. They were limited

Ellen Jaffe Jones is a certified personal trainer (AFAA), certified running

to foraging in their immediate environment for berries, roots, nuts, seeds and available vegetables…very plant-based,

coach (RRCA) and is a nationally ranked sprinter. She is the author of “Eat Vegan on $4 a Day,” “Kitchen Divided,” and “Paleo Vegan: Plant-Based Primal Recipes.” Find her online: Website

exclusively so in some cases. Paleo omits grains and legumes because they were developed in recent archaeological times, “post agriculture,” about 7,000 years ago. But if you don’t have a problem digesting beans and grains, there is no reason to eliminate them because they provide necessary fiber, iron, B vitamins and other nutrients. Genes can adapt. Blood tests never lie, so if you have concerns about any medical condition, get tested. Some paleo books recognize that the diet is hard to follow and allow for a 15-20% “cheat.” Ask paleo followers what they do for their cheat and often, it is not healthy. So for vegans, the “cheat” can easily be beans and grains. Paleo books also make exceptions for athletes who need complex carbohydrates to sustain energy. These foods include potatoes, wild rice, and quinoa.

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Oyster Mushroom and Baby Bok Choy Curry By Alan Roettinger It’s time for a little modern-day foraging. If you have an Asian market near you, make a trip and see if you can find both oyster mushrooms and the very small Szechuan-style baby bok choy, which are sold in clusters about the size of an apple. While you’re there, you’ll also want to look for a panang curry paste that does not contain shrimp.

Ingredients: 12 ounces (340 g) firm tofu, cut into 1/2 inch cubes (optional) 1 tablespoon (15 ml) low-sodium tamari (optional) 1 pound (453 g) oyster mushrooms 8 ounces (227 g) baby bok choy 2 tablespoons (30 ml) extra-virgin coconut oil 2 tablespoons (30 ml) panang or red curry paste 1 can (15 oz/425 g) full-fat coconut milk 1/2 cup (118 ml) coarsely chopped fresh cilantro 4 scallions, thinly sliced on a sharp diagonal, for garnish

Directions: Put the optional tofu and optional tamari in a medium bowl and toss gently. Set aside. Quarter the mushrooms lengthwise. If the bok choy clusters are very small, they may be left whole or quartered lengthwise; otherwise, cut them crosswise into 6 slices about 1/2 inch wide. Put a large saucepan over high heat and add the oil. Tilt the saucepan back and forth until the oil melts and is evenly distributed. Add the mushrooms and bok choy. Stir briskly to prevent sticking until the bok choy wilts, about 1 minute. Stir in the curry paste until well distributed. Add the coconut milk and stir until well combined. Bring to a boil, decrease the heat to medium, and simmer until the mushrooms are tender, about 4 minutes. Add the tofu, if using, and warm through, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the cilantro. Divide among four bowls and garnish generously with the scallions. Serve at once. Makes 4 servings •

Nutrition per serving: Calories: 241 Carbohydrates: 14 g Fiber: 4 g Net Carbohydrates: 10 g Fat: 18 g Protein: 6 g Recipes from Paleo Vegan: Plant-based Primal Recipes. Reprinted with permission from Book Pub Co. and Alan Roettinger.


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Dandelion Salad with Beets By Alan Roettinger Dandelion greens are among the most healthful foods in existence. Like all bitter greens, they act as a powerful blood purifier. When combined with beets as they are here, dandelion greens also help detoxify the liver. In addition, this combo is easy on the palate because the greens’ bitter edge is tamed by the beets’ sweetness. Brazil nuts bring protein, selenium, and a satisfying crunch to the mix. Health and pleasure! Ingredients:


1 large bunch very fresh dandelion greens

Keeping the dandelion greens in a bunch, hold them by the

(about 6 cups cut leaves)

stems and rinse well under cold running water to remove

2 cups (473 ml) grated beets 1/2 cup (118 ml) grated carrot 1/2 cup (118 ml) thinly sliced red onion 1/2 cup (118 ml) thinly sliced celery heart, including leaves 1/3 cup (78 ml) freshly squeezed tangerine juice 2 tablespoons (30 ml) white balsamic or champagne vinegar

any grit. Remove any decayed bits, then lay the bunch on a cutting board and cut the leaves and tender stems crosswise at 1-inch intervals. Put in a salad spinner and spin dry, or blot dry with a clean dish towel. Put the greens in a large bowl and add the beets, carrot, onion, and celery. Toss until well combined. Put the tangerine juice, vinegar, mustard, salt, and pepper in a medium bowl and whisk until well combined. Add the oil in a thin stream, whisking constantly until emulsified. Pour over the

2 teaspoons (10 ml) Dijon mustard

salad and toss thoroughly.

1/4 teaspoon (1 ml) sea salt

Divide the salad among four plates. Top with the Brazil nuts

1/4 teaspoon (1 ml) freshly ground mixed peppercorns or black only

and serve at once. Makes 4 servings •

1/4 cup (59 ml) walnut oil or extra-virgin olive oil 1/2 cup (118 ml) Brazil nuts, cut into 4 pieces each

Nutrition per serving: Calories: 241 Carbohydrates: 14 g Fiber: 4 g Net Carbohydrates: 10 g Fat: 18 g Protein: 6 g Recipes from Paleo Vegan: Plant-based Primal Recipes. Reprinted with permission from Book Pub Co. and Alan Roettinger.

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do you have the guts? how to deal with digestive issues on a vegan diet by Emily Segal, MA, CHHC

Eating a vegan diet can make your skin glow, energy levels soar, and bring health on every level. It can also produce a lot of gas. When I told my husband I had been asked to write an article on gas and bloating, he said “Apparently you’re renown for gas production has spread far and wide.” ...But yeah. I’m gassy sometimes. On a steady diet of beans, whole grains, fiber-filled veggies and soy, sometimes it’s a challenge not to be. But there are things we can do to lessen the gas, deal with bloating, and even prevent much of it from occurring in the first place.

Bumpy Beginnings: When first switching to a vegan diet, the digestive transition can be rough. Suddenly you are eating a lot more fiber, especially harder to digest things such as beans and broccoli. This phase will pass as your body adjusts to the changes. But you can help things along by eating smaller portions of gas-producing foods. For some people that literally means just a few spoonfuls of beans at any time. You can slowly increase the amounts you are eating as your body learns to adapt.



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Chewing is Crucial: We all think we chew just fine until someone asks us to really pay attention and chew 50 times before swallowing. Go ahead, try it, I’ll wait... Now do you realize that you’re not chewing enough? The enzymes that digest carbohydrates are largely present in our saliva. The longer food spends in the mouth, getting mashed and mixed with those enzymes, the better digestion will be and the less gas you’ll experience down the line. Chew, chew, chew. Mash the food until it’s liquid. Pay attention while you’re eating. Don’t eat on the run or multi-task by scrolling Instagram.

Drink Differently: If you are suffering from painful bloating, the next most important thing you can do is to not eat and drink at the same time. This one tip often solves my clients’ bloating issues completely. Drinking can water down the digestive enzymes, and in someone whose digestion isn’t strong to begin with, can cause real problems. Leave at least 20 minutes drink-free on either side of a meal.

Skip the Bubbles: Soda and carbonated beverages can just add more gas to what’s already brewing. Plus many artificial sweeteners cause digestive havoc for many people. Eliminate all soda for two weeks and see what happens.

Fruity Mix: Some people are sensitive to mixing fruit and other foods. It is better for these people if they consume fruit before other foods and always alone. Wait at least 20–30 minutes before consuming anything else. Other people are fine with fruit as a dessert, so just pay attention to what works for you personally.

Bugs to the Rescue! Funny to imagine, but we humans have more bacteria cells than human cells! The body, especially the lower gastrointestinal tract, contains a diverse and dynamic community of microflora, many of which are beneficial and even necessary to good health and smooth digestion. But modern life can often deplete the good bacteria and let the less beneficial ones run amok. Antibiotic use, long-term birth control pill usage, exposure to chemicals and pesticides, illnesses, chronic stress, and parasitic infections can severely upset the

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balance in our gut. Taking a probiotic supplement for a month or two can help re-populate our digestive tract with beneficial bacteria. Be sure to find a probiotic that does not contain dairy products. Consuming kombucha tea (especially home-brewed, where your local yeasts and bacteria will colonize your booch), as well as other fermented foods such as kimchi, pickles, and sauerkraut can also help restore digestive vigor. In addition to probiotics, we can keep ourselves healthy by making sure we consume prebiotics as well. According to Dr Joel Fuhrman, prebiotics are “non-digestible food ingredients that stimulate the growth and/or activity of beneficial bacteria in the digestive tract. They are found naturally in a variety of plant-based foods including onions, garlic, asparagus, leeks, artichokes, oats, and bananas. These short-chain carbohydrates or oligosaccharides are not hydrolyzed by digestive enzymes in the upper GI tract and, therefore, arrive in the colon intact where they provide food for the good bacteria. Prebiotics are beneficial, perhaps even necessary, to promote the growth and survival of probiotics in the GI tract.” Dr Fuhrman also recommends consuming a small amount of grated raw beet, carrot, and/or cabbage daily to help patients with small-bowel bacterial overgrowth issues.

Foods that don’t love you back: Sometimes, tummy troubles can be related to certain foods you just don’t digest well. As mentioned earlier, there are some you can train yourself to eat, but there are others you should just steer clear of. As vegans we don’t have to worry about the number one gas offender, dairy products, but for some, soy is just as bad. Along with corn, peanuts, wheat, dairy and eggs, soy is one of the world’s top food allergens. A 30-day elimination of any suspected food can help you determine if you feel better without certain things. Fermented soy (tempeh) seems easier for many people to digest. Sugar and caffeine are two others that often cause bloating and gas issues among my clients. When we do a 30-day elimination of both, they are shocked at how much better they feel.

The slow train: Although not usually a problem for people eating a high-fiber, vegan diet, some people do tend to still have a tendency for constipation. Be aware that slow-moving stool in the colon is likely to produce some pretty serious gas. Tips to help with constipation is an article in and of itself, but a few pointers are staying hydrated, never holding back when you have the urge to go, getting regular exercise, and using fiber supplements such as psyllium or flax (although these can also cause gas, so be aware), as well as eating lots of fruits and vegetables. Sometimes squatting on the toilet instead of sitting brings miraculous results (and makes clever use of those squat-built quads too.)



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What to do with the toots: OK, so despite all the precautions you have taken, you’re still bloated and gassy. Is there anything you can do to help? Yes! Here is a list of helpful suggestions: • Chewing on fennel seeds, or drinking fennel, ginger, or peppermint tea can help move gas along, but be prepared to then let it out somewhere. • Take a walk. Alone. This usually gets things moving out and away! • Google “wind-releasing pose” and perform the yoga pose that does what it says it does. • Don’t overeat or overload the stomach. Try to stop eating when you are 80% full. • Get a full gastrointestinal work-up. A good doctor can test you for things such as parasites and candida, as well as diagnose other digestive issues such as IBS, colitis, polyps, and stomach ulcers.

One last word: As with everything a holistic health coach teaches, food isn’t always the answer or the cause of problems. If you are unhappy, stressed, anxious, or off-balance, digestion is often the first thing to suffer. You cannot truly live a healthy life until you learn to handle life’s inevitable stresses without damaging your well-being, and to embrace happiness and joy. A good coach or therapist can help you learn these skills. • Emily Segal is a Board Certified Holistic Health Coach and the founder and owner of Triumph Wellness, an international nutrition counseling practice. Emily specializes in plant-based nutrition, sugar addiction, emotional eating and sports nutrition. A lifelong vegetarian, Emily became vegan in 2009 and used the new found health gains to accomplish her first full marathon at the age of 45. Find Emily online: Website | Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram

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Sea Breeze

Criss Cross Bra Top




Good For/Impact

Spinning/Medium Impact

Lifting/Low Impact

Best For

Small, Medium, or Large Cup Sizes

Small Cup Sizes

Comfort Level




80% nylon, 20% spandex

80% nylon, 20% spandex




Special Features

Made in USA, California

Made in USA

Overall Thoughts

I can only attest for my small cup size, but this bra has what it takes to keep things in place, so I can imagine it would also work for medium or large cup size. The high-cut front allows for no worries when weightlifting, leaning forward while instructing my Spinning classes, or even defying gravity with yoga.

Even though Onzie is marketed as yoga wear I find their apparel great for weight training or everyday wear. This bra top is definitely for those with smaller breasts and wouldn’t be suited for high impact activity due to it’s low-cut neckline.


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featured guide Sports bras. We all wear them, but which are good for what activity or have the best support? With so many styles and brands on the market it’s hard to figure out which ones will be the best for our specific needs, whether our focus is support, comfort, cuteness, or budget. Our team took a test drive of some of our favorite bras, rating and reviewing them on all aspects of use from aesthetics to utility, price point to training style. We’ve got you covered.





Camo Sports Bra




Good For/Impact

Running/High Impact

Lifting, Interval Training/High Impact

Best For

Larger Cup Sizes

Small, or Medium Cup Sizes

Comfort Level


Good but a little scratchy along the bottom seam


92% Polyester, 8% Spandex, 200 gsm

Supplex Lycra 90%, Nylon 10%




Special Features

Reflective design elements, removable bra cups

Wrinkle and shrink resistant, moisture wicking

Overall Thoughts

A nice bra for short distance runs. The material is light-weight and breathes well. Tested it on a 7 mile run and, unfortunately around mile 3, I became aware of a hook in the back poking me. I ended up with a nasty chafe in the middle of my back. Also, I’m not a fan of removable cups as I find they don’t hold their shape as well as built-in cups.

I love the look and the support. The straps are cute and move with you because the straps attach with a unique system so it doesn’t feel confining. The bottom seam is a little rough when I first put it on but it broke in by the end of the workout.


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Under $25







featured guide

Moving Comfort




One Shoulder Sports Bra




Good For/Impact

Running/High Impact

Lifting, Interval Training /High Impact

Best For

Larger Cup Sizes

All Cup Sizes

Comfort Level




BODY: 75% polyester, 25% Lycra® spandex CUPS: 100% polyester

90% Supplex Lycra, 10% Nylon




Special Features

50 UPF Sun Protection

Unique one shoulder, shrink and wrinkle resistant

Overall Thoughts

A trusted bra for long distance runs. It provides great stability without the dreaded “uni-boob” look and no chafing, despite delicate skin.

I love the uniqueness of the one shoulder look but I found that it looked odd under all of my two shoulder tops as I don’t workout in just a sports bra. There is some padding built in and I found it to be soft and very comfortable. Although I’m sure it wasn’t their intention, this bra’s front running strap to make it one shoulder created great padding for cleans and front squats too. This bra would be great for someone wanting to have a stylish top to wear on its own.


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Plantsformation Vegan Athletes Inspired Elana Priesman to Change her Lifestyle and Atart Inspiring Others I had struggled with weight and health issues my entire life, and I believe fate brought me to meet Rip Esselstyn, Robert Cheeke, and Chad Byers. After watching the documentaries Forks Over Knives and Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead, I had tried to discuss a vegan diet with doctors and nutritionists and they didn’t support it. I actually had a doctor try to convince me to go paleo. Luckily, I met these three men the very next week, on August 30, 2012, and my life changed forever. I had never seen fit men before who didn’t eat meat; I was astounded! I have lost over 80 pounds since that night. Seven years of cholesterol in the 260’s plummeted to below 170, and diabetes and insulin resistance disappeared, too. Not only that; I feel incredible every day, have tons of energy, and work


out eight times a week! My passion is to educate others about the amazing benefits of plant-based nutrition. I feel empowered and enlightened. Giving my body what it needs with plantstrong nutrition brings me so much joy. I feel so much more alive not putting dead energy from decayed animals in my body. My new passion led me to obtain a certification in Plant-Based Nutrition from the T. Colin Campbell Foundation. I continue to kick butt in the gym, gaining

I am beyond thrilled to have been exposed to this new world. Every day my life has renewed meaning and purpose to push myself harder and educate myself more and more. My goal is to be the change I wish to see in the world, and to use my body as an example that this is possible. I am still on my journey and wish to lose another 15–20 pounds and get more defined, but the physical is only secondary to how amazing I feel and living a cruelty-free life.

strength and setting an example for others on a weight loss

I hope to inspire others on their journey! •

and health transformation.

Find Elana on Facebook

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In Jo’s Kitchen

Spinach and Cashew Pesto

The perfect versatile summer sauce, dip, spread… the possibilities really are endless.

Ingredients: 1 packed cup (100 g) spinach

Directions: In a small food processor, blend everything other than the spinach and cashews to form a smooth paste. Add the spinach and cashews last and pulse

1 small peeled shallot

until slightly chunky.

1 clove garlic

Serve cold or add to a hot dish at the end of cooking. Keeps refrigerated for a

3 tablespoons (45 g) cashew butter 3 tablespoons (30 g) crushed cashews 1 tablespoon (15 g) olive oil 1 tablespoon (15 g) lemon juice Sea salt to taste

few days. Want more ideas? Try adding to a pasta salad, dollop on top of a raw salad bowl, add to a soup (raw or cooked) to bump up the flavour and texture, or mix through some mashed avocado for a thicker style spread to top crackers or bread. Makes 6 servings • Nutrition per serving: Calories: 102  Carbohydrates: 5 g  Fiber: 1 g  Net Carbs: 4 g  Fat: 9 g  Protein: 3 g


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Chia Jam Parfait

The perfect summer dessert. This easy chia jam is a summer fridge essential for drizzling over snacks for a sweet fix when the urge strikes. Ingredients: 1/2 cup (120 g) pureed strawberries 3 tablespoons (30 g) white chia seeds (dark chia seeds also work but aren’t as pretty) Few drops stevia or a drizzle of syrup of choice (optional) Other ingredients for parfait: I used a handful of granola, extra berries, and non-dairy yogurt, but you could also use a crushed cookie, nuts, mixed chopped fruit, nut butter, or non-dairy ice cream.

Directions: Blend all the jam ingredients together to achieve a thick sauce. Store in fridge for 30 mins before serving to thicken up further. Layer with other parfait ingredients to create chia jam parfait. Note: the seeds look like fruit seeds, but to avoid the seeds texture you could grind them first, this will create an even thicker jam. Want more ideas? Try drizzled over pancakes, layered up in a PB&J sandwich, in fruit smoothies or green shakes, mixed with plain non-dairy yogurt or added to your bowl of oatmeal. Makes 2 parfaits • Nutrition per serving: Calories: 70  Carbohydrates: 11 g  Fiber: 7 g  Net Carbs: 4 g  Fat: 9 g  Protein: 4 g

Jo Hodson is the health conscious plant-based foodie and recipe developer behind the holistic health website Including Cake. After completing a Certificate in Plant Based Nutrition, she furthered her desire to empower others with certified diplomas in both Holistic Health Coaching and Personal Performance Coaching currently ongoing. Find Jo online: Website Recipes and Photography by Jo Hodson.

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Gaining Confidence

Lacy Davis healed an eating disorder with lifting & gained so much more The first time I held a barbell in my hands I was terrified. I was trying to recover from an eating disorder for half a decade and succeeding in brief spurts before failing every single time. I had shied away from ‘weight’ in general, both in terms of my body and my workouts. The act of grow-

because there weren’t a lot of other options. I wanted six-pack abs. I wanted to do exercise that didn’t fill me with silent rage. I wanted my female students to look at me and think: “What a strong, healthy badass! I want to be just like her.”

ing my muscles in order to throw something of mass and

My first workout with a barbell was 75 power snatches for

volume over my head was completely foreign to me. The

time. I lifted what I now consider the very low weight of

kind of body that could be successful at weight lifting was

35 pounds and it took me 12 minutes. I would love to do


that workout again, because I would probably cut my time

People were very reassuring: “You won’t gain weight!” the Internet said. “Weight lifting doesn’t make you big!” my coaches said.

in half. But at the time, holy sh*t, that workout wrecked me. The body that I considered to be extremely fit (despite the anorexia, despite the bulimia, despite the compulsive cardio) was in pain for days. I thought lifting couldn’t be a cardiovascular workout, that it was just designed to make

“You will be growing sleek, lean muscle mass!”

you strong and not really make you sweat. Boy was I wrong!

I dreamed of my new six-pack. I thought of the elliptical

Fast forward two years. I never got those six-pack abs. That

machine and the running I had grown to hate. My new

might be a bummer to hear, but it’s the truth. Sometimes I

job as a high school teacher meant my students would be

have a really cute two pack, but that’s not a daily occurrence

watching my changes. I decided I could lift the weights,

and when it happens it’s kind of a big deal. Also, the



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Internet lied. I did gain weight. Kind of a lot of weight in fact. I couldn’t tell you the number because I hadn’t weighed myself when I started, but I had to buy new clothes. You know what else I gained, though? Recovery. Confidence. Strength. In the beginning of my weight lifting journey I connected two dots that were crucial in healing from my eating disorder. I had the desire to lift weight, to recover strong, and to wake up the next day and lift again. This allowed me to be a strong and powerful teacher for my students. There was no way I could lift and be a happy, present, useful human being when I was throwing up my food. That practice that had become a staple to my life was getting in the way of my new goals. The day I lifted my first weight was the day I stopped throwing up my food. I didn’t intend for that to be a forever decision but among other things, weightlifting helped me to wake up each morning with certain goals in mind. Bulimia would only get in the way of those goals. And while my ass got much bigger (and higher, and rounder) and my thighs grew to strain against my skinny jeans; I suddenly realized that these things weren’t the point anymore. The point, these days, is owning my curves and my sexuality instead of trying to diminish my body into nothing. It is lifting my own furniture when I move and knowing I can sprint in an emergency. The point is learning to love a body that isn’t like the ones on the billboards, but doesn’t seem to be any less attractive to the people around me. The point is using my strength as an example of what veganism can be, letting my physique bust through those stereotypes about weak protein-lacking herbivores. The point is choosing my power over my complete and total disappearance. Weightlifting did grow my body, but grew my heart and mind, too. Weightlifting saved my life. • Lacy Davis is a health and wellness coach working in Oakland, CA. Find Lacy online: Facebook | Twitter

BEFORE: Battling multiple eating disorders NOW: Strong and Confident

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Make Your 4th of July Celebration an Eco-Picnic by Laura Theodore

Photo by Joe Orecchio.


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Keeping our bodies fit during the summer months is made easier with all of the warm weather options for working out. I live in the northeast, where I find it quite challenging to follow a regular exercise routine during the winter, but as soon as the balmy breezes of summer emerge, daily swimming, kayaking and gardening all top my list for fitness fun. While getting our bodies fit is a high priority, keeping our planet fit has a high level of importance, too. When hosting a weekend party, celebrating with healthy, compassionate and earth-friendly options is essential. To keep July 4th festivities nutritious, kind and green, I like to offer a delicious and festive plant-based, vegan menu prepared and served in an eco-friendly manner. The greenest choice for dining alfresco is to use everyday dishes for serving. For disposable choices, use eco-dishware made from bamboo, recycled, or biodegradable materials. If traveling for your picnic, pack tableware in a wicker basket or reusable bag, making sure to include washable cloth napkins, tablecloth and reusable serving utensils, drinkware and tableware. Start your fête by serving quick and easy appetizers such as low-fat hummus with veggie dippers. For your meal, homemade gazpacho, appealing salads, grilled veggies, plant-based burgers and a fresh fruit dessert all make tempting additions to a portable picnic menu. These easy recipes and eco-tips will make your summer soirée healthy, compassionate and gentle on our Earth! Oh yes, it is delicious! Happy July 4th!


Quick Plant-Based Mayo

This quick, vegan mayo works well as a base for creamy salads such as potato, macaroni or mock tuna. If you are accustomed to the taste of a commercially prepared vegan mayo, add a heaping teaspoon of sucanat or brown sugar to this homemade version to make up for the “sweet” taste that is prevalent in most store bought mayo brand’s pleasing texture. Ingredients:


1/2 block (7 to 8 oz) firm silken tofu

Put all of the ingredients in a blender and process until smooth. Taste and

1/2 teaspoon (2.5 ml) freshly squeezed lemon juice (plus more as needed) 1/8 teaspoon (.6 ml) sea salt

add more lemon juice, if desired, to taste. Store leftover mayo tightly covered in the refrigerator up to 24 hours. Makes about 1 cup • Nutrition Per Serving: Calories: 116 Carbs: 6 g Fiber: 1 g Net Carbs: 5 g Protein: 10 g Fat: 6 g

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Mock Tuna Salad

Based in tempeh, this mock “tuna” salad stands in well for the real deal with its satisfying taste and pleasing texture. The secret ingredient is the Nori seaweed, which imparts a subtle seafood taste, making this version a great plant-based substitute for classic tuna salad. Ingredients:


16 oz tempeh, cubed (454 g)

Steam tempeh for 10 minutes. Place steamed tempeh in a medium bowl.

2 small sheets Nori seaweed

Mash tempeh using a potato masher or large fork and let cool. While the tempeh cools, place the nori into a blender and grind into coarse crumbs.

4 tablespoons (59 ml) low-fat vegan may-

Add the ground nori to the tempeh mixture. Add the vegan mayo, Dijon,

onnaise, or Quick Plant-Based Mayo (see

seasoning, turmeric, sea salt and pepper. Mash together using a large fork or

recipe below)

potato masher, until well combined.

2 heaping teaspoons (30 ml)

Refrigerate for 2 to 4 hours, until well chilled. Serve on a bed of crisp lettuce,

Dijon mustard

or make an open face sandwich by taking one slice of whole grain bread and

2 teaspoons (10 ml) all-purpose seasoning 1/2 teaspoon (2.5 ml) turmeric 1/2 teaspoon (2.5 ml) sea salt Several grinds freshly ground pepper


topping it with a generous portion of the mock tuna. Garnish with fresh sprouts and tomatoes. Makes 4 to 6 servings. • Nutrition Per Serving: Calories: 138 Carbs: 8 g Fiber: 4 g Net Carbs: 4 g Protein: 8 g Fat: 8 g

summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com

Potato-Hummus Canapés

So easy, yet totally tasty, these innovative appetizers are sure to impress. Using store bought hummus makes it super-quick, but if you like, use your favorite homemade variety. Ingredients:


2 to 3 large baked russet or white potatoes,

Cut the cold potatoes into 1/4 inch slices. Put each slice on a large serving

thoroughly chilled*

platter and top with about 1 tablespoon of the hummus. Top with an olive

10 ounces (284 g) prepared or homemade low-fat hummus 7 green queen olives with pimento, thinly sliced 1 teaspoon (5 ml) dried dill weed or 1 tablespoon (15 ml) fresh chopped dill weed

slice. Continue in this way with the remaining potato slices, arranging them in a pleasing manner on the platter, as you go. Sprinkle dill weed over the canapés and serve immediately. * You may bake the potatoes up to two days before assembling this dish. Wrap them tightly and store in the refrigerator until using. Makes 6 servings. • Nutrition Per Serving: Calories: 205 Carbs: 43 g Fiber: 7 g Net Carbs: 36 g Fat: 0 g Protein: 7 g Note: 2 grams fat in entire recipe

Laura Theodore is a 2014 TASTE Award-winning television personality, radio host, vegan chef, cookbook author and recording artist. Ms. Theodore is author of Jazzy Vegetarian Classics: Vegan Twists on American Family Favorites and Jazzy Vegetarian: Lively Vegan Cuisine Made Easy and Delicious. Laura is the on-camera host of the weekly Jazzy Vegetarian cooking show on PBS and she hosts the podcast, Jazzy Vegetarian Radio. Find Laura online: Website Recipes by Laura Theodore. Photography by Joe Orecchio and Peter Capozzi.

summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com







It’s a classic showdown! Which one comes out on top to build a better butt? by Erin Fergus

squat The squat is a compound, multi-joint movement that

not placed in an offset way that would put more weight on

involves motion at the hip and knee and targets the erector

one leg than the other and throw you off balance.

spinae muscles of the lower back and the gluteus maximus, hamstrings and quadriceps. It can be performed in many ways with different equipment: body weight squats, wall squats with a stability ball, squat jumps, sumo squats with a kettlebell, goblet squats with a dumbbell, pistol squats with a TRX, and front or back squat with barbells.

Your knees should stay at the same distance apart from each other and point forward during the squat. If your knees buckle inward at any point, consider increasing your hip abductor and adductor work to stabilize your legs. Your lower back should not round at any time, and you should be able to maintain natural lumbar curvature. If your back

The squat can also be performed incorrectly in many ways.

does round, consider lowering the weight, improving hip

The first mistake is usually in the knee, which often comes

and glute flexibility, and increasing core strength.

too far forward over the toes or rolls in. The knees will move just slightly forward as you lower, but you should still be able to see your toes at the deepest part of the squat. Thinking of “sitting back in a chair” will help with sticking the butt out and back and keeping the weight in the heels.

If all of that form is correct, you then have to ask yourself, “How low will I go?” Although some people don’t consider anything shallower than “ass to grass” to still be a squat, that is not necessary or healthy for many populations. People with knee problems may have to stick with an upright posi-

Foot and toe placement varies a bit depending on your leg

tion such as a wall squat with a stability ball behind them

length, hip width and joint mobility, so there’s no “perfect”

or using a Smith machine and go no deeper than parallel,

stance for everyone. A general recommendation is to stand

if that. With proper form, most people should be able to

with feet shoulder width apart and toes turned out slightly,

sink just below parallel, but also consider your goals. Going

but you can wiggle around a bit and test out different place-

to just parallel (or less than that, only if you have physical

ments (before adding weight!) to find what feels most com-

limitations and not because you’re using too much weight!)

fortable and enables the most range of motion. Just make

emphasizes the quadriceps the most, while going deeper

sure your toes are not pointed inward or that your feet are

engages the gluteus maximus as well.



summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com

We see it everywhere these days. We’re supposed to “drop it like a squat” or squat so we don’t “look like Miley,” or, when all else fails, “shut up and squat.” With all the attention the squat has received, it must be the end all be all of lower body exercises, right? Not necessarily. Other exercises may be superior to the squat, and performing squats improperly can lead to dropping that exercise from your routine.

lunge Is throwing a heavy bar on your back and lowering as deeply as you can into a squat the only way to sculpt an amazing backside and legs? Absolutely not! Enter the lunge. The lunge also has plenty of variations: stationary lunges, walking lunges, sliding lunges on slider discs, reverse lunges elevated on a step for deeper range of motion, suspended lunges with one foot in a TRX, weighted walking lunges with dumbbells or a barbell, and Bulgarian lunge (split squat) with the top of the back foot resting on a bench.

walking or elevated versions that require more stabilization. The “best” program is always a well-rounded one, so consider including several variations of squats and lunges as long as you don’t experience any joint pain and don’t sacrifice proper form for heavier weights. One other thing that never gets discussed when building a “squat booty” is that squats only target the gluteus maximus, one of three muscles in the gluteal group. The gluteus medius and minimus are targeted primarily during hip abduction movements. You can use the seated

Lunge form is not quite as detailed as squat form and has less

hip abduction machine, wrap a cable around the ankle and

room for interpretation. When you lower into a lunge, your

do standing side leg lifts, or wrap a resistance loop around

head should stay looking straight ahead, your back should

your ankles and side shuffle in a “monster walk.” These exer-

stay upright with natural curvature, your shoulders should be

cises can add shape to the glutes while correcting muscular

right above your hips and back knee, and both legs should

imbalances and improving stabilization, which leads to better

create 90 degree angles. You may need to check your form

technique when doing anything from squatting to running.

against a mirror or by watching a video of yourself to make sure you are performing it correctly. As long as lunges do not create any pain in your knees, you should be able to do them and not worry about any back rounding or pain that squats

By targeting the right muscles with the right movements and using the right technique, you can sculpt a butt that not only looks good in jeans and yoga pants but is strong and keeps you safe! •

may create. You will also never use weights as heavy on lunges

Find Erin online: Check out the Our Team page!

that you might on squats, so there is less overall compression

Photography by Dani Mouser; Model Amanda Underwood;

force. You still get full activation of the quads, hamstrings and

Top by Vegan Yogi Unicorn.

glutes, AND more hip abductor and adductor recruitment in

summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com




1/2 cup (75 g) white onion, sliced thin 1 cup (128 g) carrot, sliced thin 1 cup (104 g) cucumber, sliced thin White wine vinegar (enough to cover pickling veg) 1 cup (170 g) cashews, soaked in water to cover 8 ounces (224 g) tempeh 1/2 tablespoon (8.5 g) miso

1/2 tablespoon (7 ml) maple syrup


6 cups (255 g) romaine lettuce

2 tablespoons (15 ml) capers


1 cup water (115 g) 1 Medjool date 2 tablespoons (16 g) nutritional yeast 2 tablespoons (15 ml) fresh lemon juice

1 teaspoon (5 g) miso 1 teaspoon (5 g) kelp granules


1/2 cup (85 g) cornmeal or polenta 1.5 cups (355 ml) water 1/2 teaspoon (2.5 g) garlic salt 2 tablespoons (16 g) nutritional yeast 1/2 teaspoon (2.5 g) dried sage 1/2 teaspoon (2.5 g) dried thyme Black pepper, to taste 59

x u d e R d er Sala


1/4 cup (42 g) raw almonds

1 teaspoon (5 g) garlic salt





1 tablespoon (14 g) dijon mustard



1/2 cup (118 ml) hot water


Vegan Gluten-Free

Caesar Salad with Dijon Miso Glazed Tempeh and Polenta Croutons

by Lacy J. Davis


The night before

Soak 1 cup of cashews in water to cover. Submerge cucumber, carrots and onions in a jar filled with white wine vinegar. You do not need to seal the jar, as these are just quick pickles. Cut tempeh block into 4 equal parts. Slice each of those pieces in half width-wise, then slice it diagonally lengthwise to make into triangles. Set aside. Boil 1/2 cup water and then pour it on top of 1/2 tablespoon miso to dissolve. Âť Add all marinade ingredients (dijon mustard, maple syrup, miso broth) and tempeh to a resealable plastic container. Put the lid on, and shake vigorously. Put all of the above in the fridge overnight. summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com

Day of salad serving!

Preheat your oven to 450°F. Chop romaine into bite-sized pieces and put in bowls. Sprinkle with almonds, capers, and quick pickles. The quick pickles should be quite vinegar-y so start small and add more if that's your thing! For the dressing, drain soaked cashews. Add nuts, date, nutritional yeast, lemon juice, garlic salt, miso, and kelp to the blender with a cup of water and blend until smooth.

Bake for 25-30 minutes, turning every 8-10 minutes, until browned and crispy. Set aside to cool. Take your tempeh out of the marinade and throw onto a lightly oiled grill. I used a stovetop cast iron pan, but if you don't have that, probably any pan will be fine. I just like grill marks. Cook on each side for about 5 minutes, until the tempeh gets slightly browned and crispy on the outside. Add tempeh, croutons and dressing to salad bowls. Garnish with fresh black pepper to taste and enjoy!

Crouton time!

Makes 4 servings •

Whisk cornmeal, water, and salt together in a medium

Nutrition per serving:

saucepan, and place over medium to medium-high heat.

Calories: 475 Fat: 27 g Carbohydrates: 44 g Fiber: 8.2 g

Bring to a boil, then cook, stirring almost constantly, for

Net Carbohydrates: 36 g Protein: 24 g

15-20 minutes, or until the polenta is thick and sticky. Stir in the nutritional yeast and spices. Remove the polenta from the pot and place onto plastic

Lacy Davis is a vegan health coach, living and working in Oakland, CA. She really enjoys tacos and green smoothies. You can find out more about her and her work at online.

wrap or in a baking dish sprayed with olive oil or cooking spray. Shape into a rectangle, about 1/2 inch thick, wrap in plastic wrap, and place in the refrigerator until cooled. Cut the polenta into 1/2 inch cubes, and place in a single layer, not touching, on a baking sheet coated with olive oil or cooking spray. Spray some more olive oil or cooking spray over the cubes. You want your baking tray to be very lubed up or the croutons will stick. summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com


This salad comes together in a flash and is perfect for serving as a side dish for stir-fries and Asian-style noodle dishes. If evenings get hectic, this can be prepared in advance and dressed at dinnertime. Ingredients:

For the Salad:

and segmented 1/2 cup (78 g) edamame, fresh or thawed frozen 1/2 cup (35 g) slivered almonds 3 green onions, sliced

For the Dressing:

x u d e R r Salad




3 mandarin oranges, peeled




mix salad greens


5 ounce (142 g) package spring



Mandarin Orange Salad by Dianne Wenz

1/4 cup (60 g) almond butter


1/2 cup (120 ml) unsweetened

Mix all of the salad ingredients together in a large bowl.

almond milk

Mix all of the dressing ingredients together in a blender until smooth and creamy.

3 tablespoons (26 g) sesame seeds

If it’s too thick, add a little water.

1 Medjool date, pitted

Toss the dressing in with the salad and serve.

2 garlic cloves

Makes 4 servings •

1/2 inch (12.7 mm) piece of fresh

Nutrition Per Serving:

ginger, peeled and chopped Pinch of red pepper flakes, optional

Calories: 266 Carbs: 23 g Fiber: 8 g Net Carbs: 27 g Protein: 11 g Fat: 18 g Dianne Wenz is a Vegan Health and Lifestyle Coach, cooking class teacher, and the editor-in-chief of ChicVegan.com. She is passionate about helping others improve their health and well-being. When not hosting a potluck, whipping up a new recipe in the kitchen, or taking pictures of her lunch, she can be found snuggling with her cats, drinking tea, or getting lost in a good book. To learn more, visit Dianne’s website, connect with her on Facebook, or follow her on Twitter.

Check out the Runner-up Greek Salad with Tofu Goat Cheese by Lizz Clements 61

summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com

A fun twist on salad: Turn your vegetables into noodles and then toss them with a creamy tahini sauce.

For the Salad: Ingredients: 1 large zucchini (~1 lb) 1 cup (250 ml) sugar snap peas, ends trimmed and chopped

1 green onion, chopped

x u d e R d la a S r e m m



1 large carrot, peeled and grated




rolled and thinly sliced


5-6 leaves red cabbage,


1/4 cup (60 ml) chopped cilantro Tahini Sauce, as much as desired (see below) 2 tablespoons (30 ml) sesame seeds, toasted if desired Directions: Spiralize your zucchini or julienne by hand. Combine the remainder of the vegetables in a bowl.


Veggie Tahini Noodles Directions:

Mix all sauce ingredients together until smooth. Use desired amount for salad and store remaining in an air-tight container in the fridge for up to one week. Makes 1 to 2 servings •

Tahini Sauce:

Nutrition Per Serving: Calories: 266 Carbs: 23 g Fiber: 8 g Net Carbs: 27 g


Protein: 11 g Fat: 18 g

3 tablespoons (45 ml) tahini

Medical doctor by day and amateur chef by night. Delicious food, all the

2 tablespoons (30 ml) Bragg’s liquid

time. While attending culinary arts classes, Janet spent time in medical school. After learning about the health and environmental benefits of a

aminos (or low-sodium soy sauce)

vegan diet, she adopted a whole foods vegan diet without refined sugars or flours. Four years ago, she created The Taste Space food blog. It focuses

3 tablespoons (45 ml) water 1 tablespoon (15 ml) maple syrup or sweetener of choice

by Janet Malowany

on healthy, whole food vegan meals, world flavours, practicality, and keeping the kitchen simple. Her recipes and photographs have appeared in Canadian

Living, the National Post, Get Waisted and used for packaging and labeling by WestSoy.

Check out her newest e-cookbook, A Vegan Dinner Party and connect with Janet on her website.

Check out the Runner-up Asian-Inspired Mandarin Orange Salad by Dianne Wenz summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com


Revamp Your Salad Into A Nutrition Packed Meal How To

by Brooke Rosenfeld, MS, RD, CDN, Pn1

Summer, summer, summertime! The warmer

vitamins and minerals. G-BOMBS are what Dr.

weather tends to make us crave refreshing, crisp,

Fuhrman considers to be the most nutrient-rich

hydrating and cooling foods. What better dish

foods on earth. Today I discuss these superfoods

to meet your warm-weather needs than a nice,

and highlight the importance of each.

big, colorful salad? The definition of salad is a cold dish of various mixtures of raw or cooked vegetables, (and/ or fruits), usually seasoned with oil, vinegar, or other dressing and other ingredients. Salad gets a bad rap. People tend to think of salads as “diet food.” Salads are viewed as food people eat when they are trying to lose weight. Depending on what you put in the salad, you can make yourself one seriously nutrient-dense, well-balanced meal; and the best part is, making a bomb-ass salad is beyond easy! Salads are also a great way to incorporate many different nutrient-rich foods at once. The combinations and nutritional benefits of the ingredients are endless.


Greens Raw green leafy veggies are low in calories, yet superbly nutrient dense. Green leafys contain disease-fighting

powers as well as offer protection for your blood vessels. You can eat leafy greens to your heart’s content. Unfortunately, leafy greens are not consumed as much as they should be. What better way to get your greens in than having them serve as a base for a kick ass salad? Leafy greens are a great source of amino acids (building blocks of protein), calcium, folate and carotenoids (especially lutein and zeaxanthin), which support healthy vision. Leafy greens also contain glucosinolates, which when converted (by blending, chopping and chewing) to

When I get ready to make a salad, I always

isothiocyanates create a powerful anti-cancer

think of Dr. Joel Fuhrman’s acronym

effect. Leafy greens fight tumors and inflamma-

“G-BOMBS.” This acronym is great to keep

tion and help reduce oxidative stress. Romaine,

in mind because if G-BOMBS are incorpo-

kale, bok choy, swiss chard, spinach, broccoli

rated into a salad daily, you will be receiving

and escarole are all members of this category.


a hefty dose of disease-fighting antioxidants, 63

summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com


Beans Beans and legumes are a very nutrient-rich source of carbohydrates and protein. Beans are excellent for help-

ing ward off diabetes. Our bodies digest them slowly, giving us sustained energy because they don’t spike blood sugar levels. Beans are also a great source of soluble fiber, which keep cholesterol levels healthy. Beans are also a source of resistant starch. Resistant starches are carbs that are not able to be broken down by digestive enzymes. This awesome resistant starch heads to our intestines where it ferments into protective fatty acids that fight colon cancer! If you eat these foods twice a week, studies have shown you will lower your risk of developing colon cancer by 50%... yes, HALF! Beans/legumes have also been shown to protect against many other forms of cancer. They are also friggin’ delicious.


have tremendous anti-inflammatory, immuneboosting effects and they prevent DNA damage. Mushrooms offer a savory and amazing flavor that takes your salad to another level. Be mindful that it is recommended to consume mushrooms cooked because many varieties of mushrooms contain a carcinogenic substance agaritine. Cooking (significantly) reduces the agaritine content of mushrooms. So give them a quick sauté and toss them on top of your salad.


Berries Super-duper foods. Berries are sweet tasting but low in sugar. Berries are also nutrient powerhouses. The

bright, gorgeous color of berries means they are bursting with vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Like the aforementioned foods, berries are excellent at fighting off cancer. They also help reduce blood pressure, inflammation and diabetes risk, and even boost brain power and

Onions Onions, leeks, garlic, shallots, scallions… not what I would call datefriendly foods but if you’re not

heading out for a hot date, definitely add these foods to your salad. Compounds found in these veggies offer serious protection against cancer and cancer cell growth. They are also high in antioxidants and flavonoids. TAKE THAT free radicals. Are you getting hungry yet?


Mushrooms Studies have shown significant evidence on the protective properties that mushrooms provide

against many different forms of cancer. They

summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com

prevent cognitive decline. They improve coordination and memory, too. Berries truly are brain food!


Seeds Last, but certainly not least, nuts and seeds are a great source of protein, healthy fat, fiber, vitamins, minerals,

phytonutrients and antioxidants. It has become common knowledge that chia, flax and hemp seeds are incredible sources of omega-3 fatty acids. Seeds and nuts provide so many wonderful benefits. Did you know sesame seeds contain the most calcium of any food? Yup! I love making a dressing with tahini (a paste made from sesame seeds); the flavor is immense and you get a great dose of fat/protein. Pumpkin



seeds are an excellent source of branched chain amino acids (BCAA’s), which are essential for us ladies who like to lift heavy sh*t. Did you know the fats provided from nuts and seeds help us absorb the fat-soluble nutrients from vegetables when eaten together? In addition to beans, seeds and nuts, a few of my go-to protein sources for salad are tempeh, Beyond Meat, Gardein, tofu, veggie burgers and hummus. Get creative. When making my salads, I try to touch on each of these areas if possible. Add whatever veggies you like! You can make a feast for yourself out of a salad. Many supermarkets (such as Trader Joe’s) sell pre-prepped veggies that you can take out of the package and dump into a bowl. Trader Joe’s even sells pre-cooked lentils. I love it. If you’re not buying pre-cleaned/prepped veggies, it could take a bit of time to prepare the salad but it’s worth it. Another tip if you don’t have time to cook beans from scratch is to buy no-salt added cans of beans, rinse, and add them to your salad. I love salads all year round, but in the summer they truly hit the spot. Let us change the way the world looks at salad; no longer will a salad be viewed as a flimsy, unsatisfying meal. Jazz up your salad with color, roughage, protein-rich foods and healthy fats. Treat your body to a bowl of powerful, nutritious and delicious food. •

EAT A SALAD EVERY DAY. Brooke is a plant based Registered Dietitian-Nutritionist and Certified Sports and Exercise Nutrition Coach. She practices in Westchester County, New York and Fairfield County, Connecticut. Find Brooke online: Website (coming soon!) | Instagram Photography by Belinda Jansen.


summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com

STAGE the only thing we kill is the

The PlantBuilt Team Becomes A Reality by Dani Taylor

The idea for Team PlantBuilt was born at the Atlanta

grounds, and experience levels who performed well as a

VegFest in 2012. Giacomo Marchese and I were touring

group, it would be significantly harder for people to brush it

the vegan festival circuit all season to tell people about our

off as a fluke. As serious bodybuilding enthusiasts, the idea

online supplement store, Vegan Proteins. It seemed like

of vegans beating meat eaters in as many categories as pos-

every single city we visited, we met another inspiring vegan

sible was so intoxicating that we had to put the call out to

strength athlete that we had never heard of before! Both of

see what kind of interest we would receive.

us had been part of the vegan bodybuilding community for years at that point, but the people coming out of the wood work were bigger, stronger, and leaner than ever before. After meeting Torre Washington in Atlanta, we were both floored and started discussing how the individual influence of these impressive athletes paled in comparison to what we could all do together as a united force.

Through the miracle of social media we were able to get 15 people, both seasoned competitors and people brand new, from the bodybuilding scene to commit to competing at the Naturally Fit Super Show in Austin, Texas in 2013. The behind the scenes work was intense and we worked day and night for months to make it happen. We needed this to be as legitimate as possible and to be taken seriously as com-

Having coached Giacomo through a few bodybuilding com-

petitors. We worked closely with the promoters and tried to

petitions before, we were familiar with the comments that

build a buzz online. We also set ourselves up as a non-profit

come in when someone plant-based does well in a body-

to donate any extra money raised to farm sanctuaries and

building show: “Well, yeah if you have great genetics”, “I

vegan outreach programs. In a sport that is typically very

bet he built those muscles with meat”, and “He’s just one

ego driven, we made sure that all team members were on

guy”, etc. Sometimes there is validity to these statements,

board with the notion that this wasn’t about us. It was about

but more often than not, these words are just thrown out

the animals and raising awareness about veganism and what

there to discredit veganism and what can be accomplished

can be accomplished on a vegan diet.

on a completely plant-based diet. It’s pretty easy to chalk someone’s success up to luck or genetics when there is a show of 50 meat eaters and only one vegan performs well.

As showtime approached, people became more interested in our cause and the competitors got excited, but I don’t think any of us knew what was in store. Upon gathering in

This got us thinking that if we created a team of vegan

Austin, the energy of everyone all together was palpable.

physique competitors, men and women, of all ages, back-

None of us had ever seen this much vegan muscle in one

summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com



place at one time and it was overwhelming and inspiring.

positive. It was a thing of beauty and no one was trying to

Our group workout at Beyond Fit in Austin could have

discredit us. We proved, without a doubt, that you don’t

been made into an inspirational movie in and of itself. The

need to kill animals to kill it on stage. •

team was smashing stereotypes left and right, without even

Dani Taylor is the co-owner of Vegan Proteins, the co-founder of team Plant-

trying. It was truly one of the most awesome things I’ve ever

Built, a vegan figure competitor, and a personal trainer and nutritionist who

witnessed. At the show itself, we dominated. Giacomo and I both had a fear in the back of our minds that we, as a team, would be

works with people looking to change their physiques on a fully vegan diet. Find Vegan Proteins online at Website | Facebook | Instagram Find Team PlantBuilt online at Website | Facebook

discriminated against in the competition just for our vegan beliefs. It’s no secret that veganism is often looked down on in the realm of sports. Quite the contrary though, there was no way around the fact that our athletes were among the best of the best on the stage. Typically, competitors wait to go on stage with their legs up a wall out back, trying to get in the zone, but not on this day. Everyone sat in the audience and supported other team members as they took the stage, along with the dozens of others who specifically made the trek out to show support. All but one team member ended up placing in his or her division. There was no way to argue the success of a vegan diet in creating an aesthetic and competitive physique. Other competitors were curious and started asking questions. Audience members came up to talk about how we had inspired them to give veganism a try. The Internet was abuzz as though the event was being broadcast live online. The celebration continued at Arlo’s food truck, where we bought them out of their vegan bacon cheeseburger. And then onto Sweet Ritual, a vegan ice cream joint, where I’m surprised we didn’t eat them out of business right then and there. We had done it! And we knew this wasn’t the end of our journey. The excitement for next year bounced in our heads as we continue to crush stereotypes. Most vegans, strength athletes or not, can relate to the feeling of isolation in their day to day life—like they are on this mission all alone. Having so many like-minded people working together for the same mission was so intense that I think everyone left after that weekend with renewed passion for the countless reasons to go, and stay, vegan. The love from the audience for PlantBuilt members was overwhelmingly


summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com


Goal Setting

by Erin Fergus

You wouldn’t show up to your first meeting with a personal trainer and say, “Let’s skip the introductions and go straight to the workout.” You could do

that, but the chances that he or she put you through a workout that suits you are slim. Even if that workout rocked your world, continuing to meet without a solid plan of attack wouldn’t get the long-term results you desire. A similar thing happens when most people set out on a path to better fitness, either with a trainer or solo. They arrive at the starting line and know what the finish line should look like, but their vague goals make the road map illegible. The goals trainers hear mentioned most often are too simplistic: “I want to feel better,” “I want to be stronger,” “I want to look toned,” “I want to lose weight,” and “I want to eat better.” Although the goal setter (you!) sees a clear picture of the goal in his or her mind, whoever hears the goal would need ESP to be on the same page. All the aforementioned examples are good goals at the core, but they need a SMART makeover. The SMART principle of goal setting is an acronym that also serves as a checklist to ensure a goal is detailed and effective.

summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com



Specific A goal should be as detailed as possible so that you and everyone else will know exactly what you want to achieve. The more specific the goal, the more likely you can figure out the steps needed for attainment. Words such as “toned,” “strong” and “better” will be replaced with descriptions.

Measurable Every goal must have a number attached to it that can be measured or tested to determine a starting point and track progress. It can be a clothing size, a number on the scale, a pace, hours of sleep per night, pounds lifted, distance on a sit and reach test, or anything else that matches the goal.

Action-based An earlier version of the SMART principle used the words attainable or achievable here, but they are too similar to what the “R” means. This updated version uses action-based because the goal should be able to be translated into an action plan of short-term goals that lead to one long-term goal.

Realistic Make sure that the goal is something that you would be able to accomplish based on your starting point and common sense. Losing five pounds in a week isn’t realistic, but losing it in a month can be. Transitioning from a sedentary lifestyle to running a marathon in six months wouldn’t be nearly as effective as trying to run a 5 or 10K in six months and building up endurance after that.

Time-based A goal has to have a beginning and an end so it doesn’t become a casualty of procrastination. If the completion time is more than six months in the future, create short-term goal “checkpoints” to gauge progress.



summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com

Let’s revisit some of the above goals and make them SMARTer. “I want to be stronger” might become “I want to be able to do one unassisted pull up, bench press 75% of my body weight and deadlift my body weight within six months.” “I want to look toned” could be “I want to lose 5% body fat within five months,” and “I want to eat better” could be “I will eliminate all processed foods and added sugars within three months.” While this is fresh on your mind, I challenge you to sit down with a current goal or create one that you’ve been pondering. After checking it against the SMART principle, you should see plenty of detail and at least two numbers; one or more measurable items and one for a time frame. You should be able to envision yourself completing this goal, and you should be able to create the action plan that will help you reach it. Last, share the goal with others to make sure it’s clear. Once they tell you they understand the path you’re on, enlist them as support crew. Although setting multiple goals at once seems awesomely ambitious, choose the most important goal and put 110% into it. Use the momentum and self-efficacy from accomplishing that one to fuel your future efforts. Always remember that not reaching a goal you set is fine, too. It can be modified to be less or more challenging at any time to suit your needs. The goal is written on paper, not in stone. • Find Erin online: Check out the Our Team page.

advertise with Advertising with us is a great way to get your company in front of your target market. We have awesome advertising rates to meet your needs!

contact us today! Christy Morgan summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com

info@definitionforladies.com 72




summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com

featured athlete

Becoming A Figure Competitor Saved Simi Collins’ Life

Simi walked by a gym near her house every day on her way to work. She had no idea that this gym and lifting weights would change her life forever. Depressed, stressed, and starving, she turned to weight training as a way to turn her life around. Now as a figure competitor she shows us that no one needs to sacrifice the lives of others for their health and fitness goals.

Photo by Rich Gomez.| summer | 2014





When and what made you

I felt terrible that I was hurting my loved ones simply by being

want to be vegan?

the way I was. My depression and anxiety also made it difficult

I developed a strong interest in animals as a child. I loved the

bottom and realized I wasn’t living the life I wanted. I needed to

outdoors, nature and wildlife, and always enjoyed the company of animals. I made the connection between the animals I loved and the meat I was eating from a young age, and because of this, I never enjoyed eating meat. It made me feel guilty and regretful. But like most people, I grew up believing meat was an essential

for me to eat properly, and I lost a fair bit of weight. I hit rock go out and actively make a change, rather than keep “waiting for things to get better.” I remember the exact moment I ticked over; I woke up one morning and weighed in at the lightest I had ever been. My doctor had already warned me about my weight, but I hadn’t done anything about it. I remember looking up in the

part of a “balanced diet” and that I had no choice but to eat it.

mirror and for the first time realizing I was sick and unhealthy.

When I turned 13, my best friend was a vegetarian. She influ-

On my way to work every day, I would walk past Doherty’s

enced me and helped me make the change. Since then I have not eaten meat. I went fully vegan around 2009. Through investigations and subsequent campaigns run by animal rights groups such as Animal Liberation Victoria, I became aware of the cruelty that is also involved in dairy and egg production. It horrified me. As an animal-loving, ethical vegetarian, I knew I could not support such a cruel industry, and I made the decision to boycott all animal-derived foods and products. As well as just being vegan, I now volunteer for Animal Liberation Victoria, and try to do as much as I am able to help

Gym on Flinders Street, Melbourne (Australia) and finally decided it was time to make some positive changes and walk through that door. At first all I wanted to do was get healthy, but soon enough I had made friends with the gym owner, and he became my first mentor and trainer. He trained me once a week and taught me how to use everything. I loved seeing the progress I was making, however, I started to realize the benefits of training are far from being purely physical. My depression and anxiety faded, my selfconfidence grew, and my emotional strength developed

the plight of animals.

alongside my physical strength.

Competing is not just something I do for myself; I see it as

Training also helped me develop a healthy body image and

a form of activism. It’s a way to stand up for animals and show people what can be achieved through a vegan lifestyle, while busting a few myths and stereotypes, I hope.


How were you inspired to get fit?

to view food in a more positive way. My food became a necessary tool in my health and fitness goals, rather than something that would cause anxiety, and eventually I learned to enjoy eating again. Being vegan helps me feel more positive about food, knowing that I am making the most ethical and ecological choice with my diet.

I suffered depression and anxiety through my teens and early 20’s. I was on and off medication for it, and simply just wasn’t dealing with it well. I would jump from one


What does your program look

unhealthy “coping mechanism” to the next. It was a self-

like on the day to day?

destructive spiral that I couldn’t escape.

I train 5–6 times a week with weights, usually 1–2 body

I could see how this was affecting those close to me; my sisters, my parents, my partner. They all loved and cared for me so much, yet nothing they tried helped. I became hateful of myself;


parts per session. I cycle between a few weeks heavy and a few weeks higher reps and intensity. At the moment I’m trying Derek Tresize’s Total Body Mass program, which


summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com

featured athlete

summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com


can be found on the Vegan Bodybuilding and Fitness web-

or four smaller in between meals or snacks. I don’t eat a lot

site. This calls for 3 days a week of heavy, full-body com-

of fruit due to having fructose malabsorption, but find I’m

pound workouts, with arms and abs for 2 days in between.

generally okay with some berries or dates on a daily basis.

I don’t generally do cardio unless I’m in competition prep. I find this preserves my metabolism, allows me to build more muscle, and makes my cardio much more effective when I do bring it into my program.


What is your favorite body part

to work on in the gym? I love training my arms, if I could just train arms for the rest of my life I would! But I think I would end up looking pretty strange.


What is the biggest misconcep-


What is your favorite treat meal?

Do you feel like treats are vital to any health program? Some dark chocolate, vegan sweets, or a homemade raw dessert. I have a sweet tooth and it needs satisfying! I think treats are extremely useful in a program when they’re not too regular, maybe a couple of times a week. I recommend trying to find healthy alternatives to your favourite unhealthy foods, but if you absolutely can’t live without your Joker bars... don’t! Life is for enjoying, so enjoy it! By having the odd treat you can keep cravings under control while still achieving your

tion about women and fitness?

goals and enjoying the foods you love.

That we should train differently than men. I don’t believe in


gender-specific training. Train like a man—your hormones will make sure you stay a lady!


What vegan meal gives you the

most energy for your workouts? My breakfast: oats, berries, almond milk and protein powder.


What does your nutrition program

look like? Do you follow any special dietary guidelines? I only follow a program for competitions. The rest of the time I enjoy being relaxed with my diet while eating mostly clean, whole foods. I like to make sure I have a protein source with each meal. My protein sources are tofu, tempeh, beans, lentils, legumes, chia, hemp, nuts, seeds and protein powders. I usually like to have three big meals and three


Do you feel that veganism

improves your fitness and your health? If so, how? There are so many proven health benefits of a vegan diet too many to list! But basically, I always feel energized and charged. My body feels clean, light, efficient and strong. I never feel flat or lethargic, and I stay lean quite easily without cardio. Also I know I’ll probably never have to worry about things such as cholesterol, high blood pressure or heart disease!

CM: What

excites you most about

competing? List some of your athletic accomplishments. There’s nothing more exciting than being on stage. It gives me an immense sense of accomplishment to get up


summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com

featured athlete there and show off everything I’ve been working so hard on. Most athletes and coaches seem to believe that a diet high in animal protein is the most ideal for figure and bodybuilding, and quite clearly this is not the case! This is why competing as a vegan is so important to me, as it’s an extremely effective way to change the way people think and show them what is actually achievable without meat or dairy. Knowing that I am standing up there for the animals and representing a compassionate vegan lifestyle, I feel I am able to inspire and motivate others. I hope to send out a positive message and make a difference simply by doing what I love and following my own dreams and passions. My achievements so far include: • 2013 IFBB Australian Amateur Grand Prix, Figure Novice—4th place • 2013 IFBB Victorian Championships, Figure Novice—3rd place • 2013 IFBB O’Mara Classic and World Qualifier, Figure Open—2nd place • 2014 IFBB Australian Amateur Grand Prix, Figure Novice—6th place


Do you take any supplements and why?

Just a vegan protein powder and BCAA’s to cover all my protein bases.

CM: What are three things you always have in

your gym bag? Protein, headphones, and a change of clothes. • Interview by Christy Morgan. Know a vegan athlete we should feature in the magazine? Send your recommendations to info@definitionforladies.com! Find Simi online: Website | Facebook | Instagram Photography by Sniper Shots.

Most athletes and coaches seem to believe that a diet high in animal protein is the most ideal for figure and bodybuilding, and quite clearly this is not the case! This is why competing as a vegan is so important to me, as it’s an extremely effective way to change the way people think and show them what is actually achievable without meat or dairy.

summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com




by Erin Fergus

What’s Carb Cycling? Carbohydrates. The ever-elusive macronutrient that is essential in our diets whether we are into fitness or not. They are classified as simple and complex; sometimes even “good” and “bad.” People live for them or try to avoid them, and still some are unsure of how much they should consume. The method of carb cycling marries the fueling benefits of a high-carb diet with the leaning out benefits of a low-carb diet into a plan that can reduce body fat while preserving strength and muscle. You may have heard extreme stories of people alternating between all carb days and no carb days or referencing that they are going “no carb.” The first myth to debunk is the “no carb” one. The only way that someone could eat no carbohydrates at all would be to follow a true Atkins Diet as it was when it first became popular: meat and eggs all day, every day. All plant foods contain carbohydrates, and the amount varies depending on whether it is a fruit, a cruciferous or starchy vegetable, a legume or a grain. When



summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com

people say they are on a “no carb” day, they

You may have heard people mention a

mean that they are not eating complex carbohy-

“refeed” day. That’s like a cheat day, a day to

drates such as oats, rice, yams, bread and beans,

load up on everything you’ve been craving

and only getting carbs from green veggies.

during the structured plan, right? Wrong.

The carb cycling layout and plan varies depending on the individual’s goals and will include a mix of days that are considered “high,” “moderate” and “low.” The carb amount is aligned with the training schedule so that higher amounts of carbs are ingested on more intense training days (during meals that are close to training times) and lower amounts of carbs are ingested on less intense training or “off” days. The high and moderate days provide fuel for training, and the low days prime the body to burn fat while insulin levels are low. It is generally based on eating six meals a day, but it can be adjusted to accommodate more or fewer eating times.

There’s a difference between a “cheat” day and a refeed, and it’s in the quality of the food. The refeed is a planned day of higher carb intake to avoid a plateau after being in a caloric deficit and losing body fat. This keeps leptin, a hormone that helps regulate metabolism and appetite, functioning properly. Leptin is more receptive to carb consumption than increased fat and protein intake, so the typical cheat day free-for-all of fatty foods doesn’t accomplish the same goal. Carb intake can be increased by a set percentage or by a number of grams, and overall calories will be higher because fat and protein consumption doesn’t change. The number of refeed days depends on the person’s body fat percentage, how long he

Protein is an important part of carb

or she has been in a caloric deficit, and the

cycling and is eaten at every meal because

body’s response to the current diet.

the goal is to preserve lean muscle while reducing body fat. Our bodies absorb and utilize protein the best when intake is spread throughout the day in smaller amounts. Both carbs and protein contain four calories per gram, and fat contains nine calories per gram. If calories are staying somewhat similar among the different carb days, the amounts of protein and fat will change as well in similar amounts. For example, if there is a 60 gram increase in carbs between two days, there will likely be a 20 gram decrease or similar change in fat

Although carb cycling is usually used with bodybuilding competitors, it can be worked into anyone’s lifestyle. If this eating method is something you’d like to experiment with, keep in mind that it is completely individual to each person’s body composition, training schedule and goals. You will achieve the best results by working with a qualified professional who can consult with you, develop the plan, and modify it as needed. • Find Erin online: Check out the Our Team page!

and protein. If calories are varying between the days, carbs and protein may increase together while fat decreases. Or your high carb day might have more calories overall.

summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com


slow & steady


Thanks to a vegan diet, Inês Lopes has finally accepted and is loving the body she’s in My name is Ines, and I live in New Jersey with my two cats, Lucy and Linus. I have a masters in secondary education and previously worked as a high school English teacher in Newark. I resigned from that position and now have an office job in academia. I’m currently a student at Rutgers pursuing a masters in fine arts (poetry). I volunteer and manage the social media at an animal shelter and am the social media director for a new vegan publishing company. So, yes, I’m busy. While that may seem like a lot, I take responsibility for myself and my health. I prepare food for me and I have the time and access to the gym and make my well-being a priority. I don’t want to be someone who loses a lot of weight, makes a transformation and turns preachy and “fitspirational.” I’m not a role model. I’m not going to tell you, “If I can do it, so can you!” because we all have things going on in our lives or maybe you’re not ready. I’m just someone who wanted to change how I ate, how my body looked and performed, and what kind of foods went into my body. I used social media to document my journey. It has been public and there for everyone to see, so I think it’s fantastic if I’ve inspired someone. If you workout a little harder or eat one more plant-based meal a week because of me, that’s great! Where does my story begin? I was always a heavy child and remember weighing 112 pounds in the third grade. I didn’t play sports, ate crappy, and was really unpopuBEFORE

lar. Some would even say I had boyish features until coming into my femininity finally around 17. At some point during college I joined



summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com

summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com


Weight Watchers. I had such great success that I eventually worked for them! However, this is the period of my life that I was “skinny fat.” I followed the points and lost weight by reducing calories and exercising, but was eating things

I was trying to eat more local, organic fruits and veggies and experimenting with

like gummy bears (they’re only one point!) or working out

a variety of proteins and grains. The bulk

longer so I could have an extra candy bar. It was my first

dispenser bins became my candy store!

time ever going to a gym, but I haven’t stopped since. I got down to my lowest adult weight and started yoga, Spinning and other activities. I was thin for me but had absolutely no definition.

one brought in cake or cookies or we had tacos for a staff lunch, I’d eat those. I never cheated with meat, but my

A lot of life just happened. Teaching in an urban city, going

sweet tooth got the best of me.

through really bad heartbreaks, and buying a condo all took

I began working at a yoga studio and practiced hot vinyasa

their toll. Thankfully, the latter allowed my love for cooking to blossom. Since then I prefer to make my own food from scratch and really enjoy meal prep. But it seemed like my weight just kept increasing. By the time 2009 rolled around (at 25 years old) I was very heavy again. 2010 was a fantastic year for personal growth. I gained a lot of confidence, overhauled my wardrobe and was feeling wonderful. I resigned from my stressful teaching job and found my current job. Things were going pretty well! I still continued to exercise but didn’t have my eating or drinking under control. I was partying a lot. I went through a couple rough years and weighed in at 212 pounds at 5’6” during a doctor’s appointment. That should have been a wake-up call, but it wasn’t. I just wasn’t ready. Looking back now, I

regularly. I went to my school’s gym several times a week. As I became more interested in veganism, I started to learn about foods new foods such as chia, flax, hemp, seitan, tempeh, etc. I didn’t know what sun butter was or what coconut water did for you. I incorporated more of these foods into my diet along with weight training. I was able to lose some weight. Thanks to the explosion of Instagram, I became a pretty savvy troll and starting following people who had great workout ideas. I used these in my own daily workouts. I was trying to eat more local, organic fruits and veggies and experimenting with a variety of proteins and grains. The bulk dispenser bins became my candy store! Despite all of this, I seemed to just stay the same weight or even got bigger. I was having an amazing time at life,

think I looked terrible, but I remember feeling pretty good

though, so my weight wasn’t much of an issue.

at the time.

I’d lost about 20 pounds on my own over six months

I started volunteering at a nearby animal shelter, and that

through meal planning, yoga and working out. I weighed

decision eventually inspired me to become a vegetarian.

in at around 190, which is great, except I plateaued for the

A couple of years later, I would eventually transition to

next four months. That was the tipping point.

vegan. Incidentally, I was at my heaviest when I stopped

So when did things start to change?

eating meat! I also stopped smoking but drank a lot. My best friend got married. I thought I looked great and felt pretty good! I was working out regularly at my school gym and eating well (or so I thought.) I stopped eating eggs and cheese but still consumed other things that contained animal products. I occasionally ate the baked goods people brought to work and this continued throughout 2012. What I made at home was completely vegan, but if some83

I didn’t look at a bad picture of myself and think I looked gross or try something on and feel awful. In fact, I was the most confident I’d ever been! I was dating, had a killer wardrobe, worked out regularly, practiced hot yoga 4 times a week and lifted weights, cooked with abandon. By February, though, I’d had enough of seeing the same number on the scale.


summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com

I knew that, for my health, I needed to weigh less. Did I need to weigh what BMI charts say I should weigh? Not necessarily, but I knew I needed the number on the scale to be less than it was. I was constantly expressing frustration to my best friend about how I was working out so much and eating whole, clean foods and nothing was happening; I wasn’t seeing any muscle tone and the scale wasn’t moving! I desperately wanted to find a nutritionist to help me because I knew whatever I was doing wrong stemmed from food. And, yes, I had my thyroid tested. I was off all medication (I’d previously been on antidepressants/anxiety medication and birth control – both made me gain weight), had stopped smoking and wasn’t drinking as much, so it was definitely my diet. But I was eating really well! I cooked everything myself, used lots of local, organic fruits and vegetables, eat fewer processed junk or snacks, and had one cheat meal a week. I was using MyFitnessPal and eating the calories it said I should. I just couldn’t figure it out! The problem was, I couldn’t find anyone who was able to help me because I’m vegan. They literally didn’t know what to feed me! I eventually found someone to help me. Through slow and steady progress, my body is doing things I never thought it would do, and I’m seeing muscles I never knew I had. It’s exciting!! I’ve done so many amazing things: I ran a 10k and registered for a half marathon, hit a new back squat PR and joined a CrossFit box. I went from a F bra size to a D (there are several sizes in between those two, fyi) and from an clothing size 14 to 8. I’ll never be a size 2, and maybe I won’t ever have abs, but I can do some other pretty cool things and I’m proud of all my personal achievements. The only person I’m trying to impress is myself. I try to be better than I was the day before. It’s amazing how, with the proper fuel, consistency, planning, and proper fitness program your body responds. I have some great things to do in the future, but in the meantime, I’ve never been happier or healthier in my entire life. •

Find Inês online: Website | Instagram | Twitter


summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com


workin’ 9 to 5 by Christy Morgan

1 Resistance Band Biceps Curl 2 Burpee to Overhead Press 3 Chest Press on Stability Ball 4 Russian Twists 5 Dumbbell Tricep Kickbacks 85

summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com

featured lifting workout

5 Exercises, 9 Reps Each, 5 Rounds

Now that summer is here it’s a great time to move from heavy lifting to circuit training as a way to increase your cardiovascular endurance and shed some fluff. This upper body circuit is designed to give shape to your arms, shoulders and back while tightening up your stomach. Time to break out those bikinis and strut your stuff! As always, choose a weight and resistance that is challenging but allows you to have excellent form. Circuit training with weights does not need to be fast; concentrate on slowing down the eccentric (releasing) and concentric (contracting) motions

Equipment Needs: • 2 medium sized dumbbells or barbell • 2 lighter sized dumbbells • Resistance band • Stability ball • Medicine ball (if available) • Bench (if needed)

during each exercise to really burn the muscle you are working. For this circuit you will do 5 exercises of 9 reps each for 5 rounds. During the first round if you notice you can easily do more than 9 repetitions for a certain exercise then you need to go up in weight. This workout can be done at home or in the gym and is for an upper body day in your workout program. Workin’ 9 to 5 is for intermediate athletes. See modifications for beginners to regress the exercises or progress to make the workout more challenging for advanced athletes. Complete one full round of the circuit without stopping and take a 1–2 minute rest at the end (if needed.) If you need to take breaks at any point in the circuit keep it short, 20 seconds or less. This workout will take you anywhere from 17–23 minutes.


summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com

featured lifting workout

1 RESISTANCE BAND BICEPS CURL Stand with knees slightly bent about hip distance apart (or shoulder distance to make more resistance in the band.) Place band under one foot or both feet depending on the challenge needed. Grab resistance band by the handles, palms facing up, and relax arms by your thighs (if it’s a tube grab band slightly wider than hip distance.) With upper arms and elbows locked in close to your sides, do a Biceps Curl with both arms squeezing biceps at the top of the movement and slowly resisting on the way down. Repeat for 9 reps then move to exercise #2. Progression: Standing on one leg

summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com



2 BURPEE TO OVERHEAD PRESS (2 DUMBBELLS OR 1 BARBELL) Stand with knees slightly bent and dumbbells in both hands resting at your sides. Bend down and plant dumbbells in front of feet on the ground about shoulder width distance apart. Jump back into plank position. Jump your feet back toward your hands (try to get entire foot flat on floor) and stand up, pressing dumbbells overhead into a shoulder press. Repeat for 9 reps then move to exercise #3. Regression: Walk back instead of jumping Progression: Full burpee with tricep push-up



summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com

featured lifting workout

summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com


3 CHEST PRESS ON STABILITY BALL (2 DUMBBELLS) Sit down on the ground with knees bent. Slowly roll your body out to where your upper back, shoulders, and neck rest on the ball and your legs are in a bridge hold, glutes tight. Do not let knees fall inwards. Bring dumbbells up to chest press position with arms bent at a 90° angle. Dumbbells should be in line with bra line, shoulder distance apart. Press dumbbells up until arms are almost straight. Lower back down with control while squeezing your glutes the entire time. Repeat for 9 reps then move to exercise #4. Regression: On flat bench instead of ball



summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com

featured lifting workout

summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com



summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com

featured lifting workout 4 RUSSIAN TWISTS (MEDICINE BALL) Sit down on the ground with knees bent in a regular sit-up position. Holding a medicine ball or dumbbell, pull in abs and lean slightly back with head in line with spine (do not let back round.) Twist to the left, at the waist, lightly touching ball or dumbbell down to the ground. Twist to the right, keeping abs engaged to lightly touch down. Your trunk stays tight and in a straight line while you twist side to side at the waist. The speed to which you move back and forth will make it more challenging. Repeat 9 reps on each side (18 reps) then move to exercise #5. Regression: No weight Progression: Feet elevated

summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com


5 DUMBBELL TRICEPS KICKBACKS (2 DUMBBELLS) Stand with feet hip width apart, knees slightly bent and dumbbells in hands by sides. Bend at the waist, keeping head in line with spine and back straight, until your body is almost parallel with the floor. Tuck shoulders back and down and raise elbows up to parallel with the ground to where arms make a 90° angle. Keep arms close to your body and elbows stationary while you push the dumbbells up and back away from your body. Release dumbbells back toward body slowly while upper arms and elbows remain in locked position (so only the forearm is moving back and forth.) Repeat for 9 reps then take a 1–2 minute break, as needed, before repeating the circuit. Regression: With resistance band •


summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com

featured lifting workout

Get in touch! Shoot us an email to let us know what kinds of workouts you’d like to see featured in future issues! info@definitionforladies.com

Workout by Christy Morgan; Photography by Austin Barbisch; Model Christy Morgan; Top by Onzie.

summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com


People say and ask the darnedest things sometimes, don’t they? As vegans and fitness enthusiasts, there are certain questions we can almost guarantee we’ll have to answer regularly. We’ve included a range of answers, spanning from serious to sarcastic to silly, that we would give to common questions. Feel free to use these responses, or a combination of approaches, the next time you find yourself confronted with a similar question.

“I honestly wish it were that easy to gain muscle!” “Do I look bulky? No? Women who are ‘bulky’ spend hours and hours in the gym and may be taking a testosterone supplement. We just don’t genetically get bulky like men.” “Lifting heavy weights doesn’t make you bulky; it makes you compact and solid. I weigh more now than last year but fit into the same clothes. Not only do I fill the clothes out better, but I look and feel good without them on, too!” “With the right diet, strength training will only help you lean out.”


summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com

But weightlifting makes you bulky.

I’m a woman, I don’t want to look like a man.

“Lifting heavy makes you bulky? Nope. A bad diet make you bulky, weights make you strong.” “Even if women could get bulky, so what? Muscles show strength and perseverance. Those who hate to see women with muscles seem to want traditional gender norms. It has to do with what is perceived to be the ideal body. I hope the societal desired female body type can someday soon become a toned, fit body with muscle definition--not just slim or ‘skinny’.” “If only it were that easy to create striking muscle definition... I used to think like you, but then I tried and realized just how hard it is to get even just definition as a girl!” •

summer | 2014 | definitionforladies.com


Profile for Definition Magazine

Definition For Ladies Summer 2014 Issue 002  

Take a look inside CrossFit and the women competing in this sport, along with great workouts, salad recipes and more!

Definition For Ladies Summer 2014 Issue 002  

Take a look inside CrossFit and the women competing in this sport, along with great workouts, salad recipes and more!