Meat has been associated with muscles almost since the beginning of time. athletes who competed in the very first Olympic Games often ate raw meat because they believed it would improve their performance. Robert Cheeke, author of Vegan Bodybuilding & Fitness, is here to tell you otherwise—and he’s got the muscles to prove it.
No, he doesn’t have a Mr. Olympia–caliber physique, but that’s more a function of his genetics than his food choices. Plus, he doesn’t use anabolic steroids. Bodybuilding is all about health for Cheeke, which is why he’s a vegan in the first place:
“I follow a plant-based diet and encourage others to do the same for optimal health and vitality, to live compassionately, and to leave less of a footprint on our Earth when I leave.”
Cheeke has been following a pure plant-based diet since 1996, so he’s had more than a decade of figuring it out from a bodybuilding perspective. He lays out everything he’s discovered, from fat-burning and mass-building nutrition programs to optimal protein choices—he takes in about 300 grams a day, and, yes, he uses supplements—to the best exercises and workouts for building muscle.
Speaking of building muscle, Cheeke is definitely a hardcore bodybuilder. You’ll find photos of him in the book with Arnold, legendary vegan bodybuilder Bill Pearl and current pro Troy Alves. You’ll see photos of Cheeke onstage competing in bodybuilding contests as well as training shots of him in the gym.
Cheeke comes across as a great ambassador for bodybuilding. In the book he outlines how to begin this tremendously healthful activity, and he even lays out his convincing “Top 10 Reasons to Begin Bodybuilding.” I’ve gotta hand it to him: He makes me proud to be a part of the lifting brother- and sisterhood.
Whether you’re vegan, considering going vegan or none of the above, I highly recommend Vegan Bodybuilding & Fitness. It will give you new perspective on eating and training, motivate you to work out with fury and help you stay on the healthful road to longevity with plenty of muscle to spare.