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United Kingdom, London, NW7 3SP 40 Selvage Lane
07494 220164 office@eatshealthy.uk
Vegan & muscles? It’s something fictitious?-No, is Nick Schafer

1) Please tell us a little bit about you and your background in fitness. How old are you?

I am 33 years old

I started with fitness about 9 years ago, however, that only lasted a year or so. In 2015 my girlfriend and I decided to go vegan. Once we transitioned over to a vegan lifestyle I was always preaching that you can easily be big and strong and fit without eating animal products. However, at that time I was a junk food vegan weighing in at just over 200lbs with no muscle mass. I decided one day that I needed to practice what I preach instead of just talking about it. So in October of 2017, I dragged myself into the gym and got a gym pass. Ever since then I have been dedicated and committed to proving once and for all that you can build your ideal body on a vegan diet without the use of any steroids or banned substances. Hell, I don’t even track my calories or macros lol.

 

2) What is your daily routine?

People think my daily routine must be hell, but honestly, it’s not. People always wonder “how do you find so much time for fitness”. Well, the answer is you don’t find the time, you make it a priority in your life and make time for it. I did this by training myself to start my workouts at 7 am (and trust me, it was a process as I am NOT a morning person). But once you do it for a couple of weeks and you realize how energized it makes you for the rest of the day, this is easy. I wake up at 6:20, lay in bed for a couple of minutes snuggling my dogs. I roll out of bed, turn the lights on (this is a very important part of waking up), brush my teeth, get into my gym gear, let the dogs go pee and head out the door. I usually take a couple of caffeine pills on my drive to the gym. I work out for my usual 1.5 hours (day 1 – chest & back, 2 – Bi’s & tri’s, 3 – Shoulders & Legs). from there I hit the infrared sauna for 45 minutes and then head home to do whatever work I need to do for the day (Usually a ton of video/photo editing).

 

3) How does your meal plan look like?

Funny story, I don’t follow a meal plan. I set out on this journey to prove that you don’t need an extensive complicated meal plan to get the results you need. I mean, if you are training for a show or competition, yah, get yourself a strict meal plan, but if you are just training for yourself and everyday life, it’s not needed. I just stick to eating a healthy variety of whole food plant-based meals (with the occasional full large vegan pizza thrown in there, hey, we gotta treat ourselves too right). other than that my usual go-to’s are:

Oatmeal with berries, maple syrup, cinnamon & a little protein powder for breakfast.

Acai bowl or smoothie (or dinner leftovers) for lunch.

And whatever delicious vegan recipe I feel like making for dinner (I just find something yummy on Instagram or google and cook that lol)

 

4) What do you think that people should do to achieve a healthy lifestyle?

I’m an advocate for a Vegan lifestyle. I have seen the change it can make in people and the health of the entire body, I have seen my friends cure their stage 4 cancers, their Crones, Diabetes etc with it. I truly believe (along with the top leading nutrition scientists in the world) it is the healthiest way to eat and live for all stages of life. That being said. You can’t just eat salads and fruit all day every day. You need to get a good balance of whole foods, grains, nuts, seeds, starchy vegetables, legumes, beans etc and your portion sizes need to increase as the caloric densities of these foods are far less than a non-vegan diet.

 

5) what are your 5 tips for people to manage their daily meals and exercise?

1- STOP MAKING EXCUSES. You will never get to a point of fitness being a habit or something you love if you are constantly making excuses for yourself. Push through it and you will eventually grow to love it, I can grantee you that.

2- Go Vegan. haha, sorry but it’s true. You will not believe the change in energy, endurance and strength that comes along with this change. Not only that, an entirely new world of cooking and flavours opened up to me and my meals are more flavorful and still healthier than I have ever had in my life. Not only that but I now have a limitless variety of foods to eat and its something new almost every day.

3 – Follow other peoples success stories and transformations on Instagram. If they can do it, there is no reason that you cant as well.

4- change your exercises up, keep it exciting for yourself in the gym. Research and learn new ones and get excited to see how well they work when you put them into action yourself. It’s one of my favourite ways to stay excited about going to the gym

5- Reward yourself. I do this by getting to sit in that sauna for 45 minutes. I love it but don’t get to do it unless I finish my workout first. Some people do it by getting to slam back a delicious meal afterwards. Whatever it is, make it something you only get to do as a reward for working out. And no, I don’t mean you get to eat a box of doughnuts after every workout lol. however, one doughnut a couple of times a week won’t kill you 😉 as long as you are on top of those workouts!

 

6) what is the first thing a person should do if he/she wants to lose weight?

Look at what you are eating. The ONLY way you are going to lose weight is in a caloric deficit. Are you eating sugary foods/drinks every day? Are you eating enough foods that are high in fibre, are you drinking enough water? I can’t stress enough how important drinking water is. Stop reading this right now and go get yourself some water, come back and continue reading. Once you have your diet on track and you are eating healthy foods then you can start looking at the gym. Also, when you start at the gym and are eating a healthy diet, THROW YOUR SCALE AWAY. A lot of the time we start to lose fat but gain muscle at the same time, thus confusing the scale and confusing us as to why we are not making any progress when in fact you are. Muscle weighs more than fat, so as you lose the fat and gain the muscle you may look and feel better but the number on the scale may not change or may even increase! I always go by how my clothes are fitting and how my energy levels are, that’s the sign of your progress.

 

7) Are you for or against counting calories?

Both. I am for it if you are looking to do a show or competition or simply don’t know that much about food and nutrition. However, if you already have a good handle on what foods are high in calories and what foods are healthy for you, or if you are eating a whole food plant-based diet than I don’t see a need to, just don’t eat past being full. I think it is handy for people starting to count their calories tho as it will give them a good idea as to how much they are taking in per day. but once you kind of know, you can stop all that. I have never counted my calories or macros before.

 

8) Can you tell us 3 exercises that you recommend for a daily routine?

Not really. I don’t find it good to do the same exercises daily, it is important to give your muscles time to rest and recover, almost as important as working them out in the first place. However, I can recommend 1 exercise I would do every day per muscle group.

Chest/Back day –  I always recommend a bench press & pull-ups & Deadlifts

Arms day – wide grip easy bar preacher curls & Tricep kickbacks

Shoulders & Legs – Dumbbell Shoulder press & Squats

 

9) What is your plan in the fitness industry?

Simply to do online training and help people adopt a plant-based diet and improve their fitness and overall health sustainably. Something that will be easy and last them for the rest of their lives. We all know fad diets never work and that if it’s not sustainable, no one will ever stick to it. Trust me when I say I am one of the pickiest eaters around and once switching to a vegan lifestyle an entire world of amazing food opened up to me, and I came from a background of HATING vegetables, I still despise salad lol

 

10) Do you have any motivational quotes?

I don’t know if its a motivational quote or just something to live your life by but I have 2

 

1 –  Life begins at the edge of your comfort zone

 

2 – Get comfortable with being uncomfortable. No change ever happened without a little discomfort.

 

Thank you very much for this amazing answers.

Please find is Instagram account clicking here

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