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Vegetarian Girlfriend preparing for a Pageant



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  • Vegetarian Girlfriend preparing for a Pageant

    MDA readers,

    So my 21 year old girlfriend is preparing for a local Miss America pageant (the one that focuses on intelligence and talent, unlike Miss USA). The pageant is in mid-October, and now after a few months of stubbornly ignoring my recommendations, she has turned to me for help with her diet.

    She is doing the pageant because she wants to raise money for her cause, raising money for the women's homeless shelter that she is on the board of directors for. And, she is a bit of a pageant-addict after she placed 2nd runner-up at one last year in college. I don't understand it, but much like I am a football nut, she follows pageants like I follow the April NFL draft. I get excited that the Minnesota Vikings draft a LT, she gets excited that Miss Minnesota plays violin like her. The majority of the pageant judging is on platform, personality, and talent, but there is a swimsuit portion. Its purpose is to show general fitness, as part of the goal is to encourage young women towards healthy lifestyles. Being anorexic looking is frowned upon, looking like a yoga instructor is a plus.

    My girlfriend has been a vegetarian since she was 16, and has no plans to ever go back. She does it for a strange combination of ethical reasons and a lifelong distaste for meat. She is about 5'4 and 130lbs, with a body fat of around 22%. She is usually anemic, and can't give blood. Her torso is very skinny, and most of the very little fat she has goes to her hips and booty. Baby got back

    She hired a personal trainer back in May from our local gym, for a $1,000 contract for 5 months. With only 4 sessions a month, it comes out to nearly $50 per session. The benefit of getting the trainer to her was that she was supposed to get help with meal planning from a fellow vegetarian. What she got was a recommendation to eat tons of oatmeal and sugary, nonfat yogurt 5-6x a day. "Fat makes you fat". Additionally, the exercises she was doing were strange half-squats and "lifting" with 5lb dumbells to tone up. She still hasn't cut out her biggest vice, her morning grande iced carmel macchiato from starbucks.

    Needless to say, three months later and she still isn't where she wants to be for the pageant. She has turned to her meat guzzling, 240lb caveman boyfriend who powerlifts 3x a week and puts butter in his coffee. But the problem is that it is a transition that isn't easy for her, and I am trying to find an approachable way to get her to increase her fat consumption and lose the sugar habit.

    So after this long introduction, I am looking for advice. The solution I have come up with to help her in her final less than 60 days is to try a Whole30 vegetarian approach. We have the book, and my hope is that the strictness and straightforwardness of the book will help her. She has a new personal trainer that is doing better workouts, focusing on bodyweight exercises which I think is a good start. So now I think it is just down to diet.

    Any tips on how to quickly hack a low-fat vegetarians diet???



  • #2
    So unless your on steroids you are carrying around a good amount of fat, correct? What makes you think your diet will work for her?


    • #3
      for sheer aesthetics, i'd approach this very carefully. cutting the sugar but replacing it with fat will more than likely create a caloric surplus, causing her to put on weight. definitely track the intake and adjust frequently if/when necessary.

      try to get her to lift some weights too.

      oh, and this thread is worthless without pics...


      • #4
        I wouldn't eat fat-free Greek yogurt, but it is a reasonably good source of protein if you get the kind without added sugar. Also eggs. Lots of eggs.

        Pumping iron is the best way to build shape fast, which she needs.


        • #5
          Good God! What a waste of money that personal trainer was! Just goes to show how shitty personal trainers at globo gyms are. I feel like 2 months isn't really enough time to do much of anything if her goal is to look like a fitness model. I'd recommend crossfit, but she already has a trainer.

          What do you eat on a vegetarian Whole 30? I mean, what would be your source of protein since dairy isn't allowed? Eggs?

          My journal


          • #6
            Did you know that W30 has a forum with an entire vegetarian section? I would copy and paste this over there. There is also a list of foods that they suggest for a vegetarian W30. Things are allowed on the vegetarian W30 that are off limits for the non vegetarians.

            Vegetarians over there that can probably advise her as far as what she could be eating better than most of us here. It is a strict program and they will definitely suggest she dump that insane coffee drink, but if she is serious about her goals, that shouldn't be a huge deal.

            If she will eat fish and eggs, she will have a more successful W30. However, they do have options if she won't/can't.

            Sent from my SGH-T989 using Tapatalk 2


            • #7
              Tell her to walk her ass off - literally. And if she's drinking the regular Starbucks drink, tell her to go to the skinny version. It's a savings of 90 calories a drink or 2790 calories/month. In general (as in most, not all) women aren't going to see a lot of muscle gain in two months, no matter what they do. However, one can see more definition if one loses the overlaying fat.

              Protein as major macro. Decrease carbs and fat. Bodybuilders have been doing that for shows/competitions for longer than some folks have been alive.
              "Right is right, even if no one is doing it; wrong is wrong, even if everyone is doing it." - St. Augustine


              Who says back fat is a bad thing? Maybe on a hairy guy at the beach, but not on a crab.


              • #8
                Originally posted by Zach View Post
                So unless your on steroids you are carrying around a good amount of fat, correct? What makes you think your diet will work for her?
                That is the point of me asking, my diet isn't for her. I've been doing Starting Strength and 5/3/1 since January(on and off), I'm 6'3 and added +200lbs to my squat. Probably 25% bodyfat, so a month ago I re-analyzed my diet and cut out the whole milk and cut my carb consumption down (from ~300g --> 20g, then now back to around 100g). Was probably at around 4k-5k calories a day. There is a reason I wasn't an inspiration for her.... but our goals were different.

                For protein on whole30 it has eggs, tempeh, and full-fat yogurt as the recommendation
                Last edited by Dickson; 08-23-2013, 09:33 AM.


                • #9
                  Heavy lifting, high protein, low fat.


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by not on the rug View Post
                    oh, and this thread is worthless without pics...
                    Word.... what are we working with here


                    • #11
                      OP, you can make an aesthetic diet "healthy primal". But healthy and primal are not inherently concerned with aesthetics. So yes your probably gonna have to bastardize many of the regular advice. Then again your talking a beauty pagent, not some fitness and bodybuilding competition that requires obscene "rippedness". Its just tough to advise making any major changes with only 1-2 months to acclimate.


                      • #12
                        I'd get her to purchase the iPhone/Android app, You Are Your Own Gym and get busy. It is effing awesome. I think she still has time to almost complete the beginner's 10-week program. It'll whip her into shape better than her "trainer."

                        If you could open her up to becoming a Pescetarian she's get some great nutrition from egg yolks, fish and shell fish.


                        • #13
                          I realize I am probably being trolled to post a photo of her butt, but for the sake of science.... (not her butt) imgur: the simple image sharer

                          As you can see, she is already in pretty good shape and it's not like she needs to do a major overhaul. Getting her to lift heavy has been hard, the recent article on on how to talk to women about lifting heavy has been helpful but I still can't out influence her trainer, who recommends squats above parallel and supersets of ab work.
                          Last edited by Dickson; 08-23-2013, 10:47 AM.


                          • #14
                            Get her to take a look at the Girls Gone Strong site, particularly the recent blog series about getting lean. There are also plenty of workout suggestions, including an article about deadlifts and one specifically covering squat technique.


                            • #15
                              Try tons of egg yolks and ghee. Tell her to try the coffee with a shot of sugar free caramel if she really needs a Starbucks caramel-y fix.

                              Last edited by turquoisepassion; 08-23-2013, 11:10 AM.
                              HCLF: lean red meat, eggs, low-fat dairy, bone broth/gelatin, fruits, seafood, liver, small amount of starch (oatmeal, white rice, potatoes, carrots), small amount of saturated fat (butter/ghee/coconut/dark chocolate/cheese).

                              My Journal: gelatin experiments, vanity pictures, law school rants, recipe links

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