fitness

David Haye's vegan protein review

David Haye and Love Health Supplements kindly set us a batch of his new vegan protein to trial, so here's the True Icon take on it. 

Choices, choices

Choices, choices

As we've already covered previously, David recently made the shift to a vegan diet on an ethical basis. In his transition he began marketing some vegan, plant-based protein powders. These are available from his Hayemaker Store.

The details

The shakes come in two different flavours - mint chocolate chip and rich chocolate. They are a blend of yellow pea protein, brown rice protein, and quinoa protein. In addition, the blend includes BCAAs, green tea extract, digestive enzymes, and Himalayan rock salt (which helps to combat muscular cramp). The sweetness comes from stevia too, as opposed to the ubiquitous unnatural sweeteners I've seen included in other powders.

From this alone, I think you can see the level of effort that has gone into preparing this product. This is a far cry from the vegan standard of murky, unmixable, and unsavoury pea protein powders which are available elsewhere. Everything that has gone into the Hayemaker's protein powder is designed to maximise your athletic performance.

Perhaps most interesting is the protein blend itself though. Pea and rice? Yep, had it before. But the quinoa protein is a very welcome addition. Quinoa is a complete protein source, but is shamefully underused in plant-based powders. Also, you won't find any soy here either. Whilst the jury's out on soy (and I for one eat a lot of the stuff), this blend avoids it and thus avoids any controversy.

The taste

I call this one the 'serious and sweaty' pose

I call this one the 'serious and sweaty' pose

We got the opportunity to try both the mint choc chip and rich chocolate flavours of the shakes, and rest assured they're both awesome.

I tried mint choc chip first. For this, I mixed it straight with almond milk. Mint choc chip is always a less versatile flavour in my opinion, and I tend to prefer it without anything else mixed into the shake. The mint flavour can sometimes clash a bit with any fruit I throw in, but in hindsight a few fruits such as apples may have worked well.

Nevertheless, the mint choc chip flavour was great on its own. It was very rich and relatively creamy for a non-dairy shake. It had some earthy undertones, which were most likely a result of the quinoa. The Himalayan rock salt gave it a slightly salty taste which added to the overall flavour. It was a great shake though, and whilst I don't tend to go in for mint choc chip flavours myself I could see myself making a protein hot chocolate with this powder.

With the rich chocolate flavour I tasted a little on its own and mixed the rest with a few bananas and quinoa flakes in a smoothie. On its own the rich chocolate was very palatable, and I could have been convinced it wasn't even a protein powder but a dessert drink. It was even better in the smoothie though. The sweetness of the bananas and the touch of saltiness from the Himalayan rock salt were an incredible combo. The result was a thick, smooth, caramel-like taste.

Effectiveness

Honestly, from just two shakes, it's impossible to tell really. What I can say is that neither shake left me feeling bloated, and both actually felt energising which is a quality that's quite rare in a shake. As such, these would make great pre-workout supplements as well as post-workout. Based on the ingredients I'd trust that this would be a very effective shake to use in the long run in conjunction with a solid workout routine though.

Verdict

All in all, this is a fantastic product. At £39.99 for an 800g tub it's on the pricey side. But you are paying a premium price for a premium protein powder. This product isn't about fancy flavours (although it is delicious), nor is it about just a protein supplement. It's been formulated from the ground-up by David Haye and the team at Love Health to be the gold standard in plant-based nutritional supplements for vegan athletes, and to this end it succeeds.

You can buy David Haye's vegan protein from the Hayemaker online store.

Tasty tasty brotein

Tasty tasty brotein

 

David Haye is vegan

UK boxing heavyweight legend, David Haye, has announced that he went vegan at the start of 2014. 

David Haye claims he will 'never go back' to eating animal products for ethical reasons.

David Haye claims he will 'never go back' to eating animal products for ethical reasons.

In an interview with The Independent, The Hayemaker mentioned that he 'watched a TV documentary about how animals are farmed, killed and prepared for us to eat'. 

It's great to see him coming to veganism from an ethical approach, but he is also ensuring he maintains a diet that allows him to continue to fight. He states 'I saw all those cows and pigs and realised I couldn't be a part of it any more. It was horrible. I did some research to make sure I could still obtain enough protein to fight and, once satisfied that I could, I stopped. I'll never go back.'

Having been vegan for 6 months now, David has also released a range of vegan proteins - an industry that needs all the support it can get. It's great to see a big player enter the market, and the products look fantastic. Mint Chocolate Chip and Rich Chocolate are the two products available. The nutritional profile is unique and consists of a blend of yellow pea protein, raw brown rice protein, and quinoa protein. This provides a large amino acid profile, and beneficial micronutrients. It has numerous other benefits, including BCAAs, green tea extract, and digestive enzymes to ensure your body gets the most out of the product. Whilst £34.99 is a little on the pricey side for a 800g tub, it is a very high quality product. We'll be trying it out soon.

For those that are as geeky as us about nutritional profiles, this is probably pretty exciting.

For those that are as geeky as us about nutritional profiles, this is probably pretty exciting.

With an impressive professional boxing career spanning over 10 years, with only 2 losses, David Haye is one of the most successful boxers to ever live. Packing one of the world's strongest punches earned him the nickname 'The Hayemaker', David collected title after title during his career including the WBA heavyweight title.

To add to his already impressive career, David was one of 2010's Sports Personalities of the Year alongside the likes of Jessica Ennis and Mark Cavendish. He also has a Doctor of Science degree from Anglia Ruskin University.

It's great to hear that another big sporting name has gone vegan. What's most exciting though is that David Haye is back in training with one main goal - 'I want to become world heavyweight champion again'. Could we see the first vegan WBA heavyweight champion in the coming years? Only David Haye can give us the answer to that question.

UPDATE: we now have a review for David Haye's vegan protein.

 

Just What Is 'True Icon' Anyway?

 

Welcome to my long overdue explanation of what True Icon means to me. When Rob and I started the site we agreed we’d each write what the site was about and what it meant to us as our first posts.

Well, Rob stuck to our promise while I wrote my post months ago and subsequently scrapped it. I’m a perfectionist who eventually, grudgingly, settles for less than perfect; this time in the form of a stream of conscious blast of blogging.

So what does True Icon mean to me? When Rob first came up with the name and the tag “Become the Icon” it grew on me over the space of the next 5 minutes to encompass a lot of what I wanted the site to be. I’m not sure if it came endowed with meaning that took me 5 minutes to understand (It’s a strong possibility) or if I subscribed my own meaning to it. At this point it probably doesn’t matter.

So what is it? In short, we want True Icon sell ethical and stylish clothes. Both Rob and I have been vegan for a number of years and we’ve found ethical ‘fashion’ to be at best highly suspect. We’re hoping to provide organic, fair trade and fashionable clothing for both men and women as soon as possible. As you can probably tell from the state of the site at the moment, neither of us our web designers; we’re working on the shop functionality and going over every aspect of our products to make sure they’re as ethical as they can possibly be.

In the meantime, we’re throwing out material on anything and everything that we care about. Loosely broken into categories:

Culture: be that books, games, music, films or what have you. It’s a broad title but if it’s good enough for the Guardian, it’s good enough for me.

Fitness: We’re both fitness obsessed and we think everyone should be. Expect posts on workouts, diets, Martial Arts and how to generally make yourself into a superhero.

Essays: In which we cover topics in depth that we have been thinking about recently. This is a bit of a “File as Misc.” section.

Food: Always vegan. Nearly always healthy, fitness focused, quick and convenient. Apart from the odd indulgence including Oreo Ice Cream and Raw Food Vegan Snickers (both coming soon!). Check out the True Icon Rule of 7 for an explanation of the types of food we cook.

Technology: It has a larger and larger part in all our lives and almost everyone is fascinated by some part of it – we fall under the category of ‘almost everyone’, so here it is.

Fashion: Last but by no means least. We’ll cover brands and products we back as well as debates around just what exactly ethical fashion is anyway.

The link in all this is that we will cover things from an ethical standpoint. So if you’re an ethical dude or dudette, or you’d like to be, you’re in the right place

Finally getting onto the subject of the name, it’s easier to approach from our tagline “Become the Icon”.

I’ve heard a lot of vegan jokes over the years. But my favourite?

How do you know if someone is vegan?

Don’t worry. They’ll tell you.

It’s genius.

We’ve all met the preachy vegan types. They’re so stoked with themselves and their attitude to life.

“Would you like a crisp Mark?”

“Umm... no thanks. I take my crisps cruelty free.”

This is a slight exaggeration and in reality things are a little more nuanced. But no matter what way you look at it, no matter what type of vegan you are - it’s so very, very true.

It’s true about any ethical or moral choice. I wouldn’t be vegan if I didn’t think it was the right thing to do. And if I think it’s the right thing to do it would follow that I want others to be vegan as well.  And what better way to get people to be vegan than telling them about it, right?

But there are different ways to let people know.


1)   You can bombard them with facts.

Facts about why meat is bad, why diary is bad, why animal testing is bad. Facts about how these things damage the environment, global society and perhaps even your health.

Facts about how bee’s numbers are critically low, how we’re over fishing to the brink of disaster, how inefficient beef production is. Ad infinitum, ad infinitum, ad infinitum.

The reaction is unlikely to be a favourable one. It’s a bit like telling someone their hair is crap and that you don’t like their music taste and then asking them to buy your latest record. It’s not going to work.


Option two then.


2)   You can set an example.

Live your life to its fullest and live it ethically. Be an informed, healthy, attractive individual.

People might comment on your food, your clothes, your energy levels or physique. At this point, if you like, you can mention you’re vegan or vegetarian or that your clothes are fair-trade, ethical and just downright awesome in every way.

They’ve asked, so let them know. Let them know that being vegan is one of the best things you’ve ever done for you.

Over time they’ll see how you live your life and they’ll start to see that maybe they could make some changes. Maybe how you live will work for them too.

I’ve seen this with so many of my friends, family memebers and collegues. They come to making ethical choices in their own time and in their own way. They might not go vegan but they might shop more locally, eat less meat or avoid animal tested products.

Anyone with an ethical conscience wants immediate change. And it can happen. We will fight for it with pen and with fire, with protest and with boycott.

But first we need to set an example of how life can be.

That’s what True Icon means to me. I hope to set an example of just how easy and enjoyable it is to live a compassionate and considerate lifestyle. Most importantly, I hope you’ll join me.


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If you’ve read this far – major props. Please get in touch with us and let us know how we can make the site better and what you’d like us to cover. We’d love to hear from you.


Cheers, Kai

Kai@trueicon.co.uk & Rob@Trueicon.co.uk

Kappel Leroy Clarke sets new world record

kappel

Plant-based athlete Kappel Leroy Clarke has brought new meaning to the widely used weightlifting expression 'lift things up and put them down'. On a sunny Sunday in LA, Kappel travelled the distance between Venice Pier and Santa Monica Pier (2.7 miles) with his 48kg kettlebell. Picking the kettlebell up before throwing it out in front of him, and picking it up once again, Kappel covered the distance in 5 hours, 37 minutes and 58 seconds.

This resulted in exactly 1,801 throws of the kettlebell - a cumulative weight of 95.29 tonnes.

Kappel's approach to fitness has always been an interesting one. Much of his personal training and work with clients focuses less on the physical elements of fitness, and the thought processes that one undertakes in situations of extreme stress on the body (entitled Fre Flo Do). This approach was undoubtedly utilised in this extreme feat of endurance and strength.

A short film, entitled A Marathon of Power has been released showing Kappel's journey towards defeating this challenge.

 

Vegan Blueberry Chocolate Hemp Ice Cream

photo.jpg

Vegan Blueberry Chocolate Hemp Ice Cream

This no sugar protein-rich ice cream is fantastic if you're looking for a delicious way to get more protein in your diet. Each batch has 48g of protein for a mere 480 calories.

Ingredients:

  • 350g of silken tofu
  • 200g of frozen blueberries
  • 30g of Chocolate Flavour Vegan Blend Protein Powder
  • 200g of soy yogurt
  • One teaspoon of almond essence (optional)
  • One teaspoon of vanilla extract (optional)

Recipe

  1. Blend all ingredients together until smooth.
  2. From here either put in the freezer for 3 hours, stirring halfway through to avoid the edges freezing completely.
  3. Or place into ice cream machine for 10 minutes until the mixture reaches the consistency of ice cream or stops rotating.
  4. And you're done!

How to Lose Weight on a Vegan Diet

How do I lose weight on a vegan diet?

Losing weight on a vegan diet is the same as losing weight on any other. You must ensure that your body is using more calories than you are consuming. There are two ways to do this:

1) Eat fewer calories

2) Exercise

Ideally, you’ll be using a combination of these.

How much weight should I lose a week?

Try to lose between 1 and 2 pounds per week. Any more than this can be unhealthy and unsustainable.

Remember that losing weight isn’t a race.

You’re looking to make life long lifestyle changes. If you lose 20 pounds in three weeks you will find it difficult to return to a healthy eating routine once you reach your target weight.

Slow and steady weight loss also encroaches less on your daily routine and quality of life. It will mean you can afford the odd treat and it abates the temptation to binge.

How many calories do I need to cut?

As a rough guide you need to cut 3,500 calories a week from your calorie intake to lose a pound of body fat.

Remember that this can be done by eating less, exercising or both.

If you were to diet alone, you need to cut 500 calories a day.

If you are exercising as a part of your weight loss plan you can afford to eat a little more on work out days.

On rest days, eat less.

What are some good vegan food options?

Within reason you can eat anything you like.

You could eat 1,500 calories of peanut butter and call it a day – but it’s not recommended.

Instead, look to eat a healthy range of foods including carbohydrates, healthy fats and protein.

Many people believe that carbohydrates will fill you up. But it’s better to fill up on protein sources like lentils, beans, tofu, tempeh and seitan. Your body takes longer to digest these – so you stay fuller for longer.

Carbs: Try to avoid ‘simple carbs’ like white rice and white pasta. Brown rice and quinoa are your best friends.

Proteins: The whole range of vegan protein sources are open to you. Lentils, nuts, seeds, tofu, tempeh, seitan – you name it.

Fats: Fat is an important part of our diet so don’t cut it out completely. If you’re using nuts and seeds for protein you’ll be getting some healthy fats in the mix anyway. Other great sources include avocados, coconut oil and coconut milk.

Is cardio important?

It really depends on your goals.

You’ll hear a lot of body builders slate cardio in the belief that it burns calories that could be used to gain muscle.

Ignore them.

Cardio has many benefits including a lower resting heart rate, calorie burning and improved day -to-day fitness.

Cardio will help you cut calories from your diet and improve your ability to run for that bus, climb those stairs or whatever other obstacles get in your way from day to day.

Pick an exercise you like or that fits with your goals. Running, cycling, jump-rope, swimming are all great options.

If you decide to gain muscle, you can continue your cardio routine alongside weights and simply eat more to create a calorie surplus or you can cut the cardio. The choice it yours – it’s your life and your goal you’re aiming for.

If you really, really hate cardio and you’re prepared to make up the calorie burning potential with weights and calorie control then feel free to avoid it.

 

Steady State or High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)?

Both.

Steady state cardio is great for endurance and like any form of exercise will help burn calories. It does however take a while with runs upwards of 1.5 hours not unheard of for those who enjoy it.

As a starting goal, try to aim for half an hour of steady state cardio as a minimum.

Walk, run, swim, it doesn’t matter - just keep your heart rate above resting.

HIIT on the other hand has been linked to increased calorie burning throughout the day. It also takes half the time of steady state cardio.

Try to incorporate one or two HIIT sessions a week into your routine. For a great home HIIT routine, try burpees for 30/60/90 seconds with 30 seconds rest in-between each set.

By using both you’ll be working towards great overall practical fitness.

Should I use a weights routine?

Unquestionably, yes.

If you have to choose between cardio and weights – pick weights. It’s been proven to help with weight loss more than cardio alone.

Whether you are male or female a weights routine will help you lose weight and unless your diet is geared towards it – won’t make you a beefcake.

Weight lifting increases your overall strength, balance and fitness and raises the heart rate, burning calories in the process.

Muscle is a calorie-burning machine. The more muscle you have, the more calories your body will burn resting or working out.

Weight lifting will also decrease the chance of excess skin after weight loss, the muscle will help pad out where the fat used to be.

What’s the best exercise to help me lose weight?

The one you enjoy the most.

If you’re a runner, run. If you’re a boxer/martial artist, train and jump-rope. If you’re a swimmer, swim. If you’re a cyclist, ride.

Enjoy it, keep doing it, lose weight.

What about low carb/low fat diets?

Try to avoid fad diets.

Low fat or low carb diets are very popular. There are anecdotes across the web telling how they help you lose weight fast.

This might be true but remember you are looking to make a change for life.

Are you prepared to avoid high fat foods and carbs for the rest of your life? Your diet shouldn’t cause you any undue effort or hassle. Low fat and low carb diets can mean skipping meals you like and lead to feelings of guilt on occasions when you cave. Quite often it’s not worth it.

Our body is designed to make use of carbs, fats and proteins in different ways. Each plays an important part in our health and wellbeing so make sure you incorporate them in your diet.

Some studies have shown that low fat versions of food make us feel less full, meaning we eat more of them. Great for companies marketing low fat foods but bad news for you.

Will leangains/keto/paleo help me reach my goals?

These diets have proven results and many avid followers but they aren’t for everyone.

If your diet doesn’t fit around your lifestyle, if it leaves you craving things you can’t have, causes guilt when/if you cave or makes you constantly worry about what you’re eating then it’s not worth it.

The reason these diets work is because they all incorporate calorie deficits to their weight loss programs.

The most important thing in weight loss is using more calories than you consume. All else is tributary. Including whatever diet your friend or that blogger swears by.

Is the Body Mass Index (BMI) useful?

No.

The BMI chart is made redundant the moment you start using a weight routine because muscle weighs more than fat. Some of the healthiest people you know will be considered ‘overweight’ by the BMI chart.

Don’t beat yourself up over chart results, take photos, keep and eye on your reflection and if you want to be fastidious measure your waist, hips, arm and leg circumference regularly.

I’m in a calorie deficit but I’m not losing weight, what's going on?

First and foremost, check you are in a deficit.

Start counting calories. It’s tedious but if you aren’t losing weight by guesswork alone it might be needed. Some people are surprised by just how much they’re eating.

If you are in a calorie deficit – don’t cut it further immediately.

Stick with your deficit for a month or two. It can be frustrating to weigh yourself weekly only to find you’ve stayed the same weight or even gained some but there are good reasons why this could happen.

You may be gaining muscle while losing weight. This is known as ‘recomping’ and it’s quite common when you start a new routine.

You may notice noticeable changes in your appearance but no weight loss – this is why photos and keeping a keen eye on the mirror can be useful.

You may also be experiencing water retention. If you’re regularly feeling bloated, noticing indents on your ankles when you take your socks off or gaining weight rapidly over night you’re probably experiencing this.

Don't worry, water weight will drop off and often comes with a huge drop in weight and measurement.