Plant-based female bodybuilder explains how ditching meat helped her lose weight
Having competed as a bodybuilder for eight years, Tsuki Harris is no stranger to the importance of a structured nutrition plan
However, Harris stands out as a plant-based athlete in a sport awash with animal protein.
Many vegan athletes make the decision to go plant-based later in life, but Harris has been meat-free since she was a child.
"I've spent six years as vegan, however I was vegetarian from a very young age."
Harris says she has noticed substantial differences in her physique since switching from a vegetarian diet to a completely vegan one.
"As a vegetarian from a very young age, I used to eat a lot of eggs, cheese, whey protein and milk chocolate.
"I have always lifted weights, lived an active lifestyle and eaten well; however I instantly felt lighter when swapping to veganism. It was as if my body wasn't spending hours trying to digest certain foods."
Although Harris initially experienced some hostility in the fitness industry, her success has now led to others becoming intrigued and interested in a vegan diet plan.
"A few years ago, I had fellow trainers telling me I needed to build muscle, however I looked at their diets of meat, rice and vegetables and felt completely uninspired.
"As soon as I proved them wrong, I found I had a lot of questions flying my way but most people just seem extremely curious when they see an athlete thriving with a plant-based lifestyle."
Harris says it's certainly possible to get enough protein in your diet when living a vegan or plant-based lifestyle.
"I find eating a variety of foods works wonders - it really isn't as large of an issue as people assume.
"I find that most people need less protein than they think they do, a balance of carbs, fats and proteins work well. There are some great fats (such as nuts and seeds) and carbohydrates (such as lentils and beans) that contain protein."
Although food takes preference over supplements in Harris' regime, she uses a select few supps to ramp up results.
Hitting your gym goals
"I don't take many sports supplements, but I do use vegan protein powder and creatine to help with my athletic performance. Vitamin C, cranberry and vegan joint care support my every day health. I also use BetterYou Turmeric and Vegan Health oral sprays."
When it comes to achieving your health and fitness goals, Harris says it's not just about the hour you spend in the gym. Whether you're looking to build muscle, lose weight, or just improve general health, the key to success is in leading a holistic lifestyle.
"Health and fitness isn't just for the summer, it's for life. It's about consistency all year round, that way you don't have to 'try' to be anything other than yourself.
"Just make sure you're eating well - lots of variety - a rainbow of vegetables, less refined sugar and alcohol as well as staying on top of your water intake. Find exercise you enjoy regularly and be as active as you can, for example, walk more."
Read more from JOE:
- Gym launches free six-week membership for stressed out teenagers
- Bruce Lee's workout and diet routine revealed in new book
- YouTube comedians find out what it's like to train with Arnold Schwarzenegger
- Canadian woman breaks record for longest plank ever
- Food from Game of Thrones and Stranger Things examined by nutritionist
- Lift weights like Brooks Koepka to boost your golf game