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NFL Defensive Lineman, David “The 300lb Vegan” Carter – Tips On Plant-Built Strength



david carter, 300 pound vegan


By David Carter, Defensive Lineman NFL

Football player, vegan and 300 pounds are three phrases you don’t often hear in a sentence. Converting to a whole foods plant-based lifestyle was the best decision I could have ever made for my body, mind, and spirit. While the average lifespan of a professional football player is only 56 (usually due to heart disease, stroke, cancers, and other chronic illnesses), making this one small change has not only have improved my health and the health of the planet, but it has given me a greater purpose, something bigger than myself to fight for, and fight I will. If you’re worried about building strength on a plant-based diet, fear no more. Here are some ways that I fuel my better:


  1. Drink, Drink, Drink!

It’s been known for hundreds of years that water is good for you. Nearly all of our systems do not function as well without adequate water intake. What most people don’t know is that by the time you feel thirsty you’re already dehydrated. Not only can dehydration wreak havoc on growing muscles, it can also lead to dizziness, weakness, and fatigue. During resistance training, water is pushed from the blood into muscle cells and surrounding areas because of all the squeezing that takes place in the muscle during contraction. When cells lose water, and consequently volume, protein production can slow down and protein breakdown can accelerate causing larger muscle breakdown and less new muscle growth. Aim to drink half of your body weight in ounces. Since I weigh around 305 pounds I try to drink a minimum 150 ounces per day. I add Vega Sport Electrolyte Hydrator to some of these ounces to replenish the electrolytes I lose in sweat—without calories or sugar.


  1. Catch Up On Your Zzzzz

Sleep is a significant component in the muscle building process. Unfortunately it is also the most overlooked. Sleep is an active physiological process, in which your body diligently carries out vital activities while we’re unconscious. There are three reasons why sleep is critical for muscle growth. During sleep there is increased blood flow to the muscles, your muscle tissue repairs and grows, and the release of growth hormone reaches its peak during deep sleep. Not getting enough sleep and or enough high quality sleep can cause a rapid decrease in growth hormone secretion, which is the last thing someone looking to bulk wants to hear. Growth hormone deficiency is associated with obesity, loss of muscle mass and reduced exercise ability, so schedule some time for a catnap, or start making an earlier bedtime a priority.


  1. Reps AND Rest

I have the opposite goal of most people when I step into the gym. The last thing on my mind is weight loss. So to ensure maximum mass and strength gain it’s important for me to take a breather. That’s right you heard me, rest. When looking to gain size and strength longer rest in between reps is key. Both your muscles and central nervous system need time to recover from the exertion of lifting extremely heavy weights. Not allowing yourself to rest long enough will prevent you from lifting heavy on your next set and even slow your recovery time for your next workout session. So, how much time should you give yourself? If you’re like me and your entire workout revolves around major gains, allow yourself 3 to 5 minutes of rest before you beast out another set. After a strength training session I make sure to take Vega Sport Recovery Accelerator and Vega Sport Performance Protein to further reduce recovery time.


  1. Ommmmmmm

Believe it or not I practice yoga, all 300 pounds of me and I’m pretty good at it too. Combining yoga to my strength training routine a few years ago was one of the best things I could have done for my body and mind. Since yoga is essentially a series of focused isometric contractions combined with specific breathing patterns held for long periods of time it’s no wonder why it produces gains in flexibility, mobility, strength, and muscle endurance. Many poses in yoga are exceptionally efficient because they require you to support your own bodyweight while your muscles are in elongated positions that everyday life doesn’t require. One of my favorite things yoga does for my body is increased joint and muscular flexibility, which reduces the possibility of injury. Mental strength is another result of practicing yoga. I can’t stress enough how important it is to have your wits about you as a competitive athlete. Knowing how to quiet the mind isn’t easy but it also isn’t impossible. Practicing yoga develops that mental stillness that I find myself using and benefiting from both on and off the field.


What are your strength training goals? Comment below.


Author Bio:

David Carter

Defensive lineman in the NFL, David Carter is a plant-based strength athlete and animal rights advocate. Switching from a standard American diet to a nutrient dense vegan diet has given him more energy, shorter recovery time, increased stamina, improved strength, and decreased injuries. He shares his journey to maintain mass while eating only plant-based foods at:

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Ilen & Lauren Bell are the husband and wife team behind Black Fitness Today, born, in 2011, out of their motivation to change culture, build a platform and lead the charge. Their purpose is to help change the culture towards health and fitness in the African-American community, showcase those who are making an impact, and promote healthier living. They also aim to serve as a platform for African-American fitness and health professionals and enthusiasts who are otherwise overlooked in traditional fitness media.

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5 Reasons People Quit Going To The Gym



1)  I don’t have time to workout

It takes 21 days to develop a habit. Diligently plan out the next 3 weeks, incorporate at least 30 minutes of exercise into your daily regimen for 3-4 times a week. Make having an active life intentional. Put it on the same level as having lunch or getting sleep. As you work-out, it will soon become a non-negotiable, similar to eating and sleeping.

2)  It’s Too Crowded And People Watch Me

The gym isn’t the only option that will help you reach your body goals. There are various in-home regimens that you can following YouTube or your favorite social media fitness professionals. Fitness is doing more movement than you did the day before. Lunch break walks, morning workout routines, and bike rides all support your desire to have an active (and private) lifestyle.

3)  I’m Not Losing Any Weight

Getting the body you desire requires a lifestyle change. Oftentimes we believe workouts are enough, but eating and sleeping are also main components for weight-loss. Fat is burned during your body’s recovery stage and muscle building process. As you work out, obtain 6-8 hours of sleep to maximize gains. Clean eating cannot be overlooked, a high protein-low carb diet is key. We have to break our traditional mindsets of consuming 3 meals a day and get accustomed to eating 6 times a day. Eating 6 times includes 3 meals along with 3 snacks, which can also include smoothies and shakes.

4)  No One Will Know If I Quit 

Accountability is vital to starting a new workout routine. Identify a workout partner. If you can’t find one, write a contract with yourself. Sign your contract and hang it somewhere so you can see it everyday. Knowing you have a commitment to yourself or your partner will help you form healthy, weight-loss habits.

5)  I Just Hate Working Out!!!

You may hate the gym, but everyone loves a good reflection in the mirror. Everyone wants to add years to their life and working out does just that. You have to ask yourself every day, “does my lifestyle add years to my life or subtract them?”Medications and hospital bills can become very expensive so prevention has to be the focus. Remember: the healthier we are, the better the reflection we have in the mirror.

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5 Lies that Keep Ladies from Lifting



I’m not sure where these misconceptions come from, but let’s take a moment to clear them up.

1) Only men that know how to lift are in the weight room! FALSE

Ladies don’t let the fellas keep you out the free weight room or make you feel uncomfortable about lifting weights. First thing to consider is many guys in the weight room actually know very little about correct form….I frequently see them lifting using momentum to lift weights that are too heavy for them. So don’t be intimidated as you learn to do something you are not familiar with.

2) Lifting weights will make you bulky; I just want to “tone.” FALSE

The body is made of 2 things…Muscle and Fat…so to say you want to “tone” means you want more muscle to show. You do that by making the muscle bigger and losing the fat that prevents the muscle from showing. Lifting weights is essential in that process. Muscle is metabolically active, burning more calories and helping to incinerate fat all day long!

3) I should lose weight before I start lifting. FALSE

Don’t you want to preserve the muscle you have while losing the majority of your weight through fat? When you lift, your overall weight loss may seem slower, but you will lose inches faster. For that reason alone, I don’t like scales and strongly discourage their use on a daily basis…I could rant about scales all day but I’ll save it for another time!

The main reason you want to start lifting weights is because it increases your metabolism which can aid in your weight loss goals.

Let us pause and salute weight training!

4) Lifting weights will make you masculine and look like a bodybuilder! FALSE

It is REALLY difficult for women to build the amount of muscles that a true “bodybuilder” has. It takes an extreme amount of discipline, an insane amount of training and a diet that is so specific that the average lady wouldn’t want to eat that much! Why? Simply put, women naturally produce far less testosterone than our male counterparts which is essential in building muscle mass. Women with those physiques have spent YEARS working to get there. Whether their physique is your cup of tea or not, respect the dedication of the athlete.

5) Lifting weights is for the young! FALSE

Studies show that people of all ages, from children to the elderly, benefit from strength training…don’t believe me? Read what the doctors have said about how it can fight Alzheimer’s and dementia.

If you decide to embark on this new frontier by including lifting weights into your workout plan, trust and believe that you will begin to get advice from every Tom, Dick and Harry about what you should and shouldn’t do. Remember to stick to the basics and science over “bro-science”. Hire a professional if need be and when all else fails, trust your gut!

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The booty theory



You have probably stopped here for one of these reasons:

1. The word “booty” in the title has incredibly entertained your senses and you like everything about booties and women ( ……………….lol)

2. You just want to know what the heck is the booty theory !!?

The boooooooty theory! The booty is one of the most desired part of the woman’s body. It absolutely defines the way we walk, the way we dance, the way we stand! And let’s be honest….that’s not only an appealing body part for the men’s eyes, women have litteraly take over the appetite for round and curvy behinds! (Twweeeerkkk!)

Society standards have changed and it is totally positive to crown thick and curvy women too. Thanks to Instagram and celebrities such as Kim K for changing the game. Even though, plastic surgery is taking over, I am not against it everyone can choose what they want to do with their own body. But are we pushing too hard the woman’s image to be perfectly  shaped like a curvylicious doll?

I think there is a major impact because nowdays women don’t only want to loose weight or to be healthy, they want to get what Becky and her friend are talking about!   (Watch Becky & her friend)There is nothing wrong with it, but women and young girls are getting disproportionately obsessed by uplifting their behind in order to fit a new society criteria.

Squat videos and curvy models are booming now! It is great to have access to so many videos and pictures to get inspired! I do the same too with my instagram @iamsouannaj. I do have curves, I embrace them and I am proud of them.

But, the messsge I am trying get across is that women have to spend time uplifting their brain too and not only their booty! It is stunning to see a strong, magnificient  and curvy woman but that has also something to say, inspire others, create, develop new businesses, lead on, or does positive changes in her community like a real boss should do! Women should be more confident and invest more into themself! Women have to balance their  time to reach their ideal body goal and also develop long-lasting life goals. They need to focus on being healthy and therefore to be even stronger for a purposeful living!
Lift your booty and your brain too! What a nice statement! (lol) Comment below! I am wondering what is your opinion!

Souanna J

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Karen Civil, Live Civil, Black Fitness Today




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