Vegan Nutrition on a Budget

June 17, 2017   /   byrunningwhilevegan  / Categories :  Uncategorized

When I was training for my first half marathon a little over a year ago, I was broke and lost about how to feed myself while doing long runs. I needed to get the most bang for my buck, and as someone who had spent their adulthood scared of carbs, I was confused. Carbs or protein? How could I spent the least amount of money and still feel full and satisfied? I am someone who gains weight very easily, and it hasn’t been until sticking with running long-term that I don’t put on a couple pounds just by looking at food. I always tried to stick with a high protein, low carb diet but the truth of the matter is, I was pretty unhealthy until recently. In high school I was a swimmer and now as a 35 year old woman, I’m in the best shape of my life since being that athletic 17 year old! At 33, I looked in the mirror one day and just decided I could do better, I should do better. And so this journey began! The rise of social media, along with run clubs, has helped me stick to an exercise routine! The communities built within these are inspiring and motivating! I have friends via Instagram I may never meet, but keep me pushing to do more, get better, and stay fit. Within the run clubs, to know people in real life who are constantly pushing boundaries, and themselves, running exciting races around the world – that keeps me showing up! In keeping up with a long-term routine, I don’t worry so much about portions, carbs or protein; I can eat what I want, when I want without feeling lethargic, I need the calories! I know this isn’t everyone’s story, but it is mine.

All of the ingredients for these enchiladas, minus the vegan cheese, were purchased at the 99 Cents Store.

This post though, is about feeding yourself if you should find yourself on a very tight budget. Unfortunately when I was training the first time around, I wasn’t eating much. I wasn’t starving, but after rent amd bills, there wasn’t much dough to spend at the grocery store. I wish I had known about the 99 Cents Store back then! I mean I have one down the street, but step foot in it? Me? Nah, I was good.

Love these samosas!

This company changed their labeling, so the original packaging made it’s way to the 99 Cents Store! So great for the marathon training runs from last winter!

It wasn’t until very recently I put my snobby, preconceived notions aside and went it. It’s GLORIOUS! Every store is not equal, but you gotta give it a try! Look, obviously I think we should eat  organic, and shop at farmer’s markets and eat what’s in season! But my bank account and my ideals are in firm disagreeance. The produce at 99 Cent Store is actually pretty good! There’s also some tasty treats in the freezer section (spring rools! samosas! potstickers!) If name brand food is about to expire, it ends up at 99 Cent Store! Mike and I got 20 bags of Morning Star chik’n strips! The dry goods section is great too! You can get rice, canned or dried beans, pasta, tortillas, tomato sauce, soy sauce, hot sauce, soy milk, oatmeal, cereal – there’s always vegan treasures to be found! The beverage aisle alone is a game-changer! I’ve found organic electrolyte drinks, alkaline water and coconut water! They also carry epsom salt for your aching muscles! (The epsom salt bath is a life-saver.)

Bananas, coconut water and Nooma from 99 Cents Store! Long training run goodies!

 

Random vegan find!

So this post isn’t necessarily about nutrition, but more a guide to being a vegan runner on a budget. The truth of the matter is, the more miles we’re logging in, the more calories we need to be consuming. Groceries get expensive! Really expensive. Here’s a few more of the goodies I have obtained for $1!

Beets!

Big fan!

The best!

We bought them all, all 20 of them!

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