Conventional Wisdom · 15 September 2012

Conventional Wisdom says that we need lots of meat and dairy to get strong, but conventional wisdom can sometimes be just marketing or worse, propaganda.

Being a high school coach, I know that football players, weight lifters, and other athletes where strength is a premium are constantly told that they need to eat more meat to get stronger and even heavier. They are bombarded by the media to drink milk to get their calcium which will keep their bodies, especially their bones, healthy. I had bought into and preached the whole meat and dairy thing too. But now, I am not so sure that the message was not all a bunch of baloney.

I am no super athlete or anything close, but I do try to stay fairly fit. And if you have read this far, you know that this whole “almost vegan thing” is apparently a next step in the health plan conspired against me. So to stay objective about the whole thing, I have tried to keep tabs on my strength as well as my weight and running time.

What I have seen is that I have been able to increase the number of pushups and pull-ups I do every other morning despite mostly dropping meat and dairy from my diet. I know this could just be my way of telling myself things are working, but I am not so sure. So in keeping with the idea that this whole change in lifestyle is really just a science experiment, here are a couple more baseline numbers.

Currently, I do pushups with my feet elevated on an exercise ball. I have been doing thirty, but decided to increase it to thirty-five this morning because I have been feeling so good.

I do several different types of pull-ups, mostly just changing my hand position. Sometimes I also vary things by lifting my head in front of the bar (like lat pull downs). I go all the way down so my arms are fully extended before I pull up and I use a forward hand grip. I normally do between ten and twelve of those.

My goal is to get up to 50 pushups and 20 pull-ups before the end of this experiment on my body.

If conventional wisdom is correct, my numbers should stay the same or even decrease with no meat or dairy in my diet. The way I am feeling now, I am confident I will meet my goals. Which will answer the question for me about the conventional wisdom of meat and dairy.

© 2012 Michael T. Miyoshi

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