What does health mean to you? When I went plant-based over 10 years ago, it wasn’t for performance or to look a certain way – it was for vitality. After watching the documentary Forks Over Knives, I realized how much the way I ate impacted my longevity and health span. And now, I feel stronger than ever and love diving into deep discussions about how we can make it easier for more people to embrace the power of plants.
What does plant-based mean?
Enter Maxime Sigouin: master health coach, philanthropist, and founder of multiple plant-based fitness coaching businesses. With years of experience under his belt, Maxime has made it his mission to help 10,000 vegans get into the best shape of their lives using whole food, plant-based diets.
We dive deep into Maxime’s journey from bodybuilding and modeling to becoming a plant-based fitness guru. We discuss common myths and misconceptions surrounding the vegan lifestyle and both share anecdotes and real-world examples that debunk these some common tropes.
This episode is not only about how to optimize your health with a plant-based lifestyle but also how to thrive in every aspect of your life.
Here are Maxime’s key takeaways:
- What does health look like?: Breaking down the impact of plant-based living
- Debunking Vegan Myths: Addressing common misconceptions about veganism
- Tips and Strategies: for prioritizing and sticking to a plant-based lifestyle
- Making Wellness Easy: Using deep work, meal prep, and delegation
- Entrepreneurship: Hear Maxime’s experience running four companies and helping others achieve their health goals
- Healthy Money Mindset: Lessons on developing a positive relationship with wealth
- Vegan Protein Sources: Maxime shares his favorites
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Listen to Maxime’s episode
If you found today’s episode enlightening and want to hear more, make sure to subscribe and leave a review on your favorite podcast platform. Share this episode with friends and family who are curious about plant-based living or considering making a change in their health journey.
- Watch the documentary: Forks Over Knives
- Check out Maxime’s Coaching Services
- Interested in more recipes? Check out Plant Based on a Budget
- Sign up for my weekly newsletter!
- Want more? Listen to this episode about the plant-based athlete with Robert Cheeke
- What does health really look like? (0:00)
- How did you get into modeling? (2:51)
- Forks over knives and veganism. (6:11)
- The myth of not eating enough. (9:42)
- The importance of protein in your diet. (12:50)
- The myth of cooking. (16:15)
- How to use pain as a motivator. (19:06)
- The importance of having a list of priorities. (21:37)
- Meal prep and boundaries. (24:58)
- What are the main reasons why people come to work with you? (27:27)
- Transitioning into a vegan lifestyle. (31:27)
- The value of taking time for yourself. (35:35)
- Getting into endurance sports to run away from challenges. (42:07)
- The importance of eating extra protein. (46:01)
- Protein sources for strength training. (48:50)
Sonya Looney 0:00
Hey, Maxime, welcome to the podcast.
Maxime Sigouin 0:04
Thank you for having me excited to be here.
Sonya Looney 0:06
It’s really funny. Right before we hit record, I realized that we lived in the same place for a long time and then you just moved to LA.
Maxime Sigouin 0:16
Yeah, yeah, I just Yeah, I was there for eight months and I was came from LA to Squamish for eight months. So yeah, we could have connected
Sonya Looney 0:23
I was there. What brought you to Squamish?
Maxime Sigouin 0:26
Just I used to live in Coquitlam for over five years, and then kind of ended up moving to like Mexico and traveling around and met my now fiance in LA. Tried for a visa didn’t work out. So I got booted out. So I’m like, let me just go back to BC because it was the closest place. And I just wanted peace ultimately from living in LA for a year. I just wanted peace and quiet. And Squamish is right in the middle of peace.
Sonya Looney 0:52
Well, I guess this is a good place to start is, you know, a lot of people will look at somebody and maybe even in LA especially, you know a lot. There’s a lot of, you know, attractive or health healthy, quote, looking people there. But what does health really look like? Because a lot of people are trying to assign health by looking at somebody, but you can’t always assign by what somebody looks like.
Maxime Sigouin 1:13
Yeah, so I was saying Health to vitality, that I would say that those pretty much go hand in hand, like when you wake up, but you’re just vibrant and kicking for life. Like, to me that’s Ultimate Health. If you’re, you know, if you’re eating and living in a way that allows you to live as long as possible and feel good as long as possible than in my book, you’re doing the healthy thing, you’re doing the right thing, it has nothing to do necessarily with having a six pack or a bigger butt, flat stomach, whatever it may be. It’s more of like a feeling and for you to actually have longevity.
Sonya Looney 1:45
Yeah, I think that that’s a really freeing feeling. Because I mean, especially as a female and as an endurance athlete, I used to think I have to look a certain way. Or I have to be a certain way in order to, quote perform or be a real athlete. And actually it was when I changed my diet to plant based like 10 years ago that I stopped focusing on those things because it became about how I felt. And I think the message about health is starting to change that it’s not just about looking like somebody in a magazine, but it’s about how you feel.
Maxime Sigouin 2:11
Yeah, absolutely. And especially as an athlete is definitely about how you feel because other people look great as an athlete, but they perform terribly. So it definitely has nothing to do with with muscle mass or leanness. Yeah.
Sonya Looney 2:21
So this is something you can speak to like, I’d love to hear about your story, like how you transition to plant based and what you were doing before that.
Maxime Sigouin 2:29
Yeah, for sure. So no, almost kind of start a little bit way back. But I grew up on a on a farm. We just like we had chickens. We had cows, we had pieces we were weren’t vegan at the time, but like we killed chicken. We grabbed fresh eggs every morning. So I came from the opposite side of the spectrum of being vegan. My dad would always make fun of like people A to B is like a block of plastic ultimately. So that’s kind of what I grew up with. And, you know, I’ve always been into sports, I played basketball all through high school and college fell into the bodybuilding and powerlifting. So I got like, really big and strong throughout the years. And one day was training with a friend and he was my ride for that training. So before we had to go back home, he stopped as one of his friends apartment like I just need to pick up some things. He opens the door. There’s like a runway inside the apartment like a fashion runway and we kind of friends you have here and ended up being his modeling agent. And she saw me again, I’m I’m six foot four 240 pounds, a big chubby cheeks and she’s like, I see something on those chubby cheeks, you try losing some weight, and we’ll do a photo shoot. And so I was like, No, I’m prepping for a show. I’m gonna lean out let’s give it a shot, right? Like why not? I couldn’t even I never thought that people made money being on magazines or uncovers of things that even though it was a thing it was just like, I just never put any thought into it. So ultimately, I did my first cut, did my first photo shoot and started booking some jobs and make some money. And this is this is great. I’m making more money than when I was working at Subway and I just have to take photos I think this is awesome.
Sonya Looney 3:58
Can I stop you for a second and talk about this? So modeling is so hard like I don’t think that people really understand how hard it is to have different faces that you can make in front of the camera and that is a skill in and of itself could Can you talk about how you learned how to do that? Or did it just come naturally?
Maxime Sigouin 4:14
It didn’t come naturally and I never learned it properly. That’s why I got out of it. I think I just like had a look that was popular at the time because it’s very like seasoned dependent right sometimes they’re looking for a bearded tattoo guys if you’re not that you’re not working a lot if they’re looking for a 12 year old look which was what was in style when I was in that world and you have to be skinny look like a 12 year old so I tried to master their facial expression like I would hide my face be in a mirror like smize you know trying to smile open your eyes is different emotions. I don’t think I’ve ever mastered it but I did enough to be able to like work in New York that worked in Milan I kind of like was able to travel around but never never made it big. I just didn’t know sounds like making it toxic. Yeah, but it It sounds like it. But when you’re there, you’re living in an apartment with five other people and doing 15 castings a day like it’s, it’s not as luxurious as people think it is. And it’s very toxic space. Like the whole the whole drug scene and like puking and under eating is true on the international scene local scene not so much. But yeah, so ultimately, like, kind of did my first job, make some money. This is awesome, which they need to get skinnier, because it was a size extra large amount clothing, and she’s like, You need to be like a small medium, like a shoe medium. And I was like, well, that’s, that’s a lot of chest that I have to kind of fit in that shirt. So I went on Google, and I was like, what is gonna allow me to get skinny and vegans showed up like vegans are skinny and weak. I was like, Well, I don’t care if I’m weak, I need to be skinny because I can fit in the clothes. So ultimately, I swapped my breakfast of like 12 eggs for breakfast, three chicken breasts, two or three chicken breasts every two hours, five meals per day. The next day, I was eating a bowl of frozen blueberries, dates and bananas for my breakfast, right. And I was like all over nine years ago, and I was my early start to veganism, I stopped strength training, I just did cardio I severely under eight because I didn’t know how to feed myself properly, lost 80 pounds in my first year, again on purpose because I was trying to get skinny, and then manage to kind of like get into that world a little bit more. But that’s kind of a start meeting to veganism. And I started watching like Forks Over Knives and some of these documentaries. And that’s how my grandfather got diagnosed with cancer. And after I was watching first and I was like man, there’s there’s a connection here. Like he’s been eating terrible all of his life and living a really unhealthy lifestyle. And now he’s dealing with these diseases. And so when he passed away, it kind of just really sealed the deal for me of like veganism is the way to go, I feel so much better. And now there’s all this proof. So fast forward a few years, almost like, almost like six, seven years ago, I meet my ex partner, she get diagnosed with breast cancer within three years of us meeting. Sorry, within three months of less meetings because I was breast cancer, I choose to stay and be your caregiver. Doctors gave her a year to live she switched to whole food plant base. As soon as she got sick, she ended up living an extra, an extra four, you should have made it five years. We’d obviously like a pretty good quality of life compared to someone that is supposed to be sick. And unfortunately, I ended up passing away over two years ago. But that’s kind of what got me kick started on this journey that I’m on and why I’m such like a huge fan of of veganism and whole food plant based eating as a way to this huge group to body ultimately. Yeah,
Sonya Looney 7:21
I mean, I saw Forks Over Knives in 2012. And I’m a professional athlete, I was a professional athlete mountain biker at the time. And that’s what ultimately made me change my diet. It wasn’t for performance or to look a certain way it was for health. And yeah, and the thing I just didn’t know that the way that you ate greatly impacted your longevity and your health span. And I love I don’t love what happened. That’s that’s that’s a really difficult story. And I’m sorry that that happened to you and to your your ex partner and to your grandpa. But the stuff is real. And sometimes it takes a wake up call for people to say, hey, look, I might need to rethink how I’m doing some of these things.
Maxime Sigouin 8:03
Yeah, absolutely. And, you know, like, I’m obviously, I suppose I’m grateful for the experiences that I’ve had, because they brought me to where I’m at instead on a mission that I’m on now. And you know, I got to experience it secondhand. So I can’t even imagine what it’s like firsthand. And I don’t want to which is why I’m not waiting for the pain to come to kind of change and like we just need to like continue this path right away.
Sonya Looney 8:25
Yeah. So how did the way that you ate vegan change after you watch you watch Forks Over Knives? Or was it because vegan and plant based whole foods plant based can be really different?
Maxime Sigouin 8:36
Yeah, for sure. Well, I started to begin to look over nine years ago, so there wasn’t a lot of you’ve been vegan for 10 years. So like, there wasn’t a lot of options back then. Right? It was like tofu that was like banana flavored or strawberry flavor. Like that was your dessert. That was pretty much what you had. There wasn’t a lot. It took me two years to figure that Oreos were vegan and I was so excited. I was like, Oh yes, I get to have like sugar. So when I when I first transition again, coming from the farming background coming from the bodybuilding world, I had no knowledge all I knew was fruits and veggies and nuts. So that’s literally what I was eating until I saw Forks Over knife and I was like quinoa. That’s interesting. Pharaoh, oh, potatoes about potatoes make sense. And so I kind of started started to discover a bit more foods and I saw how they were cooking. And I was like, Oh, I can eat these things too, because I was so scared to like, not stick to it, that I just wasn’t eating a lot of things that I was uncertain about. So it kind of expanded my mind as to what I could eat. And then I started to get like 30 more calories in two, which made me feel a little bit better. And I started to become and have a better experience with veganism versus at first where it was like a harsh detox. I wasn’t eating a lot. I was really low in energy. So it was kind of fulfilling all the myth that I had read about when you go vegan and like you feel weak and blah, blah, blah. But I just realized that I just wasn’t consuming enough food ultimately.
Sonya Looney 9:53
Yeah, I think we should go into a couple of these myths. I have a like a Facebook group that I used to manage a lot better but people will come in there, it was called Plant Powered Academy, it still is. But people will come in there and say, I changed my diet, but I don’t feel good. And I thought that I was supposed to have more energy. So one myth that you just pointed out was not eating enough. So how much are people supposed to eat? Because there’s like, you should eat enough. But a lot of people don’t know what is enough?
Maxime Sigouin 10:17
Yeah, for sure. Well, I think a lot of people’s hunger system is really skewed with the type of processed food that they’ve been consuming. And so what I tell people is just, you know, grab a random calorie calculator just to get you an average of where you should be. And just track your food for a few days trying to hit those numbers. So you get an idea of the sensation, because I think most people that will transition to eating plant based have some form of like weight loss goal, or just one type of like wanting to look a certain way, which naturally, the mindset is like eat less food, but when you eat less food, your stomach gets adjusted to eating less food, so it’s smaller. So when you eat more, you’re like, Oh, I’m stuffed, but you’re still severely under eating. Because your stomach is really small, we need to stretch it back out. So so just grab an average calorie track for a few days, just so you have an idea of how much you’re actually supposed to eat and try to base it off of that after versus gut instinct, because it’s probably really skewed when you first transition.
Sonya Looney 11:09
Yeah, and especially for athletes, I mean, you need to eat a lot more than you think. And, and also, you know, I’d be remiss not to talk about protein, because still, even after all the information out there, that still is a concern for many people. But I think one of the problems with protein is that people think I need more and more and more. And as a bodybuilder, you know a lot about protein, how much protein do people actually need?
Maxime Sigouin 11:33
Yeah, well, if typically, when I train athletes, I’ll just be around the 1.2 grams two gram per kg of body weight range, which is a lot less than when most people think like when I was bodybuilding, my coach was like 1.5 grams to two grams per pound of body weight, I was 240 pounds, that’s like 400 to 500 grams of protein a day, it was abusive, and I just didn’t feel great. So when we transition to kind of those new numbers, which again, are backed in a little plug to Robert because I appreciate him, it’s in his book, The plant based athlete, right, that’s kind of the range of that they give as well. We’ve seen amazing transformation amazing results for members when it came to athletes and body composition. Again, for people that just wanted to be healthy like you don’t really need to worry that much about it right if you’re just looking to be healthy and you don’t care about your body composition you’ll get enough protein just by eating whole food plant based and and making sure you’re consuming enough food.
Sonya Looney 12:22
What are some of the other myths or questions that people who will often come to you with in your membership platform
Maxime Sigouin 12:28
incomplete protein conversation, you’re like do I need to can be combined beans and rice together to make sure the complete protein. So again, simplest way to explain it is you have a pool of amino acid inside your body. So when you consume some food and is running, there’s missing amino acids your body will just pull it from there, make it complete and absorb it like your body’s pretty smart it’s been able to survive all this time. Like if you’re an adult you lived a really long time your body’s pretty efficient. So it’s the same thing as long as you have a variety of food that pool will kind of refill itself it’ll grab whatever it needs from it ultimately so you don’t need to worry about like having rice and beans in the exact same meal or else like it’s all screwed you didn’t get any protein for that meal. Soy is another big one the big fear of soy how it’s like promotes estrogen and man how it’s cancer causing actually the opposite right actually helps to kind of balance hormone it helps like but it helps with bone density, it helps with breast cancer prevention helps with prostate cancer prevention. So those are the two biggest ones when it comes to protein that I hear often.
Sonya Looney 13:27
Yeah, when soy products is they’re often fortified with calcium as well because people worry like well I’m not drinking milk so you know cow’s milk so I’m not getting calcium but that’s also fortified.
Maxime Sigouin 13:37
Yes. And also the you know from the dairy right, it leeches actually the calcium from the bone. So it actually makes the bone weaker. But you know, if you consume like tofu, tempe, soy Nacho edamame, a beans, lentils like you’re, you’re fine on the protein side.
Sonya Looney 13:50
And from a coaching perspective, I’m also a health and wellness coach. And one of the things that people will come to me with is, well, I don’t want to spend time cooking it’s too hard or, or just it’s too hard period. What what do you often provide? Or what advice do you provide for people,
Maxime Sigouin 14:07
unless you’re unless you have a massive budget where you can get someone to come and cook your food at your house, you need to kind of reprioritize your time a little bit, I didn’t know that you’re going to have to eat food for the rest of your life, right. So you might as well put food that actually serves you. So unless you have the funds to get someone come to your house and cook your food for you, you will actually have to cook your food yourself. And there’s you know, there’s a learning curve just like anything else, right? You were when you start to become an athlete, we start a new job. When you’re a new mom, there’s a learning curve. There’s an adaptation curve that comes with it. The same thing here. But once you learn the skill, and you learn to kind of meal prep efficiently, kind of structured food efficiently, then it becomes second nature, right? If you and I cook a meal right now, we’re not even thinking twice, we can talk on the phone, do the dishes at the same time cook a meal and we know it’s going to be a good meal. We don’t have to think about it because we’ve been at it for a long time. But for most people that are new, they just need to go through that initial learning curve. It’s just like taking a crash course when you go to school. Ultimately, it’s the Definitely a worthy, worthy learning opportunity.
Sonya Looney 15:03
Yeah, and how can you approach that with curiosity? Like I have a three and a one year old, and they’re so excited about the foods and what’s happening, and we lose that spark, especially for new things, and we worry about not doing it right.
Maxime Sigouin 15:14
Yeah, well, first of all, getting guidance as a huge makes a huge difference. Because I always like the analogy of like repairing your car, like, you know, I can go on YouTube and figure out how to fix my motor for my car, right? I’ll probably figure out some videos, do I feel confident that it’s safe for me to drive the car after? Not so much, I feel confident while I’m doing not so much, I’d rather go to a mechanic, right. So same thing here, there’s people that are experts in this field that can help you just to make sure it’s efficient, and you have that confidence that what you’re doing is actually the right thing. And remove that stress removes that doubt. And it makes it a much better experience. And it makes it more efficient for you versus having to try to figure out everything on your own. Now, I put it this way, I’m a very lazy person. I’m not because I do all these things, but in a way that I love efficiency. So if someone knows how to do it, why do I need to figure it out, I’m just gonna ask the person who knows how to do, I’m just gonna hire the person who knows how to do it, then you’re gonna tell me and it just saved me like months or years of time to do the thing. Right? So I just like to ask for help when someone knows how to do it better than I do, so that I can do it efficiently. And I can just move on to the next thing.
Sonya Looney 16:17
Something that you said earlier was around the myth of cooking, as you said, Look, people need to prioritize this, you got to shift your prioritize priorities. And this is something that’s really interesting in the health and wellness space is because a lot of us want to feel a certain way or we want to do a certain thing. But the first thing to go when we get busy are our sleep, cooking and eating healthily, taking time for ourselves. So it’s one thing to say, Look, you need to prioritize this. But how do people actually prioritize it? Especially when they’re super busy?
Maxime Sigouin 16:48
Yeah, so two ways. So it’s funny because usually the people that are busy are the ones that are most efficient, the most compliant what I found the ones that have a lot of free time while they’re gonna push that stuff off, like add another day, another week. So usually busy people have been more efficient. But it typically I live by my schedule, if it’s my schedule, I do it. If it’s not, I don’t do it. Right. When it’s date night is date night, what’s cooking time, it’s cook time, what’s workout time, it’s workout time, nothing gets booked over it. So it’s more about like, I tell people look at your week, book, your nonnegotiable in there, right. So if you have a nine to five, job, nine to five job, you can’t get away from it, put it in there, right date nights with your partner times with your kids cooking time, workout time, you’ll find that there’s still a lot of spots available within your calendar, even after you put all of these things. It just if we don’t proactively create a schedule for ourselves, we’re going to be scrolling on our phone and tick tock for an hour or an hour. Like, I don’t have time anymore to cook, right, let me just order food out. Well, you could have not scroll on tick tock, right. If you’d have like a bigger schedule, you would have been able to kind of plan out for yourself. So ultimately, we plan for the things that are important in life, when it’s your anniversary with your partner, you schedule a time off, because it’s important. Same thing with your training. Same thing with nutrition, I find all human have this internal list of priorities in our head. So it could be like, you know, Netflix, work, you know, partner working out cooking food, right. But when you look at people like yourself and myself or other people that are successful in this space, and being able to be healthy, be active, run businesses and kind of have family and do all of these things, versus someone else, they have 24 hours in a day, they have access to some of the similar resources when it comes to action taking. The only difference is we have a different order list to those values that we have internally those different lists of priorities. And it’s funny, but what’s not funny whether they just say you get diagnosed with cancer today, and you the doctor has a que you have to eat healthy food and you have to exercise save your life, or else you’re going to die in the next year. Well guess what? That list of value changes drastically right? Transition goes to the top. It’s way before Netflix it’s way before work its way before your partner. Right? So nothing else changed, besides you made the choice to kind of change that order. Right? So it’s just about sitting down and being honest with yourself, like what’s my actual list of priority? Like? What do I value? Most? Do I value spending time with my partner more scrolling on my phone, watching Netflix, working? scurrying around, right, whatever it may be, and kind of like make a list of what you would want to be and and trying to start to stick with that.
Sonya Looney 19:13
Yeah, something that I wish was different is that for most people, pain is the greatest motivator. But if you wait until you have a major health event, then that’s going to be too late for some people. And that’s very frustrating and, and sad. So, you know, how can people change without using pain as the number one motivator?
Maxime Sigouin 19:35
I don’t think they can. But here’s the way around it. Right? If if an appealing future would be attracting enough we would all be super successful because the world is really good at promoting all these shiny things to pull us forward which normally they don’t. Right. So it’s typically it’s running away from something there’s a there’s a pain there. So there’s a process called reframing with who Tony Robbins is. Right so big fan of his work. I worked with his team and Studying under him. And some of these things, there’s a process called the dickens process where I get to my members, and I do calls with them and just close your eyes, right? Imagine the current habits and how you’re living your life and the decision that you’re having. Right? Typically, we do it with like a limiting belief, or a value system potentially is not serving us. So you have a limiting belief that will I can’t cook food and be fit is just not for me, like, Okay, well, let’s just sit with this. Let’s imagine what your life is, like, in one year from now. Like, really feel what it’s like, if you were to have this belief system for the next year. How would your body be? How would your mindset be? How would your life be? Go to five years go to 10? It sort of 15 years, and we kind of push it up like 3040 years, right? How would you like be like, really feel the emotions of how it feels, if you were like, Man, I’d be fat, I’d be miserable, I’d be depressed a problem, my partner probably would have left me. And then you start to like, again, your brain doesn’t know the difference between reality and what you’re processing in your head, right? So you start to feel this emotion. And it’s like, cool. Let’s just come back to right now. Right? Just realize, none of this has happened yet. But this is only a glimpse of what’s possible for you in the future. So like, now, what is a different set of rules that you could live by, that would cause you to not have this future? And then we redo the exercise we push to have a more appealing future, right? So just we’re just imprinting your nervous system, the new pattern? Basically, I use that exercise works really well. That’s, that’s
Sonya Looney 21:22
fine. I didn’t know the name of it. I did this. Yeah, I mentioned the health of wellness coaching. I did a program at Vanderbilt, and we have a visioning exercise as part of coaching. And there’s a default future, which is what you just talked about, and then an optimal future. So that’s exactly what that is.
Maxime Sigouin 21:35
Thanks. Yeah, you’re welcome.
Sonya Looney 21:39
Okay, so something that I did want to point out was that you mentioned you and I, and you know, people who are wellness focus will have their list of priorities, we’ll have more weight on the things that are going to help you thrive. But I want to point out that it’s not always easy to do that. Like sometimes there is frustration around meal prep and running out of time, or I want to watch more Netflix, and I don’t want to go to bed because it’s fun to watch multiple episodes of Ted lasso or whatever. So I think it’s important to point out that just because those are your priorities, it doesn’t mean that it’s always going to be easy. And that’s okay, too.
Maxime Sigouin 22:13
Yeah, absolutely. And it’s making it how to put this, people will say that, like we’ll call is discipline, right? I make it easy for myself to be discipline. So again, Netflix at night, trying to go to bed, but you like at so good, I just want to watch another. I bought a Christmas light timer. Uh huh. And I plugged my TV and it’s put the shut off at 9pm that went on to touch to remove the TV just shuts off. And then like, if I want to continue watching, I got to be all weird and go and unplug it because I put the system in place for myself. And I’m like destroying it. So it just feels weird. So just like again, making it easy for you to be disciplined, right, putting those little systems in place. So you know, having your groceries delivered on Wednesday, for example, that’s when you want to meal prep, having your meal prep containers out just so that you see them just to make that process easier versus having to kind of do everything from scratch
Sonya Looney 23:04
every time. That is such a great hack the Christmas light timer. I haven’t heard that one before, I might have to implement that. Because that’s like, my husband, are you going to turn it off? Or am I going to turn it off? And then it’s a lot of effort to turn it off? Or if it just shuts?
Maxime Sigouin 23:16
So far, right? Like, ah, next one, next one. So your Wi Fi router on that, right? Some people put their Wi Fi router still the Wi Fi goes out in the house.
Sonya Looney 23:26
What are some other things that you do to try to force force function, your wellness.
Maxime Sigouin 23:33
So I make my routines very simple, right? Because a lot of times as humans, we like to add complexity to things. And then when it’s too complex, we don’t have to take action on it because we can justify that it’s complex. So to me, I do something called deep work every morning for three hours where it’s uninterrupted work, no cell phone, no team members, no emails, nothing. So that you when I wake up, I wake up, I go to the bathroom, I take a cold shower, I get dressed, I sit in his chair. And I pre wrote what I’m going to do the night before. So I know exactly what task I’m going to do for 30 minute chunk for the next three hours. I don’t have to think of anything as like, Oh, this is what I’m working on and the night before I’ll plan Okay, record 10 reels. What’s the topic of each roller am I going to talk about? So when I start I don’t have to figure out anything. It’s just super easy. Oh, I’m talking about break. I’m just talking. All right. So that’s one of the things scheduling lunches break on here again, meal prepping my food. So when it’s time to lunch break, I don’t have to cook anything because when I’m in busy between calls, I don’t want to have time to cook. I just grabbed my meal. I warm it up and I eat it and it’s game over. Right? So it’s doing those little things like the meal prep the timer for the TV, when it’s time to go to the gym, I have a hard time disconnecting from work or run for a lot of employees. So at like, like 430 It’s like I’m at the gym, right and all my slack it changes to I’m at the gym so people know no one can reach me after that. Shutting off your phone airplane mode at 7pm Right after I call my parents because they’re on the east side. Just three hours ahead. Turn off the phone done. Okay can’t be strolling on anything. Ultimately
Sonya Looney 24:59
my or your ability to hold some of those boundaries. I really struggled to disconnect from work myself, and I’ll have my training on the schedule. And then it’s like, well, I’ll just do this one more thing, and then it cuts into my training every single time. So that’s something that I’m working on. Yeah, it likes
Maxime Sigouin 25:13
it, by all means, is it not perfect, but as long as I stick the majority of the time, I get the outcome that I want, right? Like I came home at midnight last night because we got a family dinner in downtown LA. So we came home it was midnight. So Rough night asleep last night. So you know, slept a little bit in and kind of readjusted things. But as long as it’s the way that we wanted the majority of the time,
Sonya Looney 25:33
we were, what is your meal prep look like?
Maxime Sigouin 25:37
Yeah, so I just do a big smoothie in the morning. So I’ll do like some some nut butter a bunch of like dark leafy greens in there, a little bit of protein powder, bananas, berries, all kinds of very the fruits that are in there some months sweet almond milk, and they’re chia seeds, flax seeds, and I’ll make like a big one. Sometimes I’ll add oats, some seeds, I’ll make like a really thick smoothie. For lunches. Typically, it’ll be like a full block of tofu, some form of like carbs, potatoes or rice, a bunch of mixed veggies and some nutritional yeast. And then for dinners, whatever we want to eat. Ultimately, I like I like structure up to a certain extent. If I have my meals for dinner prep, I don’t want to eat it ever. And I just know that about myself. So I just rather have the flexibility to cook whatever I want for dinners. Alright, as you know yourself after a while you didn’t do this for a while. I was like, I just can’t have a meal prep for dinner. I have to cook it from scratch, or we just go out to try a restaurant because at least great for you.
Sonya Looney 26:28
Oh, it’s awesome. Yeah. So how many calories are you trying to eat right now?
Maxime Sigouin 26:33
I’m at 3400 right now. Yeah, I I’m, I have a hard time eating a lot of food. This whole year of all you have been struggling so much. I am great at not eating I actually have to force myself to like eat food. Because I’m not training as an athlete anymore. Like I’m like biked there, but I don’t train for Ironman anymore. So it’s really hard to like, eat all the food and have the hunger for it. So I just have to like, force myself to eat it.
Sonya Looney 26:58
Yeah, as a like a mom, like, I’m still breastfeeding my daughter, but it’s only twice a day now. But with both of my kids, I was training and trying to breastfeed and I have to eat 4000 calories a day to maintain my weight, which sounds crazy. And it was so hard and I was actually looking at what bodybuilders eat so that I could maintain my calories.
Maxime Sigouin 27:16
Yeah, just oatmeal like calorie dense foods like nut butters nuts and seeds. And yeah, I’m just I’ve never had big of a hunger I’m way better at cutting diamond bulking for sure.
Sonya Looney 27:27
So the your goal is to help 10,000 vegans get in the best shape of their lives. So what are some of the main reasons that people come to work with you?
Maxime Sigouin 27:38
Yeah, so I’d say the typical reason that people come to work with us is they’re looking to be healthier, and they’ve just been struggling with their weight for their whole life. They just been yo yo dieting for like 1020 3040 years. Majority of people we work with are between 40 and 80 years old. Right as it’s just typically there’s more of an awareness of health when you’re 20 and 30s. You’re like I’m invincible. I can do anything and nothing catches up to you and you’re like, oh shit, my back hurts. My joints hurt. I need to take care of myself. My neck. So yeah, exactly. So most people we work with honestly, it’s like they have you know, celiac, Crohn’s, PCOS, hypothyroidism, they’re recovering from cancer, they’re just going through all these like health challenges. Or, you know, they’ve had some crazy surgeries where they have like limitations for their exercise. Or, again, like I mentioned, years of yo yo dieting, and they’re just like done with it. So our whole thing is to make this last program that people ever need to do. So we structured the whole journey to like, set them up for that, ultimately. So that’s the big emphasis I do the non and I know, similar to you, like you have a good you have a good heart, most people that will do fat loss is like there’s just slashed your calories and do over exercise, you’ll lose some weight, and then you’re just starving, put away back on. So I’m just trying to like set people up so that they don’t have to come back after I tell people, there’s two goals, there’s a need goal. And there’s one goal, the need goal is like, I really need to lose 30 pounds. So like be healthy and feel good. And once we get you there, and we kind of speed up your metabolism after you’re in a better position, then it’s the one goal and then they want to do like a 10k, race a 5k to one or run a half Ironman or whatever. Maybe I’m like, That’s the fun goal. Right? Let’s take care of the need first, and then let’s do the fun goal after
Sonya Looney 29:15
you mentioned you’re in four companies. Can you tell me about those? Yeah, of course.
Maxime Sigouin 29:19
So all of them are in the vegan fitness coaching space. Right. So, like I mentioned with when my ex partner passed away, I want to help as many people as possible not be in her position. Ultimately, because her and my grandfather were lifestyle created, they were not genetic. So it was just like overstressed lifestyle eating like shit, not taking care of themselves, like kind of led that environment to have cancer. So I realized like, whole food plant based eating plant based is one of the best ways to reduce the risk of chronic illnesses, right and reverse in some cases, and then having the fit and healthy body, right is one of the best ways to have longevity and feel good. Like let me just put those two things together and help people with that. So what I did is selfishly, right It all gets someone to lose the weight. But selfishly, I’m disease proofing their body, which is my whole point, every time I work with someone like that’s the whole outcome that I get so selfishly, I get that. So I know that a disease group someone’s body, right, so there’s no guarantees in life, it’s just like a seatbelt, if you have it on less likely to die in a car crash, right. That’s what hopefully plan basis ultimately. So I realized that some people will connect with me, because the way that I talk and the way that my body looks, and some people won’t, some people will want to be more jacked, right? Some people will connect with a different type of mindset or different way of speaking. So I realize a lot of my skill is in business and scalability. And so I realized that I’m really good at it. So after I built vegan quite successfully over the past several years, and we’ve coached over 650 plus people at this point, I started going to other people that had coaching businesses that are great at creating content that have a passion for helping, but that just don’t have a business background. And so I was like, Hey, let’s partner up, I’ll build the whole thing for you so that we can scale it and grow it if you help 100 People that counts towards my 10,000 people because I built all of your system to change their lives. So currently, I have four practices, one that I run as the face and for that I’m more behind the scenes, kind of making sure that everything runs smoothly, we can have more impact. And we’re continuing to we’re about starting about a new one every month, a new like business partner every month. And the goal is to try to get to like 1015 of them, so that we can just like exponentially have more impact and gets her go a lot faster.
Sonya Looney 31:23
Yeah, that’s a really powerful vision and way to do it.
Maxime Sigouin 31:27
Yeah, thank you. Yeah, it’s a lot of work. But it’s fun, right? It’s really rewarding, because there’s people that look at me, and I’m like, he’s too skinny. Because I’m an aesthetic background. I don’t want to go out I work with him. He’s vegan, and He’s skinny. Another guy, he’s like super buff and vegan as someone that’s like a pro bodybuilder. So I’m just like, like, oh, this person looks great. I want to work with them. I’m like, awesome. That’s okay with me, like, I still get to, you know, impact your life directly.
Sonya Looney 31:50
I just wanted to ask you about whenever you sort of change, it’s almost a shift in identity, right? Like you were a super muscley, like, big bodybuilder guy. And then you said I immediately switched to not doing any more weight training, doing cardio, like trying to get as skinny as possible for modeling. That’s such a huge shift in identity. Like, how did that land with you when you were doing that?
Maxime Sigouin 32:13
Yeah, that’s such a great question that only an athlete would ask because no one’s ever asked me a question. But it was a huge, it was a huge process. Because yeah, my identity was built up around being the big muscular guy, I was tied up around it. And then when I got skinny, I just reverted back to what I had feared previously, right? I grew up skinny fat, I was bullied. And so I was like, oh, man, I’m kind of like going back to that, ultimately. And so that’s what forced me to work on my personality, which you see now on the screen, right? I wasn’t like I was very cold and timid and shy when I was really big. But then I was like, Man, I need to develop a personality because now I don’t have this muscle to protect me. And so ultimately, it forced me to develop myself further. So it was a blessing. At the same time, I’m really happy that I did it because I feel so much better, but ultimately allowed me to get into self development and become a podium today.
Sonya Looney 33:02
Yeah, it sounds like you do a lot of different sports like you’ve done Ironman, you’ve done Spartan and it sounds like now you’re Are you doing a competition like a fitness competition or a bodybuilding competition right now?
Maxime Sigouin 33:11
Not right now. I’m just having fun with it. Honestly. I’ve done every single transformation you can think of I I’ve competed on all levels. And I’m just like having fun with it. Now, I just, I don’t care if I have a six pack anymore. I don’t need to be Jack, I don’t need to have the most endurance, I’m just so focused on the impact and the mission. And that takes a lot of time. So I’m just keeping myself healthy, focusing on vitality, and just having a mobile body that doesn’t hurt. Because I’m really tall. So joints, you know, our thing after doing years of lifting, I’m trying to like better take care of my body now.
Sonya Looney 33:46
Yeah. And I was actually wondering, you know, we’re all on a state of becoming, and you’ve, you’ve been on a huge journey, physically, mentally, emotionally, like, what are you becoming right now?
Maxime Sigouin 33:58
I’m trying to become the person that will be able to impact a million plus lives. That’s what I’m focusing on. So how can I better serve the world with the current mission that I have? And so that’s, you know, that’s showing up in very interesting ways. We used to only work with vegans. And now we don’t we opened up to people that wants to eat more plant based or transition to eating plant base, because I realized, well, I don’t need, I don’t need more people to eat. I don’t need more vegans to be vegan, I need more people to eat plant based. So I’m like, it just makes sense to kind of open it up. And so right now, it’s opening up in beautiful ways, partnerships with nonprofits, you know, partnering up with families that are currently struggling with cancer and like helping them with their grocery bills and kind of funding some of the treatments. So yeah, just letting letting it take me but that’s the bigger vision is like, how do I impact people to that extent?
Sonya Looney 34:46
And it sounds like these are all really amazing external goals and external things that you’re in a state of becoming. But how about internally, like, what type of work are you doing right now?
Maxime Sigouin 34:56
Yeah, I’m trying to stay peaceful throughout the whole process. That’s internal work that I’m doing because there’s a lot of stress, and you know, having been a caregiver, and now that being a part of who I am, we tend to take on the stress from other people, we tend to take on the weight of the world. And so on my side, I’m learning to try to not do that, right, or to like, take it on for a bit and be able to let it go. Because I suck at letting it go. Right? Because I care so much about the people that I’m trying to help. And it’s just like, people are suffering, and I want to help as much as possible. So it’s, it’s a state of stress. So I’m working on trying to stay peaceful without it and learning to kind of just let it flow over me as I serve people.
Sonya Looney 35:35
Yeah, that’s when you’re an empathetic person that’s really hard to do to build that boundary.
Maxime Sigouin 35:40
Yeah, it is it is, and taking time for yourself to relax and rest, you know, five years of being a caregiver, I never got a break. It’s 24/7 thing. And some of the units just like take time for yourself to was what does that look like? Like I work out, that’s time for myself, I can get a massage. And I just realized that all of these things never filled my cup. Ultimately, it’s up to yours to refill my cup after. And I just realized that it was just time with people that I love. Time alone without social media. Anything distracting me and just being present is actually what refill my cup way more than working out, or getting a massage or doing any of these things.
Sonya Looney 36:17
Yeah, and I’m sure that took time to figure that out. Because I think a lot of times we are doing grasping trying to feel a certain way, but we never get there. And ultimately, the hardest thing is to be in the present moment and not thinking about the future or planning or ruminating on the past.
Maxime Sigouin 36:31
Yeah, we think that filling up the cup is an act of doing. And sometimes it’s just the act of being that fills it up more.
Sonya Looney 36:38
So how do you manage your time because I saw you have two podcasts which I know how much work one podcast takes you have these four businesses and growing, you know, you’re you have your own health and wellness priorities? How do you make sure that you don’t overwork because when you were passionate about your work, it’s really hard to stop yourself?
Maxime Sigouin 36:54
Yeah, I have an amazing team. Ultimately, I just realized that I couldn’t do it all myself. So I have three coaches that work for me, with four extra across all the companies, I have a full time graphic designer and video editor that it’s all my podcasts, all my content. And I have someone to post my content for me. So we probably have content being posted right now around this show. So I just hired people to help me do the things that were not the best use of my time, ultimately, so that I can focus on these conversations so that I can focus on spending dinners with my fiancé. So I can focus on when I’m on the phone with my parents and kind of doing those other activities that can bring the bigger vision forward a lot more than just a small nitty gritty things. And at first, it’s hard, right, because when you’re a business, you’re giving up some revenue to kind of have that time back and you want to use that time back efficiently. But I got to the point where I was like, man, me hiring someone to do this thing to just take the time to do nothing is way more valuable than paying this person to do the task, right, like time off is awesome. So putting an amazing team in place, ultimately, because I wouldn’t be able to do it all by myself, for sure.
Sonya Looney 37:59
I think the discussion around scaling, and whether you own a business, you’re not just scaling in your life and exporting responsibility in some cases to other people where you can pay them to do it. So that if you have the means to do so so that you can focus on things that truly matter to you. But I think people have guilt around paying, you know, paying someone to clean your house, for example, or you know, paying someone to come work on your bike. But there is a value that’s more than just money that you get from that.
Maxime Sigouin 38:25
Yeah, it’s the time he’s chained to you get back, right. And it took me a long time to figure out like the value of my time. And as we kind of grown, I’ve associated monetary value to it. And so if anything is below that I outsource it, versus if I need to do it. But that’s helped a lot, ultimately. But yeah, at first it is like the guilt of like, well, I, I’m like just sitting here, I should clean my house, I shouldn’t pay someone, I’m just being lazy right now. But it’s the compounding of everything like that stresses like Well, let me just clean my house this time and then continue with all my other tasks. And then two weeks after you just burnt out. And it’s just not worth it. Ultimately,
Sonya Looney 39:02
on your website, I noticed that you had I think it was six different pillars that you work with people. And I saw one of them said money mindset. So I wanted to ask you about that. Like, what is that? Yeah, for sure.
Maxime Sigouin 39:12
So one of the businesses we started is with a good friend of mine who is just a wizard of finances, financially free student and the rest of we’re getting out of debt in his life out of San Francisco did really well for himself through obviously increasing his earning capacity and through his investments. And so he is he’s just turned 41 I think just turned 41. And we built he wants to have a coaching practice in the vegan space. But he wants to have something that we wish we had when we were younger. No one taught us about how to manage money. No one taught us how to increase your earning capacity, you know how to increase our savings rate how to put herself in a better financial position, because what’s the biggest stressor for the majority of people is finances. Alright, School doesn’t teach you these things. So we want to create a program like how do we get people fit and get a handle on their money so they’re in a good position? Because everyone’s saying isn’t like if you earn more money, like you’ll be safe. There’s so many celebrities that made like hundreds of millions of dollars that went broke. It’s not about how much right? It’s about how much you keep. It’s an emotional conversation. It’s a strategy. So that conversation and so we created a program that I wish I had when I was younger, and that he was she had when he was younger. And so ultimately, I’ve done quite well in my life, he’s done quite well in his life as well. So we’re teaching people to kind of like end up in our position, but without making all the stupid mistakes that we did, ultimately.
Sonya Looney 40:29
Yeah, and I know I’m off topic a little bit, but around money, you know, there’s people that have lots and lots and lots of money, but it still never feel safe. So it’s not even necessarily about having a huge number, but it’s about feeling good with what you have. And you could you could actually extrapolate that into achievement or, you know, what is enough period in your life? What’s enough money? What’s enough accomplishments? What’s enough, whatever so that you can feel quote, safe?
Maxime Sigouin 40:53
Yeah, the idea of contentment, right, like, when are you going to be content? And for sure, right. I know a lot of people that are in my circle that are financially free, they never need to work another day in their life. So they’re financially free, but they’re not mentally free. They’re still mentally tied to it, there’s still there’s still scarcity. There’s still like, if I spend this money on like, Dude, you could spend an absurd amount of money per day and be fine for the rest of your life, you’d be okay. But that extra tip at the restaurant or buying the expensive, the more expensive toilet paper, whatever, it’s a guy, I’ll see you the three bucks, you know. So you know, it’s a mentally free and financially free is a very different position to be in. But you’re right, the idea of contentment, especially when it comes to like sports, right? I’ll be honest, when I was doing that, when I was doing my races, it was purely out of escapism, right. It was a fun sport. I loved it triathlons, a beautiful sport. So me, or my ex partner was going through cancer, I don’t drink, I don’t do drugs. That was my alcohol. That was my drug. That’s how I numbed myself to be able to get me through the whole thing. And so a lot of people not only in the insurance world, but in the fitness space of any form, will use exercise as a coping mechanism, which again, helps you to not go on drugs if you ask me. But still, you’re still running away from the problem. So that’s like, a whole other conversation.
Sonya Looney 42:07
Yeah, it is. And I mean, I don’t think it even has to be either or, and I definitely got into endurance sports to run away. I started as a runner, at the end of high school to deal with anxiety. And I just remember, like, just going on flogging myself because I was the only way because I didn’t drink in high school or anything like that, like how do I deal with life’s challenges and it was just to go do that, because that would make everything else go away. And overtime that evolved for me. And even you know, in my early days as a pro, it was like doing it in a deprivation sense of I have to prove myself and over time, your relationship with your goals and things change and, and having the awareness around that like it for you having the awareness around that and coming to a place where you feel better with the type of movement that you’re doing.
Maxime Sigouin 42:48
Yeah, thank you. It took a long time, though. What once I started doing Ironman, and racing, I realized there was me bodybuilding all over again, I was like, Man, my identity is wrapped up into being this guy. Now. I need to detach myself from it. And so it was a time I was like, I’m going to focus on being even more of a caregiver in business, because I need to pay for cancer treatments. And I’m going to step away from racing for a bit. And I’ve never gone back since then, ultimately, and people ask me, I have no desire to go back to racing. I don’t have no desire to train 20 hours a week, 30 hours a week anymore. I just yeah, it’s just it’s out of my system. I have nothing to run away from. So I just have no desire to do it.
Sonya Looney 43:26
Yeah, and I mean, it sounds like now a big part of your identity and purpose is outside of yourself. It’s helping a lot of people disease proof themselves and feel better, healthier and happier in their lives. And you know, someone could say, well, that’s the same thing as bodybuilding or Iron Man, but it sounds like this is something way bigger than that way. It’s way more outside of yourself.
Maxime Sigouin 43:47
Absolutely. It’s what’s not even about me anymore, right? It’s like, I just genuinely don’t want people to have to go through that pain. People don’t know how painful it is until they go through it or if they’ve seen it firsthand. 24/7 for like five years, right? Your uncle has cancer like it’s different. You not living with him supporting him the whole way through. So I just don’t want people to have to go through that ultimately. And yeah, it’s more and again, me you’re racing only serve me. Right? So now the switch is that I’m trying to serve other people versus just trying to take care of me because I found a way to take care of me throughout the whole process.
Sonya Looney 44:21
So I’m gonna switch gears here to talk about some of the vegan fads out there. You know, there’s like, eat raw or you know, only eat fruit or do fasting or there’s like 1000 different things out there. Like what are your thoughts on some of these fads? Yeah, well,
Maxime Sigouin 44:37
I think that a lot of the fads are centered around people wanting to lose weight, ultimately, right. I think that’s why they’re so popular in the media. And I think people are trying to look for the path of least resistance when it comes to like, I just seem to follow this clear cut rule and like everything will be solved and I will just do that versus trying to look at all these other factors, right. So people are looking for the easiest solution to try to solve problem. And so like yeah, if you internet fast and you severely eat over your calories are you still gonna put on weight? Right? Yes, if you go raw vegan and you civilly over calories, you’re still gonna put on weight, right? There’s like core fundamentals that are there. You need to be in a calorie deficit need to have you know, enough micronutrients, you need to have a certain amount of protein if you trying to improve your body composition, like those are three things you need to worry about. To keep it simple, right? If you do intermittent fasting with it raw vegan, raw material for paleo, ATD 1010, whatever it may be, if you stick within those guidelines, it’ll all work. So to me, I’m looking at like, what is the most sustainable way for me to eat? Well, if I’m just raw, there’s a lot of limitations to that. Right. I socially, it’s hard family gathering. It’s our birthday. I just want to enjoy my life. Right? rato forcing thing there’s limitation. So I was like, if you eat whole food plant based, you eat a mixture of raw food and cooked foods, you can eat anywhere, anytime, at any event, you can stay on track, you can be healthy, you can disease group your body. So to me, that’s why it’s the most holistic way to kind of get there because there’s a least amount of restrictions on it.
Sonya Looney 46:01
Yeah, and it’s more like you said, sustainable. And something that you said, there’s, I want to enjoy my life. I think that a lot of people think going back to the myth that if they change their diet to plant based or vegan, they’re never going to enjoy their life or their food again, and it’s just not worth it.
Maxime Sigouin 46:16
They don’t know how good life can be until they are like healthy and vital. And they’re like, damn, this is so much better than burger, that bag of chips.
Sonya Looney 46:26
Yeah, that’s why like people always like joke about vegans being you know, so excited and telling everybody about it. But when you feel that good, you want everybody else to feel that good, too.
Maxime Sigouin 46:35
Yeah, absolutely. Yeah. And it’s, yeah, it’s just a different level of energy. And sometimes, like, Man, when I transitioned, I had a hard time dealing with how much energy I had. I was like, I have too much I don’t I’m not drinking coffee. I don’t know how to deal with this. This is too much and eventually get used to it. And it’s fun. But yeah, it’s it’s a pretty significant amount of energy difference when you do it properly.
Sonya Looney 46:55
So you said, eating extra protein to improve body composition? I think that my ears perked up when I heard that, and I’m sure other people were as well. So like, What do you mean by that?
Maxime Sigouin 47:07
Yeah. So like I said, you can eat a low amount of protein and be healthy and live for a very long time, there’s nothing wrong with that, it’s just if your specific goal is to improve your body composition, we do need to have a little bit more protein, like I mentioned earlier, 1.2 grams to gram per kg of body weight. So again, protein is amino acids, we need amino acids, because we’re building blocks to kind of help you repair the muscle. Ultimately, that’s the only reason it’s not even the protein and amino acids that are in the protein that are important to us. So without having sufficient amount of that when you’re tearing those muscle fibers, you don’t have enough building blocks, it’s kind of like you’re, you’re you’re trying to build a house and you’re running out of bricks, right, it’s gonna be hard to build a house. So same thing your amino acids are the building blocks want to actually get sufficient amount to kind of repair what you’re doing with your exercise. Because if you’re not exercising, versus if you are exercising, logically, there’s a bigger requirement because there’s a bigger energy output, you’re basically beating up your body a little bit more, if you want to put it that way. So you need a little more help to help support it.
Sonya Looney 48:03
What are your thoughts on some of the more processed foods to get more protein like if you want to drink like a protein shake or have like, I don’t know the very good butchers, you know, sausages or things like that.
Maxime Sigouin 48:15
Yeah, so So two aspects of that. So first of all, is enjoying yourself right? So there’s nothing wrong from a gun burger from time to time, right? You having a barbecue with some friends, it’s fine have a beyond burger, but you don’t want to have that every you don’t have a fake protein product every meal because you want to hit your button you don’t need to there’s a lot healthier sources of protein that will have more fiber, more poly phenol more vitamins and nutrients and all that. Right. So from time to time, it’s fine because again, you want to live you want to be able to enjoy your life, that’s one part. And so the other printers have protein powder. So I do use protein powder. I’m always upfront about that. Because as an athlete, you want to eat a certain amount of calories when history amount of protein in the vegan space in terms of calorie cost per gram of protein. It is one of the best ones it is handy but again you don’t base your protein requirement on fulfilling every single protein powder. For people that have a harder time with protein powder. I always recommend them to use hemp protein powder, please you’re gonna work in the hemp space for a long time. So you have hemp seeds, right everyone’s familiar with hemp seeds, if you cold pressed them, there’s oil that comes out that’s hemp oil, the meal that is leftover from having crushed to hemp seeds, that’s hemp protein basically, that’s basically what it is. So it’s the least amount of processed protein that you’ll ever get is literally just crushed hemp seeds. So they don’t they don’t heat it up, they don’t kill the enzymes, they’re still fiber to sit a lot of the nutrients that are in there. So you still get a lot of the benefits are not the least processed form of hemp of him a protein that you would get ultimately
Sonya Looney 49:46
you just eat the the hemp seeds by themselves instead of the powder.
Maxime Sigouin 49:51
You can but it depends again what you’re trying to accomplish in terms of an outcome. If your calories are lower and need to get a little bit more protein hemp seeds are pretty high in fat. If you’re trying to Get 30 grams of protein from hand you’ll get a significant amount of calories from it versus if you just grow hemp protein.
Sonya Looney 50:05
Gotcha. What are some of your favorite protein sources from you know from food?
Maxime Sigouin 50:10
Yeah, tofu, tempeh, a edamame, a roasted chickpeas with some like spices and some like lime juice on there. And then just going for like for some grains, rice or some quinoa, some Ferro rice, which again pretty low in protein, but still have some protein in them. That’s kind of like what my Bay main base is sprouted oats are really good too. And they’re like, the Costco was like 18 grams of protein per cup, or something like that. Sprouts, seeds, those are kind of ones that I typically go for.
Sonya Looney 50:39
And in terms of exercises or movements, like if someone says, Well, I don’t really want to weight train, but I’m interested in overall health and you know, mobility, like what are a few things that you would recommend to people
Maxime Sigouin 50:51
still strength training. Here’s, here’s the reason why. Right like, again, depending on your age, as you get older, lean muscle mass increases, right protein synthesis decreases, well, you’re more prone to losing muscle mass, bone density starts to go away. So are you strengthen your bone and increasing muscle mass and help to balance hormone as well strength training, right resistance training, well put it this way, it doesn’t have to be a dumbbell. It doesn’t have to be a barbell, it can be a bag with books in it, it can be resistance band, it could be a tree trunk, for all that matters, we just want resistance against gravity ultimately, is what we’re looking for. You want to put that stress on the bone to kind of strengthen that bone, we want to put that stress on the muscle to tear those muscle fibers so they can repair and become stronger. Our body is just an adaptation machine. It’ll adjust to whatever you give it. And so if you don’t give it enough to force it to become fitter, why does it need to it doesn’t care. It doesn’t care that you’re trying to build muscle doesn’t care. If you’re trying to lose weight, All it cares about is like how do I survive as long as possible? Let me get into a neutral state as fast as I can. Right? That’s why when you started biking, Sanya, you’re burning a shit ton of calories, you’re probably starving on your first workouts. Now you can go for a really long ride and be like, Yeah, I’m okay after, right, because your body got adjusted to this energy output to this specific form of exercise. So it’s the same thing here, you want some strength training to strengthen the bone and build some lean muscle. And also at the end of the day, humans we hate something that we’re not good at. Right. And as a huge learning curve to string training in terms of adaptation, you started off, you’re not coordinated, you do a squat, your hips and your knees are kind of like wonky, you’re not very coordinated with the movement, you’re not firing off the muscles properly, because you’ve never really done them before, right. But if you do, like again, three, after three to four weeks is supposed to be a bit more coordination, you started to be a bit more strength, those muscles start to become activated, because again, a lot of those muscle fibers were dormant because you never used it before. So once they started to get activated, and you start to become like, you know what I mean? Like a piston, when you’re squatting, like the weights on your back is just like up, down, up, down, and you’re in control, you’re feeling that strength in your legs, people start to get addicted to that feeling. And so it’s just like, just stick with it long enough until you start to feel that coordination and that power. And you’re like, Oh, this is great. I feel strong. This is awesome. Let me do a little bit more of it. And I’ve turned 100% of people around in our program that come with us is like I hate strength training. I’m like, you’re just not used to it. And then after they’re done, they’re like, I can’t see myself not working out anymore. Like I love it. I feel so strong. So a lot of times it’s just getting through that that like steeper learning curve, ultimately.
Sonya Looney 53:14
Yeah, I can see how much energy you have like just talking about in your excitement behind it. And I love that you said no, you have to do it. There is no hack.
Maxime Sigouin 53:23
There isn’t like hiking is great. Yoga is great. Cycling is great. Swimming is great. A lot of those are more cardiovascular exercise, which again, don’t get me wrong, super important. You can have the nicest body in the world. If your heart gives out you still die, right? You want to keep that heart strong. So you need to do some of those exercises. Just call it hard training. Ultimately pick something that’s fun. If you love cycling, cycling, right if you hate running, don’t run, go swimming, go play basketball, go play soccer, go hiking, whatever it may be, it doesn’t need to be a specific form of, of cardio.
Sonya Looney 53:53
I can’t believe we’re already out of time. I’ve really enjoyed chatting with you. Where can people find you and work with you?
Maxime Sigouin 53:59
Yeah, thank you. Well, it was pleasure chatting with you as well. I’m happy. I wish you would have connected way before when I was in school, the best place would just be fit vegan.ca You’ll find all my social media links, all the podcasts, all the information on like how to work with us how we help our members, everything’s on there.
Sonya Looney 54:16
Well, thanks so much for coming on the show and I’m excited to follow you on your journey of getting 10,000 to millions of vegans in the best shape and their life.
Maxime Sigouin 54:25
Thank you. Thank you for having me.