Book Review: Vegan Bodybuilding and Fitness

Last Updated on October 8, 2018 by Diane Hoffmaster

Title:  Vegan Bodybuilding and Fitness
Subtitle: The Complete Guide to Building Your Body on a Plant Based Diet
Author: Robert Cheeke
Publisher: Book Publishing Co.; 1st edition (April 7, 2010)
ISBN: 978-0984391608
Pages:  317 pages
From the Publisher:

Renowned for his passion, dedication and determination, Robert Cheeke has inspired athletes, trainers and anyone interested in a strong, healthy body. He has been at the forefront in ushering in a different way to fuel and nourish bodybuilders in an industry riddled with animal-derived body-enhancing supplements. Being one of the most prominent figures in vegan bodybuilding, his advice on diet, training, and other facets of the lifestyle make this book a fantastic resource for beginners and experienced athletes alike.
Readers are provided with guidelines on the mental and physical aspects of preparation necessary for undertaking the goal of becoming a bodybuilder. They’re offered an overview of nutrition, nutrient food sources, the function of nutrients in the body along with mass building menus for training.
Robert shows how to choose the exercises that yield the best results and offers advice on how to find sponsorship and make bodybuilding a career as well as how to take bodybuilding beyond a personal endeavor and use it for activism and outreach. Also included are resources for products, services and equipment that are vegan.

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About the Author:  (from Amazon)
Robert, a vegan since 1986, has been able to promote vegan bodybuilding on a worldwide stage through articles in FLEX Magazine, Natural Bodybuilding & Fitness Magazine, VegNews Magazine, dozens of other publications, and through his documentaries and websites. Being a vegan, he feels that he has a positive impact on the environment and society and believes that an animal-free diet is one of the best things you can do for your health. He eats a vast array of natural and organic foods that keeps his body fat percentage low, protein intake high, energy levels high, bones strong, and allows him to put on quality muscle. Founder and president of his own company, Vegan Bodybuilding & Fitness in 2002, Robert also directed and produced an award-winning documentary Vegan Fitness Built Naturally (2005) and was co-director and co-producer of the documentary Vegan Brothers in Iron scheduled for release in 2010. He spends his time traveling around North America speaking at various health, wellness, vegetarian, personal development, and fitness festivals.
My Review:
I found myself drawn to the concepts in this book because so often I worry about protein intake and ensuring proper nutrition for my family while still cutting down on animal products. I frequently serve vegetarian options but always try and throw in nuts or beans for protein. My fallback, however, is always cheese! The idea that you can achieve the author’s level of fitness and strength with no animal products at all is amazing!
One concept that is stressed in this book that I wholeheartedly agree with: Eating whole foods is vital to our body’s health! Yes a muffin or bag of potato chips might be vegan but they are not going to provide you with the same nutrients and energy as a handful of almonds and a bowl of fruit! Obviously, your body will require MORE of these whole foods if you are actively training for a competitive sport like bodybuilding but the idea he proposes is simple…eat real, unprocessed foods for the greatest improvement in health and fitness!
The author takes a few pages to describe exactly what veganism is and why it will benefit you in the long run. He discusses his reasons for getting into bodybuilding and how to build a successful nutrition program. Included in the book are menus…for people with allergies, people who choose raw foods, maintenance diets, and several other programs. I particularly like the chart on ways to obtain protein on a vegan diet. Protein is vital to muscle building and CAN be found in non animal sources. It is just a little harder sometimes!
Cheeke gives a lot of information about his own journey in this book, making it an interesting insight into the sport of bodybuilding. Vegan Bodybuilding and Fitness has a lot of technical information about types of exercises and which nutritional supplements accomplish what but what it all boils down to is the fact that he has been living this lifestyle for 10 years and has obviously had success with it! I would say that if you want to learn more about building muscle, improving stamina, and getting into the right mindset of competive fitness all while maintaining a vegan lifestyle, this is a great resource.

Disclaimer: As per FTC guidelines, I received one copy of this book in exchange for my honest review. I received no monetary compensation. All opinions expressed here are mine and mine alone.


  1. Hello…stopping in from BYB…thought I would say hi. Have a great weekend!

  2. Wonderful review, Diane! This sounds like a very insightful and informative book!

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