Wednesday, 26 August 2015


 199.9lbs in 2010
-poor eating habits

134lbs in 2012
-2.5 years high raw vegan
-casual long distance running
-no weight lifting
-under eating
-always felt like I needed to lose me weight because my stomach would never tighten (needed strength training)
 155lbs in 2013
-non vegan
-weight lifting
-now consuming enough calories for my body to grow
168lbs Nov 2014
-still working out and dieting hard but weight is creeping back on
-starting to get sleeping issues
-becoming depressed; eating so well and working out consistently 6x a week but my body seems to continue changing in a negative way
August 187-185lbs 2015 (I know this picture is closer so I realize I look bigger here then I am)
- I sometimes I workout 2x a day
- I hardly have cheat days, when I have a cheat meal I binge on 4-5 slices of pizza rather then 2 because I feel deprived
-I am almost the same weight here as I am in the first pic! Muscle makes the body tighter but I am carrying a lot of body fat I can't seem to keep off

Sometimes life redirects you back into a direction that would have worked for you had you done it correctly. I was a horrible vegan. I ate way too little, did not make sure I got the nutrition I needed to maintain a long term healthy body and looked to vegan idols who did not have the same physical goals in mind as I did.
Almost every person who I have met or have listened to turns to veganisim because they stumbled upon a documentary that changed how they looked at their food or environment. I was no different.

It's a week day, I just got home from work, there is nothing good on tv and I am feeling like eating ice cream and watching something. Then I remember a DVD a friend lent to me and decide I have nothing better to do and should give it a watch.

I spend the next 90 minutes in hysterical tears unable to turn the program off and yet so disgusted that I feel like getting sick. I am watching Earthlings, the movie that single handedly changed my life. In short, this is the best program I have seen to date that goes into the animal cruelty side of the animal product industry (the food we consume, the fashion we wear and the puppy mills we get our loved family pets from.) There are other great documentaries which show how these processes damage our earth.

Through my tears I tear apart my cupboards while my then long time boyfriend stares at me wide eyed. Everything that looks like it could have animal in it goes directly in the trash. From then on, for the next 2.5 years of my life I was an avid high raw vegan.

A very picky vegan, however. I did not get routine blood work done, supplement in the areas that are needed or eat nearly enough to keep my body nourished. I have long suffered from iron deficiency, even while growing up with a father who was a professional hunter and eating loads of the best wild game. My body simply had a hard time absorbing the iron it was receiving. Fast forward two years into being a vegan without any supplements and the high energy I am used to, rapidly plummets. Within a few weeks I can hardly get out of bed. My iron levels are dangerously low - the only thing that kept them from dramatically effecting me to begin with was that I had had animal in my previous way of eating.

Iron storages are a funny thing; what you do have (and like I said I was very low before going vegan) lasts in a storage system in your body for roughly seven months before your body starts to really notice that it can not pull from its backup as there is nothing left. Without me replenishing those storages or building them back up, eventually I was a horribly tired mess. This would not have been an issue as a vegan has I been eating enough to maintain and build on my storages, but like I said, I was a horrible vegan.

In addition, I was not supplementing B-12, which is only found in bacteria, that bacteria is only found in animal proteins because it is PUT there by humans. The lack of B-12 has very similar symptoms as lack of iron so my situation was double-trouble. In short, humans are also supplementing B-12 through the dead flesh they eat. This does not mean I needed to take a pill as us vegans have a beautiful product called nutritional yeast which can be used as a B-12 supplement in place of a pill. Furthermore, many vegans take no supplements what so ever and have no negative side effects. Everyone is built very different. 

As I got into the field of nutrition through my fascination with self experimenting (before going vegan) and finishing school for both that and personal training, my life took a very different direction. I was now 65lbs lighter, just left a toxic 7 year relationship and starting a new job as a personal training in the Downtown core. Everyone in my gym is super fit and getting ready for fitness competitions, which was something that I quickly decided I wanted to participate in.

Losing my weight was done through running casually and how I was eating, but very little weight lifting. Which left me with a much smaller body, however still undefined and soft. I wanted the athletic builds I saw around me. I hired a trainer and after two months of solid effort, my desire to put on lean muscle and being the only vegan I knew, I made the decision to go back to animal proteins.

Some would say it worked for me, and back then I agreed. However now I am not sure. I had fantastic results - I lost 2 more sizes and put on 20lbs and was much tighter and athletic looking. Most people would then determine, "So you're admitting you got close to your desired physique by eating animals then?" No, that is not what I am saying at all. What I am saying is I believe had I been consistent and nourished my body more with food (I was now eating at least 800 more calories a day) and supplements while lifting heavy weights, I honestly believe I would have achieved that look anyways. But we are a society of gimmie-it-nowwwwww and I want it yesterday and I was no different. 

Fast forward two years, I have met the love of my life, I am a step mommy to an amazing little boy, just bought a house, moved an hour away and starting a new profession. My eating habits get lax but nothing extreme. Certainly not lazy enough to justify my weight jumping up to 192lbs. I am looking down at the scale mortified - yes I have been more relaxed with my eating, but I am still eating very well and I have gone to the gym six times a week consistently. How did I get here?

I hire a new trainer, she ups my calories and carbs and I see great results. I drop from 30.6% body fat and 192lbs to 25.4% body fat and 185lbs in 7 weeks. I am having very little cheats, working out so hard I am cripplingly sore the next day and staying active when not working out. But my body fat and weight stay the same for 2 months.

I am suffering from insomnia, have strange digestive gas, I am a bit foggy and always tired. I chalk it up to my body using a lot of energy to digest the high amounts of carbs and insane amount of protein I am eating.

Weeks go by. My hormones are out of whack; I cry at everything, get angry and offended easily, can't seem to feel rejuvenated even after ten hours of sleep. I decide on my own to start eating vegetarian. As I have studied health and nutrition I know I have a leg up on some things, but honestly what they teach you is shit. Complete bullshit. So I am lost and angry. I am a personal trainer and studied sports nutrition, why can't I get a handle on this?

Then one night when my insomnia hits I have an epiphany. Nothing really occurs to me right then and there, but when I finally wake up the next morning, I have decided I want to be a vegan again. I wake with a deep longing to return to my old ways of eating but learn from my past mistakes and do it differently. 

The three biggest changes this time to make sure I am not in the same position I was last time with my low energy levels will be as such:
-suppliment where I know I need it and go for routine blood work to track it
-keep weight lifting during this process
-eat a lot more calories so that I have energy and my body does not pull from my muscle or bones

There is something magical about documenting a journey. It is therapeutic and I hope that someone curious about this life style can learn from my mistakes so when and if they make this life change, they do not suffer for their decisions.

That is why I have decided to journal and YouTube this experience this time around. Everything from what I eat to what activity levels I do, how many calories I have consumed (plus carbs, fat, protein) and my thoughts and feelings along the way, as well as photos, to fully document the highs and lows of my life decision.

Ultimatly I would love a lean athletic body, have loads of energy and get my body fat to a healthy range on this lifestyle so that I can feel comfortable trying for a baby with my fiance`. But mostly I want to feel like I am helping the planet and protecting defenceless animals from further harm. Those are the three things that will keep me on this path when the process gets a little difficult. Having been a vegan before I feel I have a little advantage, however I am in the process of unlearning everything I have been thought in school and my mind is having an inner battle with me.

At first I was hesitant to do videos or write blogs because people want advice from someone who has gone through the process already and achieved what they have set out to do. I know that is mostly what I look for, but please keep in mind I have conquered this area of my life in the past, felt amazing but made some mistakes that sent me in a direction I have been trying to recover from for the last few years. Except having low iron, while vegan I was never sick, my mood was stable, I felt happy with my food choices and good deeds towards the animals and planet. It was only when I left this life style that sleeping problems, weight gain and hormonal imbalances occurred. This is my journey, so if you're a normal american diet eater, vegetarian or vegan, I hope you read because you're curious about this life style and are open minded enough to view my process with an open heart.

xo Tannis Skye

Tuesday, 29 April 2014


If you dig a little and do your own research as you choose not to take my word for it, practically every study done protein (muscle building) synthesis rate returns to normal within 48 hours.

But you're still sore? It doesn't matter. You muscle has finished 'growing' from the workout you did two days ago and TECHNICALLY it can be trained again. So should you? Yes and no.

If you killed your legs two days ago with max out heavy squats that put a lot of pressure on your joints, tendons and so on, training that body part again is fine, but not at max effort. THOSE parts of the body, especially if you still feel sore, are still recovering, not the muscles. Always keep in mind that you're doing more then working muscles when you workout. You're putting mass amounts of stress your ligaments, cell walls, nervous and endocrine system too.

The more you train the more your body will adjust. The first time I did a serious leg workout I was on crutches for 3 days. And I wish that was an exaggeration. I even missed 1 day of work because of it. It isn't that I don't train just that hard to this day, but to an extent my muscles have come to understand the process, recover faster and heal.

The goal is to get the muscles to grow without having huge time lapses between training. My suggestion: Train hard and heavy and either A) do max 70% same effort when training same muscle again 2 days later, or B) let more time lapse before you work the muscle, say maybe 3-4 days to let the muscle AND tendons, ligaments etc heal at your max efforts.

Train, but train smart.

Monday, 28 April 2014


A full spectrum of angles need to be used for the chest to be worked effectively. Because of the number of attachments up the center of your chest, incline, level and decline is needed. The biggest mistake for chest workouts is that there is too much pressing of the arms. The shoulders need to go forwards from a backwards shrug position so the pecks can squeeze and fully contract.

Take the bench press for example as far as posture is concerned. Bench press is pretty awesome because it uses your triceps and front delts as supplementary muscles, but that is also why it can be bad for your chest-building-quest. You want your body to almost only be using your chest to press the bar and weights up so you need to watch your hand placement. A good rule it to put your middle finger where the small thin etch line is on the bar. Don't got too fast as the exocentric part of the rep (negative) is just as important.
Dips are a form of decline press to develop the lower part of the chest muscles. So why not just do decline press then? Those build mass and strength whereas dips is more of a detailed mission. The more you lean forward. you more of the chest versus triceps workout you get.
Doing an incline bench press (smith machine optional) puts more pressure on the top of the chest as it changes the position of effort on the muscle. You will likely have to adjust the weight here compared to flat bench as most people can not lift the same amount. It will also be a little more difficult to control the bar here so you'll really have to concentrate on posture - I would not suggest suicide grip here if you're in intermediate lifter.
You may already be doing these, but perhaps need a few modifications, or had the perfect posture, but now you're aware of the exact muscles you're working and why!
I hope this helps.
As Arnold says, "Lifting if the best sport out there. It not a destructive sport. Sound mind, sound body."

Saturday, 26 April 2014

PT 2: Unique Natural Healers


If you like a good solid fast every now and then like I do to give my body a digestive break, you're going to want to know about potatoes. I like to work out still, even lightly, when I fast and the hardest thing for me is the loss of sodium. Boil potatoes and drink the broth and it is a natural source of electrolytes, in addition to fighting the flu/cold like symptoms we get when we're detoxing our bodies.


Worried about your prostate boys? Pumpkin seeds are loaded with zinc which aids in prostate support with their protective compound called phytosterols and prevents DHT, which is associated with enlarged prostates.

Here is a psotate syrup for you men if you wanna get a jump start on your health!
6tsp grounded pumpkin
6tsp blackstrap molasses or honey
Juice form 1/2 lemon.

Grab a finger full and have at'er!

The seeds also immobilize worms in the intestine so that they may be easily expelled.


If you think you're allergic to these, you MAY not be. You may blotch up because these are so severely detoxifying that your body could be responding to the fact that they're very alkaline. If you keep trying them and you stop blotching, hey, there you go, just some detox happening.

For the women that like a sparkling set of cheeks, rub some strawberries on your cheeks as it makes the moisture of the berry pass instantly into the pores and tired skin revitalized.


Got an insect problem? Hang some tomatoes within the area. It's an instant repellant.


Peel an orange, keep the peel, put it into some raw honey, place on a cookie sheet and bake for 5 minutes at 250 degrees then let it cool. You're now free to suck on the peel just as you would a lozenge, but you know, minus the chemicals and unnatural elements to keep it preserved.


They do two different things. Fruit juices cleanse the body while vegetable juice builds or regenerates. If both are to be used, have fruit in the morning while veg can be had at any time of the day.

Thursday, 24 April 2014


Since health and nutrition are such a big part of my life, anyone who decides to get me anything knows that the key to my heart is usually something related to that field. A client of mine recently returned from Australia (thank you Nicole!) and brought me back my all time favorite sweetener; Manuka Honey. Before that a new person in my life whom I hope to get to know much better bought me a book entitled God's Farmacy. Once you shift through the underlying religious side of this book which only really occurs within the first few pages, you get to the meat of it, which turns out to be a super fascinating read.

I am only half way through the book right now, but I wanted to share a few things with you that I picked up and thought were fascinating. Enjoy!

Aloe Vera:

Having problems with your number 2s? Aloe Vera cleanses the bowls by improved mobility and reduces the population of harmful bacteria.

Use it as a preservative. This one was a really cool one for me to learn. I blend up chunks of mango and let it dehydrate over night on 170 so that in the morning it is almost like thin mango fruit roll up, and honestly, who didn't love those as a kid? Cut some aloe and smear the gel over top as an editable preservative that acts as a barrier against moisture, fungus and bacteria.

Blackstrap Un-sulphured Molasses:

Iron shortage is something I deal with personally so it was great to learn that molasses contains more iron then any other food, in addition to being an amazing source of calcium (gasp, more then cows milk.) That sounds like a good excuse to me to get some baking in.

It is also great for eczema, acne, rashes and as a cleaner by cleaning impurities and helps the pH balance of the skin. Let it sit on your face for one hour then wash off with warm water, avid using soap.


Cabbage is high in iron, an iron deficient or anemic can benefit here. Eaten raw, in juices or added to food.

You can use the cabbage as a vaginal douche by washing it and warming it up for one minute in the oven -  it also aids in yeast infections. If you don't like the idea of going all garden-of-eden on your girlie bits, you can boil it and drink as a tea, which will also help with intestinal parasites.

Carrot Tops:

So no more throwing away the tops of the carrots we use! Drink the juice the carrots make, but then boil the tops and I can be used as a tea for a mouthwash. They're a strong antiseptic, diuretic and aid in urinary problems.


I think we all know garlic is delicious and have heard of people saying they eat a glove a night to prevent illness and promote continued health, but did you know that it is also natures most powerful antibiotic? So throw out the bottles the doctors give you, as they kill unhealthy AND healthy bacteria and replace it for lots and lots of garlic. Just remember to brush your teeth or else your partner may not come within 10 feet of you and it will have nothing to do with you being sick.

Saturday, 5 April 2014

9 HEALTH Questions and Answers

Q: Lifting weights will stunt growth?
A: No, lifting weights helps with bone development, density and proper posture of course.


Q: To get ripped (not body builder)  lift lighter weight and more reps?
A: Uh, no. Muscle does two things: gets bigger or smaller. Being ‘toned’ is leaner, which is fat loss. However, if you have not built the muscle needed underneath to support a cut, or fat loss, you could just end up looking skinny.


Q: Can I turn fat into muscle?
A: No. These are two different tissues. Muscle is mostly water, whereas fat is mostly oil. Can you build your muscle by lifting heavy and lower body fat in combination with clean eating, yes, but they don’t replace each other.


Q: Does eating lots of small meals make me lose weight?
A: No. But here is what it does do; keep insulin levels (spikes) to a minimal so you avoid crashes and sudden cravings, preventing binge or emotional eating. Which brings me to the men wanting to bulk up. Eating 8+x a day isn’t always good. In fact, it is bad for your cause. Your body is spending so much time and energy digesting food so often that it cannot focus on building muscle. 4-6 meals for the
average person is ideal, no matter if you want to lose weight, gain weight, old or young, male or female. A good rule is to eat every 2.5-3 hours. Let us not make this complicated by saying, Hey Tannis, I work 14 hour days and I am awake 18 hours of the day, how do I eat only 4-6 times then but also eat every 2.5-3 hours. You are clearly not an average person so logic needs to be used in this case.


Q: Does fat make me fat?
A: SIGH. No. NOOO. But keep this in mind; fat is high in calories, you can have a lot of it as long as you don’t exceed you caloric number to maintain or lose weight. For example: say my calories are 1500 a day, and I like having 1 whole avocado, salmon and peanut butter in a day. Just right there you have 800/900 of your calories dedicated to fat, but you still need to have enough protein (1.2-1.5G per lb of weight) and complex carbs to build muscle. So fats are good but make sure they suite your cause.


Q: My doc says I have high cholesterol so I am not allowed to have egg yolks
A: For Cholesterol to have a negative effect on the body there needs to be a pre-existing problem with the blood vessels. Yolks are healthy forms cholesterol. There is no data that supports this.


Q: Creatine is dangerous?
A: Nope. It’s a 20/30 year old product and NO research has shown it to be harmful, the only side effect is it MAY increase acne. It has also shown to increase a bloating feeling or look.

Q: Ass to the grass is the only way to squat?
A: Yes, mostly. As long as you can maintain a neutral spine. You want to avoid a large forward lean, HOWEVER, people like myself with a long femur and short torso can only physically go so far down with proper posture before I will start to have a forward tuck going on to compensate. In this case, go AS deep as you can while maintaining proper posture and neutral spine. We are all built differently so we need to be aware of our bodies and work with them.


Q:I want my abs to look like ____ how can I?
A: Our abs can only show when our body fat has decreased, the side and placement (lower Vs or 8’s) can come from SOME methods of working out (such as tucking your tailbone under when targeting core) but people with the line down the middle, perfect side by side abs, or scattered abs, cannot be changed. Those ‘grooves’ are tendons going down and separating are just DNA.

5 Ingredient Protein Pudding

This satisfying protein pudding is as easy as 1, 2, 3, 4, 5.  My meals and times are very planned for six days out of the week, but when I know my verity day is approaching I prepare this the night before and have it off and on the following day. I love cheat like meals that are actually very good for you, still shock the system (the point of the much needed verity day) and taste no different then what I could buy in the store.  You can make it a little fancy as well if you are hosting a party and want to keep it on the healthy side by adding shaved semi-sweet dark chocolate on top, or my personal favorite - adding raw coconut flakes on top.

5 Ingredient Protein Pudding
(4 servings)
1) 4 scoops of chocolate protein of choice - I go between chocolate New Zealand Whey ISO (by Diesel) or Raw Chocolate Sunwarrior rice protein
2) Add 3tsp of black organic chia seeds (this makes it a little gummy)
3) Add 3tsp of ground flax or husk (this makes it stick together)
4) Add 2 cups of unsweetened almond milk
5) Pick one (or all!)
- 1 tsp of cinnamon
- 3 tsp of ground coffee
- 3 tsp of raw nut butter
If you want to make this thick and less gummy like the picture, add another 1.5 tsp of ground husk or flax, if you like it a little more liquidly and gummy add another scoop of chia seeds. Play with it and see what you like!
Mix well with a fork (no need to make a mess of the whole kitchen with mixing tools) and set in a container with a lid the night before, stir in the morning, then eat!
I did not do the calories and nutritional info here, but let me tell you this (and it is mostly based on assuming you have a GOOD and healthy protein powder) this is nothing but healthy proteins and fats so there is no real need for concern. You are littlerly eating seeds, nut milk and a healthy form of protein. No need to over complicate and analyze this one. Great to send to school in a container for the kids and amazing for adults pre or post work out.

Friday, 4 April 2014

Healthy and Easy Protein Ball Recipe - Great for the Kids!

With Easter around the corner and my godson in mind, even though he is still under a year! I have been thinking of some fun treats that could be made with the tiny tykes and this recipe happened organically while playing around in the kitchen. The taste has several layers; light chocolate and nut flavors with coconut undertones. They're remarkably satisfying bites. Use some cookie cutters and let them sit out to harden for a little while and the kids will go nuts over it. It is raw (except the husk) and is also vegan so you'll be consuming nothing but mostly living foods with quality nutrients.

Fat total, 19 = 1.4 each
Carb total, 102 = 7.8 each
Fibre total, 50 = 3.8 each which is almost 20% of your daily need!
Sodium total, 210 = 16.1 each
Sugar total, 17 = 1.3 each (and mostly just from the soaked date)
Calorie total, 800 = 61 each
Makes 13, no need to cook.
4 scoops raw rice (no pea) chocolate Sunwarrior protein
2 tsp raw chia seeds
2.5 tsp raw coconut organic flakes
2 tsp organic hemp meal
2 soaked in 3 tsp water over night dates
4 tsp psyllium husk (stick together)
1/2 tsp Himalayan salt
1 tsp nutmeg
2 tsp PB2 - dehydrated peanut butter low Cals
(walnuts/almonds/cashews optional)

Friday, 21 March 2014

127 Days and Counting

With under a month and a half left of my bulk cycle and 4 months and 1 week left before I walk on the July 26th WBFF stage to compete for my pro carb in the Bikini Diva Fitness category, I am starting to get exciting. More then anything I'd like to see the results of my 18 month journey (at time of competing) in the mirror. It has been a never ending carb loading process to build the muscle I need to be able to cut down. Mentally the only thing forcing the fork to my mouth with yet another helping of yam is these last few weeks. Light at the end of the tunnel.

I think when all is said in done though, this will be healthy for me. I was so consumed with how little I could weigh having been previously over weight that the forced shift in focus on lean muscle and not small scale numbers is the healthiest gift I have learned over the year. Instead of celebrating another pound lost, I celebrate physical milestones like how many push ups I can do, or that I've been able to lunge for 30 minutes straight without pause; how wide set pull ups are slowly becoming easier and someday soon I will finally be able to do a muscle up.

My palms get sweaty when I think about the show. I am not nervous because I don't think I can do it, because I can and I will, but more so to do all I can do - train and eat how I should - but be told yet again that my body just isn't ready. It's an emotionally exhausting process and hard to swallow when your body just can't support a cut cycle yet. What do I do this time around if July nears and this stubborn body of mine, specifically my rear, still hasn't made the gains it needs to walk the stage and win? But then again, when I think about above said, I find the irony. I've spent the last 3 years of my life changing my body and outlook and as such, formed a pretty amazing metabolism. Now my problem - which isn't a problem truly - is that I get lean too fast at the expense of my muscle. So I try to remember that when I get down and out about the length of this process.

In the meantime I have directed all of my attention into my clients at the gym, building my personal business inside of Steve Nash and expanding my knowledge with my amazing trainer, coach and friend.

When I get down and out about this seemingly never ending process, which can sometimes be more often then I like to let on, I always listen to or watch this video. It is the best motivation for me, hands down, every time without fail.

I'd like to share it so that anyone in my position can relate.

Our demons and our dreams are both hungry, careful which ones you feed.