Vegan Athletes

There are many vegan athletes out there ranging from runners, to bodybuilders to boxers who are ahead of their game and winning medals. I wanted to add this page for all the people out there who think that to be strong and fit, you have to eat animals and their by-products.

But why arn't there more vegan athletes in the world? Well, when you consider that only around 0.5% (although this figure may be higher) of the world population is vegan, and say 1% of those vegans (as an example) choose to become athletes, they are outnumbered by non-vegans on a massive scale. If 50% of the world population were vegan and 5% of those were into competitive sports and that tallied with 5% of non-vegans competing in sports, then obviously, we would have more of a balance. This page is to show you that eating a plant based diet, can and does mean that you can achieve supreme fitness and strength.

Brendan Brazier is a professional Ironman triathlete and best-selling author on performance nutrition. He is a two time Canadian 50km Ultra Marathon Champion and holder of the 2003 and 2006 National 50km Ultra Marathon Championships. Other achievements include 3rd place at the National Long-Course Triathlon Championships and both 3rd and 2nd in consecutive years in the Royal Victoria Marathon. Brazier became vegan after experimenting with various diets to improve his performance.

Robert Cheeke is the President and founder of Vegan Body Builder and is a well known vegan athlete. Robert started cross country running initially but soon became interested in bodybuilding. He is a competitive bodybuilder and the 2005 INBA (International Natural Bodybuilding Association) Northwestern USA Natural Bodybuilding Overall Novice Champion. Robert turned to a vegan diet in 1995 and is well known in vegan fitness circles. Robert has also been voted in the Top 15 Most Influential Vegan Athletes by VegNews.

Robert Hazeley is well known for being a slightly mature bodybuilder. He began bodybuilding in 1971. In 2005 he came second in Mr Wales, fourth in the British Championships, third in Mr England and sixth in World Power Lifting. He also came second in Mr Britain of that same year. Robbie went vegan in 1989 for health reasons after a bad tennis injury and was introduced to a plant based diet by his friend and mentor Dave Howe. He says it improved his stamina, freedom from injuries and ability to train more intensely.

Keith Holmes is an American boxer and began his pro career in 1989 and captured the WBC Middleweight Title by scoring a TKO over Quincy Taylor in 1996. He defended the title twice before losing the belt to Hassine Cherifi in 1998, a decision loss in which he dropped Cherifi once. In 1999, Holmes landed a rematch with Cherifi and regained the belt via a 7th round TKO. Holmes again defended the title twice before losing the belt to middleweight legend Bernard Hopkins in a clear-cut decision loss. He continued to fight sparingly after the loss to Hopkins, and in 2005 lost an IBF Light Middleweight Title Eliminator bout against Roman Karmazin in a close majority decision.

Ellen Jaffe Jones is the author of the best selling book, "Eat Vegan on $4 a Day" UK|USA. Ellen often places in 5K races for her age group and did her first marathon in 2010. She was the 5th oldest female to finish the Palm Beaches Marathon. She has won 5 gold medals in Florida's Senior Games. At almost 60, her times approach female qualifying NCAA college track team times in the 100 and 400 meter races. The "Anna Maria Islander" chose Ellen as the 2010 sports story of the year. As an Aerobics and Fitness Association of America certified personal trainer, and Road Runners Club of of America certified running coach, she volunteers as the assistant girls cross country coach at Manatee High in Bradenton, FL. She is a personal trainer at Island Fitness on Anna Maria Island, FL as well as an online trainer/coach.

Georges Laraque is a professional ice hockey forward and was unanimously awarded the "Best Fighter" award from The Hockey News in 2003. He was also named the number one enforcer by Sports Illustrated in 2008. Despite his reputation as a fighting-only player, Laraque has had offensive bursts during his career and on February 21, 2000, Laraque scored a hat trick against the Los Angeles Kings. He also supports animal charities and says he has never felt healthier being a vegan.

Carl Lewis is another well known vegan athlete and has been a vegan since 1990 and is a world famous and respected athlete. He has won ten Olympic medals including nine gold medals and ten World Championship medals of which eight were golds. Lewis was (he is now an actor) a sprinter and long-jumper and topped the world rankings in the 100m and 200m and also long jump events. He was named Athlete of the Year in 1982, 1983 and 1984 and has set world records in relays. He was voted Sportsman of the Century by the International Olympic Committee and named Olympian of the Century by the American sports magazine, Sports Illustrated.

Jack Lindquist began his professional trajectory as an Aerospace engineering student at Penn State University, which lead to a short stint in the defense industry workforce. After one weapon design too many, his conscious got the best of him, quitting to work as a bike messenger while figuring out lifes next step.

It was at this time that Jack realized he was naturally fast on the bike, winning the 2007 Puma Velocity race in New York City and earning his first free ride overseas to compete.

With excitement for racing escalating, and a few coaches noticing his potential, Jack propelled himself from an ex-aerospacing bike messenger to the U.S. National Developmental Team in just a few short-yet-hard worked years.

Mike Mahler is a vegan strength coach and kettlebell instructor. He has trained many world class mixed martial arts fighters such as former UFC light heavyweight champion Frank Shamrock, and is a leader in the field of strength and conditioning and the development of modern kettlebell lifting. Mahler is the author of a several DVDs, including The Kettlebell Solution For Size and Strength and The Kettlebell Solution For Speed and Explosive Strength. He has also written the book, Mahler's Aggressive Strength Kettlebell Workshop Manual. Mahler is a regular contributor to Hardcore Muscle Magazine, Testosterone Magazine, Ironman, Ironman Magazine Japan, Industry Magazine, Vegsource and Exercise Magazine For Men. He has been a vegan since 1997.

Martyn Moxon is an English cricketer who played ten Tests and eight One Day Internationals for England. On 8 May 2007 Moxon was confirmed as Director of Pro Cricket at Yorkshire CCC. Moxon's County career spanned 17 seasons with Yorkshire where he scored over 21,000 First-class runs. He began his career with two centuries in his first two home County Championship matches and it was not long before his elegant driving saw him earmarked for England honours. He established a reliable opening partnership with Ashley Metcalfe and later captained the County.

Patrick J. Neshek is a Major League Baseball relief pitcher for the Minnesota Twins. His delivery has earned mention on TV programmes SportsCenter as well as Baseball Tonight. His former manager believes that one of Patricks greatest strengths is his ability to have enough strength to throw hard from such an angle. Patrick went vegan in 2007 after reading the book "The China Study" and said it changed his life and he initially turned to a vegan diet for health reasons. He also states that this decision changed his career.

Fiona Oakes won 17 UK titles as a cyclist and went on to represent the UK in the Barcelona Olympics in 1992. In 2007 she became the Essex County Marathon Champion, beating the 13 year record by over 11 minutes. That record still stands today. Fiona has also competed in a number of major international marathons and achieved top ten places in Florence and Amsterdam as well as 20th in London and 17th in Berlin. What makes this so amazing is that Fiona has a knee replacement. Fiona is another well known vegan athlete and has been vegan since her late teens.

Pat Reeves is an accomplished marathon runner and fitness trainer. She has held many BWLA (British Weight Lifters Association) titles since 1994 and also fifteen years consecutive British Masters Champion with BWLA. She has represented Britain twice and holds Divisional, Commonwealth and Masters records. Pat has been vegan for the past 40 odd years and switched from marathon training to bodybuilding in 1989. She says her most memorable powerlifting experiences are achieving the highest echelons at BWLA Worlds and European events and retaining her British Masters BWLA title for the last fifteen years. Also pulling 100kg dead-lift consistently in 2005 for both BDFPA and the BWLA.

Amanda Riester: My name is Amanda Riester and I am a lifelong animal lover, and thrive on a strict vegan diet. Going from vegetarian to vegan 2 years ago I noticed a HUGE difference in my overall health and energy level, and realized I could use my fitness accomplishments and athletic physique to advocate a vegan lifestyle. Growing up in a family of professional boxers, I began my journey into athletic competition at 12 when my father began teaching me to box, I later went on to become a 4 time golden gloves champion and trained for the 2000 Olympics. I am a certified USA Boxing coach, judge and officiant. In 2005 I was diagnosed with cancer, during treatment I rapidly gained 45 lbs, going from a size 0 to a 13. Soon after remission I hit the gym again, with a vengeance, determined never again to be unhappy in my own body. I worked out hard, and got certified as an AFAA personal trainer and group fitness instructor. After over 10 years in the world of combat sports, I hung up my gloves and began bodybuilding. So far in 2011 I have placed 1st runner up at the Windy City Classic Natural Bodybuilding Championships and I won FIRST place at the Natural North America Bodybuilding and Fitness Championships. Although I spend several hours a day in the gym, my heart really belongs in animal rescue and liberation. I have spent 11 years volunteering in pit bull rescue. I am the proud mommy of 3 rescued pit bulls and wife to an amazing husband. I work full time as a professional animal communicator and pet loss grief counselor and feel so blessed to be able to call that my "job."

Lionel Rumi is an Ice Dancer who started skating for France in 1994. He's a 3 time French National Champion and has participated in many international events including ISU Junior Grand Prix events from 2003 through 2007 and at the European Youth Olympic Games in 2003. He is also the two time winner of the French Master's in the Junior category. He skated under the Israel Flag beginning 2009. He has participated at many international events, including the 2011 European Championship in Bern, and 2011 World Championship in Moscow.

He's also pursuing an amateur modeling career. He's featured in a French 2012 Male Calendar by Lionel Andre, and modeled for the MAC Collections "Glitter and Ice". He has been a vegan since November 2011.

Mary Stabinsky: I am a vegan triathlete who is currently racing at multi-sport events from sprint distance to a full ironman. I train for these events using crossfit endurance and I have my level 1 CrossFit and CrossFit Endurance certifications. In addition to my swimming, biking and running, I am throwing down some CrossFit WODs! I also compete in stand along cycling races, road running races and swimming events.

I keep a training blog of my workouts and nutrition, as well as my race schedule at the link below - so other vegan athletes can see what I am doing. I welcome comments and questions.

Ed Templeton is a professional skateboarder who started skateboarding in 1985 and turned professional in 1990 for New Deal Skateboards. He came first in the 1995 Slam City Jam street and first in 1990 Muenster World Cup street skateboarding. In 1993 he founded Toy Machine Skateboards. Ed has been a vegan since 1990/1991 and is a supporter of animal rights and has said: "Once you read about the meat and dairy industry and the things they do, it is hard to keep supporting them. I didn't want to partake in the killing of animals or spend my money on the whole system."

Ted Trendy is the founder of Team Green, a vegan athletic and social club that specializes training vegan athletes for triathlon, marathon, swimming and athletic events, as well as organizing group outings. Team Green has chapters and members all over the world. Ted has been vegan since 2006 and has first hand knowledge of how to get healthy through training and a proper vegan diet. Once weighing 300lbs, he decided to shed the weight, become vegan and help others who want to be fit and healthy too. He currently lives in San Diego, CA and is in businesses as well as being a personal chef, trainer and cycling instructor. Ted Trendy competes in Ironman races and Ultra events.

Kenneth Williams is a professional vegan bodybuilder, personal trainer, financial advisor, spokesman and Vegan campaign coordinator for In Defense of Animals (IDA). He made history at the 2004 Natural Olympia in Las Vegas which is the most prestigious natural bodybuilding competition in the world. He finished third out of more than 200 competitors from 37 nations and became America’s first vegan bodybuilding champion. He has also competed and placed well in a number of important bodybuilding events. In 2004 alone, he placed second in his class at the Silver & Black Muscle Classic, the Team USA contest, and the World Natural Bodybuilding Championships.

All the vegan athletes named above are as far as I'm aware, on a vegan diet. I have made a point out of not adding "vegans" who eat cheese or gulp down a few eggs, as that to me is defeating the object. I hope you can see that the myth of weak pale vegans is just that - a myth - and you can build a strong and healthy body by eating a vegan diet. Not only a healthy body but a far healthier body by not loading yourself with animal fats and cholesterol. It's important to realise that a vegan diet isn't a second class way of eating. It is just the opposite. It is a far superior way of giving your body nutritious and healthy vitamins and minerals which will improve your health and benefit you in many ways.