Is it possible to be a vegan runner?
Being vegan (a person that eats plant based diet) does not take away from energy levels needed to be a runner. There are lots of vegan runners that run all distances, even 100 mile races, and they do just fine. Eating a plant based diet surprisingly enhances your energy levels and will make you a better runner. Interested? Read on!
The thing to understand is that you can still be an unhealthy vegan eating junk food; not every calorie is created the same. 100 calories of carrots has way more nutritional benefit than 100 calories of vegan candy. It is important to make sure that a large percentage of your diet is raw, which means eating lots of uncooked fruits and vegetables. By cooking food you kill the essential enzymes that you benefit from. Also, stay away from fake processed vegan foods that don’t have much nutrition.
On race day you might be nervous about vegan food options. Always pack away vegan energy bars for back up, and indulge on fruit that most races provide. Even bring an ice chest with fruits and vegetables to eat afterwards. Once you have been vegan for a month or so your cravings for junk food provided at races will disappear.
When first starting on a vegan diet is the time you will doubt it the most. Use online resources and chat groups for support. Go to restaurants that are vegan. Meetup.com is a good way to find vegan groups. Having support in your first few months as a vegan is practically a necessity, especially since a vegan diet is so different from today’s accepted modern diet. But in fact a vegan diet is a more traditional diet that humans have been eating for thousands of years.
There are a lot of rumors that being vegan will actually make you less healthy, that you will miss out on critical vitamins, that you won’t get enough protein in, and that there is no way to get enough calories in. These rumors are not true, there is zero scientific evidence backing them up. Focus on eating healthy vegan options. Do your homework, research recipes and restaurants online so that you know you aren’t eating calories lacking nutritional quality. Experiment with various smoothie recipes. Eat until you are full and you will be fine with calories and protein. Yes, you will get enough protein from fruits and vegetables, it is not even a something to worry about. Eat healthy vegan options and keep your diet as raw as possible and you won’t even need to think about vitamins.
-Brian Peterson Vegan ultrarunner If you have any questions please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org