From strongmen to cyclists, football players to ultra-marathoners, veganism is a growing movement among those at the top of their sport. Here are ten of our favorite quotes from vegan athletes around the world, who we are celebrating not only for their awe-inspiring abilities, but also for their commitment to speaking up on behalf of animals!
1. David Carter, former NFL defensive end for the Chicago Bears
Carter enjoys proving his colleagues wrong. “People ask me if I want to get a steak and I tell them I actually don’t eat that, or any meat or dairy. They’re usually thinking, ‘Wait, you’re supposed to be small and weak.’ But of course they can’t say that when they’re looking at me.”
2. Morgan Mitchell, 400-meter and 800-meter Olympian sprinter
“I recover a lot quicker than I used to. It’s easier to keep my weight down and I haven’t been sick at all!”
3. Dustin Watten, volleyball player and gold medal winner at the 2015 FIVB World Cup
“By choosing plants and cutting out animals and animal products I feel we give our bodies the best source of nourishment and sustained energy to help us push for our own individual passion in life. Second, because I believe we are on this planet to live in harmony as close as we can with the earth and the other animals that inhabit it.”
➔ Watch Dustin Watten’s video on our youtube channel
4. Alex Morgan, forward for the Orlando Pride of the National Women’s Soccer League & the United States women’s national soccer team.
“I never thought it was possible I could be playing at an elite level as a professional athlete with a plant-based diet. Then I realized it wasn’t detrimental at all. What I learned growing up wasn’t all that true.”
5. Brandon Flowers, former NFL cornerback for the Kansas City Chiefs
When asked if he misses meat Brandon says, “You don’t just cut out the taste of having a hamburger. They have vegan hamburgers that taste like hamburgers you know, so why not go with that instead of putting the meat of an animal inside your body.”
6. Dotsie Bausch, a seven-time USA Cycling National Champion, a two-time Pan American Champion, and an Olympic silver medalist.
“As it turned out, from both an ethical and practical perspective, no other lifestyle made sense, and I wanted people to realize it too. After years as an athlete, I felt a deeper calling, and I’ve never turned back since.”
➔ Watch Dotsie Bausch’s video on our youtube channel
7. Tia Blanco, pro surfer and winner of the gold medal at the ISA Open Women’s World Surfing Championship
“There have been so many positive benefits: my surfing performance, saving animals, spreading the word, and being enlightened to a cruelty free way of living.”
➔ Follow Tia’s plant-based cooking page on Instagram
8. Patrik Baboumian, world-record-breaking strongman
“I just found myself thinking that if I would have to kill the animals I ate with my own hands I couldn’t because I was too compassionate. I felt that I was fooling myself eating meat considering my inability to kill an animal so I just thought I’d better be honest to myself and stop eating meat.”
9. Robbie Balenger, an ultra-runner who completed a 3,200 mile run across the United States
“The future generations that will be affected by the choices we make, and the animals who suffer horrendously for them, don’t get to make the choice for themselves. It is with those that don’t have a choice that my empathy lies.”
➔ Watch Robbie Balenger’s video on our youtube channel
10. Seba Johnson, the youngest Alpine Ski Racer in Olympic history
Seba grew up as a vegetarian and notes “In school textbooks we are brainwashed into thinking cows and other animals are here for us to drink from and eat. More often now I see athletes perform their very BEST once they’ve cut dairy from their consumption. Once they get rid of dairy they are able to breathe, sleep, and recover faster!”
➔ Want to find out how you can live a healthier life and be a hero for animals? Sign up for our FREE vegan starter kit today to see how easy it can be!