Top 5 Vegan Athletes of 2015!

2015 was a great year for veganism. So many plant-based restaurants opened, with many major chains incorporating more vegetarian and vegan food items in their menus. It was also a great year for vegan athletes, and they seemed to be all over in the news! Here is a breakdown of the top 5 major happenings in 2015 by vegan athletes:

Serena Williams

Serena Williams went vegan in 2012 after her sister, Venus, was diagnosed with Sjögren?s syndrome, which is a debilitating and incurable autoimmune disease that results in fatigue. However, after her doctor recommended a raw vegan diet, Serena adopted the same one in solidarity. And on top of her many successes as an athlete, 2015 saw Serena beating Garbine Muguruza of Spain, winning Wimbledon for the sixth time, with four major titles. 

Tim Shieff

Tim Sheiff is a professional freerunner and a two-time World Champion who has been a vegan (mostly raw) since 2012, acknowledging the many health benefits the diet has resulted in for him. In 2015, he competed on Ninja Warrior, a hit TV game show and was declared "the last man standing". While he completed all the stages in the fastest time, he lost by one second for the last obstacle. However, he is also setting his sights on competing again, and if it was literally just a matter of one second, we have high hopes for him in the future!

Scott Jurek 

Ultra-runner Scott Jurek impressed the world in July of 2015 when he broke the record for the fastest run across the Appalachian Trail by 3 hours and 13 minutes, finishing it in 46 days, 8 hours and 7 minutes. Jurek has been a vegan now for almost two decades, and credits the diet for his performance, as well as his fast recovery and lack of injuries!

David Carter

David Carter, an NFL player who is also known as the '300 pound vegan' was signed in 2015 with the Chicago Bears, which became his first season playing on a vegan diet. Carter credits his vegan lifestyle to his wife who is an animal rights activist and vegan. He thanks the diet for his increased performance, as well as strength, energy, speed, as well as recovery time!

Patrik Baboumian

Germany's strongest man, Patrik Baboumian, beat his own world record in September of 2015! The German-Armenian originally from Iran completed the yoke walk in Kitzcher with 560kg in 28 seconds, beatng his previous record of lifting 555kg two years ago. This became Baboumian's fourth world record break since becoming vegan!

So there you have it! While of course there were many other successes and happenings in the world of vegan athletes, this is the top 5 list. Here's hoping we see more vegan athletes in 2016 taking the world of sports by storm with their plant-power!

Lena Tachdjian is a certified nutritionist and a writer, who splits her time between Canada and Armenia. She writes about nutrition, health, food, recipes, culture, travel, animal rights, and more. You can follow her on her nutrition and travel blog

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