Fitness model, personal trainer and activist.
SS: What made you go vegan and why?
FM: I've had a passion for fitness for quite some time, but never in a million years did I ever imagine my physical abilities and conditioning could take me to unprecedented levels on a Vegan plant based diet. I had been training with extreme calisthenics (bodyweight training) for about 1 1/2 years when two friends of mine who train the same way I do, introduced me to the vegan lifestyle. Both of my friends had supernatural strength and conditioning - when I found out they were vegan, well that grabbed my attention I started to do some research. What intrigued me the most about being vegan was that I felt I needed to take my health and wellness to a whole new level. They explained the health benefits of veganism and guided me through the healthy vegan foods to get me started. As the weeks went by my energy rapidly increased, my muscle endurance and recovery increased to miraculous levels. I became stronger, faster and stopped feeling fatigued or bloated from eating dairy and meat products.
The health reasons are the ones that initially made me go vegan and the effect it was having on my body's look and performance sealed the deal. Subsequently I became more exposed to the other reasons for becoming vegan such as the violence towards animals that is innate to factory farming. It made me open my eyes to see the truth about the wrongful slaughter of animals for products. It made me look back and think after all these years, I hadn’t realized that all animals deserve to live - we didn’t need to consume them to be healthy or strong. I knew then that I wanted to be vegan.
SS: Has it been difficult for you? If yes what was difficult and did it get easier?
FM: Overall It was was not difficult but I did have my bumps in the road. I was NOT a vegetarian so I went into this straight from eating meat and animal products to going straight vegan. I have been eating healthy for a good time so I normally never ate large quantities of animal products. Red meats, fish and dairy were really easy for me to stop consuming, as I hardly consumed those. Chicken, turkey and eggs were a bit of a challenge for me to stop consuming. In the beginning there were instances where I caved into eating Chicken or eggs. But over time, when my resolve waned I noticed that I was more and more disappointed with the taste of the foods that I caved for. What made it easier for me was buying and having more of my favorite vegan food available around the house. It guaranteed me that no matter what, I would have something available that was healthy and that I enjoyed.
SS: What are some animal rights related things that you participate in?
I love animals and believe all should be treated with love and compassion equally. I do what I can to support animal rights groups by donating and participating in events to raise money. I also spread the message through the web on facebook or videos on youtube, sharing information with friends and family about the violent and wrongful treatment of animals across the world.
SS: What are your favorite animal rights organizations?
FM: PETA - People For The Ethical Treatment of Animals- is a great organization that I find to have valuable and important news regarding animals and related current events. Mercy for animals is a major organization that exposes agricultural industry cruelty. They conduct investigations that lead many to see what goes on in factory farms. I believe any human being with a heart and compassion should be able to see these investigations and care enough to know what is right and do what they can to stop the animal cruelty.
SS: What would you say to somebody who is considering going vegan?
FM: I would tell them first before anything to take the transition step by step and acknowledge that there might be an instant where you will fail in a moment. Do some research and find out what foods are the ones you need to be eating and plan out how you can make some meals and even look for some vegan recipes to get you started. But always remember that there are great rewards ahead health wise and a sense of well being knowing that you are helping the planet and not contributing to the cruelty and killing of animals. There are people out there, even friends that will want you to fail and will ridicule you into believing that you are not healthy or are wrong in your decision to go vegan. But the facts don't lie, humans will benefit and have a better life on a vegan diet.