Cam Awesome is a plant-based vegan who is training for the 2016 Rio Olympic Games. He shares some of his story with us on becoming a vegan and how it has helped him in his sport.
When did you go vegan and what caused you to go vegan?
I became vegan because I lost a bet and had to do a 28 day vegan challenge. After losing weight and feeling great I decided to keep it going a little more than 28 days. After two months, I decided to look into why a plant based diet makes a person feel so good. I became knowledgeable about the chemicals and hormones given to animals and the way they are treated. It’s partially for the animals and partially for the personal health benefits.
What are the benefits you’ve seen?
I can maintain, drop, or gain weight easily. I have a quicker recovery time and feel all around more at ease.
Who have been your inspirations and why?
Bill and Ami Mackey. They are the married couple responsible for introducing me to the vegan lifestyle (not diet) and they have started a nonprofit boxing gym in a rough neighborhood in St. Louis, MO. They teach the boxers about nutrition, help them with their homework, and even feed these young boxers. I wish I had them in my life a lot earlier. They are a blessing to so many people and the world should know who they are.
What have you learned on your vegan journey?
I learned that you can outwork a bad diet. I learned the connections of animal protein to illnesses. I learned compassion towards animals and other people.
What would be your advice for beginning vegans?
My beginning advice for vegan is to not just be vegan, be whole food plant-based. Vegans can eat junk food and drink sodas. Vegan does not necessarily mean healthy. If you’re caring about the betterment of animals and you don’t care about the betterment of yourself, sure! If you care about the betterment of both, stay away from processed foods, added sugar, salt and fats. Eat clean, train hard.
Do you juice?
I don’t juice. I like to eat my food. I find it more satisfying