Fast-forward to now. In the past two years, I've run three beastly mud runs and a half marathon. I've added on a solid 20 lbs. to my thinner frame, mostly muscle, transforming into a new lean and muscular athlete. I've adopted a solid gym regimen, lifting more than I ever have. A consistent yoga practice has also helped me shape my body. Why now? Why have these past two years proved so valuable with my fitness?
1) I adopted my vegan lifestyle, taking a much greater focus on health and nutrition. My new completely plant-based diet introduced me to new foods, cleaner eating, and a renewed love for lots and lots of fruits and vegetables. And beans. And oh so many other foods.
2) I discovered Vega and Vegan Proteins. And with this came my go-to source for clean, plant-based, cruelty-free options to enhance my fitness, muscle building, athletic performance, endurance, and more.
I've had the great opportunity to get to know many plant-based athletes and bodybuilders, through personal friendship or online followship - Robert, Giacomo, Dani, Ed, Chad, Billy, Derek, Mindy. I've looked to these wonderful people for inspiration, motivation, information, and advice and they have all bonded together to create a powerhouse - PlantBuilt.
PlantBuilt is a group you may be familiar with. The team, compiled and led by Giacomo Marchese and Dani Taylor, co-owners of veganproteins.com (whose collaboration with KMIV brought our most successful giveaway ever!), debuted at the 2013 Naturally Fit Super Show, with 15 vegans competing in various classes of bodybuilding amongst over 150 (non-vegan) competitors. Every single athlete placed in the top 5 of their class and 2 pro cards were awarded. Making up only 10% of the competition, they took home 40% of the overall trophies. This year's team is over twice the size and will be represented in the INBF bodybuilding, Crossfit, powerlifting, and transformation competitions at the Naturally Fit Super Show in Austin, TX on July 26th, 2014. Many of last year's team members returned, and the new ones were selected by the honorary members from a large, competitive pool of applicants.
With such great success last year, I, personally, am SO excited for what they can - and will - accomplish this year. In order for this to happen, for this powerhouse of vegan strength, health, and compassion to show the mainstream that plant-powered is the upcoming movement of our world, PlantBuilt needs our help. And since they've done so much to build veganism in a healthful, strong, positive light, let's come through for them, so they can continue spreading the message.
PlantBuilt is currently hosting an Indiegogo campaign in a effort to raise the needed funds to:
- Support their selected farm sanctuary and vegan outreach groups
- Go towards the operating costs to compete as a unit and promote a vegan lifestyle through direct activism
Beyond helping the PlantBuilt team, the animals, and spreading positive message of compassion, there are a variety of perks to reward YOU for your help - t-shirts, custom workout music compilations, Vegan Proteins products, honorary PlantBuilt team membership, and more. For optimal value, check out "The Works" package. For $100, you actually receive more than your donation value while offering your generous support to PlantBuilt.
So let's make a difference, okay?! Visit PlantBuilt's Indiegogo Page:
and please donate as you can. Each and every dollar means something and adds up to make this campaign a success. Whether you donate or not, please share amongst your friends, family, community, online audience. We have a fantastic group we're supporting here. Let's really make a difference.
Thank you. From Kiss Me, I'm Vegan and from PlantBuilt. And from the animals.
Many vegan hugs and kisses and flexes to you!