It’s been almost two weeks since my brother passed away. He was twenty-five years old. Writing about it still seems somewhat surreal. I fell off of social media and all communication including phone and email for the past two weeks. Still in the process of dealing with this emotionally. The only thing that has kept me afloat and made me feel very close to my brother’s spirit is working out like a maniac. He was an athlete who took training seriously, and who was in the process of transitioning to a vegan diet. In the last days prior to his death I spent time with him and we really moved our bodies: Hot yoga, plyometrics workouts (which consisted of him jumping up and down a huge wall higher than above my knees), stairs, sprints, and hills (which he normally ran with a 30 pound weight vest on). After these workouts he would take Glutamine. I promised to find him a vegan version and found that there is one….Vegan L-Glutamine, which provides the body with an amino acid essential for recovery from extreme workouts and helps the muscles to rebuild and regenerate faster. Apparently large amounts of physical stress on the body can deplete the natural source of glutamine in the body and therefore supplementation is encouraged for those exercising intensely with little to no rest in between workouts. I’m not going that hard yet, but its nice to know there are vegan options.
My brother believed in beating his body into submission through physical fitness because he knew that all battles are of the mind. As they say, “Mind over matter.” He knew that he could achieve his goals and create anything he wanted in his life if he remained fit and focused. The past week I’ve found myself working out almost everyday. I’ve been making sure to drink power smoothies and eat adequately as well. I’m in the Midwest at the moment, and yesterday after power yoga I found a trail near where I am staying that is six miles long. Just bought some new running shoes and plan to break them in by completing the six-mile run in the morning.
As I thought about my brother and the amazing athlete he was and the awesome vegan would have been (he was a star basketball player and owner/creator of a new cafe with raw and vegan options in Richmond, Virginia, called Higher Ground Wellness Cafe), I started research vegan athletes who have excelled in sport, proving that the human body can in fact handle intense physical training on a vegetable based diet. Check out the cool slide show (link below) via Treehugger which highlights ten exceptional athletes who adopted meat-less diets. There are many more, but I thought this was a nice summary. We only have a short time on this planet. We owe it to ourselves to give our body temple the best fuel and training we can so that we can live the time we have to the fullest. Move your body this week, and if you can, say a prayer for me and my family. -XoXo Raw Girl