TEAM VPA at the Ironman World Championships
It is so fun and cool to meet up at Endurance events with other teamies! With a private Team Facebook group, monthly Zoom meetups, Team event calendar and more there is always opportunity to connect with other like minded athletes! And with specific Team Events planned for 2023 we are going to have so much fun! We are on a mission to spread the Vegan message throughout the Endurance Sports World! Join the fun in 2023!
MEET SOME OF OUR TEAM MEMBERS
In 2022 we had 100 Team Members. JOIN THE FAMILY AND SHARE YOUR STORY!
Meet Team VPA athlete Patrick!"Hey y’all! I’m Patrick Messenger, or the @louisvilleveganrunner and this is my first year with Team VPA. I’m excited to part of this wonderful group of athletes, helping spread the good word about veganism!I went plant based in 2016, then fully vegan in 2018. I began running in 2017 and I was amazed at the recovery time and performance benefits going fully vegan allowed. These days, I run Ultra Marathons, mostly in the 50-100 mile distances, at regional trail races near Kentucky. I am grateful for the health conscious life I’ve built and love the benefits my dietary choices have on all animals and the health of the environment too.Peace, Love, and Veggie Grease "
Welcome to the team Ila @ultra_ila“Hello from the Chicagoland area!! My name is ILA, I’m 64 years old (65 this year), and been vegan going on 7 years in June. I’m new to Team VPA so looking forward to letting others know that you can be an Ultra Runner and VEGAN! I became vegan due to health reasons, Type 2 Diabetic, High Blood Pressure, and OVERWEIGHT!! I am now NO LONGER Diabetic and off of ALL MEDS!! I started running at 54 years old while I was in graduate school (I have my doctorate) to help with stress and work. Running the trails is what I LOVE, and currently training for Tunnel Hill 100M. I want people to see that as a Black Woman, you can be Vegan, Athletic, and have CURVES.”
Welcome back Mel!"I’m Mel and I’m from Southern California. This is my second year with the team. I’ve been vegan for about 8 years. My focus is running and military style endurance events (carrying a weighted ruck for very long distances for very long periods of time). Currently I’m prepping for an epic 36 hour event in Colorado Springs put on by 3 event companies called Cerberus, my first (hopefully) 100 mile trail race in October and my redemption event for the year, GoRuck Marine Recon HTB all while having as many adventures across the country as I can! Follow my shenanigans @melissarrrrgh "
Welcome to the team Stephanie @orangeluvr! First year on the team and she is already helping getting everyone organized and helping keep up with IG and FB."Hey friends! I’m Stephanie. I’ve been vegan for 3 years after learning about needing significant foot surgery and researching if a plant based diet would help with recovery. I haven’t turned back. Triathlon is my main sport as an Athena, but started rucking and will do just about anything to stay active. Originally from Indiana, spent 9 years in the Coast Guard from 1998-2007, I now live in the Virginia Beach area because, the Ocean. Can’t wait to get out and wear our colors loud, proud, and sometimes silly!"
ABOUT MY JOURNEY
My journey started back on 3/13/13 when I was awaken by my father's phone call telling me my Mother had passed away due to a massive heart attack. She was only 58...One month after my 39th birthday. It was a complete shock and devastating. I felt I was in good shape. Went to the gym regularly, ate what I thought was a healthy diet. But after about 9 months of depression I found myself almost 200 pounds with high cholesterol, border line high blood pressure, and pre diabetic sitting at the doctors office listening to him tell me I am headed in the same direction as my mom if I don't make some changes. He gave me 3 months to make a significant reduction in my cholesterol otherwise he would put me on medication for the rest of my life. He didn't tell me how to do this however...but I thought it logical to remove any food with cholesterol in it. I admit, I was naive. I didn't know what a vegan diet was. My wife was vegetarian when we met and I converted her back to eating meat. My dad grew up on a chicken ranch, my Aunt lives on a milk farm. Growing up eggs, milk and meat were a staple in our diet. I had no intention of living a vegan or plant based life style, come on I hated vegetables, right! Well that's what I did. I went home from the doctor and removed every trace of cholesterol from the house. Turns out that was all of the animal products....