Simply put, my children and the earth. It's never been a thought in my mind that what I might be eating could affect the environment, and my children’s future.
Two years ago when my wife brought up trying a vegan diet, I laughed and thought she was crazy to try and convert me into a leaf eater. I naively responded with “How will I feed my gains?” she rolled her eyes knowing I’d take no part.
Fast Forward two and a half years later, and I’m eight months into a plant based lifestyle. How, and what changed my mind? It started after a conversation with a colleague about digestion and the body’s ability to recovery if fed properly. All I heard was, “more gains”.
He then gave me a food combining list, and suggested I started juicing (typical). He also suggested trying to avoid meat as much as I could, as it didn't digest as well when paired with a lot of foods. After taking that into consideration, and talking to my wife and Miles about juicing and all its benefits, I decided to do the food combining. In the meantime I’d decide if meat would stay or go. Because, protein is important to keep a body strong and meat was giving me lots of protein.
My research obviously started with ‘how do vegans get their protein?’ I found out quickly that not all protein sources come in the form of a steak, who knew? So a couple documentaries, and a lot of research later, I managed to tackle a month of eating vegan, or plant based lifestyle. I was also able to surpass my protein macros, daily.
The benefits I was feeling throughout my body kept me interested. My energy levels were feeling higher during my workouts, and even throughout the day. I also had a constant nagging lower back pain all throughout my 20’s, which finally became unnoticeable.
Diving deeper into my research, I really found why I wanted to give this plant-based diet a go. It wasn't for the vitality I was feeling but for the sustainability of Earth.
Being a big steak guy, two years ago I really didn't think about how responsibly, or sustainably sourced the food I had been consuming was. Yes, we tried to do the grass fed thing as much as we could, with venison throughout the year, but we always had the beef and chicken too.
Learning about the production of meat and dairy, and the environmental affects that it poses shook me.
It really opened my eyes to how detrimental the commercial dairy, and meat industries are on our planet’s future, and our children’s future as well.
Initially, I tried the plant based diet as an experiment so my body could digest quicker, then get into recovery mode, so I could get back to lifting weights, and playing lacrosse. Now it’s a lifestyle that I’m committed to, so I can help the sustainability of the Earth, and the future home to the 7th generation.
Like our elders say, “We don't inherit the Earth, we’re borrowing her from our grandchildren.”