Carry on (vegan) cycling!

February 6, 2019 6:21 am Published by Leave your thoughts

Veganuary might have come to a close, but many people are continuing to forge ahead with a champion vegan lifestyle. One of those is NGF staff member, Rob O’Connor, one of the Midland’s top cyclists.

Can you really be a top vegan cyclist?

Go for it, Rob! (stock picture – but an uncanny likeness…)

 

With a number of championship medals and titles to his name (including 2018 Midlands Circuit Champion and 2016 British Masters Circuit Champion), Rob, aged 61, isn’t planning on hanging up his cycle-clips any time soon. He can easily outpace competitors half his age, practising daily on the country roads that lead from his home to Naturally Good Food’s eco-base.

Rob is powered by determination – but perhaps more importantly, he’s also powered by plants! He’s a dedicated vegan, who’ll be continuing along the vegan (cycle)path for the rest of the year. For Rob, veganism most definitely isn’t just for January.

Rob’s keen on the full range of vegan wholefoods. Often starting (or ending) the day with a bowl of organic porridge oats (with dairy-free milk), he makes fantastic vegetable soup and stew concoctions for his lunch each day. For a special treat, he enjoys a vegan rice pudding made with coconut milk. He’s a really good example of how a vegan diet can work for someone of slightly more advanced years, and someone with a strenuous exercise regime.

While he’s a committed vegan himself, Rob doesn’t preach. He was vegetarian for many years before taking the plunge into veganism and recognises that it can be a slow and steady process. He’s also keen to stress that people don’t need to make a complete lifestyle change in order to start seeing health benefits. Every little helps – and he encourages people to stick to their healthy January lifestyle, even if they decide not to continue on the full vegan journey.

“For me, it’s always been about the health benefits associated with a more plant-based diet,” he says.

“I’ve been cycling since I was in my 20s and I’ve always tried to maintain a healthy weight for my sport, but I also need to be in peak physical fitness. I decided to make the change to fully vegan after 10 years or so being vegetarian, so I’m a great believer in people making a gradual transition, if that’s what works for them.”

Having chosen to become vegan for health, rather than ethical reasons, Rob is keen to stress that people shouldn’t feel guilty if they can’t, or don’t want to, become completely vegan.

“For me, it’s about healthy eating and avoiding processed foods. But I know for many it’s too big a change to contemplate and my advice to them is simple: respect your body and feed it well. Look to include more plant-based dishes in your diet, try to cut down on the amount of meat you eat and embrace the adventure of trying new recipes.”

Where does Rob get all his vegan food?

You guessed it…

Rob says:

“I’m lucky, I have access to all kinds of delicious vegan food at work, but I know people do worry how they will get all their essential nutrients and protein if they change diets. But they really don’t need to. It’s so easy these days to find vegan food, including snacks and treats.”

He’s right! Naturally Good Food has a dedicated vegan range, which you can see here. It’s just bursting with natural and organic wholefoods (packed with nutrition), along with a great range of dairy-free milks, chocolates and desserts, and all the natural vegan supplements you’ll need for a truly healthy diet.

Keeping on keeping on

Rob’s already planning his training and competition schedule for the warmer months of 2019. He’s an important part of the team here at NGF, where he embodies our healthy eating message. We’ll be cheering him on!

“When you think about it, my body really is my engine. It’s what powers my cycling, so it’s vital my food gives me what I need.”

Anyone looking to learn more about veganism, or wanting to increase the amount of plant-based food in their diet can call the team at Naturally Good Food on 0333 259 8189 or check out www.naturallygoodfood.co.uk

A video of Rob discussing his diet and training is available to download via WeTransfer on https://we.tl/t-GabsZCm7P1

Naturally Good Reads v2

 

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This post was written by Yzanne

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