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Newbie in Texas


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Greetings to everyone on the Vegan Bodybuilding and Fitness forum. I'm very pleased to have found this forum--especially since I can speak freely about veganism w/o raising the ire of forum members (like I've witnessed on bicycling.com for instance). I really like the fact that forum members here hail from several different nations.


I'm originally from Melbourne, Australia and have resided in CA, AK, WA, OR, VA and now TX since 1996. I've been vegan since July, 1999. I'm a 46 year old male, 6' 2", 197 lbs., married to a Puerto Rican lady and have one son who will be turning five next week. I'm trying to make him aware of the abhorrent practices found in animal agribusiness in the hopes that he'll be fully vegan later on in life. (It's remarkable to me how well he seems to grasp society's lack of compassion towards animals at such an early age).


I'm employed with the Natural Resources Conservation Service as a Soil Scientist/Cartographer. I've been in this line of work for 17 years.


From a fitness standpoint, I enjoy X-C skiing, cycling and especially rowing. I have a Concept II indoor rower and routinely "compete" against people all over the globe for best time/distance records. The indoor rowing community consists primarily of Americans, Canadians, Australians, New Zealanders and Western Europeans. Last year I ranked in the 82nd percentile in the 5000m and 30min categories.


My other interest is in studying the nutritional benefits of vegan superfoods, particularly those that have been held in high regard since antiquity. These foods consist of but are not limited to: Hemp, Soy, Quinoa, Goji Berry, Muscadine Grape, Spelt, Turmeric, Amaranth, Rooibos, Maca and Flax. I'm constantly experimenting and found that independantly of Ruth's Hemp Foods and Brendan Brazier's Vega meal replacement, I had stumbled onto something very similar that has enabled me to gain muscle mass to a greater extent than I had ever experienced before--by blending hemp milk with maca, flax seed, quinoa powder and blueberries. I'm constantly experimenting and am seriously considering marketing a probiotic based recovery drink sometime in the near future.


Looking forward to getting to know forum members a bit better and to chat about all things related to fitness and being vegan.



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Welcome Michael!


Great to have you here, and thanks for the detailed introduction.


I also use Vega, and Brendan Brazier is featured in the movie we filmed this summer:


Vegan Fitness - Built Naturally featuring The Vegan Fitness Team


It is great stuff, and anything similar I'm sure would be very effective. Those ingredients are some of the best to have in a meal replacement or post workout drink.


I hope to hear more from you on the forum.


Have a great day!



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Thanks to all for the kind responses and warm welcomes! I can honestly say that is was very uplifting to come to work Monday morning to read such nice words.


To address some of the responses:


I live in West Fort Worth, close to Aledo.


The recovery drink was intended to be a whole fruit flavored Hemp based kefir, sweetened with xylitol with maca added. I'm sure that many of you are aware of dairy based kefirs (a probiotic drinkable yoghurt, which far surpasses yoghurt for repopulating intestinal flora). We've been led to believe that non-dairy kefir drinks don't work out right, but I'm here to tell you that it is not only easy to make but deliciously tangy as well!




Yes, children are remarkably compassionate and it is a great shame that marketers of animal products do their level best to exploit and confuse the issue. Happy cows pictured on labels for cheese, for instance and hamburgers growing in the "hamburger patch" or on trees (!), it is all very pathetic.




Can you share some details about your movie?


I would be interested in knowing in what cities the other Texas residents on this forum are in--thanks!

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Hey Michael,


I know we have members on here from Denton, Bordertown, Houston and some other cities too I believe.


I have info about my movie in some other threads under General Discussion, it might be on page two.


But a quick summary:


Vegan Fitness - Built Naturally is a combination of Real World/Documentary/Instructional and it's all put together in a "movie" style. It focuses on the lives of 3 successful vegan athletes:


Brendan Brazier (Pro Ironman Triathlete, best selling author, founder of Vega, etc.)


Tonya Kay (Professional Vegan Athlete, Pro Dancer, speaker, instructor, teacher, etc.)


Robert Cheeke (Founder of Vegan Bodybuilding & Fitness, well-known Vegan Bodybuilder, and an all-around cool guy)


The movie covers vegan nutrition, training, lifestyle, and the film takes us to many cities and documents live competition, vegan cooking, vegan potluck, interviews with vegans and non-vegans, and has tons of footage of training, eating, preparing meals, hanging out, and has an awesome soundtrack.


It's a great way to to learn about what has helped us all succeed and excell in what we do, and we have very different backgrounds, all do different sports, and we all have differnent strengths.


To learn more about each main actor/athlete visit:








Thanks for asking about the film I jus saw the trailer last night and it's awesome, we hope to have a shorter version available for viewing on the site soon.


Take care,



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Hi Robert,


The film you describe seems like a very ambitious undertaking and I hope to be able to see it sometime. Thanks for sharing the information and also for the web links. I have visited Brendan's web site before and was truly fascinated by his knowledge of vegan nutrition as it applies to atheletes.


Can't wait to see a clip from "Vegan Fitness-Built Naturally" one day!



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I'm in Denton at UNT. Parents live in Allen. Got kin in Ft. Worth. So michael we could meet up at Spiral diner sometime maybe or there is a tamale place i believe close by Hot Damn Tamales, they actually make a vegan one. Hotdamntamales.com i think is their site. Also I know a person that goes to spiral frequently so if i get a group organized we can have a vegan eating party or something like that.

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You know, I remember enjoying the food at Spiral Diner when it was in the heart of downtown Ft. Worth. They've moved to a new location and I need to check them out sometime. They make a great vegan burger there. They're on the web at spiraldiner.com




Thanks for the response too, as well as the link to Los Dos Laredos. I've never made it farther south than Houston in the 9 years I've been in Texas, but plan to one day.

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Another vegan rower out there--great! Do you use an indoor rower currently? I think that for simultaneously toning muscles and improving both flexibility and cardio fitness, rowing is just about the best. Welcome to the forum by the way.


I'm glad to see that you are savvy on hemp products. The best source is galaxyglobaleatery.com, a restaurant in NYC. I purchase 5 lbs. for $25.00 before shipping and this is the best price I've come across. I asked them how is it that you sell at half the price of other outlets? They informed me that the restaurant (decidely hemp based menu) is their main business--selling the shelled seed just above their cost is their way of getting the word out.





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Hey Michael, welcome abroad!


I'm also new but I can tell straight away that people here are fantastic!

Just a question, if I may, is your kid already a vegan/vegetarian? Or is it something that you're introducing gradually? Wow, I wish I had had parents like you!


Good luck with your business idea, it sounds promising!

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Hello Christian,


Thanks for the nice welcome. You are correct, people here are exceptional in every way--warm and friendly to be sure.


My son is not fully vegetarian/vegan, but is at least eating far less meat (and no dairy save for some occasional cheese) than the average child. He has a strong awareness already of animal agribusiness through my teachings and has a compassionate soul. What I'm also proud of is the fact that he is in the 95th percentile for height/weight for his age group-- his gym teacher informed us that he is showing exceptional athletic prowess. I can tell you that at 4, I was already pitching balls to him overhand and he was hitting line drives over my head! Yes, a nearly vegan diet has served him well.

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