05/03/21 Vegan sportswoman from Croatia wins gold medal at leading European marathon competition!
Ana Štefulj excelled in prestigious competition, attributes success to vegan diet
- Vegan athletes push boundaries: Lewis Hamilton, Scott Jurek, Seba Johnson, Morgan Mitchell…
Vegan runner Ana Štefulj delighted everyone in Kiev by bringing Croatia victory at the Balkan Marathon Championships in one of the fastest times in the history of the race, 10 minutes ahead of the competitors from Israel and Bulgaria! With her result, she also achieved the fourth best result of all time in Croatian women's marathon! Along with earlier victories and successes, Ana achieved this great result on a plant-based diet, stating: "As a vegan, my main motivation is to show what vegans can do."
When she gave a lecture at the popular ZeGeVege festival in 2019, organized by the Animal Friends Croatia association, Ana Štefulj stated that her beginnings in running marathons took place with her transitioning to a vegan diet, for ethical reasons. Thus, after 10 years of vegetarianism, she aimed to show that a vegan diet is not an obstacle to running, but actually the secret of success, her secret tool that positively affects her results. She pointed out that she made progress in running marathons thanks to her vegan diet.
"We congratulate Ana on her excellent results and we are happy that more and more athletes in Croatia, following the example of their international colleagues, are achieving top notch results with a vegan diet. In doing so, they break down prejudices about veganism and show that plant foods are the best fuel for sporting success,” say Animal Friends Croatia.
They remind that the marathon vice-champion Dubravka Mesec achieved fifth place in the world competition last year, while the ten-time Ironman Damir Mesec became the vice-champion of Croatia in the 100-kilometer discipline. Apart from them, veganism in sports is also promoted by fitness trainers Dragan Šurlan, Mislav Skrepnik and Marko Samardžija. They all show that a vegan diet leads to top results.
Around the world, vegan athletes have been successfully dispelling the myth that without meat and whey you can’t get enough protein or strength for physically demanding workouts and field performances. Ultramarathoner Scott Jurek has achieved numerous victories and successful results while being on a vegan diet, as well as the world marathon record holder Fiona Oakes. Athletics legend David Verburg, who has an Olympic gold medal in the 4 x 400 meter relay race and is a three-time world champion, considers the vegan diet to be responsible for his increased energy levels and is a big advocate for animal rights.
And six-time Formula 1 champion Lewis Hamilton, in addition to great sporting successes on a vegan diet, is an engaged animal rights advocate. Germany’s strongest man and world record holder in heavy lifting Patrik Baboumian is also an ardent advocate of a vegan diet and love of animals. NBA star and Olympic gold medalist DeAndre Jordan believes so much in veganism that he invested in the plant based “meat” company Beyond Meat. Olympic skier Seba Johnson, a vegan from birth, states that "terrible agony, fear and suffering" of cows and calves are associated with every milk-based ice cream.
Former American football player in the national league, Derrick Morgan, points out that thanks to his vegan advantage, he shortened his recovery time, reduced inflammation and encouraged many colleagues at his club Tennessee Titans to stop eating meat and dairy products. Three-time Olympic gold medalist and professional soccer player Heather Mitts, as well as figure skater Meagan Duhamel who won three Olympic medals, are both vegan. But that's not all. Men’s Health magazine named the star of the ultramarathon Rich Roll in 2018, when he was 51, the “The Fittest Vegan in the World”.
Animal Friends Croatia say that there are really a lot of vegan athletes, and the turning point in thinking was certainly the impressive documentary "The Game Changers" whose producers, among others, were the famous James Cameron, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Jackie Chan, Lewis Hamilton and Novak Djokovic. The documentary also shows the experiences of elite athletes who achieve their maximum potential thanks to a plant-based diet. It features Australian athlete, Olympic and state champion Morgan Mitchell, who, while highlighting the merits of a vegan diet on her results, also cites ethical reasons for veganism: “Animal life and environmental welfare mean more to me than any amount of money or career success, because there would be no life without them.”
For more information on the vegan diet and the list of famous vegan athletes click the link HERE.