I have been a vegan for almost a year now and was a vegetarian for over a year. Sports and being vegan go happily together, I just don’t need animal products to push myself to my limits and I don’t want animal products in my system. Although veganism is very important to me, this site is not about veganism, if you want to know why I have become vegan, this a helpful video explaining the ins and outs.
5 tips to travel human powered as a vegan
Great! you have decided to become vegan for personal, ethical, environmental or health reasons, awesome! Here is a digital high five for you. Although it seems to be extremely hard to cycle 100 miles a day or longboard 50 miles a day on a vegan diet, there are numerous professional athletes who are just doing the trick. Here are 5 tips on how I survive being vegan on the road.
1 Fruits and nuts
Every country I have been to and I dare to say every country in the world sell fruits and nuts. The health benefits of fruit are obvious and a banana has saved the day more than once for me. Nuts are great too for endurance athletes, being full of protein and fat, they give a better energy boost than (fruit)sugars or carbohydrates. Proteins are good too at the end of the day for some muscle repair. The extra salt on the nuts can also be a benefit when exercising in the heat but only you drink enough liquids.
2 Bread and spread
Mostly all the breads I have encountered are vegan, sometimes it is good to ask if there is egg or cow milk in the dough. While you’re at it, whole grains bread is also a good protein source. With regards to spreads; PEANUT BUTTER. I can’t tell you in words how good this is, objective and subjectively. A wise man said once, a day without peanut butter is a day not lived. Being a spread of legumes, peanut butter contains a lot of proteins and fats, which are essential for endurance sports. Other spreads like nut spreads are a great source too. If your country of travelling doesn’t have peanut butter I feel for you… But jam and some Nutella like products are vegan (Nutella itself isn’t!). If there is no peanut butter, jam or Nutella like product, try do find the more fancy breads that are tasty on its own already. But if you’re haute cuisine-ish on your travels, olive oil with some pepper and salt is an amazing dip as well, also really easy to get.
3 Happy cow
The internet is a great resource for practically anything. If you don’t know yet, there is a site called happy cow that lists all the vegan, vegetarian and vegan friendly restaurants in your area. It’s a great way to discover vegan restaurants on the road!
4 Words matter
Before I leave to a country, I try to learn how to say I’m a vegan and I don’t eat animal products (meat, fish, cheese, milk, eggs, butter) in the language of the country I am going to. Usually I write it on a piece of paper so I don’t forget it. It is helpful, if you want to eat out, to call the restaurant in advance where you go to and ask if they are willing to make something without animal products.
5 Connect online
Thanks to Facebook, there are so many vegan communities in the world. Even in Iran we met vegans thanks to the power of Facebook and internet. So if you know through which cities you are travelling, see if there are relevant Facebook groups or forums on the internet with vegans. It is a great way to meet new people and to understand how the vegans manage in the country/city where you are passing through!