Jeff, a 33 years old Canadian fitness enthusiast impresses with his crazy and unusual workout videos on Instagram and shows how being a vegan made him not only improve his fitness but also a happier person.
Jeff, why did you switch to a vegan diet and how long have you been vegan?
I was on the plane when I watched the famous documentary ‚What the health’ and ‚Forkes over knifes’ on Netflix. It was devastating and eye-opening at the same time. Listening to all these facts and seeing the footage, I went vegan from one moment to the next. That was 16 months ago.
How did it change your body?
Externally, I definitely lost body fat, which is good news for me. That way, my body is more defined and therefore appears nicer. My skin rejuvenated itself and looks healthier.
Internally, I felt full of energy, I slept shorter and was still more energetic than before.
My stamina now from before had increased in terms of fitness and my ability to push through the workouts past my point of breaking.
Was it hard for you to go vegan?
I had no idea what veganism entails. It took me a little bit to understand and figure out what food to eat and how to pair it. Therefore, it was a bit challenging to eat out or at work at first. Since I did not know better in the beginning, I mostly ate raw vegan. After a few weeks, I got more comfortable and started to cook more and more.
The social perspective was a bit difficult, people did not understand it. And a lot of times, what’s not understood is not liked.
Being in such a great shape as you are, you must calculate macros?
No. Not at all. I have been working out now for 15 years, I never watched my protein intake nor calories. I love to workout, but I also love to eat. Calculating macros seems more like a job than it is fun. I try to have a natural and authentic relationship to food without analyzing each little factor.
What does food mean to you?
Steve Harvey once said and I couldn’t agree more: „What’s on your plate is either feeding disease or feeding health“. Eating food is not only for aesthetics, it is more for what it does to and FOR your body. I visualize my food more as something that nurtures me and therefore get totally excited about the health part of a, for example, a green smoothie, knowing that my body is provided with all kinds of nutrients.
People always think you have to eat tons of food when you go vegan. Is that true for you? And what do you eat on a daily base?
First, I was overcompensating, fearing not to get enough nutrients. Now I eat less than in the beginning, which probably about the same amount of food as in my not-vegan days.
I love smoothie bowls or bowls with some sort of oats (oatmeal, overnight oats, steel-cut oats) loaded with fruits, nuts & seeds. I eat lots of salads and try to keep the vegetable part as high as possible, always integrating legumes and healthy grains like quinoa. I am also a huge fan of sprouting my own broccoli sprouts, which is super healthy, way cheaper than store-bought and also handy as I can add them to my meals, whenever I want to.
What does being vegan mean to you?
I have always been a happy person, but I am a lot more proud of who I am today. Veganism brings awareness. It is more than just a diet, it’s a lifestyle that makes you see the bigger picture. It does not start and end with food. You start using less water and are more conscious about resources in general. The path I am on, does make me a better person, and I am proud of that and I can only encourage people to try it out themselves.
Meet Jeff on social media: IG: thecodycore