CIGNA Expat Health Insurance

High Performance Herbivore

A Year of Ironman Training on a Plant-based Diet in Europe.

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Like many of my better ideas, the idea for this blog came to me while running. It's an idea that brings together a seemingly eclectic medley of my desires, passions and ideologies into a collective application that will look like both a lifestyle change and a science experiment. It's also an idea that heralds the end of cream in my coffee, eggs on my toast, salmon in my maki, whey in my shakes and chocolate on bad days. It's an idea that will take the form of a year-long commitment commencing January 1st, 2009, when I adopt a vegan diet, train for an Ironman - and blog about the whole thing. Think that a weekly training volume of swimming 10km, biking 300km and running 50km is a bad idea for a female athlete eating no animal products? I've done my research and I think my athletic performance is about to exponentially improve. I welcome you to follow my progress on this blog.

About Me

Rachel is a Canadian living in the Lake Geneva region of Switzerland. As an Account Manager for forward-thinking IT firm Metasoft, Rachel brought her job with her to Switzerland, working with American clients from a home office overlooking the Alps without missing a beat. After some success running marathon distance, Rachel tried the challenge of the ultramarathon by entering a 50km race on New Year’s Day in 2006. She finished second, and was hooked. She has gone on to have several top 3 ultramarathon finishes and has won the female sub40 division of the BC Ultrarunning Series. True to her training in scientific reason, Rachel has experimented with many different training regimes. Some resulted in too much weight loss or gain, some in excessive lethargy or the favourite of those close to her, a perpetual bad mood. The only diet that allowed for high training volume, reduced rest and performance gains was a short vegan stint. Since nothing in her formal education predicted this, Rachel has set her mind and body to testing it over the long term with a 1-year commitment to eliminating animal products while training for one of the toughest single-stage events of our time, the Ironman.

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