Not All Vegans Are Super Skinny Not All Vegans Are Super Skinny

I’ve been vegan for about 4 years, and was vegetarian for a year before that.  However, most people are somewhat surprised to discover this when they first meet me.  For one thing, unless I’m asked to talk about it, I’m generally not very preachy.  For another, I’m not particularly skinny – and everyone knows that all vegans are super skinny.  I mean, when you eat nothing but rabbit food all day, how could you possibly be anything but?



Well, veganism is an ethics-based stance rather than a health-based one (more on this in a future post). You don’t have to eat a single salad to be a vegan.  Literally consuming nothing but french fries and cola would technically still be classified as a vegan diet.  If done poorly, veganism can be just as unhealthy as any other lifestyle.  [Obtrusive foreshadowing: When done well though, it can’t be beat]

When I first went vegan, I did lose quite a bit of weight.  I was experimenting with a lot of new foods, but I was also a runner, a distance hiker, and was self employed – which meant a flexible schedule and time to hit the gym.  Physically, I had never felt better, and my doctor agreed.  My blood work was perfect, my snoring disappeared, and my athletic performance was improving daily.

Then about 2 years ago came a number of big life changes that threw all of this for a loop…

I moved from my little home in the country into an apartment in the city. I left self-employment for a stuck-at-a-desk government job.  To top it off, I injured my IT band due to over-training, just a few weeks before my first marathon.

And then… I met Paula.

Paula is probably the single greatest thing that has ever happened to me.  She is easily the kindest, most outgoing, and most supportive person I know.  She is a fellow vegan, a lifelong athlete, and shares my passion for nature.  She also loves to have one heck of a good time!  And boy, do we ever.

Whether it’s out with friends or alone in our kitchen, every night is a party when we’re together.  Making and eating incredible vegan food is one of our favorite pastimes, and in our home, that’s always accompanied by fun music, silly dancing, and wine.

We’re still active too.  We’ve completed at least one back-country backpacking trip every month for the past 25 consecutive months (and during the summer it’s almost weekly).  We still hit the gym when we can fit it in, and after over 2 years of recovery, I’ve finally started running again.  However, living life to its fullest has still taken its toll, and we’ve both gained some unwanted pounds, and lost some of our athletic vigour.

That’s where “Plant Life” comes in.

Throughout this blog, Paula and I will be chronicling our many adventures in living a plant-based, active lifestyle.  For the next little while, we’ll be focusing on trying to get back some of our healthy habits, but we’ll throw in some of our favorite calorie-packed indulgences as well.  We’ve recently started growing our own food indoors, so you’re likely to hear a lot about that too.  Plus, when she’s not busy with her day job, Paula is a master-level Reiki practitioner and teaches evening classes on meditation, so those topics are bound to come up as well.

All in all, we hope you join us on our journey, and get involved wherever possible.  We so look forward to hearing your feedback, and reading your stories as we go along.


  1. Pingback: Plant Life
  2. Tom Russell says:

    Great site and this way I’ll be able to track Paula down even when she’s hiding out in the deep woods!!!

  3. Jambo Von Hippystein says:

    This site sorely needs a “Share on facebook” button so I can invite the world ;) Make it so!

    1. Derrick says:

      Great tip. Thanks ;)

  4. Kim Lawless says:

    I love reading about you crazy kids! Any chance you’ll profile some vegan wines? Yummy!!

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