Everyday Heroes Series, Episode #3. What Being Vegan Is Like In Russia: Petr’s Story

Hi everyone! I am very excited to bring you the latest episode of the Everyday Heroes series, where people just like you tell their stories of how they embraced veganism. Today I have a special guest for you: please meet Petr from Russia! I’ve personally known Petr for years: we went to college together in the Russian city of Tula back in the day before I moved to the US in 2006. A few years ago I found Petr again on Facebook. I was surprised to find out that he and his wife were vegan – at the time, I was far from considering veganism for myself as I thought that vegan lifestyle was too hard to maintain. I suspected that in Russia, vegans must have an even harder time as the winters are very long and cold, and fresh produce tends to cost too much. Fast forward to this … Read the rest of the post

Vegan Runner Eats Blog Is One Year Old! What I’ve Learned About Blogging In The Past Year

…And this day has come: this month, Vegan Runner Eats blog is officially celebrating its first anniversary!  To celebrate, I decided to share with you 10 things I’ve learned about blogging in the last year as a part of What I’ve Learned monthly series. In case you have a blog of your own, or if you’ve ever wondered what blogging is like, I’m going to show you what it’s been like for me in the past year. (Why a post about blogging, and not about vegan diet to celebrate Vegan Runner Eats’ first birthday?  I wrote about veganism and changes in my health recently: see this post about five physical improvements, and this post about ten changes in my mindset since I went vegan. Also, here’s a post celebrating my blog’s 6 months of existence with summing up some vegan wisdom.) The truth is, blogging is way more than just sitting down in front … Read the rest of the post

Fremont Fair: Seattle’s Quirkiest Neighborhood Shows Us More Than We Asked For

Wow, this past weekend was definitely something to remember! On Saturday, Rob and I visited the Fremont Fair – a giant fun event celebrating the summer solstice that took place in Fremont, the quirkiest neighborhood of Seattle. This annual fair took place for the 43rd time, and while we only found out about it a few days ago, we were definitely glad that we did! Just how quirky is Fremont, you may ask? After living in the Deep South for almost eight years, I consider seeing anyone wearing clown shoes on an average day the pinnacle of quirkiness, but for the dwellers of Fremont it’s just casual Tuesday morning attire. In fact, this Seattle neighborhood has an official motto of ‘delibertas quirkas’ – the freedom to be peculiar. The Fremont Fair concentrated this free spirit the same way sugar cane juice is concentrated to turn into molasses – it may be light and thin at first, but … Read the rest of the post

Ten Changes in My Mindset I’ve Had Since Going Vegan – Part 2 of My Veganniversary Celebration

(This post is part two of a 2-part series celebrating my Veganniversary. See part 1 here.) As you remember, in my previous post I summed up a few changes in my health since I went vegan a little over a year ago. Today’s post is about the changes that I believe to be even more important than the physical ones – the changes in my mindset. Why do I think that the mindset changes are so important? Because they show how far we’ve gone in our personal growth, and ultimately they can influence our decision to stick with something we chose to do, or abandon it. I am sure that everyone who’s ever decided to go vegan has experienced some changes in their mindset, but since they are not as noticeable as, say, the improvement in our energy levels or, ahem, better bowel  movement frequency, we tend not to compare them with … Read the rest of the post

My First Vegan Anniversary Celebration! 5 Physical Improvements I’ve Had Since Going Vegan

(This post is part one of a two-post series celebrating my Veganniversary. See part 2 here.) You know how sometimes we get caught in a whirlwind of things suddenly happening to us, and we forget something important? Well, that recently happened to me: last month I started a new job, got lots of new opportunities for this blog (the new Everyday Heroes series taking off was awesome!), continued to explore our new surroundings in the Northwest Washington and almost got used to this new rhythm of life – and in the meantime, completely forgot that May marked a year since I ditched all animal-derived foods and went vegan! All is not lost, so I’m going to celebrate my belated Veganniversary (yes, that’s a real word) today! And what’s a better way to do this than to count all my blessings and see how my life and wellbeing have changed since … Read the rest of the post

Everyday Heroes, Episode 2: Meet Neil, the Vegan Cupcake Guy Who Runs an Organic Produce Farm, Leads a Vegan Potluck Group, Just Finished a Marathon – All while Having a Full Time Job!

I am extremely excited to introduce you to our second guest in Everyday Heroes series – Neil Frank from Michigan! I first met Neil through Instagram, where he’s known as vegancupcakeguy, and was very impressed by his ability to juggle so many interesting and time-consuming activities at once. See for yourself: he has a full-time job as an architect; he owns and manages an organic produce farm that brings affordable fresh fruit and vegetables to the people in his community; he regularly participates in running races and just ran his first marathon; plus he’s got some crazy cupcake skills! On top of that, he’s a dedicated vegan of fourteen years, and is raising two daughters. A few of Neil’s homemade cupcake masterpieces (all photos in this post courtesy Neil Frank) Naturally, I had to ask Neil to share his story with the readers of Vegan Runner Eats: we all could use some inspiration and … Read the rest of the post

Everyday Heroes Series, Episode 1: Meet Laura, a Newly Vegan Runner and a Busy Mom!

I’m very excited to announce the first episode of the Everyday Heroes series! You may remember that a couple weeks ago I’ve invited the readers of Vegan Runner Eats – that’s YOU! – to send me their stories about how they manage to combine their busy lives with following a vegan diet (even taking it one step at a time) and being active. Click here for more details, and to see how you can participate. Today I’m delighted to introduce you to our first hero, Laura. She recently embarked on her vegan journey to improve her health, and even successfully ran a half marathon! Laura tells us her story in her own words below (with a tiny bit of editing by me): Introduce yourself. I’m in my mid-forties, married with two awesome middle schoolers.  I live in Aurora, CO, right outside of Denver and have a desk job with an investment company. Why … Read the rest of the post

The Quirks of Whidbey Island: Our Weekend Adventures, Plus The Traffic Light Lentil Stew Recipe

I can’t believe it’s been almost a month since we moved to the Washington state! Almost every day we get a chance to see how different the Pacific Northwest is from our previous home in the Southeastern US (Alabama, to be exact), and to be honest, we love it so far! From the overall laid-back, almost hippie vibe of Whidbey Island, our current dwelling, to the breathtaking views that open up every time you turn around the corner – it’s all worth experiencing in this lifetime. Right now the only drawback is that the weather is quite a bit cooler than what we’ve been used to living on the coast of the Gulf of Mexico, but at least I’ve been enjoying the fact that I don’t sweat like a sasquatch when I go running outside. Speaking of sasquatch… We see this guy every day passing by Bailey’s Corner, a very laid-back community … Read the rest of the post

How to Eat Plant-Based while Traveling: Think Outside the Box!

Most people following a plant-based diet will agree: it’s the easiest to follow when we can cook all of our meals at home, in our own well-stocked kitchens. However, life interferes, and we may find ourselves stressing over food while getting ready to travel to a new destination that may or may not accommodate our veggie-oriented eating. As you know by now, earlier this month Rob and I moved from our 3+ year home in Alabama to the wild and woolly frontier just outside Seattle, WA. During our transition, we spent a week in hotels equipped with only a microwave and a small fridge (okay, it’s better than nothing), first in New Orleans, Louisiana, then in a little town on Whidbey Island in Washington. Quite a bit of time was spent researching places where we could go eat next, all while trying to keep our meals healthy and affordable. Thankfully, we’re not … Read the rest of the post

Vegan Kitchen Simplified. How to Cut Soy out of Your Plant-Based Diet if You Decided to Go Soy-Free.

Once again, welcome to the Vegan Kitchen Simplified series! Today’s post covers the aspects of going soy-free. While soy remains a polarizing subject among healthy eating specialists, you’ll see that cutting it out of your plant-based diet is not very complicated if you choose to do so. Whenever I have a conversation with non-vegan people about our respective diets, I often hear from them the idea that being vegan must require eating lots of soy products (at least in their opinion). I personally don’t have anything against soy as long as it’s organic and non-GMO, but I often find it hard to convince my non-vegan friends that eating soy is not at all a requirement of a vegan diet. I might make tofu or tempeh a few times a month, but if all soy products mysteriously disappeared tomorrow, I know for sure that my husband and I would definitely not starve to death. Every now … Read the rest of the post