Strongest Hearts Extra; Ice Breaker Cross Country Relay Run

Six ultrarunners are attempting to run 3100 miles cross country in just 24 days- that’s over 20 miles a day for each runner! They are raising awareness and funds for mental health resources. We caught up with the legendary ultra runners Charlie Engle, Catra Corbett and David Clark to discuss addiction, veganism and what it’s like to embark on such an epic journey. Follow the run here:...

Strongest Hearts Extra; Stic of Dead Prez and Nutritionist Afya Ibomu

  Last year we sat down with Stic of Dead Prez and Afya Ibomu, a nutritionist and cookbook author. I chatted with them about Hip Hop, veganism, and health- 3 of my favorite things! I remember vividly when my good friend said to me in 2000- you have to hear this Hip Hop track on veganism. I was apprehensive, but boy was I wrong. After hearing Let’s Get Free that one time I immediately bought it and listened to it non-stop. Needless to say, I’ve been a big fan since day one and was stoked for this interview! You can read more about Stic here and be sure to check out his post on Plant-based on a Budget. He also has a book out with Scott Shetler, our star from the pizza prank video: Eat Plants, Lift Iron. You can find Afya’s books here....

Strongest Hearts 16; Plant Built Bodybuilders

Strongest Hearts 16; Plant Built Bodybuilders from Strongest Hearts on Vimeo. It’s the end of the year, and we’ve saved our best episode for last. We’ve come to the final installation of our trip to Austin, Texas to the Naturally Fit Games this summer. We covered the crossfit competition, the weightlifters, and now the biggest group on the Plant Built team, the bodybuilders. Between our pre-competition video and our week in Austin with the Plant Built team we learned a lot about the fitness community and everything that goes in to these kinds of competitions. I’d first like to say thank you endlessly to Giacomo Marchese and Dani Taylor, the founders and leaders of Plant Built for having us, and for putting together such an amazing group of people to speak on behalf of animals and showcase the strength of vegans. And, of course, thank you to the athletes for speaking with us throughout their competitions. The Plant Built team had competitors in the physique, bikini, and figure categories. The competitors are judged by a panel on criteria regarding symmetry both up and down and side to side, muscle size, and leanness. Each category has different criteria of muscle development and leanness. It takes months of extreme dieting and intense exercise to develop the muscles and lose the body fat to get the bodies that these athletes have for competition. Going in to shooting this episode we were wary on highlighting an athletic endeavor that promoted such strict dieting that can sometimes lead to development of eating disorders, as well as further the noise regarding what a perfect body...

Strongest Hearts 14; Naturally Fit Games Part One – Powerlifters

While at the Naturally Fit Games in Austin, we managed to follow a lot of athletes around for a few days.  We were lucky enough to get to spend some time with the 6-member powerlifting team as they competed against athletes from around the country. While the bodybuilders were meta-focused on diets and spray tans before their competitions, these powerlifters were the life of the party, which our host, Matt, was appreciative of.  We will soon post a video of some of the fun antics these powerlifters dragged him into in the Powerlifter v Bodybuilder Pizzagate 2014.  Despite the fun atmosphere they brought, they also brought the competition.  We’re very thrilled to show you our latest video and help show how strong vegan athletes can be! You’ll notice in this video a first for us. We were asked to blur out the face of one of the competitors.  A former undercover investigator, he is currently still involved in many aspects of the animal rights community, and just before we aired, he was given the opportunity to pursue a new path in protecting animals that required a bit of anonymity.  We apologize that we weren’t able to do much more than a blurry dot, but his story is so important we didm’t want to take him out of it completely.  It’s not often that within the span of a few months one goes from a carnivore to working undercover at an animal facility, secretly documenting the horrendous acts done towards animals to educate the public and help the animals.  Thomas was an inspirational person to meet, and we are thankful...

Strongest Hearts 15; Naturally Fit Games Part Two – Crossfit

For Strongest Hearts 15 we are at the Naturally Fit Games with the Plantbuilt Crossfit Team.    After our first 10 or so episodes some of the feedback we got was: what about strength and muscle building? I get the benefits for running and cycling, but what about strength athletes? We heard you loud and clear. In fact part of our successful kickstarter campaign was getting to the Naturally Fit Games to film the Plantbuilt Team– over 30 vegan athletes- compete in Powerlifting, Crossfit and Bodybuilding. The Naturally Fit Games are a huge showcase of athleticism; in addition to these three events there’s Jiu Jitsu, MMA and even roller derby. The majority of participants are omnivores and based on my casual conversations most are not familiar with the vegan message. That’s hard for some of us to imagine- but it’s true. I believe we need to use many tactics to spread awareness about ethical veganism and being in this environment confirmed that. And the strength component was so big we had to make 3 separate episodes! Though due to some unforeseen circumstances we are releasing part 2- Crossfit- first. Don’t worry, the powerlifters and bodybuilders aren’t far behind. For some background on Crossfit see Strongest Hearts 12 with Ed Bauer and keep your eye out for more episodes from the Naturally Fit Games. If you like our videos please share them so we can show more people you can be vegan AND an athlete!      ...

Strongest Hearts 13; Team Plant Built preps for competition

We have a new episode up, and boy is it a good one! A bunch of vegans are flexing muscle at a competition in Austin this weekend, and we want you to meet them before they go. We will be filming with them as they compete so you can see how they do!  Go watch the video and get stoked on that much muscle on one screen. I become pretty obsessed with some of our footage for these videos. After taking the efforts to capture as much as we can in our limited time and budget, I always end up with favorite shots. Shots I know we have to use, like the one where the light is just right and the coldness of the air causes steam to rise from the athlete in the early morning hours of a snow-covered bike ride. The one I had to wake up at 4am and hang out the back of a moving car with my camera dangling dangerously close to the ground in order to get. If we don’t use this shot.. I’m going to be pissed. But sometimes.. we don’t. It’s been 6 months since Whale Wars was aired, and I’m still dreaming of all the shots I took, hanging off the side of a ship, staring at death-inducing waters, bitter that they ended up on someone’s harddrive in a storage room. And then there are the interviews. I’ve been conducting interviews since my freshman year in high school when I started reporting for our school’s TV news program. You could bake two-dozen cakes in the time it takes me to...