For a great sportsman, diet is very important. This is why more and more top athletes
are becoming vegetarians or vegans. Today we can mention the famous Scott Jurek, who held
the 24-hour running record and won the Spartathlon twice (race in Athens and 246km
Sparta), or Marco Olmo who became an ultra-trail world champion at 58 years old!
Here are some great vegetarian or vegan athletes who have won medals, whether at the world
championships or the Olympic Games.
Carl Lewis is probably the most famous: he is a vegan Olympic champion, winning 10
Olympic medals, 9 of them gold. His 15-year career (1979 to 1996) made him stand out for
his longevity. Especially since he was medalist in 4 different disciplines: 100m, 200m,
4*100m and the long jump. Carl Lewis says he adopted the vegan diet in the early 1990s and
has always said that this lifestyle is his main asset. He regularly contributes to books and
works on the subject of vegetarianism.
Chris Campbell is a world wrestling champion. He is a vegetarian and one of the oldest men
to have won an Olympic medal at the age of 37. He won the bronze medal for Spain at the
1992 Olympic Games in Barcelona.
Hannah Teter is an Olympic vegetarian medalist and also a gold and silver medalist in the
world snowboard championship.
Bode Miller has been a vegetarian since birth. He has won five medals at the Olympic Winter
Games in different ski disciplines. His diet has not really changed since he now has his own
organic farm similar to the one he had when he was a kid.
Edwin Moses was a force of nature in the 70s and 80s in the world of athletics. He won gold
medals in the 400m hurdles at the 1976 and 1984 Olympic Games. He won 107 finals in 122
consecutive races and set the world record in the 400m hurdles four times. Moses is a
vegetarian, humanitarian and fights for world peace. He has been President of the Laureus
World Sports Academy since 2000 and promotes the use of sport as a tool for social change
around the world.
Murray Rose is known as one of the models of a vegan athlete. He was the star of Australian
Olympic swimming. He broke 15 world records and won six Olympic medals, including four
gold, which made him an Australian sports legend and hero. During his long career, Murray
Rose has always been a vegan.
Surya Bonaly is a Frenchwoman who has competed in Olympic events on many occasions
but has never won an Olympic medal. She has, however, been a three-time World Silver
Medalist, a five-time European Champion, and finished first in the Junior World Championship
in 1991. She is a vegetarian and a PETA activist. She participated in two PETA
announcements in English and French calling for an end to the Canadian seal hunt and the fur