The only male weightlifter on Team USA is a vegan

Kendrick-farris-vegan-weightlifter-olympics-rioGetty Images/Scott HalleranKendrick Farris is plant-powered.

You’d think that an Olympic athlete who can lift nearly 800 pounds goes home from the gym every night and gobbles up some high-protein meat.

Not Kendrick Farris.

This three-time Olympian has been a vegan since the birth of his second son in 2014 — and since eliminating animal products from his diet, he’s actually become stronger.

Farris, 30, told Sports Illustrated that the dietary switch was motivated by a desire to return to “the purest form of our life, our being, and it started with the food.”

Whatever the motivation, the diet seems to be working for him: Farris won first place at the Pan-American games in 2015 and 2016.

Farris’ wife Katrina told the Huffington Post that her husband used to eat animal-based foods with gusto.

“He loved burgers and all the things you think of when you think of Olympic athletes. Meat!” she said. “So I didn’t think he was going to stick with it. But two years later, I think it’s made him better.”

Kendrick farris vegan weightlifterGetty Images/Laurence GriffithsFarris at the 2012 London Olympics.

For Farris, a typical breakfast consists of oatmeal or pancakes, followed by a midday snack of a plant-based protein shake, HuffPost reports. For lunch, he has avocado quesadillas before his workout.

He snacks on guacamole and black bean chips, and often has a dinner of black bean quesadillas. And, if he’s still hungry before bed, he’ll sip on another protein shake. (That’s a fry cry from gymnast Simone Biles’ post-workout meal: Pepperoni pizza.)

“I want to tell people, ‘Start paying attention to what you’re putting into your body,'” Farris told Sports Illustrated. “These things will help you have not just a clearer mind and a longer life, but, man, you will have a greater quality of life.”

Farris placed eighth in his weight division at the Beijing games and tenth in the London games. But maybe his new plant-powered diet will propel him to the podium in Rio. Find out when he competes on Saturday, August 13.

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