Being Vegan, Vegan Being: Samantha Schmidt – I LOVE Being an Example of a Vegan Life.

I am a recent college graduate living in Frederick Colorado. I am a fitness and nutrition coach with a passion for health, personal development and family. I help women start their fitness journeys, rejoin their journey’s and to stay motivated along the way. Samantha Rachelle Fit is my business but also my passion. My Vegan clients are incredibly fun to work with because they see the biggest transformations both physically and emotionally. Supporting and providing fitness and nutrition plans to my clients is something I not only enjoy, it is how my mind operates. How to make something work for everyone. I want health and happiness for everyone who chooses to seek them. If you have been struggling with transitioning into Veganism, or in how best to be a #plantbasedboss follow me and message me @samantha_rachelle_fit I can help in the Vegan transition and in becoming plant strong.

What was the moment you realize that you wanted to go vegan?

As a child, I was always a little indifferent about meat but I ate it because well EVERYONE else did. As I grew older I realized what “meat” really was and how it was obtained for our usually careless consumption. $1 nuggets. I was struggling with the idea of cutting meat out of my diet but never took enough initiative to make it happen. I was in college and it was easier to just ignore the truth and eat the meat. Until one night when I made myself hamburger helper. I ate it in disgust and physically got sick after eating it. It felt like my body made that decision for me. Since that night, I have not had meat. Dairy was a bit difficult for me to cut out. It did not “harm” animals so I was not sure what the big deal was there….so I decided to educate myself. Once I did…I realized the dairy industry could be argued more harmful. I quickly made the switch to vegan replacement foods and also soon realized that “dairy free” “egg free” and “vegan” were all very different things. I ate foods for a while that I thought was vegan due to clever packaging.

This is me in 2015 before I went Vegan and I was struggling with body image and my weight. I would go from starving myself to eating an entire sausage and cheese platter. I lacked balance so badly. Since being Vegan I have noticed having power over balance is much more attainable. I feel that my mind in clearer without all of the animal products to cloud me up. I remember people saying they had a clearer mind post vegan and I did not understand what they meant. I thought they were a little nuts. Well call me nuts, because now I get it.

How long have you been Vegan?

22 Months.

Why is being Vegan important to you?

Being Vegan is important to me because I believe it promotes life, longevity, and humanity.

Any recommended Vegan books?

Skinny Bitch.

Any recommended social sites, Facebook Groups or other?

(All on IG)

Do you actively promote veganism? How? Please share any stories you would like.

I do! I use my Instagram @Samantha_Rachelle_Fit and @plants_and_petals to share my vegan meals as well as my vegan fitness groups. I want to show that it is possible to be plant strong. I actually feel stronger and more fit than I ever did as a meat eater. I originally created an Instagram account to share pictures of my food. I enjoyed learning how to cook meals without meat or dairy and I wanted to share that adventure with other vegetarians and vegans. I have since transitioned into a Vegan coach and I help others transition into Veganism as well as start or reignite their fitness journeys.

As a Vegan fitness coach, I get to use MY LIFE to promote a plant-based diet. I love being an example of a vegan life. Proving it is possible to not only be plant strong but to be healthier and well nourished. Where ever we came up with the idea that eating plants made us weak is beyond me. I think it was carefully placed marketing and educational tactics from years past.

If you needed meat or dairy or live…..then I must be a vampire. Almost 2 years later I am still alive and stronger than ever. I also remember when I was told if I kept making that face….it would stay that way. Yea that one wasn’t true either. 😉

What is your favorite Vegan meme?

I don’t like when people say…”We could eat there but you can’t eat anything there.” I can eat anything I choose to eat. I choose to eat food that is more environmentally responsible. Food that will preserve my health. Food that did not once bleed.

What is the vegan stereotype you hear the most and how do you respond to it?

The biggest stereotype is that vegans are weak, skinny and malnourished. I am a Vegan fitness coach so I am living proof it is possible to consume NO animal products and to be strong. I show this on my Instagram as often as possible. @samantha_rachelle_fit I try to use my passion for fitness to advocate for animals. Being strong and fit does not require harming or killing animals. I utilize my social media platform as well as my fitness experience to demonstrate the strength and power of plants. Elephants, Deer, Horses…..these amazingly powerful mammals are also Vegan. Being Vegan really isn’t a new concept……except maybe to humans.

What’s your favorite Vegan restaurant?

Watercourse in Denver. A HUGE menu. Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner. The atmosphere is inviting, well lit and reasonably priced. Make reservations. I took my family there for my birthday…they were all impressed and they are all meat eaters.

Please share your favorite vegan recipe?

As a Vegan fitness coach, I am always on the hunt for a plant-based protein-packed meal. I LOVE to experiment and learn new ways to incorporate plant protein into a meal or snack. My most recent favorite is Buffalo Broccoli Tacos.

  • Cut a head of broccoli into small bite-sized pieces
  • In skillet mix butter and buffalo wing sauce and broccoli bits
  • Char in skillet until broccoli is crispy on edges
  • Add broccoli bits, chopped celery, shredded carrots to corn tortilla and dip in blue cheese dressing
  • Broccoli has protein and is so good charred up like that. Sometimes I throw in peas, chick peas or beans. Some days I just crave that EXTRA protein.

Some encouraging words for new Vegans?

Being a Vegan is about being educated. I would tell a new Vegan to learn. I wouldn’t say to dive deep into the ugly and horrifying details but I would say know what it means to be vegan. Know the why and know the who. Know what animals you save, know how many and always remember that package of “wings” “breasts” etc is a life. It may not be easy to break away from 10 years 20 years etc of what you were taught before you went vegan. You ARE saving lives and prolonging your own. Take each day for what it is and forgive yourself when you make a mistake. LIke I mentioned earlier I ate foods I thought were vegan and forgot to order foods without cheese quite often at first. It took me some time to re-learn the things I had been taught to me the first 20 something years of my life. Stay educated and know that companies target us so be sure something really is vegan by checking the ingredients list.

What does living cruelty-free mean to you?

Living cruelty free to me means living a life without guilt. Without shame or disease. Living cruelty free to me means I do not value one life more than another. Living cruelty free means living a life of value, one that holds value and sees value in myself and the creatures around me.

What are you favorite Vegan non-food products or companies?

Most Aveda products are Vegan and are also just great products. They are cruelty free but a few do contain honey so be sure to check the products first.

What is the toughest Vegan item to find that you need?

Vegan dressings. I struggle to find rich savory dressings for my salads. I end up making my own and sometimes just go without dressing but sometimes I want a thick creamy dressing and they are difficult to find. There are a few brands out there but some taste off putting and very processed.

Talk about a time when you struggled with your Veganism?

I tend to prefer to cook my own meals and eat at home. I struggle with being Vegan when I go out to eat. It is difficult to find a restaurant that will prepare a meal without animal products or remove all of the requested items as ordered. It is also difficult because I know that when I am out at a restaurant having a dry baked potato (because it is the only safe thing on the menu) that I could be having a protein packed powerhouse salad AND a baked potato with vegan butter, sour cream and cheese. So I think pre-vegan I thoroughly enjoyed the dining experience and post vegan it is actually more of a headache.

Follow me over on IG. I share my Vegan cooking and all the ways to get #Vegangains @samantha_rachelle_fit Plant-based diet. It makes all the difference.

What is one question you would ask other Vegans? Please answer it.

What is your favorite thing about being Vegan? For me, it is the empowerment it brings. Living a plant-based life means gives me a clarity and peace I have never known. Empowered because I am fueling my body with nourishment from our earth, and I am not sacrificing the freedom or life of another to do so. My favorite thing about being vegan is the freedom it has given me.

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