Harri Nieminem, vegan Thai Boxer
Taking the World title
Harri travelled to Thailand to win the 1997 Thai Boxing title at 60kg. He beat the US champion in the semi and the Thai champion in the final.
Harri was 22 when he started eating vegan in 1994. A year before he cut out red meat, and was inspired by straight-edge bands and living a cleaner lifestyle. Very soon he noticed his skin was more healthy.
After his successes as a fighter Harri felt the need for a change of direction and started running in 2000. He's since completed two marathons, a 50k, a 60k and two 100k events. When we caught up with Harri in 2011 he was training less as he now runs his own tattooing business and has a young family. He still trains in the Muay Thai gym, runs, and uses kettlebells, and is of course committed to veganism.
"I think that vegan diet is best anyway and it works for me. It's so easy to being vegan nowadays. When I think about sport and training it should be fun! It is good to remember this. One Thai trainer in gym told me "You must relax and enjoy!". So simple. So true."