Canadian Meagan Duhamel has skated singly and in pairs, although she is best known for skating in pairs. She has seven national titles, three Winter Olympic medals and seven national titles.
Soon after working with partner Eric Radford she achieved fame when she and Eric were the first pair to perform a side-by-side triple lutz in competition. She is the 2011 Four Continents Silver medallist, 2011 Canadian national silver medallist, 2010 Four Continents bronze medallist and 2009 Canadian National silver medallist.
She is the Canadian Gold medallist for both 2012 and 2013. In 2014 she defended it again, setting a massive points record in the process (read more here). In January 2015 she won the Canadian National title for a fourth time, setting three points records (read more here.)
In January 2016 she won the Canadian National title four a fifth time (read more here)
She has also made her mark on international competition. In the 2014 Winter Olympics she won a Silver in the team pairs and followed it up with a seventh in the individual pairs (read more here.).
- Two time World Champion
- Seven time Canadian Champion
- Gold, Silver and Bronze Winter Olympic medal winner
In 2014 Meagan won Bronze at the World Championships (read more here) and she qualified for the Grand Prix, considered the second most significant event of the year Meagan and Eric won Gold there, breaking their Canadian points record (read more here).
Meagan was nominated as a finalist in Vegan Athlete of the Year 2014.
In February 2015 she won the Four Continents by a large margin (read more here), and soon after she won the World Gold, making her World Champion (read more here). At this stage Meagan and Eric were World Champions in the two biggest international skating events.
In December 2015 she competed at the international Grand Prix and won silver (read more here) and later she successfully defended her World Championship title, taking another Gold (read more here). She started the 2016-7 season with Skate Canada International where her ambitious program led to a fall, from where she recovered and went on to take Gold (read more here) and in 2017 she won it from a record sixth time (more here and here). In her final appearance there, she won it a seventh time (more here)
In 2016 she was awarded the title of Vegan Athlete of the Year 2016.
“I have been a vegan since December 2008 therefore I do not eat meat, milk, cheese or anything that comes from an animal.”
Meagan read the book ‘Skinny Bitch’ which covers the benefits to health and animal rights of going vegan. It suggests a gradual transition to veganism, but Meagan felt that she needed to move more quickly, and the next morning she removed all non-vegan foods from her kitchen.
She has had such a positive experience from turning vegan that she urges everyone to try it. “So many people tell me they could never be vegan. I just wish people would understand and realize that it’s really not that difficult, and it’s a choice that we make. I think that it is in everybody’s grasp to be able to make a decision like switching to a vegan lifestyle. One of my proudest accomplishments has been going vegan.”
It is worth noting that although Meagan has skated since childhood, all he incredible international honours were achieved as a vegan.
One of the benefits of going vegan was she found it easier to control her weight, which was something her skate partner Eric Radford benefited from as he often has to lift her. “I think for any pair team in skating the girls’ weight can affect a team’s performance. Meagan is always in peak condition so lifting her is very easy.” However, her exploration of food meant that Eric confided in perhaps a negative effect of Meagan’s veganism on him was: “when I have to lift Meagan’s suitcase which is full of her food!”
In preparing for the 2014 winter Olympics she explained she was feasting on “homemade bread, pumpkin-apple butter, granola, cookies, trail mixes, and snacks like that.” She also trained with vegan retired ice hockey star Georges Laraque for long distance runs.
Meagan had adopted a dog rescued from the Korean meat industry (read more here). She has spoken out against plans to include animal fur on the uniforms of Canadian athletes at the Winter Olympics (read more here).
“It’s great working with Meagan. She always has a ton of energy so even if I’m tired HER energy keeps me going. She has brought some amazing vegan baking into the rink to share with everybody and everybody is always so surprised to hear it’s vegan!”
(Meagan’s skating partner Eric)
Image credit: Meagan Duhamel