Vegan meathead breaks state record as he says goodbye

The Texan lifter broke his own squat record, one of four he already held in the Lone Star state.

16 April 2024

Vegan Daniel Austin had a fantastic powerlifting meet, breaking his already massive squat record.

Last summer he set four records in the 75 kg (165.2 lbs) category for Masters 40-44. He’s just improved his squat record, taking it to 207.5 kg (457.4 lbs).

He also holds the records for bench (135 kg or 297.6 lbs), deadlift (232.5 kg or 512.6 lbs) and total (572.5 kg or 1262.1 lb).

Daniel has been vegan since age 22 in 2005 out of respect for animals and recognising the cruelty of animal agriculture.  He qualified for the US Nationals for the first time in 2018.  Since then he’s taken second at the IPL World Championships and won first place at the  USPA Nationals in the submasters for three years running.

Vegan legacy

Daniel is now leaving the state having made an impact, and he clearly has done that.

“I’m proud of the records I set as a vegan lifter in a state that people commonly associate with stereotypes that are the antithesis of veganism” he says. “When I first started winning local meets in Texas, back around 2015-2016, fellow lifters and judges often cracked jokes about veganism – sometimes to my face, but mostly within earshot, but these days all I hear at meets is support, respect, and curiosity about how to be strong as a vegan. It’s been cool to witness that shift among non-vegans peers and I credit those who have kept their minds open.

“It goes to show that the most important things vegans can do in sport is be consistent, respectful, and simply demonstrate what we can do.”

Moving to a new state means that he has a chance to make new impressions.  Surely we’ll see new state record attempts before long, although Daniel’s also thinking of other challenges.

“Now, upon my move to Virginia, I have already eyed what it takes to claim records there, and I aim to get those in the USPA in June when I go to Nationals, and also in the WRPF when I compete with the Vegan Strong PlantBuilt team again in October.”

The vegan meathead clearly has no plans to slow down and we’ll be keenly waiting to hear how he gets on.