Vegan powers to more State records!

It seems as though it was just weeks ago that the ‘Vegan Meathead’ was saying goodbye to Texas having broken another record. He was looking forward to working on the Virginia records, and has already given us something to report!

29 June 2024

Competing in the 75 kg category Daniel Austin started with squat and was managed a 435 lb (197.5 kg squat) which meant he was close to the record but could not claim it this time.

His bench of 292 lb (132.5 kg) was a State record, and his deadlift of 502 lb (227.5 kg) gave him his second record. The total of 1229 lb (557.5kg) was also a State record in the 40-44 category.

Daniel has previously taken second at the IPL World Championships and won first place at the USPA Nationals in the submasters for three years running. He collected State records in Texas before moving to Virginia recently.

Vegan Power

Daniel has been vegan since age 22 in 2005 after years as a vegetarian and pescetarian.

“Eventually, watching videos about veal calves and the emotional responses of calves and mother cows being separated from each other convinced me I had to just go fully vegan.”

He’s written a book, ‘Eating for Strength: The Way of the Vegan Meathead’ and as a growing force at state level in Texas, where veganism is not the norm, changed some perceptions. Just before he left he explained how things had changed.

“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.”

Things have started well in Virginia.  Daniel has found a great local gym with is “-a lot of dudes working out together, hyping each other up, and often traveling to compete together as a team. It’s a great environment for lifting.

“I’ve definitely gotten interest about veganism or my book from a handful of people there–all very positive vibes about it.”

Having made a rapid impact on Virginia we may be permitted to expect more. The recent lifts were all below Daniel’s Texas records and he has the determination to aim to take these records further. And he still has the squat record to collect!