Ruth Heidrich, vegan endurance athlete

Veteran runner, Ruth Heidrich, poses at an Ironman Triathlon

Ruth Heidrich, vegan endurance athlete

Extreme senior fitness

Ruth Heidrich is a prolific runner who has maintained an astonishing level of fitness into her senior years.

A survivor of an aggressive breast cancer, Ruth turned vegan in 1982 aged 47 in response to the diagnosis. She has won over 900 medals for running of all distances, some of her most prestigious include:

  • March 1988: 1st age group place in the New Zealand Ironman Triathlon, aged 53.

  • August 1988: 1st place in age group in the Japan Ironman Triathlon.

  • May 1997: 1st place age group in the US National Senior Olympics Triathlon, aged 62.

  • Nov 1997:1st place in age group at Hawaii State Senior Olympics in seven seperate track and 10 K road races.

  • First place in high profile Ironman triathlons
  • First place in both the US National Senior Olympics and Hawaii State Senior Olympics
  • Record performance when tested by the Cooper Sports clinic


Top Ten Fittest Women USA

Ruth has undertaken fitness testing at the Cooper Clinic, which includes running on a treadmill to exhaustion. In 1990 she set the record for the 55-59 age group, and five years later she set the record for 60-65. In 1999 she again broke the 60-65 record, despite being at the older end of the age bracket.


She also was named one of the "Top Ten Fittest Women in North America" in 1999 and has written three books: Senior Fitness, A Race For Life, and The CHEF Cook/Rawbook.


Ruth says:

"There is no question that the combination of a low-fat vegan diet and daily, vigorous exercise are the keys to radiant good health, and if so desired, to set new limits in the fields of human athletic endeavors, especially as one ages!"


No Meat Athlete is a great running resource Full disclosure: 50% of any book you buy on there goes to support this website but there's also a ton of free resources there


More information about Ruth elsewhere online


Ruth's site


The fight for health


Video interview


Cris Iles-Wright

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