Here at peta2 we’re always on the lookout for positive role-models who lead their lives with compassion for animals. A few weeks ago we found out about Kelly Richardson, a member of the Edmonton Crush Dance Team who has been vegetarian for 15 years! As a member of the Edmonton Crush it is Kelly’s job to cheer on the Edmonton Rush Lacrosse Team and perform in front of thousands of fans every night. In February Kelly was named the “NLL Girl of the Week” by the National Lacrosse League. We were fortunate enough to get an interview with the lovely Kelly to discuss her vegetarianism.
How long have you been a member of the Edmonton Crush Dance Team? When did you first become involved in cheerleading and/or dance?
This is my second year with the Edmonton Crush. I was a competitive rhythmic gymnast throughout childhood and high school, but this is the first time I have been on a professional dance team.
How long have you been vegetarian, and what prompted you to make this choice?
I have been a vegetarian for about 15 years. As soon as I really understood what meat was, I stopped eating it. I just don’t like the thought of eating dead animals. It seems unethical, as well as disgusting. It was an easy decision.
Once you switched to a vegetarian diet, did you find it easy to get the vitamins and protein that you need in order to be active and athletic?
Yes, it’s very easy to achieve proper nutrition on a vegetarian diet. There are so many great vegetarian foods that are high in protein, iron, and other nutrients. I don’t think meat contains many vitamins anyway, so I’m not missing out on much.
What are some of your favorite vegetarian foods and/or treats? Do you have a favorite local vegetarian restaurant or market?
I love vegetarian pizza, all types of veggie burgers, and edamame soybeans. I also have a mild obsession with organic peanut butter. Edmonton has a great vegetarian restaurant called Padmanadi which serves amazing meatless cuisine.
If a fan were to approach you with questions about how to get involved with vegetarianism, what advice would you give him or her?
I would definitely encourage him/her to go for it. It’s an easy way to improve your health, end the suffering of animals, and even help the environment. There are a million different books and websites with information on nutrition, recipes and activism to go to if you have questions or concerns. However I assure everyone that it’s a choice they won’t regret. Besides, everyone knows that vegetarians are just cooler people in general.
Now that you know how easy it is to be physically fit and stay active without eating meat, get outside and prove it!