My 10 Year Plant-Based Personal Trainer Anniversary

justine vegan personal trainer training her clients

I shocked myself the other day when I realized it’s been over 10 years since I started personal training. That’s right, a whole decade!

On top of that, it’s also been that long being THE vegetarian (and now vegan) trainer at the gym. This has meant that I got all the vegans, vegetarians, and plant-based curious members that walked through the door. “Send them over to Justine“, LoL, I loved it! 

Other trainers around me were guzzling whey protein shakes, eating chicken and rice, while I was eating lentil rainbow salads and drinking homemade fruit and veggie based smoothies. Even though I did things differently, I was proud of it and I knew it was right for me. 

What happens when a vegetarian client gets sent to a non-veg trainer?

Well, they ask them to eat meat. And now looking back over the past 10 years of sticking it out as a veggie trainer, it’s so rewarding to know that I stuck to what I believed in and helped others who had the same vision. 

How it all began…

I went vegetarian approximately 13 years ago, which was about 3 years prior to becoming a trainer. I had no idea what I was doing. Bread, cheese and lettuce is a meal, right?! HA, NOPE.

I started working out again, and started researching all things health and wellness. I even started a blog to share info from my research. I transformed my health with a mix of exercise and proper plant-based eating. I was reminded then, of my true passion which was always health/fitness, even going back to childhood. I was very active from doing workout videos with my mom, lifting weights and playing sports with my dad, and I was obsessed with gym class. 

I was also always interested in eating healthy but never really got the right information as a kid. The government food pyramid was as good as it got for us (who else can relate here?). Not until I made the switch to vegetarianism did I start really digging into the research and learning about what my body needed. 

vegan personal trainer journey

Fitness can provide you with a tight knit community, but sometimes, being in the plant-based world makes you different. Let’s take this out on the weight floor and show you I’m not as protein deficient as you thought, shall we?!

Well, I did prove them wrong. I had great success in achieving my own goals and those for my clients. 

Moral of the story

Be proud that you choose to eat plant-based food. Be proud to be different. Know what you are doing is right for you. It’s also the best choice for animals and for the planet. And with time, you will be 10 years from now looking back at how much has changed for the good.

For me, as I look back, I can see how big a change it made to my life and career. I went from not knowing where my path as a plant-based trainer would lead me to now running my own vegan fitness company. My family is understanding, supportive, and inspired by my lifestyle. My husband has been vegan with me for four years now. We have relatives who have turned vegan. There are now more vegan trainers popping up everywhere. There are more plant-based and plant-based curious clients coming our way as well. The world is changing to a more plant-powered future and we need it to continue for the sake of our planet and all of the earthlings. Stay the course my friends. Keep listening to your heart and be proud of the difference you are making! Here’s to the next 10 years of being plant-strong together! 

Much love from your vegan coach,


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