Viva La Vegan!

Tumeria Langlois became interested in fitness and nutrition at the age of 14, when, following major surgery, she gained 65 pounds. Through diet and exercise Tumeria was able to lose the weight within 1 year. In addition to weight loss, exercise improved her body image, self-esteem, general health, endurance and love of life. It helped her maintain a positive attitude and gave her a feeling of accomplishment. Upon graduation from high school, Tumeria enrolled in the Exercise Specialist/ Physical Education major at the University of New Hampshire, graduated Cum Laude and obtained her Bachelor of Science degree. For over 27 years she has dedicated her life to helping others make fitness a part of their lives.


Why Vegan?
How and why did you decide to become a vegan?
I became vegan for spiritual reasons. I always loved animals and even had a very close relationship with a baby cow when I was a child. As I began my spiritual search I realized that I was connected to all living things. I started eating less and less animal products. It just didn't feel right any more. I recognized that all animals were sentient and deserved the right to live their lives.

How long have you been vegan?
Over 11 years

What has benefited you the most from being a vegan?
My soul feels free; my body feels clean and healthy.

What does veganism mean to you?
It is a lifestyle and a commitment to living a life of compassion for all living Beings - human and non-human alike.
What sort of training do you do?
I lift weights and cardiovascular training.

How often do you (need to) train?
I train 5 to 6 days per week – 2 days upper body, 2 days legs and core, 5 to 6 days of cardio exercise - either the elliptical or the spin bike.

Do you offer your fitness or training services to others?
Yes, I am a certified personal trainer and I hold a degree in exercise science.

What sports do you play?
None. I am into fitness and health rather than competitive sports
Strengths, Weaknesses & Outside Influences
What do you think is the biggest misconception about vegans and how do you address this?
That we are radical and feel superior to everyone else. In fact it is just the opposite. We are vegan because we don’t feel superior to any other life form. We respect all of life. I firmly believe in teaching by example. I also believe in educating the people I come in contact with if they are open. I let them ask the questions rather than impose myself on them. They have to be open and receptive.

What are your strengths as a vegan athlete?
I find that I recover more quickly from my workouts, even at the age of 52. Having a good amount of muscle mass shows that even a vegan girl can put on muscle and not be protein deficient.

What is your biggest challenge?
I never look at life as a challenge. I look at life as an opportunity to grow and evolve.

Are the non-vegans in your industry supportive or not?
Yes, The people who work at my gym are very supportive. They have reduced their meat consumption as well. I remind them to eat healthier.

Are your family and friends supportive of your vegan lifestyle?
Yes. Most of my friends are vegan but those who are not are very accepting and supportive.

What is the most common question/comment that people ask/say when they find out that you are a vegan and how do you respond?
“Where do you get your protein?” Seriously, I get asked that a lot! I tell them beans, nuts, seeds legumes, dark green leafy greens.

Who or what motivates you?
I have always motivated myself. As part of my spiritual evolution, I have learned to look within myself for my strength and motivation.
Food & Supplements
What do you eat for:
- Oatmeal with walnuts and a banana. I will add to the oatmeal some ground flax seeds, cinnamon and date sugar to sweeten it some.
Lunch – Vegetable soup with beans and red rice mixed in, a handful of nuts (cashews or pistachios), and fruit like pineapple.
Dinner - I always make a grain - red rice, brown rice, barley, millet or quinoa. Then add any and all kinds of veggies into a big pot - carrots, sweet potato, broccoli, mushrooms, tofu, zucchini, summer squash, kale, spinach, Swiss chard - you name it!
Snacks (healthy & not-so healthy) - Usually fruit: cherries, pears, apples and bananas. Once a week a sweet indulgence is allowed like a vegan whoopie pie.

What is your favourite source of:
- Tofu, beans and nuts
Calcium - Dark green leafy vegetables, beans, almond milk
Iron - Spinach, beans
What foods give you the most energy?
Whole grains and fruit

Do you take any supplements?
B12, Vitamin D2 in the Winter, DHA Omega 3's from algae.
What is your top tip for:
Gaining muscle
- Strength train and be consistent. Don't be afraid to push yourself.
Losing weight - A combination of strength training, cardiovascular exercise and diet- eliminate processed foods, refined sugars and eat a whole foods, plant based diet.
Maintaining weight - find your balance. Monitor your weight and note fluctuations. I have a weight range of 5 pounds that I keep within. If my weight sneaks up to the higher end of the range, I cut back a little. If it goes to the lower end of the range I can indulge a little more.
Improving metabolism - Strength train is a must- Muscle is metabolism.
Toning up - Strength train. Women do not have to be afraid of it - you won't build bulky muscles.
How do you promote veganism in your daily life?
I live and teach by example.

How would you suggest people get involved with what you do?
Do research. Educate yourself. Make connections with farm animals. Go to a farm sanctuary and meet these animals. Pet them; play with them - it won't take long to realize they are all unique individuals. Do some soul searching. Every person is on their own path. My path is unique to me. Everyone must find their own in their own time in their own way. You may become vegan for the animals, for the environment, for your health or for spirituality like I did. I became vegan for my spiritual growth. That has now changed. I am now vegan for ALL the reasons I have listed above.
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