If you’re one of the few people not addicted to Madi Serpico’s Instagram, you might not know about this powerfully fast, vegan triathlete. Competing in her first Triathlon event at 12, Madi hasn’t slowed down since - that’s why she’s a perfect representative of the Redd lifestyle. She swims, bikes, runs, models, and makes it all look easy, all while eating exclusively plant-based. We may not be able to keep up with her on the track or in the water, but we did manage to catch her for an interview this week. Don’t miss her insights, and make sure to check out her website here.
Madi, you maintain a rigorous training schedule while observing a vegan diet. How does a plant-based lifestyle enable your competitive success?
Madi Serpico: Such a good question. I have been plant based for over 6 years. I used to really struggle with training volume before I went vegan. A lot of this I attribute to my hormone fluctuations which were directly linked to meat, dairy and egg consumption . I tried supplements and experimented with other things to help with this. Especially my inflammation and recovery. As soon as I went on a whole-food plant based diet my symptoms disappeared almost overnight. It was such a drastic change in how I felt. I was so relieved it was as simple as a change about what I put in my mouth. My performance as an athlete improved so much.
Can you tell us about your daily routines?
MS: As far as diet goes I have started to incorporate some micronutrients. I do an elixir shot in the morning of lemon juice, turmeric, cayenne and oregano oil or ginger. I feel energized almost immediately. I also have just started to have a cup of Maca with water in the morning. It is filled with antioxidants 60 times more than spinach. It's high in fibre and it is a slow release energy for 3 hrs. It's the bomb. I usual swim after that with my squad. Who are all killer swimmers. I eat a clean bar right after like Redd. Then usually a hard bike or run or sometimes both. Eat a nutrient dense plant based meal and Netflix with my fiancé and our puppies. Repeat the next day.
What are some of the ways that you take care of your body and wellness?
MS: I try to fuel my body with good food. Cooking at home with Griff is my therapy. I do a lot of stretching and I am also trying to build a stronger foundation to help avoid injury by doing controlled specific weight training. I have also been reading lot about using safe body and hair products that don't mess with your estrogen. I try to use very simple products like coconut oil for moisturizer. Just little changes can sure make a difference.
What’s your proudest moment?
MS: Oh goodness there are a few. 1st time I made the podium as a development athlete after having the slowest swim and running my way up from the back after a very average bike. Also when an athlete contacts me and tells me they follow me and my journey and they say I have inspired them to continue chasing their dreams. Or young women who have struggled with puberty or unable to stay at a healthy weight and have poor diets and they make the change to a vegan diet and thrive. I am so excited that I have made a small impact.
How does Redd fuel your unconventional, uncompromised lifestyle?
MS: With Griff and I both being athletes there are a lot of last minute changes and trips due to both our lifestyles. We also like to support other plant-based athletes and events. So it entails a lot of planning to have good food available no matter where we are. So when we travel it’s such a relief to know that we are getting high quality nutrition from Redd, instead of choosing a quick fix like chips.
What advice would you give to younger generations looking to excel, both in sports and in life?
MS: Just to be kind to yourself. You are changing and growing everyday so take your time. Do a sport you love. Put in all of your heart and love what you do. Just remember that most girls don’t excel in sport until they are in their late 20s and early 30s. It takes experience to be able to handle the ups and downs and to learn to appreciate the successes. Surround yourself with people who believe in you and support your dream. Be patient and celebrate where you are.