In Defense of Animals (IDA) welcomes Christine Vardaros to its ever-expanding list of professional athletes
who are proving the importance of a vegan diet not only for what it does for animals but for what it can do to improve overall strength and performance when competing. Christine is also our new Team IDA spokesperson. The professional cyclist resides in Mill Valley, California when she is not traveling around the country racing.
Here is what Christine says about her cycling career:
“I began my cycling career in 1995 as a mountain bike racer out of NYC. It was the only way i could get out of the city on the weekends! The first mountain bike I ever laid eyes on was a Breezer; it belonged to my (ex)boyfriend. It was love-at-first-sight! I knew i had to have that bike! Well, I bought the bike and shortly afterwards was offered a contract with Team Breezer, a women's professional cycling team (i was the only semi-pro on the team.)
By 1997, I had packed up my desk at Morgan Stanley and moved to the Bay Area. In 1998, I started to work with a coach named Elmo who brought my fitness level up to the professional ranks within 6 months. I raced for Breezer for one more year as a pro, then ran my own pro cycling team called Team Jamba Juice for two years.
The following year, I retired from mountain bike racing and began to focus on cyclo-cross. I started a team called Sally Spicer, a pro cyclo-cross team. At present, I race for Velo Bella, a women's team based out of The Bay Area, with Sally Spicer as a secondary sponsor. Due to a broken leg that i suffered during last year's cross season, I have been racing road full time this year to help get my fitness level back up.”
Vegan Cyclocross rider Christine