by Stuart Chase, former CKBC athlete rep and 2016 & 2017 Canadian national champion paracanoe sprint paddler


In part 2 of this three part series on alternative training diets, Stuart Chase, speaks with Dan Thompson who recently changed to a vegetarian diet. 

Newly vegetarian in Vancouver

Apple-Quinoa-SaladDan Thompson, a False Creek canoer, has been eating a vegetarian diet since November. He did it to be able to focus on upping his calories, but keeping it clean while doing so.

“The main reason I did this was because I wanted to increase my caloric intake, but the idea of stuffing myself with more meat didn't feel like a good solution,” said Dan, adding that before he changed his diet, he paid a lot less attention to his actual caloric intake than he does now, and probably reached his target calories a lot less often.

Dan said the shift over to vegetarianism wasn’t all that difficult.

“It was surprisingly easy, actually. I care more about convenience than anything else, so the main problems have come from having to put more work into preparing food.”


When it comes to finding a favourite meal within his new regime, Dan hasn’t settled on any one thing in particular.

“I'm not much of a ‘foodie,” he confessed, “so I don't really pay a whole lot of attention to a meal, as long as it makes me not-hungry.”

Dan has enlisted the help of a bit of technology to help him with his meal planning.

“I have been relying a lot on the ‘mealime’ app to come up with meal recipes.”

Of everything he’s discovered through the app, he thinks the two meals he’s gone back to the most are Pasta e Ceci (pasta with chickpeas), and an Apple Quinoa Salad with Celery, Almonds & Dried Cranberries.

His change in diet has met in some surprise, but mostly support and encouragement.

“I got one big "WHY?!" from a dragon boat paddler, but the rest of the reactions I've had are of support and/or curiosity. And of course, being asked to respond to interview questions for a CKBC article is a reaction I wouldn't have otherwise had :D”

Missed Part 1? See it here. And our food for thought series wraps up with a vegan paddler in Part 3.


Dan Thompson

Age: 37

Paddles for: False Creek Sprint Canoe Club

Discipline: Sprint Canoe

Favourite race: 1000m C1

Favourite venue: Burnaby lake because it's caaaaaaaaaaalm.

Orginally published April 2017