The ruptured pulley injury I sustained in October has caused me to make big lifestyle decisions about my diet and to look at my priorities and what is important to me. After seeing my physio, Nina Leonfellner about my poorly pulley, I asked her what might limit the risk of getting further injuries in the future as this was actually the 3rd time I had pulley damage in only a year. She explained that I appeared to have fairly weak collagen and that I needed to make sure that I was getting enough protein in my diet. When I mentioned that I was vegetarian Nina suggested that eating small amounts of good quality meat would be beneficial to me. I had already been contemplating this for the past year, as I find it hard to put on muscle and thought it may be helpful for reducing the risk of injury especially as I had increased the amount of climbing and training I was doing.
I told my family at age 10 that I was going to be vegetarian for my own moral reasons. I very much knew my own mind; I made my own decisions, didn't like to accept help and would choose my own outfits by the time I could talk, much to the amusement of my mum who would get disapproving looks from strangers at how I was dressed. My decision to be vegetarian was mainly due to the intensive nature in which some animals are farmed and the way in which animals are killed. So I had a hard decision to make, I had good reason for being vegetarian and had to question myself whether I would forgo those morals to some extent for the sake of my climbing. I wouldn't know if it would help without trying it, particularly because I hadn't eaten meat since I was so young.
I decided that climbing was that important to me and that I really wanted to do all I could to lessen the risk of future injuries, so I would start eating meat and see what effect it had. To try to lessen my moral issues with this I decided that I should eat only good quality meat with the best quality welfare standards. My first meat meal was on Christmas day, so I have been eating meat now for just over a month.
So have I noticed any difference? To be honest no, I haven’t noticed any change good or bad but I wasn't expecting it in an instant, so will give it a good six months before I make any further decisions about my diet. For the time being I will continue to do what I’m doing and enjoy only the best sourced meat alongside a healthy diet, cake and climbing. I’m sure this wouldn't be the answer for everyone, but I’m hoping it will work for me.