#9 Vegan Fitness Panel from Noosa Vegan Festival

The Pursuit of Enhancement Podcast Episode 9



Welcome to Episode 9 of  The Pursuit of Enhancement Podcast.

My name is Peter Ledwidge and I am your host.

Each week I sit down to talk in-depth with guests that push the boundaries of conventional living, driven by the singular pursuit of being on an unrelenting quest to continually expand the horizons of their body, mind and spirit.

The aim is to learn more about them and from them; their story, the work they are doing, the highs, the lows, the triumphs, the heartaches and everything in between.

The hope is that these conversations might spark something within you that gives you cause for self-reflection, inspires you to embark on your own journey of self-discovery or gives you the courage to take a chance and go after your goals.

Vegan Fitness Panel

This week is Episode 9 and today’s episode is taken from the Fitness Panel which I hosted recently at the Noosa Vegan Festival.

The panel consisted of

  • Rafa Miyashiro Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Champion
  • Abidin Marhad calisthenics and human movement coach
  • Mat Grills – Ultrarunner
  • Tammy Fry – Karate Champion
  • Brad Dalrymple – Ultra man triathlete
  • Dr Carmen Atkinson – Ultra man triathlete

Today we will hear about their vegan journey, busting vegan myths and the improvements in recovery and performance they experience by adopting a vegan diet.

They also speak about the broader implications of the vegan lifestyle. By not condoning killing of animals you feel better in yourself and your spirit. Knowing you are doing the right thing everyday. Choosing life over culture, conditioning and tradition.

About The Panellists

Mat Grills

A former guest here on the podcast in Episode 2 and Episode 3

Owner of The Journey in Bargara, vegan cafe, health adventure compassion is their motto.

Mat is a husband and father of 2 young girls. He has competed in some of Australia’s toughest ultra races. His passion for life and the sport is inspiring and the feats he has achieved at times beggar belief.

mat grills nvf

Brad Dalrymple

He is currently training for Ultraman oz taking place in Noosa in May

Brad lives in Brisbane, while his parents live here in Noosa, so he spends much of his time training in the area.

Brad is a Senior Environmental Engineer and Manager of the Urban Water Team in BMT WBM’s an environmental engineering consultancy group in Brisbane.

He is also former President of Stormwater Queensland.

nvf brad

Dr Carmen Atkinson

Carmen is also training for ultraman oz in May. She crashed off her bike on day 1 of competition last year and is back for revenge this year.

As a chiropractor she has worked extensively in the Sports and Fitness sphere.

Carmen believes that as human beings we are designed for extraordinary health and athleticism, yet so few people realise their potential.

As well as being an athlete she also does triathlon coaching, nutrition coaching,  and functional strength coach

She is a public speaker on topics such as;

  • Life beyond Anorexia – An inspirational and raw personal journey from the depths of Anorexia to Athletic success.  Learn to recognise your innate strengths to not only recover from your darkness, but to thrive.
  • Aligning the physical body to the spiritual to cultivate your athletic and personal transformation.
  • The bodies need to move and the Essential Human movement patterns

carmen nvf

Abidin ‘Abs’ Marhad

A calisthenics coach in Noosa, and owner of Lift, Move, Play @lmp_noosa 

Abidin “Abs” Marhad transitioned to the vegan lifestyle 3 years ago and has never looked back. He has experienced all different types of “healthy diets” and is convinced that an all plant based diet is by far the most effective of them all.

Abs has been in the fitness industry for over 7 years. He has trained in an array of fitness methods, from bodybuilding, weightlifting, Muay Thai, Brazilian Jiujitsu to now Calisthenics and Yoga.

Through learning about the vegan lifestyle it has also opened and altered his views on training. He has now opened his own studio here on the Sunny Coast where bringing more natural, functional movement into his and his members training regime has become prime focus.

LMP is a holistic specialist training facility focusing on conscious primal movements and promoting body awareness. Based on developmental movement patterns we inhibited as a kid, LMP promotes freedom of movement in every direction from every position. Lift, Move and Play (LMP) are the three tools we believe will give us back our full range of human movement abilities.


The range of motion you would require in the terrain is foreign to the modernised body today.

So break from captivity, discover your own true nature and improve your quality of life.

Abs1 (1)

Rafa Miyashiro

Brazilian jiu jitsu warrior, competes in the World pro in Abu Dhabi on April 24, then the European Masters the week after

His titles include 2x Australian National Champion and Pan Pacifics Champion.

Rafa has been vegan for 2.5 years, training Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu for 7 years.

He is also a BJJ instructor and loves to inspire people on their BJJ journey, on healthy eating, veganism, environmental consciousness etc.

Rafa’s passion is to inspire other people to go vegan, break the myths and show the world that is possible to be a vegan high level athlete!

rafa nvf

Tammy Fry

Marketing director of The Fry Family Food Co.

The current Australian Open and QLD karate champion

She has been vegetarian from birth.

Enabling others to live a happier and more energetic lifestyle through plant-based nutrition is the cornerstone of her passion

Tammy has spoken at countless schools and universities on the topic of food choices and climate change.

She runs her sell out Seed Workshops worldwide which are all based around simplifying plant based living for families.

tammy nvf

Connect with The Panellists

Links to the instagram of all the panel members are linked above. From there you can find further information about them and how to get in contact.

Items of Note mentioned

Rich Roll – Finding Ultra and The Rich Roll Pocast
Forks Over Knives
How Not To Die – Dr. Michael Greger.
The China Study
The Engine 2 Diet

End of Episode 9

So that’s it for episode 9 I hope you got something out of it.

I think it’s clear to see that there are many benefits to the vegan lifestyle, not only from a health and performance point of view but from an all round health perspective on all levels of our being, not just physical. One thing I would say is to try something before you dismiss it or jump to conclusions. Try it for 30 days, and properly try it, and if you don’t feel better at the end well at least you can say you gave it a go rather than just dismissing it out of hand.

As ever let me know in the comments your thoughts and take aways.

I am so so grateful to everyone that tuned in today. There and so many things you could be doing with your time so that fact that you choose to give it to me is such an honour. Thank you.

Be sure to follow or subscribe to your favourite source so you can keep up to date with future episodes, share it with your friends in person or on social media.

Also follow on instagram @thepursuitofenhancement

If you’d like to support the show you can do so on PATREON.

I’m Peter Ledwidge, this is the Pursuit of Enhancement podcast and I will catch you next week for episode 10.

In the mean time remember to

Be kind

Work hard

Stay humble

And smile often.

If you want to connect with me further you can find me on twitter, facebook and instagram via the icon links below.


Listen to Episode 8

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