Celebrity Vegan Corner: Torre Washington




Sheree Grant
January 1, 2018
As I entered the doors of Body King, I felt a rush of excitement. The see-through glass allowed me to glimpse into the entire facility. As I walked into the gym, I noticed a few clients and a beautiful German Shephard. As a dog lover, that just melted my heart immediately. Torre was sitting at the back of the gym, waiting patiently. Ten minutes before arriving to our interview, I had  gotten caught in heavy traffic, and managed to drive to the wrong location, making me about twenty minutes late. Well twenty-three, to be exact. That’s a Jamaican stereotype that I didn't want to live up to that evening. I didn't have an expectation of how he'd react, but his kind, calm demeanor reassured me. The anxiety that came with being late slowly dissipated, and a peaceful aura took over the gym.

As Torre trained a client, I listened intently to hear the way he spoke with concern, asking necessary and vital information about any prior injuries. He did a run through to ask preliminary questions that would help him get a rough idea of where the client was, physically and emotionally, and what she hoped to achieve. I watched Washington do a full assessment of his client, where he requested a series of movements and checked to see if there were stress points on the body. All the while, Torre gave advice to his client and made suggestions, in order to see better physical results. He also praised her, when telling her that her water intake was excellent. Torre spoke about the importance of tracking meals with an app (i.e. My Fitness Pal), for weight loss and proper nutrition. He also spoke about consuming enough calories each day, and many other outside factors, like stress.




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Torre Washington is the REAL DEAL. Here’s why:

Torre Washington is known for his work as a bodybuilder, but it is his vegan lifestyle that has spearheaded the fascination behind his achievements. Known for his animal activism and personal training, Washington has been vegan since 1998, yet it wasn’t until he saw a friend compete in a bodybuilding competition in 2008, that he realized he could also compete. For many of us, vegan and bodybuilding do not sound as if they go hand-in-hand. In fact, most people believe that vegans are twigs, and unhealthily frail. Well I am proof that you can be a thick vegan, but Washington is proof that you can be a seriously fit vegan. 

Washington began his first competition in 2009, and placed 3rd, which he claims was “a tough class.” This however, did not discourage him, but instead, propelled him to work harder to compete. Six months later, Washington competed in his second show, winning the show and also winning with a Pro card, which is the overall win (meaning winning over everyone who won in their class as well). Go Torre!

He’s won and placed 2nd and 3rd in the Musclemania competition, and has even been featured in GQ Magazine’s 2016 edition, including a host of other magazines centered around veganism, like Vegan Health and Fitness (2015) and Forks Over Knives (Spring 2018). Today, Washington inspires thousands to begin their vegan journey, that ultimately leads to a fitness journey. By inspiring many across the world, through traveling, his website and many resources (i.e. E-Books that help to guide people into transitioning into their best selves), Washington’s achievements have become mutually beneficial, as they encourage those who struggle to start or stay consistent in the lifestyle change. I had the pleasure of meeting Washington at Body King in New Hyde Park, the day after Christmas, to interview him.


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Torre, you are the first vegan I am speaking to for my Vegan Corner. I’ve decided that once a month, I will feature information on a popular vegan who has been making a positive impact on the world, and it just so happens that I am getting the opportunity to personally interview you. I’m very excited! It’s such a pleasure to meet you! Bless up! {chuckles}   
Ok, now that I’ve gotten the Jamaican stuff out of the way, I have just a few questions for you! The first thing I'd like to know is what made you want to get into Ital cooking, and how was your transition? Did you ease into it, or go cold Tofurkey, as I call it?

 I was born [sic] vegetarian, but I went vegan in 1998. I actually didn’t know what vegan was. But I wanted that lifestyle because I was Rasta and I wanted to go ital. 

Did you find anything helpful during your transition?

 I didn't have a transition. I didn't really pay attention because there was nothing for me to look for, because I always worked out. I did not have a transition phase.

For the new vegans transitioning who are struggling with weight loss, and working out, do you recommend anything?

Making sure you’re getting enough nutrition. [Some people] are not eating enough calories, or they're eating too much, based on what their day to day activity is.

What would you say to someone who says that they can’t go vegan because they are concerned about getting enough protein?

When you eat meat, are you concerned about protein? When people go vegan, the first thing they think is 'ah, I need protein', but they never think about that when they're not vegan. The average recommended daily allowance for females is 46 grams, and males is 56 grams. So if you look at it, everything has protein in it, so eating anything but the flesh from an animal- your going to get 56 grams.

 How do you feel when you compete?

 I don't have a -- I guess it's just a feeling of-- Ah! It's-It's a great feeling to be able to get on stage- but I didn't think about it as being vegan. I've always wanted to just compete. The vegan aspect of it came in later. I love it. It's a feeling of accomplishment, competing.

How has veganism expanded your compassion for animals?

I wanted to be a veterinarian before I became an engineer, but when I saw how much schooling [was involved]... but I learned more about the plight of animals in the world and I've been keen on paying more attention to extinction.

What resources are available that you offer, and how can people connect with you?

Torre Washington official on YouTube, Instagram and Twitter.


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After the interview, I briefly explained to Torre that I had been a public school teacher, and that this year (2017), I decided it was time to follow my passions. I did not get an opportunity to fully disclose my journey, as Torre had a full evening with clients coming in, yet it astonished me that he made the time for me to speak to him. Honestly, I do not believe I’ve met a rude vegan yet. I’m sure there is a vegan out there, getting pissed off about slaughter houses, honey being in everything, or organic fruits with no seeds; nevertheless, I have yet to find a vegan that was unable to show kindness to others. Not only is Torre accomplished (the man’s in GQ Magazine, okay), but he is humble. Normally, these two concepts do not go hand-in-hand (most people with many accomplishments and a large following have an air), yet the only thing Torre exuded was confidence and compassion. Torre even explained that when I was ready to begin my fitness journey, he’d be there as a resource. This is clearly a person who is seriously committed to helping people reach their fullest fitness potential, and it’s evident, simply based on his physique and achievements, that he loves creating and sculpting bodies, through hard work and proper vegan nutrition.

I would recommend anyone (especially athletes) who are interested in taking their fitness to the next level, to reach out to Torre. His workouts are intense, so if you're looking to get that summer body, or summer booty, he is definitely the person you'll want to contact. Torre also has bodybuilding fitness guides and vegan nutrition guides for bodybuilders, so if you're looking to compete, and you also want to go vegan, these guides will assist you in your journey. With years of experience and a large clientele, Washington is proof that veganism will only enhance your life. Athletes who believe they are unable to go vegan because they won't receive the proper nutrition to build muscle mass can rest assured that going vegan will only upgrade you. The first step is admitting that the only thing stopping you is... you.


 Note: Torre, big up Dash and Diamond for me! Thank you for your time! I greatly appreciate you!

Note to self: Taking pictures next to bodybuilders will make you want to run laps in your backyard, throw out your favorite vegan vanilla ice cream, AND check yourself in the mirror when you get home.
*Channels inner Viola Davis, staring into the mirror*
You is kind...
You is vegan...
You is important...

For more information on Torre Washington, check out the link to his website https://www.torrewashington.com/



As always, peace, love and light breddren.

Sher



Sourcing MLA citation: “About Torre Washington.” Torre Washington, www.torrewashington.com/about.

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