Track Star Kailyn Whitney Goes Vegan for the Most Competitive Olympic Trials of Her Career

US sprinter Kaylin Whitney is training hard for the US Olympic Track Trials beginning on June 18, and she’s relying on a vegan diet to fuel her grueling training days. The transition is just one of many momentous changes the athlete has made in preparation for the trials. Originally a 100 and 200-meter specialist, Whitney is making the impressive jump to the 400-meter distance to secure her spot at the 2021 Tokyo Olympics.

Vegan sprinters compete

Whitney gained fame early on in the track and field sport. At 16 years old, she earned two Youth World Records in the 100 and 200-meter distances. She ended her high school track career early to pursue a spot at the 2016 Rio Olympics, though she didn’t make the team that year. Now, she’s set her sights on wearing the Team USA uniform in Tokyo in an event that’s twice her record-breaking distance. 

Whitney hopes to achieve this by turning to a plant-based diet ahead of the trials. She’s subtle about this diet change, but it’s her secret weapon to speeding past the fierce competition come June 18. She’ll race that day at 4:30pm PST in the first round of the women’s 400-meter race in order to qualify for the semi-finals on June 19 and the finals on June 20. 

The track star is not the only vegan athlete competing at the US Track Trials. David Verburg—an Olympic gold medalist also specializing in the 400 meters—will also be competing for that elusive spot on Team USA. 

Fans can watch Whitney and Verburg compete on NBC and NBCSN. 

Photo credit: Red Bull Content Pool