For the first in my interview series I wanted to chat with someone who I thought would fit the MeatyVegan image and what’s meatier than a professional vegan arm wrestler?
Rob Bigwood currently stars in AMC’s new reality series “Game of Arms” and he took the time this week for an exclusive interview with MeatyVegan. What I really loved about this interview is that, while I knew Rob was vegan, I didn’t know he was an ethical vegan and his answers to so many of these interview questions are right in line with my own beliefs.
I used to be a pretty impressive arm wrestler in my youth but when you see the guns on Rob you really can get a sense of true power and muscle. Proving, once and for all, that plant-power is true power and anyone who wants to argue this point, is welcome to go arm-to-arm against Rob Bigwood.
MV: Rob, you’re a professional arm wrestler and a vegan, doesn’t this mean you’ll never beat a meat eater? Don’t you need meat to be strong?
RB: I beat meat eaters all of the time! There are much healthier and cruelty free sources of protein and eating butchered animals limbs isn’t my thing.
MV: Most vegans are asked “where do you get your protein?” I’d like to ask, where do you get your haircut?
RB: I like this question a lot! I’ve been going to place in downtown Manhattan right off of Broadway for the past two years, but I also have a soft spot for Astor Place Barber.
MV: What would we find in your refrigerator right now?
RB: Fresh Direct was just delivered this morning so this could take a while. Organic broccoli, almond milk, almond and peanut butter, coconut oil, Earth Balance, beans, berries, wheat bread, avocado, spinach, there is too much to list … should I keep going?
MV: Has your role on AMC’s new show “Game of Arms” led to other acting offers? Will we see you in the next Julia Roberts’ romantic comedy?
RB: Ha! I’m a terrible actor and feel extremely awkward in front of the camera. But I wouldn’t mind a scene with Scarlett Johansson, just saying …
MV: How do you train to arm wrestle and is the arm you don’t use to compete with basically weak like an overcooked green bean?
RB: The best way to train is to actually arm wrestle. It hits all of the weird angles and positions that are impossible to duplicate at the gym. I compete with both arms, though I was warned not to after the surgery on my right elbow. My right hand, forearm, and bicep are stronger at the gym then the left but it’s the exact opposite on the arm wrestling table.
MV: What inspired you to become vegan?
RB: Growing up we are conditioned to ignore where our food comes from with clever advertising. I never connected that the hotdog or cheeseburger that I was eating was once an innocent animal that had its life viciously robbed. It was somebody’s mother, father, brother or sister. All animals have the same feelings and share the same fears.
MV: What inspires you to stay vegan?
RB: Because I know in my heart that it is the right thing to do despite what others think or say. Animals need a voice and things (factory farming) need to seriously change.
MV: If you could have one non-vegan food converted to vegan food and taste exactly the same, what would it be?
RB: I haven’t found an amazing vegan Reuben yet. Please tell me where I can find one!
MV: If you weren’t arm wrestling, what would you like to be doing?
RB: I’m actually an Interactive Art Director. I design mobile apps, websites, and anything else interactive. We just launched the new Comedy Central app for Android and Apple devices and it’s a pretty awesome! I’ve also worked on some other huge brands including Air National Guard, Citi, Emirates, MSG and Pepsi to name a few.
MV: What would you say to the younger readers who want to get stronger about being “powered by plants”?
RB: Do a little research on balancing the right nutrient dense proteins and carbohydrates but most importantly listen to your body. Vegan food can taste amazing and is the complete opposite of boring. There is absolutely no need to contribute in taking the lives of millions of innocent animals each year. Forks Over Knives and Peta’s Vegetarian Starter Kit are a few good places to start.
I couldn’t agree more.
Watch Rob Bigwood prove that plant-power can dominate on AMC’s “Game of Arms.” Upon airing, the premiere of “Game of Arms” was watched by 1 million viewers, with 626,000 of those viewers among adults 18-49. It is AMC’s highest-rated reality series premiere of all time. Check your local listings.