Vegan diet transforms Lancer athlete

Published 3:56 pm Tuesday, February 16, 2016

By Tom Lanigan

Special to the Farmville Herald 

Longwood University men’s basketball player and sociology major Khris Lane says that he feels “great.”

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Lane, a 2013 graduate of Benedictine College Prep in Richmond, has been a member of the Longwood University team since transferring from Drexel University in 2014.

Lane said that basketball is his game and after graduating from Benedictine he played for Drexel University for one year.

Here’s where Lane’s story becomes interesting. “One day I got together with a group of friends and we went to the gym at Saint Christopher’s (high school), and we started playing pickup basketball. Well, I ended up breaking my ankle, it required surgery, and that of course, left me unable to play,” Lane said.

“The situation gave me time to reflect. I was in bad shape physically, overweight and I wanted to be closer to home. I began checking on schools that promoted academics along with a solid NCAA DI athletics program, and Longwood University does both and I am close to home.” 

The National Collegiate Athletics Association requires all college student-athlete transfers to sit out one season of play, but the student athlete may participate in training activities and travel with the team. It was during this time, after his transfer to Longwood University and redshirting in the 2014–2015 season that Lane began his regimented vegan diet and transformation into a healthy athlete.

“I was feeling worn out, like I didn’t have any energy, I was needing a nap, I realized I was in bad shape,” he said. “I needed to get back into shape.”

Lane said the idea of a vegan diet appealed to him and the decision was made. “I knew it would take a while. I thought to myself, ok, no meat and no dairy. In place of dairy, I drink almond milk and coconut milk,” Lane said.

Lane said he makes his own smoothies. “I mix kale and spinach. I also like banana, honey and I mix in some protein.”

When asked about dining at Dorrill Dining Hall on campus Lane said, “I like ‘D-Hall.’ I will get two vegetables and a salad, they have a great salad bar.”

They always have fresh fruit, but I also like the organic fruits. From what I found through checking out the organic fruits and vegetables, the organic food has more of the proteins and ingredients linked to better health than regular food, and lower levels of the toxic things and pesticides.” When asked about breakfast and cereals, Lane said, “If I do eat cereal, it will be a grain based cereal, oats, wheat, but again, I like the fruits.”

Lane knew the process would take while, but he stayed on course and, he says, he “gradually I began to feel my energy level rise, I wasn’t as tired in the afternoon, I didn’t a nap. As I began to feel better and better overall, I knew my diet was working. Now, I feel much better about myself and I concentrate on my physical training and conditioning to play the best game I can.”

Lane also said that the Lancers men’s basketball team is molded into a single, strong unit that promotes excellence among its members and he is proud to wear the Lancers uniform.

When asked if he ever experienced any teasing about being a vegan, Lane said that if someone did say anything, it must not have amounted to much of anything.

When asked to share his thoughts and outlook for his team and the remainder of the season Lane said, “We are having our ups and downs, bumps along the way. But I believe in my team and coach (Jayson) Gee. I believe we are on course to becoming a dominant team.”

This season, Lane has played in 27 games and averages 26.2 minutes of playing time. He also averages 9.4 points per game.

Lane is the son of Karri Lane; he has younger sister and he said he is closest with those two members of his family