Healthy Talks with Kaptain KO

Kovon Flowers Captain of Black Men Run NYC & Founder of NYCWAY

Kaptain Kovon – yes Kaptain not Captain – of Black Men Run NYC and founder of The NYC WAY is more than just a runner. Kovon takes his health very seriously. For him there’s only one healthy way to eat and that’s with a vegan diet. Let’s take a peek at one of his meals while diving into how he prepares and recovers after races.

MSM: Kaptain KO – You’re a man of fitness, a man that focuses on staying healthy. There’s a saying “You are what you eat.” I’m sure lots of folks don’t actually know that you’re a vegan. Can you tell us what led to that decision?

KAP: What lead me to my journey was around 2011, I was experiencing a lot of health-related complications, mainly high blood pressure. One day it got real bad. I had to go to the hospital and nearly fainted. Once I was told I needed to switch up my diet that’s exactly what I did because I didn’t want to take medication or end up having a heart attack.

MSM: How long have you been running? Give us an idea into some of your run stats.

KAP: I’d been running on and off since 2011, then I got serious and entered my first race in 2012: The Bronx 10-Mile. Talk about leaping out the window. Since then I’ve run four marathons, seven half-marathons, and a few 5k’s and 10k’s here and there.

MSM: I’m sure being a vegan runner has many benefits especially when it comes to pre- and post- race prep and recovery meals. You care to share a recipe with the run world?

Kaptain Kovons nightly meals

KAP: Well, as far as meal prep before a race, I tend to keep it high in carbohydrates. As I get closer to race day I transition to a high protein diet containing mostly plant-based meals consisting of quinoa, lentil beans and steamed kale. Also, a protein shake with scrambled tofu, veggies, and sweet potato is what I usually eat while training. My recovery is usually a protein shake which consists of:

Oat milk

Green Vibrance protein




Pinch of black pepper

MSM: The life of Pen-master – you’re a man of many talents outside of running – what can we expect to see from you in the future?

KAP: I come from a musical family…music is in the blood. I like to write and create melodies. As of late, I’ve been learning the producer side of things and my plans are to put out content for sale as well as promote my vocal producer services as my business.

MSM:  As Kaptain of Black Men Run-NYC, one of the largest Black male running groups in the NYC area, and founder of The NYC WAY, these groups have been known to set the tone of Black running culture in the NYC area. How and where can folks find you guys, folks that are interested in all the wild things happening in this world such as racial injustice and inequality as it’s even more important for Black empowerment among ourselves and the community? Also, BMR-NYC/NYC WAY has been a staple in the NY run community since it’s inception and has continued to grow even larger. How have you kept it so consistent?

NYCWAY at The Race UC Collective

KAP:  We’ve been consistent since 2013 of October and the motto has always been “Any Weather We Go,” which is most important for Black empowerment for ourselves and the community. We meet every Wednesday 7pm & Sunday 9:30am at the front entrance of Prospect Park  near Grand Army Plaza. People know we’re gonna be there.

Kaptain KO – Instagram
BMRNYC – Instagram
NYCWAY – Instagram

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