05/29/17

Breathe Today. SA Tomorrow. What Can You Do?

Last week the City of San Antonio~Office of Sustainability launched an Air Quality awareness campaign to encourage businesses and residents to help reduce air pollution.

This is just the beginning of a campaign set out to make the city a fabulous place to work, play and live in while enhancing the environment and quality of life for all residents as well as future generations. The air we breathe should be as pure as we as a whole can help make it.

#BreatheTodaySATomorrow #AirQuality

“Air quality is a priority for San Antonio because of it’s impact on our community’s health and economy,” said Chief Sustainability Officer Douglas Melnick. In October 2015, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released a more stringent, health-based air pollution standard of 70 parts per billion (ppb) of ground level, ozone emissions. Bexar County’s air quality is currently at 73 parts per billion. Ground level ozone is created from emissions from various sources such as industrial facilities, motor vehicle exhaust and gasoline fumes in the presence of sunlight.

Don’t just breathe, breathe clean. It’s our right.

What can you do to help keep the air cleaner everyday? According to EPA below are some examples.

Transportation tips:

  • Car pool, use public transportation, bike or walk when possible.
  • Combine errands to reduce “cold starts” of your car and avoid extended idling.
  • Be sure your tires are properly inflated.
  • Keep car, boat and other engines properly tuned, and avoid engines that smoke.
  • Follow gasoline refueling instructions for efficient vapor recovery. Be careful not to spill fuel and always tighten your gas cap securely.

Household Tips:

  • Use environmentally safe paints and cleaning products whenever possible.
  • Some products that you use at your home or office are made with smog-forming chemicals that can evaporate into the air when you use them. Follow manufacturers’ recommendations for use and properly seal cleaners, paints, and other chemicals to prevent evaporation into the air.
  • Conserve electricity. Consider setting your thermostat a little higher in the summer and lower in winter. Participate in local energy conservation programs. Look for the ENERGY STAR label when buying home or office equipment.
  • Consider using gas logs instead of wood. If you use a wood-burning stove or fireplace insert, make sure it meets EPA design specifications. Burn only dry, seasoned wood.

Lawn and garden Tips:

  • Mulch or compost leaves and yard waste.

There will be days when the ozone and pollution is expected to be high. We can do small things in order to keep our city air cleaner. I believe that if we practice putting these tips into our everyday life and explain to our children why this is important, it will make us more aware of the environment and space we live, work and play in. Awareness and education might just bring more caring and need for protection of the city love.

Remember that we are part of the imprint and we make an impact always.

 

Let the City of San Antonio~Office of Sustainability know what your doing to make air quality better.

Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/COSAOfficeofSustainability/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/COSAGOV

Instagramhttps://www.instagram.com/cosa_sustainability/?hl=en

I was born and raised in San Antonio and am a Nature Girl at heart. This means I play, hike, swim and have fun outdoors. If there is anything I can do to ensure that my family and friends breathe cleaner and leave it cleaner I will!

Fitfunand … #BreatheTodaySATomorrow.

(Sponsored post: The Social Being.)

 

01/4/17

Fitness Fun with Get Fit SATX

Happy New Year!

 

It’s that time of the year … new hopes, new dreams and new resolutions.

One of the most popular resolutions is Health. It’s always at the top of my list … right next to happiness of course : ).

I love exploring different ways to stay fit all while having fun. The one constant in my life has been jogging. It’s the countless miles I’ve run that made me realize that I am capable of so much more. I am not the fastest runner out there but I cross the same finish line. This past December I ran my 24th Half Marathon in the rain with at least 7 miles in cold wet shoes. It just made my finisher medal all that much more rewarding.

Ask yourself, can I give more? The answer is usually Yes.

 

The running community is supportive and inspiring. I have trained with several running groups in the past and my personal favorite is GetFitSATX. You get your first week FREE! Athena & Joey Farias are the founders and Coaches that make up Get Fit SATX.  I met Athena at the local YMCA over 10 years ago. I remember her talking about training for the Boston Marathon and thinking “she’s crazy, who wants to run 26.2 miles and why so fast”, lol? I eventually got “crazy” myself and ran 26.2 miles too, haha.

Throughout the years I would see her at running events and although I wasn’t as fast she was, Athena was always supportive in cheering me on. That meant a lot and still does today. Athena and Joey have been able to combine healthy living through healthy eating and being physically active. Athena combines her personal experiences and formal knowledge to provide her athletes into achieving their personal best. I thought since fitness is on our brain why not share some great tips, advice and perhaps some motivation from one of San Antonio’s best, Coach Athena Farias. 

What inspired you into the fitness world?

Running gave me a way to cope with all the bad around me as a young girl. It saved my life! I wanted to be able to share how taking care of your physical health can impact your mental and emotional health in a positive way.

What is your most memorable achievement fitness goal?

My 50 mile trail run. I trained for 20 weeks and at least 6 of those weeks were in cold, wet weather. I remember one of my training runs was 26 miles. it was the most mentally challenging, my body was fine, my body didn’t hurt, my husband was there supporting and running with me, but for whatever reason my mind was weak. At the end of the run I just began crying and I couldn’t stop. It was like an internal flush because the very next day, I ran the strongest 20 miles ever!!

What is your best advice for someone who has never run or exercised but is looking to start?

Just get out there and do it. The only thing stopping you is YOU. Find something that you enjoy doing and do it! Grab a buddy too, to hold accountable.

Any do’s and dont’s while putting together fitness goals?

Do be very specific when setting goals for your health. For example, if your goal is to lose weight, have a number and have an end date. I will lose 10 pounds by Feb 28th.

Don’t be too hard on yourself … we are all human and we all may fall off the track, just remember to get back on track as soon as possible.

Easy tips on staying healthy while working out.

Drink water, it is the best thing you can do for yourself. Get the right gear for the activity you choose to do. Be sure to do a 5 minute warm up, a 5 minute cool down and a few stretches during your workout session. Don’t forget you can’t outrun or exercise a BAD diet!!

Athena is well known and highly respected in her field and has been featured on: Great Day SA, ISpeakfor.net TV, Races and Events and KABB – Health Segment.

You can contact her at:

Facebook: Get-Fit-SATX                                                                                                                                                                         Email: getfitsatx@yahoo.com                                                                                                                                                                Get Fit SATX

Athena Farias, MS                                                                                                                                                                                   CPT/CES/PES

If you are waiting for the right time to commit to be Fit & have Fun, it’s now!

 

Fitfunand … just RUN!

04/22/16

Nature is always in style. Earth Day everyday!

 

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Earth Day began in 1970 as a day to celebrate the planet and to encourage people to be more environmentally friendly. The Earth is one thing we all have in common so let’s not just celebrate it today but any day we have a chance.

Recycle. Reuse. Restore. Replenish. Reduce.

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It’s where we live and how could we not want it to stay as pure and if possible even cleaner and more beautiful. Awareness in who we are as humans and passing this message along to our children so that they can continue our work for Mother Nature. I love the Earth for the love it shows me on my nature walks/hikes/runs and how it refuels my soul.

Plant a tree, hug a tree, help clean a local park or river, recycle any chance you can, waste less, NEVER litter! It’s the little things that matter in this big world we live in. Inspire others to be more aware, aware that Earth needs love too : ))!

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Explore and leave your footprint … just keep it small : ).

If you want to know more then head over to Earthday.org for more information.

Fitfunand … Happy Earth day!

12/20/15

The Birthday Girl … ME! #FelizCumpleaños

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One, two, three, four, five …  (fast forward) 2015 : )). Keep calm, it’s the birthday girl!

I keep telling myself that I am only as young as my heart tells me and that special number appears to have fixated itself in the 20’s. I will never let a silly number dictate what I can or cannot do. I do what makes my soul happy and this year in particular I wished for a horse ride.

 

When I was a little girl my dad bought me a horse. I asked him years later, WHY? My dad had the perfect answer…because you wanted one : )).  photo 1 (35)

I ended up falling off my horse one time and never rode her again. Her name was Big Red and my granddad ended up taking care of her. I felt that it was time to conquer my fear and giddy up!

December 3rd every year was a big deal. The coolest cakes, themes, presents and the most important, familia. The day of my birth reminds me of birthdays past and the love that was put into them. Every year now is a day to live just a little extra. I am happy to be alive and yes I am reminded that time goes by so quickly. I don’t want to live fearful, I want to live fearlessly : ). 

 

I decided to try Hollow Tree Ranch  in New Braunfels, Tx. Their motto is “Horses training riders”. Jeff Oliver is the founder and owner of Hollow Tree Ranch. I spoke with Jeff when making my reservation and he was so sweet and easy to work with. He answered all of my questions and when we arrived took care of more concerns from my group. I feed off positive energy and that is all I ever felt from the moment I called. My daughter hadn’t gone on a horse ride in years and mentioned that she was a little scared. His response, “what in particular scared you so I can make it better for you”? The one hour ride was just enough to get our giddy on but left us wanting more.

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Was it what I hoped for…YES! Will I be back…YES! Next up, the Moonlight ride and I can hardly wait : ).

The day was not just for me but for me to share this special adventure with the people I love. Life is better with family and friends. Thank you Jeff for being a part in making this memory memorable for all of us. Words cannot describe the what the ride meant to us individually. Empowered we became as we conquered our fears.

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We left the ranch on such a high and discovering that right down the rode was Dry Comal Creek Winery was an even bigger surprise, could my birthday get any better?

This would be my daughter and her best friends first wine tasting and who better to share this with than with her MOM. The girls had a blast and we were even treated to a special tour of the place.

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The sangria was delicious and the wine tasting was a huge success for the girls.

 

 

 

My beautiful evening ended with a family dinner at The Little Red Barn, my granddaughters favorite steak house. I believe it’s because the waitresses dress up in cowboy hats and boots. My Madelyn loves a great themed anything and I adore this. Do more than just exist, when you can and while you can!!

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For more information here are the links on Hollow Tree Ranch & Dry Comal Creek Winery. The trip took less than an hour from San Antonio and we all know any hill country road will lead to an awesome adventure.

CHEERS to finding the Giddy up in your step : ). Grab your boots and just go!!

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Fitfunand … Happy Birthday to me!!

 

11/4/15

Life Is A Beautiful Ride.

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A couple of months ago I decided to dust off my bike and add something a little different to my fitness routine. I recently met some ladies who bike for fun and they mentioned that “themed” riding is a happening occurrence….WHAT????

I attended my first bike ride nervously with a friend who actually has “biking” experience. I don’t think I’ve ever done more than 5 miles on my bike but in my head I did the math (the Josie way). My last run was a 10 miler and I had 3 thirteen milers under my belt this year so I figured, why not?? Silly girl.

What I should have done before I biked after a 5 year hiatus and hardly any bike experience : )).

  • Brake check
  • Tire check
  • Gear check
  • Light check
  • Helmet

The only expectation I had was to have a great time. I didn’t prepare for reality. Embarrassed to say I rode with my front wheel turned around for at least 2 miles before a sweet and kind rider mentioned this to me as he also noticed that my front brake was not connected. Let me not forget to mention that I had no clue what I was supposed to do with the gears on my bike (gears ?). I did however, remember to put lights on my bike and bring hydration : ).

Ten miles later and a tad deflated ego I can honestly say my expectation was met. I HAD A BLAST!!

The group I rode with was fabulous and not once did they make me feel like the silly non experienced rider that I was. They stopped to help me fix my brake (glad the bike has 2) and even helped with basic bike etiquette along the way. I quickly figured out how to use my gears with advice from my new friends and by the end of the ride, I just knew I’d be back.

Fast forward 4 months later…

 

Social and themed bike rides through downtown San Antonio are now just a weekly occurrence, the norm. I recently completed a 25 mile bike ride to all the Missions and felt amazing afterwards. The wind in my hair with friends and family by my side sightseeing the city we love.

I have associated myself with great groups who just like me want to ride because we can : ).

Here is a link on Safety & Education for Cycling in San Antonio.

Laws/Ordinances

Fitfunand … Safety first!!

 

 

 

07/5/15

Fitfun and Garner State Park.

The outdoors is a huge part of my happiness and when you combine that with a quick road trip how can the day be any better?

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Road trips with my dad were my first memories. We would usually head to California and Las Vegas every summer. I remember rolling down the windows and feeling the wind in my hair while the music played on.

 

 

 

My love for the outdoors came when I was about 18 and a friend of mine took me to Garner State Park. The beauty of the park left me speechless and I knew instantly that I would be returning. The frio river  is cold no matter what time of the year you go and the water is so clear you can see the beauty of the rocks at your feet.

Years later after having my 2 daughters I knew the time had come to start making my own memories with my family. So we bought some tents and loaded up our truck with love and the much needed necessities, food & bathing suits  )). We were young parents and financially the struggle of buying a home and raising our girls did not allow us too much for faraway vacations. That never seemed to bother us too much because we were happy at Garner State Park.

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Garner State Park with my girls.

We were a family there with no distractions (cell phones). My favorite type of campsite with the girls was the area with electricity and water with the restrooms a few feet away. One with nature without roughing it too much, for the girls sake … lol.

The moment the tents went up we hit the river which was just a few feet away. The girls explored and swam till they were tired and then we lit up the pit for dinner and started making a fire to roast some marshmallows. The simplicity of the outdoors. Fire,food,water and the most important factor …. FAMILIA!

 

It became our yearly (sometimes twice) family vacay. The older the girls got the more we explored the park and the surrounding watering holes. The park offers paddle boating, plenty of scenic trails and they even have miniature golf at the park. My favorite thing to do is to go tubing down the Frio. The ride can last anywhere from 1-4 hours (yes…4) depending on the river flow.

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Tube floating tips:

  • sunblock
  • sunglasses & hat
  • old sneakers or water shoes
  • secured cooler on it’s own float
  • a waterproof phone (for pics only)
  • an adventurous spirit

 

The memories we made with the girls will forever be etched in my soul and may they remember them as clearly as I remember my early road trips with my family. We recently took our granddaughter for her first time and she loved it.

 

I learned that you don’t have to travel far to be happy. Happiness is with family or friends enjoying the ride of LIFE.

FITFUNAND …… Garner State Park.

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#gonetubing

 

 

 

 

06/30/15

A Relay Race (TEAMWORK).

What is a Relay Race?

A set mileage run by 2 or more individuals. A leg is the distance run by one person. The 1st leg will run his/her set mileage and then hand off a baton (a hollow cylinder) to the 2nd leg and so on. The anchor is your last runner for the relay and usually your fastest runner (never me : )), someone has to go a little slower to document the race with fabulous pictures.

A favorite out of town run but not too far is the Beach To Bay Relay. A six-leg marathon in Corpus Christi,Texas that Honors the Men and Women serving in our United States Military. No matter what leg you do, you will have no regrets, I promise! Medals to all finishers!!

beachtobayrelay

 

The American Hero 25k Relay is another wonderful run set in San Antonio, TX. An event with the word Hero in it is sure to be a beautiful one.

It was established to raise funds for scholarships for cancer survivors (and other diseases and child abuse), to recognize our American Heroes and to promote track & field meets, running and athletic events in the San Antonio area. How could you not want to participate? Did I mention  ……  Medals to all finishers!!

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The Carrabba’s Classic is a half marathon for individual racers as well as a relay event, with four-person teams completing a 13.1 course. This event offers a wonderful post meal with great entertainment and super giveaways. This event is also held in San Antonio,TX.

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So whether your running a relay or an individual run, just know that the end goal is a better YOU!

Fitfunand … having the Faith that with my Family & Friends I will have Fun staying Fit.

 

 

05/13/15

A little Run, some Sun and Tons of Fun!

Outdoor activities are what I enjoy the most and finding ways to burn some calories in the name of FUN along the way …. ugghhh YES!!

Exploring new parks and seeing my City grow as I run/bike/jog or walk it makes me happy. I had some days off and decided to go on a bike adventure with my daughter.  I grabbed some water our sun screen and a selfie stick to document our ride. Yes, a selfie stick, $9.99 at the Valero Corner store ; ).

We decided to try San Antonio B Cycle. They have 55 special bike stations (Bstations) in downtown San Antonio in highly visible and trafficked areas and as far south as Mission Espada and as far north as the Witte Museum. San Antonio BCycle members will be able to pick up one of the gray bikes at any BStation and drop it off at any BStation. The price is super reasonable and you can check out the link below for more info. This was my first B Cycle ride but it won’t be my last …. fun,fun,fun!

http://www.sanantoniobikeshare.org/

 

 

The weekend was Mother’s day and since I am a mom of 2 and a proud grandmommy of 1, I decided it would be a great weekend to run my 20th half marathon (13.1 miles). One of the great rewards to running events is that they usually support a charity. The Fit Moms & Moms-to-Be FUN RUN supported “Helping Hands Comfort Bags,” an organization that brings hope, comfort, and joy during times of waiting. This organization gives comfort bags to children who are fighting a chronic disease, such as cancer.

It was a non-timed, fun-filled event where everyone ran or walked at their own pace. Choose your distance and achieve your goal, WE DID!! It was the smallest half marathon I had ever participated in but one of the most rewarding. I was reminded again on how precious Life is and how important it is to live it gratefully, graciously and with gratitude. We are Women hear us ROAR!

Helping Hands Comfort Bags Contact Information 

HelpingHandsComfortBags@gmail.com.
www.youcaring.com/helpinghandscomfortbags2

FITFUNAND … A Beautiful Weekend!

03/7/15

Fitness and Fun (according to me)!

DISCLAIMER – I am not a Personal trainer or a Certified Coach. I am just an ordinary Human who enjoys running here and there and everywhere!

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Top tips that I would suggest in preparation for running your first ever 5k (3.1 miles).

I want the run to be super fun and enjoyable for you so before you even sign up for a run make sure that you are doing this for all the right reasons and not just because it’s the new fad and you want to impress the new guy or girl at work. Let yourself be the only reason they like you, confidence is sexy not stupidity : )).

Running long distance in any weather is challenging enough and I promise you that you will have to find your inner strength physically and mentally. The end results are bitter sweet. A longer run is always a sweeter finish and I constantly bring myself to tears when I know I had a good strong run. Be your own inspiration and in doing so you will inspire others.

I would suggest joining a local running group because they are great at helping you customize a plan for you. Support is key in making your run a success. These groups also keep you updated with local runs and often have discount codes that help when signing up to run a race.

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A destination or themed run is so much fun. I have been known to get a little dirty all for a good run.

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Be unafraid and as long as you have trained then just let your mind and body do the rest and always, always enjoy the experience. I personally feel most alive when I am running. My health is important to me and why not do exercise that makes me smile.

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Last but not least are my running buddies. A solo run is not as much fun as the miles I put in during training with my gals. The bigger the support the bigger the after party at the end of the run!!

SET YOUR GOAL.

BE DETERMINED.

ENJOY THE ADVENTURE.

SMILE.

FINISH.

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I know one day I won’t be able to run, but today is not that day!!

Fitfunand……….all in the name of a good fun run : )).

 

01/17/15

One Run at A time …. 2014!

I Ran a Little.

I Ran A Lot.

I Ran for Fun.

I just RAN. 

Fitfunand…..2014 !