Showing posts with label fitness. Show all posts
Showing posts with label fitness. Show all posts

October 7, 2021

Hiking With the Cows at Orange Creek Restoration Area, North Tract (Gainesville)

Location: near Island Grove community, off of Highway 329, at 29.45881° N, 82.08476° W

Nestled about 15 minutes south of Gainesville and not far from Highway 301, Orange Creek Restoration Area is a lightly trafficked hiking and horseback trails system approximately 5 miles long. Trails wander through shady pine and Florida scrub, with several sections of trail that are underwater after rain accumulates in rainier months.
Orange creek is a great opportunity to see many kinds of Florida wildlife. On our hikes we’ve encountered snakes, lizards, wild hogs, lots of bird species, and many kinds of insects. Non native residents of the park that are fun to view include a herd of (female) grazing cows that sometimes have calves nursing with the group.

Remember to always give wildlife appropriate space so that they don’t become agitated or possibly attack. Do not try to approach the cows.

This wildlife restoration area is used for hunting during some times of the year. Hunting season dates and notices will be posted at the gates, so be sure to keep your eyes out for these notifications. Hunters search for turkey and deer here during the appropriate seasons.

The five mile trail passes easily with its easy grade and plenty of shade from the Florida heat. There is a huge parking lot if you’re in a horse trailer or bringing friends.

One interesting stop towards the center of the park, and also accessible by an old dirt road, is the Carlton Cemetery, also known as the Old Sykes Cemetery. This beautiful old cemetery holds graves from pre-1900 from the original settlers to the area, primarily the Sykes family. Many of the headstones are showing their age. It’s a peaceful resting place and a nice break on the hike.

Make sure you wear a good pair of hiking boots or supportive shoes when you attempt this hike to protect your feet properly. A good pair of hiking boots will also come in handy if you run into a snake or any swamped areas of the trail.

The Columbia Men's Vent Shoes are my favorite footwear for hiking Florida trails. They’re lightweight and breathable, so my feet keep cool and don’t get sweaty. I’m always getting compliments on the bright blue and lime colors. I’ve had my current pair for about a year of frequent hikes and bike rides, so they are holding up well to frequent wear. Columbia has also made these shoes with an antimicrobial fabric to keep foot germs at bay.

Check out my favorite trail shoes by Columbia at the links to Amazon below if you’re looking for a great pair.

Amazon also offers the Columbia Vent Shoes in Green, Sea Salt/Canvas Tan, Black/White, and Monument/Rocket colors.

June 7, 2021

And Now For Something Different: Model Diversity in the Peloton TV Commercial 'At Home Motivation'

**Update to Article - only five days after this was published, the commercial was removed from Youtube, that's why the video is missing below... perhaps they listened?**


Have you seen the 2021 Peloton bike commercial advertisements on TV yet? In the era of body image diversity, this commercial is a total marketing FAIL. Read on to hear why this commercial irks me everytime the upbeat tune from Beyoncé starts to play.

In case you haven't seen it yet, here's the newest Peloton bike commercial (released Spring 2021) which features the song 'At Home Motivation' by Beyonce. On an interesting side note, superstar singer and entrepreneur Beyonce has partnered with Peloton to create a series of custom workouts lead by the famed singer... Here's the commercial:


What strikes you most while watching? What do you notice about the people chosen to represent at-home exercise participants? Watching it at home many times now, I've noted a few things, both positive and negative, regarding the diversity with the models Peloton has chosen to represent regular people participating in home exercise using Peloton’s bike equipment.

Let's start with the positive attempts at model diversity - - there does appear to be many different ethnicities and ages displayed in the commercial for the at home exercisers. The Peloton trainers represented are also somewhat diverse in ethnicity and age. That's where the diversity attempts end.

Now for the negative - -

What bugs me the most is that every model representing at home exercise participants appears to be in really great physical shape. As I watch, I’m thinking “why do these people need to work out, they’re already fit?” Maybe Peloton is only for people who are already fit? And the only girl working out at home is in great shape, far from the average US women’s size (which I think is a size 16). The commercial really leaves me feeling out on the Peloton fitness trend.

Even the older gentlemen doing sit-ups at the end appears to have a little tummy, but upon second look, you’ll notice that he is quite fit and might have the bulk due maybe to a layered shirt.

My point isn’t to pick apart the models used (because these are real people too) - but to ask that companies consider body shape as a diversity item on their checklists. The lack of diverse body shapes is kinda depressing to watch. Every time I hear Beyoncé’s catchy tune start, I sigh and wonder why the marketers could be missing such a relevant issue in today’s world. Discussions about diversity, specifically body image, are everywhere.

And while we’re on the diversity checklist: I didn’t sees any models (both trainers and at home fitness participants) that had differing abilities, such as sight loss, limb loss, or mental illness. How about including some diversity here, which could recruit customers that are veterans, elderly, or somehow “different” than the norm Peloton is currently portraying in their commercial.

What about income diversity? Perhaps criticizing for income diversity is a reach, since Peloton equipment is at a high price point - and requires a monthly subscription that's more than most cellphone planes or a gym membership at a Youfit or Planet Fitness.

I digress, back to body shape -

For an example of a company that does a commercial right for inclusive fitness, check out the brand new commercial for Echelon Fit, sponsored by the Saved by the Bell character, Mario Lopez. The commercial uses very diverse models, looking like real people with many different body sizes and types. Here’s the most recent (2021) Echelon Fit commercial:


Peloton, please consider choosing models that represent a more diverse audience in your next commercial attempt.

Beyoncé, how could you put your name on something that leaves out so many types of people? I am both surprised and disappointed that you would so irresponsible with your sponsorship.


August 31, 2008

Special: Healthy Kids

Well, I don't have kids myself, but I've certainly mentored enough kids and been around enough of my friends that have kids...

Kids want to be just like us. They want to talk like us and do the same things as us.. They're interested in the things that the adults are interested in, and then are very impressionable... They want to be just like mom.. or dad.. or friend... Any one they think is cool, they watch and imitate..

It's no wonder that so many kids are now starting out towards an unhealthy lifestyle, when all of the adults around them are overweight and unhealthy..

The best way to lead others, whether it be an adult or a child, is by example.. When they see us eating junk, what kind of an example is that? Or when they never see us do anything except for sit in front of the t.v. or computer for hours on end, how can we expect them to do anything different?

Yes, every child growing up these days in America has never known the world without t.v. or a computer.. I remember that when I was a kid, we didn't have but one small t.v. that we never watched because we were always outside... And we didn't get a computer until I was about 13, and even then we only really used it for school work.

Kids just need to get re-interested in getting outside and have someone that they can look to for a healthy lifestyle... Why not get outside and play some ball? Or have some fun in the kitchen making something healthy together? It'll help the child that needs that good role model, and it'll help you at the same time!

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