Positive F Words


Now that I have your attention, here are the positive F words that should never leave you:

Positve F Words

Every summer for over 25 years, my children and I have traveled to South Dakota for an amazing weekend of camping, family, fitness and FUN.  Pickerel Lake, near Grenville, South Dakota, has been the host for the annual Family Fun Days event.  It kicks off on Thursday evening with the annual horseshoe tournament and reunion of families.  Friday is the hot dog roast and more family FUN.  Saturday is “the” day for a majority of the weekend events.  At 9:00 am the day begins with a casting contest for ALL ages, men and women.  From that event on, so many families get together to form Obstacle course teams, Pongo teams, Birdie Golf, Bean Bag Toss, Great Balloon Toss, Kick the Shoe contest, Three Legged race with three people, and so much more.  The evening ends with a Pot Luck Dinner followed by a fun skit for first time campers at Family Fun Days.  Sunday morning starts off with coffee, donuts and juice followed by the morning Worship with Ne-So-Dak Camp counselors leading.  It truly is an amazing, fun-filled weekend of memory making opportunities.

Family Fitness Outreach Center has been working hard to get Suwannee County moving and would like to announce the 1st Annual Father’s Day 5K to be held on Saturday, June 20 at 8:00 am.  This will be a FREE event and I encourage EVERYONE to join us as a family for some fun and fitness! Once again, this is a FREE event and you do not have to be a runner to participate.  As a matter of fact, I challenge YOU and YOUR family to walk, wog, jog, stroll–whatever your heart desires.  For more information, email Coach Becky Skipper at coachbecky61@gmail.com or go to www.coachbeckyskipper.com.  It’s going to be a FUN, FAMILY, FITNESS event.  Hope to see new faces as well as old faces in the crowd.  🙂

Faithfully Fit,

Coach Becky



Never stop trying

You try You Fail  Coach BeckyAs 2015 is well on it’s way, I wonder how many resolutions have ended simply because the person felt that they failed.  Let me ask you this, “Who told you you failed?”  Was it your head? Perhaps a friend or family member?  Or was it yourself?

It doesn’t matter how many times you decided to start a fitness program, start again.  It doesn’t matter how many times you have said, “Today is the day I am going to eat clean,”  only to make it past breakfast before you cheated.  It doesn’t matter how many times you started the “couch 2 5K” program, start again.  I want to encourage you to “never give up.”  As the quote says, “Real failure is when you stop trying.”  I want to encourage you to “never throw in the towel–use it to wipe the sweat off your brow.”  I want to encourage you to start with one pound at a time, and never give up.  I want to encourage you to keep moving forward–no turning back.

“Who told you you failed?”  This question reminds me about the story of Adam and Eve when they were hiding from God because they were naked.  “Who told you that you were naked?” the LORD God asked. “Have you eaten from the tree whose fruit I commanded you not to eat?” ~Genesis 3:11~  You only failed if you stopped trying.

“Was it your head?”  Our minds can be full of negative thoughts.   “Each person has an average of 60,000 thoughts a day! That’s one thought per second in every waking hour! Amazingly, 95 percent are the same thoughts repeated every day. On average, 80 percent of those habitual thoughts are negative.(“Don’t Believe Everything You Think.”)    You have to learn how to control them.  “Set your mind on things above, not on earthly things.” ~Colossians 3:2  Thinking about heaven and eternity can only fill your mind with positive thoughts.

“Perhaps a family member or friend?”   Sometimes they don’t mean any harm, however, their non-supportive comments tend to hit a nerve.  Instead of encouraging you to keep going, they pick on you.  They constantly remind you that you NEVER keep a resolution so why even make one.   Have you ever thought that maybe, just maybe, they didn’t keep their resolution?  I can’t help but share this:

“Keep in mind, hurting people often hurt other people as a result of their own pain. If somebody is rude and inconsiderate, you can almost be certain that they have some unresolved issues inside. They have some major problems, anger, resentment, or some heartache they are trying to cope with or overcome. The last thing they need is for you to make matters worse by responding angrily.” ~Joel O’Steen~

“Or maybe it was yourself?”  Many times we are our worst enemies.  Do not beat yourself up if you have fallen off and feel like you have failed.  It doesn’t matter if it is February or July, don’t wait until next year to start over.  Once again, I want to encourage you to never stop trying!

The following, of course, is only a few of the many who have failed before they were successful.  Never stop trying in anything you are attempting to achieve.  You CAN do it!  “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”  ~Philippians 4:13~

Theodor Seuss Giesel: Today nearly every child has read The Cat in the Hat or Green Eggs and Ham, yet 27 different publishers rejected Dr. Seuss’s first book To Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street.

Charles Schultz: Schultz’s Peanuts comic strip has had enduring fame, yet this cartoonist had every cartoon he submitted rejected by his high school yearbook staff. Even after high school, Schultz didn’t have it easy, applying and being rejected for a position working with Walt Disney.

Michael Jordan: Most people wouldn’t believe that a man often lauded as the best basketball player of all time was actually cut from his high school basketball team. Luckily, Jordan didn’t let this setback stop him from playing the game and he has stated, “I have missed more than 9,000 shots in my career. I have lost almost 300 games. On 26 occasions I have been entrusted to take the game winning shot, and I missed. I have failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.”

Faithfully fit,

Coach Becky





Weaknesses to strengths

weaknesses into strengths

Many people focus more on their weaknesses rather than their strengths.   The world is full of  so much negativity, which can make it difficult to focus on anything positive.

Change is a good thing,  so let’s make some changes and go against the normal flow.  Let’s swim upstream, against the current.  Let’s dare to be different.  Let’s turn our weaknesses to strengths.

Taking the first step, when changing your lifestyle of eating, can be a weakness.  Taking that first step may take longer than you expected, however, it can be the BEST step to the rest of your life.   It starts  one step at a time.

To begin this journey, your first step is to be  mentally prepared.  This is a crucial part to being successful in changing your lifestyle of eating.  Once again, one step at a time.  Choose one thing that needs to be eliminated from your eating habits–and get rid of it.  Do not have it in your house ever again.  From this point on, you continue to eliminate the foods that you know are a weakness or stumbling block in your journey.  Next, you will add some type of exercise.  This can be walking for 10 minutes before you go to work, during your lunch break or immediately after work.  Starting with 10 minutes makes it easier to form a habit.  Many people are led astray thinking they have to workout 5 days per week for 60 minutes and eventually give up.  Do not let that happen.  It reminds me of the old saying that goes along with KISS–Keep It Simple Silly!!  When we apply this to everything we do, there is so much more positive outcomes than negative.   When you have the mindset of 3 days per week, up to 30 minutes on those days, you will see that you look forward to your fitness appointment.

Turning those weaknesses into strengths will help you become successful on your journey of changing your lifestyle of eating.

How determined are you to take the change of lifestyle eating journey?  How motivated are you to make those changes?  I want to encourage you that you are not alone on this journey.  Many struggle just getting started, however, once you make that first step, you will be well on your way.  There will be mountains, there will be valleys; yet the ultimate goal is to keep moving forward.  Don’t look back, because you are not going in that direction.

Here are a few scriptures to reflect on when you have hit a wall, reached a plateau or feel like giving up.  The examples in the Scriptures show how motivated and determined the people were to receive their healing.  Use these as examples to keep moving forward.  Don’t give up!

Mark 5:25-29New International Version (NIV)

25 And a woman was there who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years. 26 She had suffered a great deal under the care of many doctors and had spent all she had, yet instead of getting better she grew worse. 27 When she heard about Jesus, she came up behind him in the crowd and touched his cloak, 28 because she thought, “If I just touch his clothes, I will be healed.” 29 Immediately her bleeding stopped and she felt in her body that she was freed from her suffering.

Mark 2:3-5New International Version (NIV)

Some men came, bringing to him a paralyzed man, carried by four of them. Since they could not get him to Jesus because of the crowd, they made an opening in the roof above Jesus by digging through it and then lowered the mat the man was lying on. When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralyzed man, “Son, your sins are forgiven.”

Faithfully fit,

Coach Becky


Run, Suwannee County, Run

Run, Suwannee County, Run and that they are. 

Since November 19, 2011, the Suwannee County School Board Wellness Initiative has been timing local 5Ks as well as sponsoring and co-sponsoring  the annual Turkey Trot and Hog Jog 5K, respectively.

suwannee wellness initiative

The Wellness Initiative’s goal was to have at least one 5K per month to help promote health and fitness to Live Oak and Suwannee County.   In 2013,  the following races were held:

January 26, 2013  Vivid Visions 5K — Run Domestic Violence out of town.

February 16, 2013  Stupid Cupid 5K —  Sponsored by Cheek & Scott Drug, Inc.

March 16, 2013  Shamrock Shuffle — Sponsored by Suwannee Health & Fitness

April 26, 2013  NJROTC Fun Run/Walk 5K — Fundraising event for Suwannee High School NJROTC

May 18, 2013  Midnight Glow 5K Walk/Run  —  Fundraising event for Suwannee Relay for Life

June 29, 2013  Firecracker 5K —  Proceeds went to the local Veteran’s of Foreign Wars

July 27, 2013  3rd Annual Hog Jog 5K  — Proceeds went to the Back 2 School Bash

September 7, 2013  Come 2 the River Healing Arts 5K  —  Proceeds went to Stephen Foster State Park

October 26, 2013  Mystic Jungle Zombie 5K — Proceeds went to the Mystic Jungle Educational Facility

November 16, 2013  3rd Annual Turkey Trot —  Proceeds went to local Thanksgiving Project

December 7, 2013  Jingle Bell Fun Run  — Sponsored by Suwannee County Chamber of Commerce, Spirit of Suwannee Music Park, Poole Realty, Inc. and Dairy Queen.

On Saturday, March 1, Suwannee County’s Best Dang Race 5K/10K was held to raise money towards awareness of prostate and colon cancers.  My dad, Richard R. Oien, and Denise’s father-in-law, Frank Sanger, both went to be with the Lord after losing a tough battle against prostate cancer so this race was extra special to us.   Denise and I wanted this to be “the best dang race” so we asked the Suwannee High School Drum line to play at the event.  What an AWESOME addition to the race.  The Drum line played at the beginning of the race, during the race and every time a runner crossed the finish line.  They were a HIT!!

Best Dang Race Jennifer, Don and Kati 198

Several clubs from Suwannee High were also involved.  Members from the Beta Club, Student Government, Leo Club, Art Club and the Environmental Club helped cheer the runners on to the finish line.  What an AWESOME group of young adults that sacrificed their Saturday morning to support the cause and for that I say, “Thank you!”

My sister, Bren and niece, Bailee flew in for the weekend to participate in the race.  They were here to represent “Team RRO”.   “Team RRO” was represented by Bren Oien, Bailee Oien, Tonee Rogalski, Stephanee, Skyler, Oaklee and Zebree Phillips, Stonee Skipper, Taylor O’Conney and myself.  We all wore yellow shirts with a SMILE on the front and “Team RRO – Keep Smiling” on the back.  Yellow was my dad’s favorite color and he always told us to keep smiling.

Team RRO

Runners came from as far as The Villages, near Ocala.  Frank McCann, Philip Radford and Jack Slifer headed to Live Oak around 4:30 am to make it for the 8:00 am race start.  I met Frank and Philip at a previous race, Firecracker 5K so I was excited that they were coming for this race.  They brought along one of their friends, Jack.  Jack won the 60-69 male 10K.  Frank was second.  Both Jack and Frank are 67 and Jack informed me that he was a two time prostate cancer SURVIVOR, so this race was special to him as well.  Philip won the 70+ 5K, he’s 81.  These men are my inspiration.  The race raised $450 and will be given to the Suwannee Relay for Life.

Jack, Philip, Don and Frank

If you have wanted to participate in a 5K, 10K, half or full marathon but don’t think you can do it, I want to encourage you to jump in with both feet.  On Saturday, March 8, Kathy Wood participated in the Shamrock Shuffle.  Kathy has completed 6 weeks of chemotherapy treatment for breast cancer.  She said that she wants to inspire people to become active and  there are “No excuses.”  She is the coordinator of the Wellness Initiative, as well as a physical education teacher at Suwannee Intermediate.  She plays a huge role in coordinating the Dodge ball tournament that will be held on Thursday, March 27;  a fundraising event for Suwannee Intermediate.  Way to go Kathy and YOU are an inspiration!!

Becky's Personal and Best Dang Race Pictures 205

The next race will be the Wild Azalea Festival 5K in White Springs, FL.   It is an 8:00 am start.  Race day registration is available between 7:15 – 7:45 am.  Hope to see you all there.

On Saturday, March 22, the Cure Duchenne–Run for a Cure 5K will be held.  The race will start at Ivey Memorial Park, Branford, Florida.   Race will start at 9:00 am, with race day registration from 8:00 – 8:45 am.  This is an AWESOME cause so come on out and show your support.

1 Corinthians 924

 Faithfully Fit,

Coach Becky


Today is your tomorrow — Part 3

CHALLENGEThere have been some questions about the 21 Day “Today is your Tomorrow” challenge so I would like to clarify and answer them.

This challenge is an experiment of mine.  I want to share my passion for fitness, virtually and I thought this would be an excellent way to do so.  Last week I posted the first 3 videos explaining the exercises for Day 1, Day 3 and Day 5.  This week, I am updating the page and sending out Day 8, Day 10 and Day 12 and have included some words of encouragement to each and every one of you that have began the 21 Day challenge.

The challenge was designed to help you create a habit, since habits are formed in 21 days!  I am asking for feedback from the videos.  Is it working?  Were the exercises explained and demonstrated to your understanding?  What else would you like to see in the videos?

I hope that you have found the “Today is your tomorrow — Part 3” post worthwhile and that it has truly helped you begin your fitness journey.

For the health of it,

Coach Becky

Double Bicep Becky with Philippians 4-13



Today is your tomorrow – Part 2

WOO HOO!!  It’s an exciting day in the world of Coach Becky Skipper!!  A few days ago I sent out a 21 day workout schedule to help make today your tomorrow.  If your tomorrow has not become your TODAY, no worries.  Today is your tomorrow – part 2.  Today I am including a video that explains Day 1 of the “21 day Today is your Tomorrow” Challenge.

I hope that you find this short video helpful in demonstrating the proper way to do squats, alternating lunges and planks.  Remember, you only have to do one set of 12 repetitions for the squats and lunges.  You will do 3 sets of 15 second planks, resting 30 seconds between each 15-second plank.

I have not included a video for the 30 minute interval training so you are on your own for that.  I encourage you to try the 2:00 minute to 1 minute  (jog to walk) intervals.  You will be surprised at how far you will have jogged/walked in 30 minutes and you won’t feel defeated or tired upon completion.  WOO HOO!!

Day 3 video will be uploaded to youtube sometime on Thursday.  It will demonstrate three levels of pushups, bicep curls and overhead tricep extensions and kickbacks.  You will do 12 pushups of your choice, 12 bicep curls using dumbbells, soup cans, canned veggetables, bottled water, or whatever is available in your home to substitute for dumbbells if you do not have a set.  There are two tricep exercises and you may choose one of the two and perform 12 repetitions.  Don’t forget your 3 sets of 15-second planks.

Day 4 you will repeat what you did on Day 2.  Make sure that you stretch before and after your walk/run or run/walk.

Day 5 video will be uploaded to youtube on Thursday.  It will demonstrate the shoulder workout.  Don’t forget your 3 sets of 15-second planks!!

Please let me know if you started Monday with the 21 day “Today is your Tomorrow” Challenge.  I would love to hear from you and will answer any questions you may have.  If you have any suggestions, feel free to include them in your email.

I’m excited about this opportunity to get to know each and everyone of you, plus help you transform your body and change your lifestyle of eating.

Once again, I am looking forward to hearing from you, so please share your progress with me.  Leave a comment on this page or email me at coachbecky61@gmail.com

For the health of it,

Coach BeckyCommit to the Lord whatever you do Proverbs 16-3


Today IS your tomorrow.

How many times have you said, “I’ll start tomorrow?  Let’s agree to turn this around so TODAY is your tomorrow!!  The hustle and bustle of the holiday season, or life itself, can hinder us from staying on track with our nutrition and fitness regimen.

I want to encourage you to make time for YOU.

This is my challenge for you for the next 21 days:

TODAY(day 1):  12 squats; 12 alternating lunges;  15 second planks (perfect form) x 3

Day 2:  30 minute run/walk at 2:00 to 1:00 intervals (beginners-walk)

Day 3:  12 pushups; 12 tricep dips; 12 bicep curls; 15 sec. planks x 3

Day 4:  30 minute run/walk at 2:00 to 1:00 intervals (beginners-walk)

Day 5:  12 front lat raise, 12 side lat raise, 12 rear deltoid squeeze; 15 sec. planks x 3

Day 6:  Cross train (biking, swimming, ZUMBA, etc.) for cardio workout

Day 7:  REST

Day 8:  12 squats x 2; 12 alternating lunges x 2; 30 sec. planks x 3

Day 9:  30 minute run/walk at 2:00 to 1:00 min. intervals

Day 10:  12 pushups x 2; 12 tricep dips x 2; 12 bicep curls x 2; 30 sec. planks x 3

Day 11:  30 minute run/walk at 2:00 to 1:00 min. intervals

Day 12:  12 front lat raise x 2; 12 side lat raise x 2; 12 rear deltoid squeeze x 2; 30 sec planks x 3

Day 13:  Cross train (biking, swimming, ZUMBA, etc.) for cardio workout

Day 14:  REST

Day 15:  12 squats x 3; 12 alternating lunges x 3; 45 sec. planks x 3 (if you can)

Day 16:  30 minute run/walk 2:00 to 1:00 minute intervals

Day 17:  12 pushups x 2; 12 tricep dips x 2; 12 bicep curls x 2; 30 sec. planks x 3

Day 18:  30 minute run/walk  2:00 to 1:00 minute intervals

Day 19:  12 front lat raise x 2; 12 side lat raise x 2; 12 rear deltoid squeeze x 2; 30 sec planks x 3

Day 20:  Cross train (biking, swimming, ZUMBA, etc.) for cardio workout

Day 21:  REST

WOO HOO!!  It takes approximately 21 days to form a habit and you just formed a habit!!  I am so PROUD of YOU!!  Yes, YOU!!  YOU did it!!

Double Bicep Becky with Philippians 4-13


The Mental Game

The day began at 5:30 am at the sound of the alarm.  Today was the day that I faced my biggest challenge in my life:  my first half marathon.  Normally, my stomach is nervous and I have “competition” butterflies; however, this morning I was pretty calm.  The farthest I have ever ran was seven miles during my senior year at college, so I really didn’t know what to expect.

The start line was within walking distance, so Denise and I headed that way around 6:00 am.  Several men, women and children were heading in the same direction.  The closer we got to the start line, the louder the music and the more excited I got.  Denise and I spoke with a few of the ladies that were running.  Some of them had already completed a few half marathons, while others were running their first.

The DJ was announcing that the corrals were now open.  Denise and I were in  number 5.  There were at least 1500 ladies ahead of us, but we were all there for our own reasons.  All of a sudden, a wave of emotions came over me.  Tears were streaming down my face.   The half marathon was for leukemia and lymphoma, and all I could think about, at that moment, was my dad.  He didn’t have either one, but HE was who I was running for.   From that moment on, I knew I could do this.

We approached the start line.  Our countdown had begun: 5-4-3-2-1 WOO HOO!! It’s now one foot in front of the other for the next 13.1 miles.  I didn’t have my Ipod, nor a watch to monitor my speed, heartrate, etc.  What I did have was the faith that I could complete this race.  I relied on the Word that was hid in my heart.  The JOY of the LORD was my strength.  I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.  I’ve got this!!

The first three miles seemed to go by fast.  I was on pace.   I wanted to finish at 2 hours and 30 minutes, so I needed to maintain an 11.5 minute mile.  So far so good.  It was at the three mile mark that I met Katherine, a Run Tampa team member.  She had a two hour and forty-five minute goal, or simply finish.  We stayed together for the next three miles.  I remember hearing someone ask if we were in mile five.  I thought we were only in mile four and the next sign I saw was mile six.  GLORY TO GOD, I had another mile under my belt and didn’t even realize it.

Around mile seven, there was a group of young men that were cheering us on.  They had their Speedos on and a small, hand held sign.  I will let you use your “imagination” as to what the sign said.  😀  There were several others dressed in nylon, neon green body suits, giving us “high fives” and cheering us on, as well.

One of my goals was to make it to mile 8 before walking.  I made it, walked about three steps, and began running once again.  My legs felt like rubber and I knew I had five miles left, so walking was not an option at that time.  Guess who was still running beside me?  Yeap, Katherine, from the Run Tampa team.  She and I had “teamed” up since mile three.  Woo Hoo!!

Yes, made it to mile nine but had to walk.  Katherine decided to walk with me.  We shared how we were feeling and I found out that this was her first half marathon, too.  We decided to start running again after the water station.

Now the mental game began.  I could hear her talking to herself, “Kat you got this.  You can do this Kat.”  I, too, was talking to myself.  My words were, “the pain that dad went through, while taking chemo was far worse than what I’m feeling now.”  I kept running.  I saw mile 11.  Woo Hoo!!  Only two miles to go.  The mental game was on again.  I wanted to walk the rest of the half marathon.  My body wanted to quit.  Why not, I had made it 11 miles.  I deserve to walk the rest of the way.   Yes, only two miles to go.  You can do this.  You are almost there.  Think, eight laps around the track.  You can do it.  My spirit was willing, but my flesh was weak.  I had to walk, once again.  When I was walking, Katherine showed up and walked with me.  We shared feelings, once again and it helped, tremendously.  We came to an agreement that at mile 12,  we were  running to the finish line.

The people that cheered from mile 12 to the finish line were lifesavers.  The best part was watching two little boys see their mama and hearing someone tell them to “go get her”.   That helped me.  I visualized my grand-babies meeting me.  I imagined Oaklee running the last half mile with me.  I can do this.  I was getting emotional at the quarter mile mark.  I did it!  I actually completed a half marathon.  As I crossed the line, I thanked the LORD for helping me achieve this goal, and I know my dad was looking down on me, too!!

God is good ALL the time and ALL the time God is good!!

St Pete Half Marathon2 JoyLord


Picture vs Scale

Over 10 weeks ago the “Back to School T25 Challenge” began.   The requirements were to keep a Food, Exercise and Reflections journal; exercise a minimum of 90 minutes per week; turn in the journal on the required dates; and have FUN!

Several people began the journey and on Friday, October 25 the 10-week challenge was complete.  The final weigh in was Monday, October 28 and the winner was announced later that evening.  Jerica Torres was the WINNER!!  She took home $150 cash and received three months of FREE classes from ME!!

Many of you will have a hard time believing this, BUT, she actually gained weight during the challenge.  Yes, you read it correctly.  She gained 0.4 pounds.  What I want you to do now, is look carefully at the pictures.  Picture vs Scale will win just about every time.  You have heard that muscle weighs more than fat, and we all know that 1 pound of muscle = 1 pound of fat.  The difference is, that a toned body looks so much better than a “fat” body.  Jerica Before and After 2It wasn’t easy for Jerica during the 10 week challenge.  She had several obstacles to face while trying to fit in her 25 minutes – 5 times a week workouts.  She is a wife and mother of two young boys.  Her husband works out of town during the week, so she carries the responsibility of getting them to school, doing homework, getting them to their workout, cooking, cleaning, etc.  Point of the story:  NO EXCUSES!!  She also had to miss a couple of weeks during the challenge.  One week because she wasn’t feeling well and another week she was helping her younger sister plan her wedding.  Despite those obstacles, she truly remained FOCUSED on the challenge and never once gave up!  Her hard work and dedication was an AWESOME reward.  Oh the prize money and free classes were a bonus, but the ultimate prize was seeing her accomplishments in the pictures.  Also, changing her lifestyle and becoming a healthier young woman was another added bonus.

The 10-week HOLIDAY T25 Challenge begins Monday, November 4 at 5:30 pm.  For more information, click on the link or email coachbecky61@gmail.com


Getting Fit – Suwannee County

suwannee wellness initiativeA little over three years ago, the Suwannee County School Board received a wellness grant from Blue Cross Blue Shield of Florida, their  insurance company.  It was given as an incentive to encourage, motivate and become healthier employees.

Monday, October 14 marked the Suwannee County Wellness Initiative’s 3rd Annual Health Fair and Professional Development Day.  Over 40 Health & Fitness vendors were present that day, sharing their knowledge with the employees of Suwannee County School District.  The Suwannee County School Baord Wellness Coordinator is Katherine Wood.  Committee members include:  Lori Saunders, Facilities; Tina Colvin, Transportation; Kim Thomas, Suwannee-Hamilton Technical Center; Margaret Wooley, District Office; Cindy Wiggins, Branford High; Mary Roberts, Branford Elementary; Kim Mott, Suwannee Primary; Andrew Chapman and Tralene Sasso, Suwannee Elementary; Jennifer Stevens and Carolina Figueroa, Suwannee Intermediate; Tiffany Bellenger-Smith and Lila Rissman, Suwannee Middle; Damon Wooley, Karen Williams,  and myself, Suwannee High.  As a committee, we take part in  planning the annual health fair.  This year’s event was a total SUCCESS!

Since the Wellness Initiative has been established, Suwannee County has shown a remarkable increase in the number of people that are changing their lifestyles and becoming more health conscious.  The Wellness Initiative partnered with the Suwannee Recreation Department and installed a four-station Par Course located at the First Federal Sportsplex in Live Oak, Florida and an amazing Disc Golf course at the Live Oak Heritage Park and Gardens.

The Wellness Initiative has been working hard to promote a 5k race at least once a month to benefit non-profit organizations such as the Turkey Trot in support of the Suwannee Thanksgiving Project; Back to School Bash 5K and Hog Jog 5K,  in support of the Back to School Bash that provides hundreds of students with backpacks, paper, pencils, etc. for the upcoming school year.

The Wellness Initiative has timed 5k’s sponsored by the following business and non-profit organizations:  Vivid Visions;  Cheek & Scott;  NJROTC;  Stephen Foster Memorial Park; Melody Church;  and the Suwannee County Relay for Life.

I, as a Wellness Initiative committee member and Suwannee County School Board employee, can honestly say that since the birth of the Wellness Initiative, Live Oak and the surrounding areas have shown a huge increase in the number of health conscious people.  More and more are getting fit and involved in the area 5K events as well as traveling to Gainesville, Tallahassee, Jacksonville, St. Augustine, Ft. White, Lake City, Madison and more.

I encourage everyone to continue  getting fit, being fit and staying fit.  There are several ways to enjoy exercise, so find what works for you and get started.  Don’t put off until tomorrow, what you can do today!

Be Blessed,