Month

February 2017

4 Things to Do in Florida That Aren’t the Theme Parks

This post was originally written for Curious Sarah’s blog. Checkout the post featured here on and read the guest post she wrote and shared here for ways to fit travel into your busy lives!

When you think of Florida, you probably think of the theme parks or world famous beaches. And while those are definite must see attractions in the Sunshine State, Florida is home to so many amazing things to see and do. Most activities in our state revolve around the great outdoors..that’s one thing Florida doesn’t lack is sunshine! Just pack your sunscreen and read on for some serious FL wanderlust.

Things to Do in Florida That Aren't the Theme Parks | Fresh Fit Florida

The Florida Trail

Things to Do in Florida: Trails | Fresh Fit Florida

If you’re looking for an outdoor adventure, then you must check out The Florida Trail. This trail spans from the Everglades to Pensacola and is over one thousand linear miles. There are trailheads in most communities across Florida and is a great way to see the state by foot. The Florida Trail is only one of eight National Scenic Trails in the United States and a big draw for hikers and those seeking an active adventure through some of Florida’s best nature and scenery.

More Information here and here.

Dry Tortugas National Park

Things to Do in Florida: Key West | Fresh Fit Florida

Key West

Key West is most definitely a Florida tourism hot spot, but did you know that just seventy miles offshore, there’s the Dry Tortugas National Park? Made up of seven islands and only accessible by boat or seaplane, this National Park is rich in history and nature. There’s something for everyone at this park: camping, snorkeling through shipwrecks, observing marine life, exploring Fort Jefferson, and don’t forget about the crystal clear waters and pristine sandy beaches

More information here. 

St. Augustine

Things to Do in Florida: St. Augustine | Fresh Fit Florida

The nation’s oldest city is home to so many fun attractions! St. Augustine really has it all. Visit historical landmarks like the Fountain of Youth or the Castillo de San Marcos ..  there’s ghost tours, distillery visits, shopping, nightlife, and so much more. There’s so much packed in this city, you can definitely make a vacation out of visiting here! It’s one of my favorite weekend getaway destinations!

Things to Do in Florida: St. Augustine | Fresh Fit Florida

More information here.

Florida Springs

Things to Do in Florida: Natural Springs | Fresh Fit Florida

At Weikiva Springs

Did you know that there are more natural springs in Florida than any other state? These natural springs are all over the state and there is so much to do at each one. Springs are camping hot spots, a great setting for snorkeling, cave diving, or scuba diving, and a fun place for all types of boating and water sports..my favorite is paddle boarding! There’s launches and slips along the way for easy access to the springs and miles of waterways that you can tube down and soak in the Florida sun. 

More information here.

Things to Do in Florida | Fresh Fit Florida

I’m in serious need for planning a trip now! Have you ever travelled to Florida? What’s your favorite thing to do and see here?

Race Morning Routine

Princess Race weekend is here!! This is my first race postpartum and I cannot wait to run through Epcot and cross the finish line with a glass of champs waiting for me. I’m hitting the expo tonight!

Princess Race Weekend is one of my favorite Disney running events. It was the first race I ever did and the perfect half marathon for your first time. I’ve run a race during Princess weekend every year since, with the exception of last year because of my marathon just a few weeks prior. 

After doing lots of races, especially Disney ones, I’ve nailed down my routine for race weekends. From the (super) early wakeup calls to pre-run fueling, I wanted to walk you through my process!

The Night Before

It’s race weekend tradition that me and my best friend have a sleepover to carb up the night before and then get ready and leave together for the race in the morning.  This is the little routine we’ve nailed down over years of doing races together!

Before the Nike Women’s Half Marathon in DC 2014!

I always set out my clothes, fuel, and every thing I need for the morning. Who wants to run around and pack up stuff at 2:30 in the morning?! See the wakeup call.

Then it’s time to carb up! For a half marathon, we usually do a whole wheat pasta with meat sauce or grilled chicken. I personally like to avoid alfredo or cheese sauces, because to me running and cheese don’t mix. For a 10k, we’ll usually grill some turkey burgers with chips and salsa or oven baked sweet potato fried..and we don’t skip out on a wheat bun! And dessert!! 😉

I make sure to chug a lot of water and make sure my running buddy is as well. Gotta stay hydrated!! Hydration is KEY. You definitely need to begin hydrating for a race the days leading up to it.

Then it’s bedtime! We try to go somewhere around 9 to get in a decent amount of sleep before the morning. See you in the morning!

 

2:30-3am. Wakeup call. UGH. SOEARLYWHY. This wakeup call is much earlier for Disney races then most others. 

Immediately begin drinking water. Then I start getting ready, taking about 20 minutes or throw on some mascara because #RACEPHOTOS, brush my teeth, and put any of the last few things in my bag to check.

I usually snack on a banana while I’m getting ready before I leave the house. It’s easy on my stomach, loaded with electrolytes, and holds me over for my big morning ahead!

Time to hit the road! We aim to get to the Epcot parking lot no later than 4am. We give ourselves PLENTY of time because of traffic, road closures, and anything else that comes up. See tips below!

Typically for Disney you need to be in your corral place for 5:30am. Again, we plan to give ourselves a lot of time because there’s usually a .5 mile+ walk to the start line, major lines to bathrooms, and any other issues that could hold you up. 

Before checking our bag at Gear Check, we hit the porta potty lines. The lines before gear check are ALWAYS the longest. There are porta potties as you walk to the corrals, but we hit those too. After a pee break, we stash our bag with gear check.

As we walk to the corrals, we share a PBJ that we packed the night before. After one last potty break, we’re in our corral for 5am. 

And that’s it! We eagerly wait for the race to begin, marked by fireworks at every corral start and then we’re off!

 

Last Few Tips

  1. Plan for road closures and know you’re going. Disney has bunches of roads closed for their races, plus they shut down the roads getting you to the start line after a certain time. It would be so unfortunate to miss out on a race you trained hard for because of transportation!
  2. Get there earlier than you think. Long bathroom lines will most definitely hold you up..especially since you’ve been hydrating!
  3. If you’re running with a buddy, share a bag for gear check. After the race there can be long lines as everyone wants to pickup their stuff. Saves time to just check one bag!
  4. Make sure to get waters from the store in a bottle that you don’t mind tossing. I always buy the big smart waters to have the morning of so that I can dispose of it before the race begins. I don’t want to lose one of my good reusable water bottles!
  5. Have your cheer squad figure out runner tracking BEFORE the race day. Sometimes you need to download an app and it’s better to figure it out before the race so you’re not worried about figuring it out and missing your runners go by!

So there’s some tips and my no fail race routine! Checkout some of my other runDisney posts below! Are you running Princess this weekend?? See you at the 10k on Saturday!

Star Wars 10k Recap

My First Half Marathon

My First Marathon

Ariel Princess Race Outfit Inspo

Beauty and the Beast Race Outfit Inspo

Princess Weekend Outfit Inspo

 

This ‘beast mode’ tank from Raw Threads is perfect for the Beauty and the Beast themed weekend this year! I absolutely love that there’s a coordinating men’s shirt so you could match your significant other either during the race or for dranks around the world at Epcot!

People who have run in Sparkle Skirts swear by these bottoms. I’ve yet to try them, but runners all over adore these skirts…and it’s hard not to. How cute is this Belle inspired skirt??

I always throw a pouch or wristlet into my gear check bag that holds my money, ID cards, travel cosmetics, keys, and basically anything on the smaller side I don’t want getting lost in the large, clear plastic runDisney bag. I’ve loved the Disney Dooney and Bourke purses for years…I’ve always wanted a wristlet in this doodle print! 

You definitely need coffee for the 2:30am wakeup call so many of us runDisney fans know all too well. Might as well theme it to the race right? I love that you can download this printable from Etsy and iron it on or apply it to anything you want!

Ever since my first half marathon, I’ve worn these princess crown earrings I’ve had…and I swear they bring me good luck! 🙂 I love including some cute bling for a Disney race and these red roses are a perfect Belle inspired option!

The girls need to feel like princesses too, so a supportive sports bra is a MUST. Since having a baby and doing the whole breast feeding thing, getting fit for a good sports bra is such a must. I love the VS zip fronts…and I found some on Amazon??? I won’t question it…especially since they have some Prime options! Love the red for a cute pop under a top…another nod to the enchanted rose…

Another sweet Etsy find, I am obsessed with this Chip iron on! It’s sometimes hard to find a running top that’s the right material, so I love that you can customize one of your favorites. Also, Mrs. Potts is there too telling us the finish line is near. Check it out in the link! I love these tanks I found on Amazon…$12, deep arm holes, and a great material perfect for workouts, plus they come in a TON of colors!

 

Are you running a race during Princess Weekend this year? Share with me! I’m doing the 10k..it’s my first race postpartum and I’m super excited and only a little nervous! 

How To Fit Travel Into Your Busy Life

One of my goals for the year is to travel more! It seems like a lofty goal, however, since having a baby, but with a new RV, a boat, and living in a huge tourism destination, I think it’s totally doable with my friend Sarah’s tips below! She blogs over at CuriousSarah.com and shares vacationing tips and ideas for budget travel. Definitely bookmark her page to help plan your next vacation!

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If you’ve ever “liked” a picture of an astounding foreign landscape or searched for low priced airfare, chances are you’ve come across one of those bloggers who travel year-round and “lives a life of travel”. And it goes without saying that at some point in your internet binge, you felt jealous. Right?

“That’s great for them”, you mutter to yourself. “But I’m not going to sell my home and quit my job for the sake of wanderlust”. And I don’t blame you. 

Perhaps you got wrapped up in the rat race; the mortgage, student loans, car payments and maybe baby car seats. Don’t feel bad. If you postponed your dreams in the pursuit of the American dream don’t feel guilty because you love your family, and you’re grateful you have a place to call your own and you needed a car. Millions of people around the world would, and do, sacrifice everything to have that.

My point is that it’s ok if you’re not one of those permanent nomads. Embrace your life and your responsibilities. But find a balance. Maybe you’re not a self-actualized vagabond but everyone needs a vacation at least once a year. With some strategy, planning and a little resourcefulness, you too can recharge in whatever way is most fulfilling to you.

Whenever I have a seemingly huge task ahead, I try to break it down into its elementary parts and take baby steps.  

What do you need to take that vacation? In most cases, it’s just two things.

Time and Money. 

So let’s tackle those two variables one by one. 

Time.

If you’re fortunate enough to have vacation time, even paid vacation time, good for you. Problem solved and you can read the next part. If you’re not one of the lucky ones, here are some suggestions to carve out a week or more of free time. 

-Think differently about your raise/promotion. Huffington Post writer, Wendy Simmons, says that by forgoing a raise that works out to be another $40 per week, opt for another two or three days of (paid) vacation instead. 

-Talk to your boss about working remotely. Businesses all over the country are starting to adopt this trend, even for just a day out of the week. Studies show that employees who work from home are generally happier and up to 13% more productive (according to Nicholas Bloom, Professor of Economics at Stanford University). Tell your boss they can save on office supplies. 

-Plan trips around holidays. Sure, the lines will be longer and everything a bit more crowded but if that’s the only time you can take, go for it.  

Money.

If you feel a bit strapped for cash on a regular basis, it can be difficult to set aside funds for a trip. The good news is that with a little consideration, many of us can find wiggle room in our budgets. 

There are already a ton of posts and articles about ways to save money (my favorite website is The Penny Hoarder so I won’t go into that. However, there are two simple concepts that seem to go untouched in this category. 

-My first and favorite strategy is to take a detailed look at your finances. Look over expenses for one month and study each and every transaction. Then categorize them, even if it means writing it down and color-coding. 

Pay special attention to your fun/entertainment budget. Are there unnecessary recurring purchases like eating out, coffee, beer and so on? For the most part, you can’t do much to lower your electric and Internet bills so don’t worry about that. Focus on the variables over which you have control and work on those. It may take a couple months to see what works. 

If you usually have a Grande Mocha from Starbucks every morning on your way to work, putting that change into savings could give you $1,172 in one year! 

My second strategy is to make a habit of squirreling away money. So many people are discouraged against saving because after all their bills, they only have a small amount left and they figure, “what’s the point?” What’s important isn’t the size of your contribution, what really makes the difference is establishing the habit and letting time work for you. 

If you save just $20 per paycheck (assuming you are paid bi-weekly), you’ll have around $520 at the end of the year. You could have even more if you saved all your change. With just a few simple changes, you can save $1,672 for your yearly vacation. 

“But Sarah,” you ask. How am I supposed to have a vacation for $1,672?

If you travel hack using credit card miles (like The Points Guy), you can earn a free or cheap flight. Using this method, I have flown to Mexico for $27 and Spain for $5.50. In a nutshell, find a credit card that offers you rewards for things you’d buy anyway. You could use your rewards for airfare, hotels, and sometimes a credit on your statement. 

Using AirBnB or any of the various home stay websites out there, you could get a week in a private apartment for $100. And you have $1,500 to spend however you please. I’ve used Couchsurfing to stay for free in three countries and I used WorkAway to organize a volunteer stay for about $3 per day (with all the homemade food I could eat). I’ve heard great things about House Sitting websites to which you pay a small annual fee that is less than a quarter of a nice hotel room, and you get more space and a kitchen!

These suggestions might not get you a luxury vacation in those over-water bungalows in Fiji (although you could certainly implement these tips to accomplish that) but all we need is time away in a new place. If it really means that much to you, which it should, make traveling a priority.

And when I say “traveling,” that doesn’t mean you have to get on a plane or cross any borders. There are plenty of adventures to be had in your own backyard.

The Dalai Lama suggests that we go somewhere new once per year. Listen to one of the wisest people on Earth and make travel a priority. And don’t feel guilty if you decide to take your vacation instead of flying back home for Thanksgiving. 

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Sarah is a writer loving life in the Pacific Northwest. When she’s not reading to her baby in Spanish, running her husky or drinking wine with her husby, she’s either hiking, writing or reading about budget travel. She has also been known to practice calligraphy with her morning coffee from time to time. For more details on how to fit a vacation into your busy life, or what it’s like to get tattooed in Thailand, visit CuriousSarah.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

So will you be using these tips for travel? Where are ya headed for your next vacation?! I’m hoping for a camping trip to the Keys or the Ocala National Forest..sometime before it gets WAY to hot in Florida!

Allow Me to (Re)Introduce Myself

My About Me page DESPERATELY needed an update…I don’t think I’ve made an edit to that page since, like, day 1 of my blog…oops…

So here we go… Allow me to reintroduce myself… 🙂

Hi! I’m Jackie, a new mom, marathoner, student of dietetics, and lover of all things health, fitness, and living in the sunny state of Florida! 

Welcome to my blog!

Fresh Fit Florida follows my adventures in (new) motherhood, running, trying all sorts of fun fitness things, healthy eating, cake devouring, and of course being a tourist where I live. 

I started my health journey in 2012 during a time I really need to find myself and work on me. I hit my neighborhood gym’s treadmill and just ran until I couldn’t. Somewhere during this time, I decided to register for the Princess Half Marathon at Disney for 2013. That was back in the day when you didn’t need to register at 12pm on the dot!

I fell in love with running and competing that half marathon was my proudest accomplishment. I even ran a half marathon before ever doing a 5k!

Just before that race, at the end of 2012, I met my now husband, Brian. We moved in together that summer and got our first baby, Macy.

He proposed that fall on a Caribbean cruise and we got married in 2014. We just had our first baby, Reagan, in December of 2016!

I started blogging in 2015 as a way to share healthy recipes, cute workout clothes, my marathon training progress, and to share foods coming from the wonderful state of FL #eatlocal ! I also enjoy writing about anything and everything in between and over my blogging journey have learned you don’t specifically need a niche. I love connecting with others and sharing on their health journeys and swapping advice along the way.

So that’s a lil bit about me…I’d love to hear more about you…so introduce yourself in the comments!

Valentine’s Day Splurges

Can’t believe it’s already February and it’s almost Valentine’s Day! Valentine’s Day is always a fun holiday to celebrate. Not that I need a single thing, but I couldn’t resist joining in the gift guide fun with a roundup of some splurge worthy items I would love to receive for heart day! 

Here are some V-Day splurges…and I’m not talkin’ calories! 😂

  1. These leggings are so look amazing. They also make a pineapple version that I adore as well. This is one thing I will probably treat myself to once I hit a few fitness/weight related goals with my postpartum journey. I’m a firm believer in #treatyoself to motivate yo self, so I’ll provide a review once I take the plunge and reach my next goal!
  2. How perfect is this Kate Spade gym bag? Obsessed with the bow detail and how it perfectly fits a yoga mat..but I’d probably be too nervous to bring it to a group fitness class for it to sit on the dirty gym floor…. 😁
  3. Wholeheartedly makes THE prettiest necklaces…would love to receive one of the pretty rose gold hearts for V-Day.
  4. Not really a ‘splurge’ since the gold lady planter is at a good price point, but it’s totally not something I need at all. Especially since if it’s green and a plant there’s no doubt it’ll be dead before it comes home with me.
  5. Have you heard of Tieks flats? I’ve seen them promoted on Pinterest, but never really thought about them until my mother in law showed me the pair she purchased. She swears by them and says they are super comfortable, plus really cute. Just super 💸
  6. Where my TIU girls at?? Love this mug! If I bring home another coffee mug my significant other will probably have to throw away 10 just to make room, but how cute is it?! #tiuteam
  7. Omg this curling iron is not only beautiful, but according to other bloggers and reviews, it’s ah-mazing. I wish I could afford it rn, because I need a new curling iron…it be hella expensive. But isn’t that the fun of making a splurge wish list??

 

 

Are there any items on your wish list? I also won’t say no to some good chocolates…

Happy Valentine’s Day!

 

Easy and Fun Date Night In!

As new parents, not only is it hard to get out for a date night, but it’s also super easy for us to push our relationship to the bottom of the priority list. We’ve been trying to make time for ourselves and this fun and sexy game from my friend Natalee at Kissing Often has come up with an easy option for all couples to enjoy a night in!

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Hello there everyone! My name is Natalee and I am the founder of Kissing Often. My passion is keeping the love alive in relationships. I believe that it is important to keep the romance and intimacy in your relationship alive and well, but if we’re honest sometimes it’s really hard. Kids, crazy schedules, and work then before you know it the day is done and you’re beat! 

My goal is that I can help keep that spark between you and yours. My site is completely dedicated to fun and creative ways to spice things up. There you will find intimacy ideas, date night ideas, and simple ways to let your sweetie know that you are thinking of them, and you appreciate them. Many of our ideas are able to be done from home too! All you have to do is print out our adorable free printables that accompany each idea and you’re set! 

I am so excited to be sharing one of my latest ideas with you all today! It’s called The Dice Game (super creative title, I know). But trust me, give these a roll and you’ll see just how fun this intimate bedroom game will be! 

Easy and Fun Date Night In- Dice Game

Not only is this game simple and easy (because we have done all the hard work for you), but it is super fun! It’s always a blast when you can take something as ordinary as dice and turn it into an intimate idea for you and your spouse! I love making up fun little ways to take ordinary games and making them fun for the bedroom. 

This game is perfect for everyone! Whether you are on a tight budget and can’t get out, are new parents and don’t have a sitter, or you just want to add some sizzle and surprise in the bedroom. 

So allow me to explain how this little game works. You’ll start off by putting together the dice that we have included in your printable pack. Simply cut them out and tape or glue them together. Let’s be real though, tape is easier and faster. Now the game goes like this. You and your sweetie will take turns rolling the dice. If an ODD number is rolled, then whoever rolled that number must remove an article of clothing. If an EVEN number is rolled, then that player must draw an action card! Whatever the card says, the player who drew that card must do immediately. 

Easy and Fun Date Night in- Dice Game

Of course you have everything that you need in the printable pack that we have put together. There you will find dice, action cards, an invitation to leave for your sweetheart, and the rules of the game. A little tape, you, and your sweetheart is all you need to make this happen. 

You can get your FREE printables here : Dice Date

For other fun ideas please visit me at http://www.kissingoften.com/ 

Thanks for reading everyone! Hope you all enjoy!

So what do you think of this fun game?? How easy it is to pop open some wine, print off the cards, and enjoy a sweet night in together! Thanks Natalee for sharing!