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Fitness Newsletter | November 2012 | 
Winter Catalog Available Online Dec. 8 


Winter CatalogDon't get stuck on the couch this winter! Parks & Rec will help your family stay active with exciting classes and programs for all ages.


Looking to kickstart your fitness? You'll find plenty of Body Transformation classes in this catalog to get you on your way. Body Transformation combines exercise with nutrional education and is offered in a variety of formats: Cardio, Cross Training, Dance, & TRX®/Boxing.


The Winter Programs & Activities Catalog will be posted online at 9 am, December 8. Online and in-person course registration also begins at 9 am, December 8.

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Need a Little Motivation?

by Robert Arbogast, Fitness Specialist


Ed WhitlockAre there times when you struggle to find the motivation to exercise? If so, you're not alone. This time of year can be especially tough as we are pressed for time with the holidays and tempted by all of the delicious treats. The question is, "What do you do about it?" Sometimes the inspiration we need can be found in the stories of others.


I recently spent some time looking for a story to give myself a little boost and stumbled across Ed Whitlock. Unless you're a real running enthusiast, you've probably never heard of Mr. Whitlock. He's not all that famous and he doesn't seek attention. He doesn't even see himself as an inspirational figure, but I would disagree. 


Ed Whitlock is a long distance runner with finishing times that would be impressive for anyone. But what makes him amazing is that at age 81, he is still competing and his marathon times are still astounding. In fact, just last year he broke the marathon world record for his age group by almost 15 minutes coming in at just under 3 hours and 13 minutes. Breaking records is nothing new for Ed. He was the first 70+ year old runner to finish a marathon under the 3 hour mark. And marathons are not his only specialty. He holds numerous records in other distances on both indoor and outdoor tracks and road race events. 


Obviously, Ed is blessed with fantastic runner's genes, but his accomplishments have not always come easy. At different points in his life he has overcome setbacks. An achilles injury kept him away from the sport from just after high school until his early forties. An arthritic knee hampered his training a few years back and two falls (not running related) have left him battered, bruised and ailing from a broken rib. He has been knocked down, but not out. And he shows no signs of stopping any time soon. 


He contributes his success to consistency and keeping the training simple. He's always taken the philosophy that exercise should be a pastime, not too technical, not too complicated. It's a philosophy that we could all benefit from at times. 


Reading stories about people like Ed Whitlock and thinking about their dedication and accomplishments can lift our own determination and drive. Not all of us need or want to run a marathon at age 81, but at times we do need a little inspiration to set goals and consistently tackle them.


The next time I need a little motivation to hit the gym or make a healthy decision, I'm going to try to find my inner "Ed Whitlock." Good luck finding yours.

Give the Gift of Recreation! 


Gift CardSimplify your shopping this year with Virginia Beach Parks & Recreation gift cards! Our gift cards can be purchased in any amount that the recipient can use towards a membership, personal training, classes, programs, shelter reservations, birthday parties, and at Owl Creek Tennis Center. So, forget long lines at the mall, wondering which toys he already has or which size she wears, and give a gift they're sure to enjoy! Stop by any recreation center to purchase cards and give the gift of recreation!

Try Dancing this December


Ballet SlipperWith the days getting colder and evenings coming earlier, many of us have moved our activities indoors. What a great time to try something new. At Princess Anne Recreation Center, we are excited to have three different dance classes starting in the month of December. There are a variety of formats for three different age groups.


Ballet I | Age 6 - 8

This class is designed for both beginners and those with some basic training. Students will learn ballet terminology and work on posture, balance and coordination as additional skills are introduced. Items recommended for class are leotard, tights and ballet slippers.

Friday, Dec 14 - Jan 18 | 5:15 - 6:15 pm | $29 | Register 


Intro to Jazz | Age 9 - 12

Learn basic jazz movements and terminology. Students will work on jazz dance skills including coordination and balance. Ballet or jazz shoes and movement friendly or dance attire recommended.

Friday, Dec 14 - Jan 18 | 6:30 - 7:30 pm | $29 | Register


Belly Dance | Age 16 & up

This class will expose the student to the basic concepts of belly dance, then takes these basics into drills to form combinations of basic moves. It is moderately aerobic but works to strengthen the core and large muscle groups. Wear loose, comfortable clothing.

Tuesday, Dec 4 - Jan 22* | 5:30 - 6:30 pm | $29 | Register

*No class Dec 25 or Jan 1

Have Some Boot Tracks for Dessert! 


Boot TracksLooking for an indulgence that won't completely derail your hard work at the gym? Here's a great tasting, chewy, chocolate cookie for the holidays that's made on your waffle iron! At just 63 calories per cookie, they're healthier than the average dessert treat, fun to make, and a sure hit with the kids (or Santa).


View the recipe, reviews and nutrition facts on

Please Note Our Upcoming Facility Closures 


Bow Creek Recreation Center is closed for a long-term modernization project. Expected re-opening is September 2014.


All Virginia Beach Recreation Centers, Owl Creek Tennis Center, administrative offices, parks & park facilities will close at noon on Monday, December 24 and remain closed on Tuesday, December 25 for Christmas. All facilities will also close at 5 pm on Monday, December 31 and remain closed on Tuesday, January 1 for New Year's.
All Virginia Beach Recreation Centers, Owl Creek Tennis Center, administrative offices, parks & park facilities will be closed on Monday, January 21 for Martin Luther King Day.


Don't forget that your membership is good at all Virginia Beach Recreation Centers! If your usual center is closed for maintenance, take the opportunity to visit another center. Use this locator to help you find one!

Virginia Beach Parks and Recreation believes all of our diverse citizens have a right to participate in community recreation and we are committed to creating equal access for everyone who may have a challenge or barrier. If your child requires additional support, we can help.  Learn more about our accommodation and inclusion services.
We welcome your comments and questions.  Feel free to email us at
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Virginia Beach Parks & Recreation is accredited by CAPRA,
the certifying agency of the National Recreation and Park Association.