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Fit Feature: Jasmine Garcia

The mental and physical benefits of working out and eating healthy keep Jasmine Garcia, 41, on course for her busy lifestyle.

Garcia, who is a special needs paraprofessional at Galewood Elementary, said energy is high and outlook is more positive when she stays active.

“I love the fact that, when I focus on staying fit and healthy overall, I just feel better about myself mentally and physically,” she said. “I have always felt the need to work out as I have a lot of extra energy to burn. It’s very hard for me to sit still. It’s important for me to carve out that special time for myself to work out because that helps me to feel more balanced.”

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Garcia, who has three children at home and one engaged to be married, said she is a faithful bootcamp attendee. A boot camp workout consists of several stations or activities, like pull-ups, push-ups, lunges and more. It’s essentially a type of interval training — bursts of intense activity alternated with intervals of lighter activity.

“Bootcamp is super intense and I love the challenge,” she said. “The idea of working out as a group encourages me and causes me to push harder.”

She said her diet is good, eating four meals a day and trying to focus on protein, fruits, and vegetables.

“I definitely feel the need to cheat sometimes, but I purposely stay out of the junk food isles at the store,” she said. “I refuse to buy that stuff. If it’s in my house, I will eat it!”

Garcia said that trying a group class, like a boot camp, is a great way to start on your fitness path.

“You will make friends who will encourage you and hold you accountable to achieve your goals,” she said. ” I find that working out physically causes me to want to eat healthy. I don’t like the idea of throwing away all the hard work that I accomplished at the gym that day or even the week.”

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