The Apex of chocolate season (we’ll get to that later), Valentine’s Day, is squarely behind us, so it’s time to refocus our attention on those New Year’s resolutions we were quick to declare – in some instances, even quicker to dismiss.
Chances are one of your personal goals was to be more active, and the good news is that just became a little easier. Thursday, Feb. 28, San Antonio’s B-Cycle program will expand by five new rack locations, that’s 50 more bikes, at Sunset Station, The Witte Museum, The San Antonio Zoo, The Tripoint YMCA, and the Acemart in Southtown.
Once in place, the bike share program will have more than 300 bikes at 35 stations across the city (see map for locations), making it the second largest bike share program in the country. Denver holds the top spot.
Considering that the program is just a few weeks shy of its second anniversary, that’s pretty impressive.
What’s also impressive are the numbers. In just under two years, B-Cycle has acquired more than 10,000 unique users who collectively have travelled more than 270,000 miles and burned more than 12,000,000 calories.
So just who are those folks using the program and how exactly are they using it?
“Everyone uses it,” says Daniel Treviño, B-Cycle operations manager. “Our user base is mostly casual day pass customers, but our annual memberships are also increasing, and have shown constant growth for the last several months.”
In addition to the expansion, B-Cycle racks will be updated with new signage, making the process of using the bikes even easier, and perhaps making an even bigger impact on the health of the city.
“The expansion is a great achievement and I’m really proud of the community for embracing the program,” says Treviño. “It shows how the city is adopting a healthy lifestyle, and we’re proud of that, so we’d like to make B-Cycle more accessible to everyone.”
In the months ahead, the local bikehshare program hopes to increase station density in and around downtown, and expand through the Mission Reach area. Their goal by the end of the year is to have 50 fully functioning stations so that even more people can take a ride whenever and wherever they like.
“Using a B-Cycle is an awesome recreational option,” says Treviño, “and a healthy transportation alternative.”
Chocolate Science For The Win!
Switching gears, so to speak: I don’t know if it’s actually possible to die from eating too much chocolate, but I’ve been doing lots of personal research on the topic lately.
Probably a bit too much.
And Valentine’s Day wasn’t terribly helpful in stifling my resources.
But the good news is that it’s not all bad news when it comes to chocolate. Take this piece in the New York Times by Anahad O’Connor, which cites recent research that correlates frequent consumption of chocolate with a decreased BMI (body mass index). Granted, the amount needs to be kept in check, but folks who ate small amounts of chocolate most days of the week were about five to seven pounds lighter than those who didn’t consume any chocolate at all.
But wait, it gets better. Because aside from robots and the Internet, scientists may have spawned their greatest creation ever: low fat chocolate that actually tastes like chocolate. Writing for the Business Insider, Jennifer Welsh reports that researchers were able to successfully create the same smoothness and “mouthfeel” by replacing half the fat of the bars with tiny bubbles of fruit juice. As a result, your get the same taste and sensation, but with less fat and less total calories.
That does not sound half bad.
A Different Kind of Political Race
If biking and chocolate aren’t your cup of tea, consider signing up for the City Manager’s Step Up to Wellness 5K Run/Walk taking place at Sea World next Saturday, February 23. The event, currently in its sixth year, was originally open only to city partners and employees, but now is open to the community at large. Perks of the event include a modest entry fee, reduced admission to Sea World after the event, and the chance to rub elbows with city leaders along the way – including, of course, runner and City Manager Sheryl Sculley.
Tom Trevino is a writer, artist and wellness coach based out of San Antonio. His column, “The Feed,” addresses health and fitness issues and dispense practical advice for San Antonians attempting to wade through the often-confusing diet and fitness world. He holds a B.A. from the University of Texas, with training and certification from the Cooper Institute. He has a fondness for dogs, the New York Times, and anything on two wheels. When he’s not writing, training, or cooking, you can find him wandering the aisles of Central Market.
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The Feed: Secrets of Success February 2013
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The Feed: Food, Fascism, and Super Bowl Eats January 2013
The Feed: Fat, Calories, and the Best Diet Ever January 2013