Maccabi USA will bring a team of 1,100+ athletes who will be part of the 10,000 Jewish athletes from 80 countries, participating in 43 different sports at the 20th World Maccabiah Games, which will take place July 4-18, 2017 in Israel.
So it’s pretty impressive when seven of those US Team members come from Spanish River High School in Boca Raton – and are part of the school’s legendary Cross Country and Track program.
The Palm Beach Post noticed and stopped by a team practice yesterday to photograph the athletes and coaches. Here they are:
Rick Rothman: Current assistant cross country/track coach at FAU and former Spanish River High head coach of cross country/track; will be the coach of the Open Men’s and Women’s Track & Field Team at 2017 Games
Doug Horn: Current Spanish River High head coach of cross country/track; will be co-coach of the Open Men’s and Women’s Track & Field Team at 2017 Games.
Melissa Perlman: Assistant cross country/track coach at Spanish River High; former Spanish River High track athlete; is captain of the Open Women’s Half Marathon team at 2017 Games.
Jordana Kimelman: Former Spanish River High runner and current student at Florida State University; will be competing in Women’s Open Half Marathon at 2017 Games.
Jake Noonan: 2017 graduate of Spanish River High who will be entering Indiana University in the fall; was captain of cross country and track teams; will be competing on the Junior Track and Field Team at 2017 Games.
Alex Kline: 2017 graduate of Spanish River High who will be entering the University of Florida in the fall; was four-year member and captain of cross country and track teams; will be running on the Junior Track and Field Team at 2017 Games.
Rylee Pustilnik: Just completed her freshman year and is a state-ranked current member of the Spanish River High cross country and track teams; will be running on the Junior Track and Field Team at 2017 Games.
What could be better you ask? Nothing! As defending champion of the Levis JCC Run, Sweat and Beers 5K hosted in Boca Raton, Florida on a hot July night (7:00pm), I feel I can make that statement! The 5K is now in its 5th year and keeps getting better. Plus, if you’ve never run an evening race…you’ve got to try it! (Side note, for winning, I received a case of beer…so you may want to start training now!)
What: 5th Annual JCC Run, Sweat & Beers 5K
When: Thursday, July 16, 2015; race starts just after 7:00pm
Where: South County Regional Park; 11200 Park Access Rd, Boca Raton, Florida 33498; Race start is just outside Ampitheater/Dog Park; follow the signs!
I have a great relationship with a Palm Beach Post reporter that allows me to write for the paper and its supplemental magazine “Healthy Living” every so often. Here is my most recent feauture story on a wonderful couple that I had the pleasure of meeting, interviewing and photographing. Enjoy! Read it on the Palm Beach Post’s website here.
Healthy Living Magazine
Palm Beach Post
February 15, 2015
Debbie and Ron Schwartz have been happily married for 47 years. So what do they attribute their success as a couple to? Well working out, together of course. Debbie, age 68, and Ron, 71, workout together at the Adolph & Rose Levis Jewish Community Center (Levis JCC) in Boca Raton three days a week for 60 minutes…sometimes more. They typically begin each session with legs and lower body and end with biceps; Debbie adds on between 15 and 30 minutes of cardio after her weights; Ron skips the cardio trying not to slim down too much.
According to Debbie, the couple has always worked out together. “It motivates you,” she says. “On days I don’t feel like working out, Ron pushes me. And vice versa. It makes you really enjoy working out and being together. It’s our time. We can share it and be together with no distractions.”
Ron, who is also Debbie’s personal trainer, adds: “Debbie never complains. I’m truly amazed at what she can do. She is absolutely my favorite student.”
Ron, who has been working out since age 15, first taught Debbie his healthy lifestyle ways when the two got married. Since then the two have taken up the “get healthy cause” together and share it with everyone they come in contact with – from their social circle to other Levis JCC gym members to their two young grandsons. “Our focus is on staying healthy and hopefully living a little longer,” says Ron. “Appearance and health motivate us; working out and eating healthy are what get us there. Hopefully we can share our message with those around us.”
Debbie adds that nutrition and eating healthy have been a huge component of the healthy lifestyle for her. Just three years ago she lost the extra thirty pounds she had been carrying around thanks to Ron’s training schedule and a focus on cleaning up her diet. “For me, I had to start watching what I was eating more,” Debbie says. “Just working out was no longer enough. We now eat salads every night and lots of vegetables, fish and turkey burgers. We’re not perfect but try to eat well about 95% of the time.”
Pull Quote: “It is a lifestyle. We are not suffering. We love working out and we love eating healthy because we know it is good for us.” – Debbie Schwartz.
Debbie Schwartz: Age 68, Lives in West Boca Raton, Works full-time as an insurance agent at Century Risk Advisors.
Ron Schwartz: Age 71, Lives in West Boca Raton; Retired from IBM and Office Depot where he worked for more than 40 years total as an IT Systems Analyst.
Health Living Tips from Ron and Debbie Schwartz:
Visit your doctor to get medically checked before starting any physical exercise or nutritional program.
Join a gym (like the Levis JCC in Boca Raton)!
Get a trainer and/or find a partner. If you don’t have a partner, working out is much harder and definitely not as much fun. Plus a partner/trainer gives you accountability, motivation and guilt – all the emotions that will keep you going back!
Educate yourself: Learn how to work out before you even step out onto the gym floor or pick up a weight. Understand the process first and then start. Otherwise you risk injury.
Eat healthy. It is not a diet, but rather a way of life. We recommend more vegetable and lean proteins!
About the Levis JCC Sports & Wellness Program
The Levis JCC Fitness Center is an affordable way to incorporate health and wellness into your life. With a variety of membership options, members can make working out fit both their budget and schedule.
Membership includes brand new, state-of-the-art fitness center (bikes, elliptical machines, treadmills, Stairmasters, strength training equipment and free weights. Fitness staff, trainers on-site. Unlimited group exercise classes (Zumba, Body Pump, Cardio Kickboxing, Yoga) in new studio; Spinning in new, neon room with top instructors; six tennis courts and two full indoor basketball courts. Locker rooms with sauna, steam room and showers. Learn more at http://www.levisjcc.org/sports-and-wellness/fitness-membership/.
Adolph & Rose Levis Jewish Community Center
9801 Donna Klein Boulevard | Boca Raton, Florida 33428 561-852-3200 |firstname.lastname@example.org
Thanks to our friends at ModernBocaMom.com for featuring this awesome Kids Running program. Learn more HERE:
Runner’s Edge Boca Ratonis partnering with The City of Boca Raton and Run for Funds Florida, a school and organization fundraising/event management business, to launch a highly requested Kids Run Club here in Boca starting March 3rd.
The Kids Run Club is open to first through sixth graders or kids ages 7 to 11. The kids meet Tuesdays and Thursdays from 3:45 to 4:45 pm at the Spanish River Athletic Complex (across from Spanish River Library).
Lacey Chimienti, a teacher and track coach in Boca Raton and a weekend Runner’s Edge Boca Raton employee, is the head coach of the program; she is assisted by Runner’s Edge owners (and runners) Tom Vladimir and Carol Virga.
To participate in the Runner’s Edge “Kids Run Club,” please call Runner’s Edge Boca Raton at 561-361-1950 and/or email Coach Lacey at email@example.com to sign-up to receive details on registration.
The cost of the Kids Run Club is $75 for residents and $93.75 for non-residents. The Spring session will kick off on March 3 and end April 23, 2015. Kids will race in the Run for the Rays race on April 26th in Boca Raton.
Thankgiving is in fact the biggest day for 5Ks in South Florida…so join in on the fun and participate in a Turkey Trot near you! I personally will be racing in the Levis JCC Turkey Trot on Thursday morning at 7:30am at South County Regional Park in West Boca Raton! Hope to see you there! Details below!
My fellow coach at Spanish River High School in Boca Raton, Florida, Dough Horn, loves to intertwine fun games and team activities within our serious and high-intensity season (which happens to last from summer through mid-November). So when he asked me to plan a “Clue Run” of sorts that would take place the week prior to the Florida State Championships and therefore act as a stress reliever for those that qualified for States (the boys varsity team) and a fun run for those who had already ended their seasons (the remaining 40 kids)…I quickly got to work strategizing! The “Clue Run” was a success for many reasons, which I will list below, and therefore I wanted to share it with others/coaches looking for a great activity to execute with their own respective teams. (Thanks for the push to post here Lacey!)
Doug wanted the run to total 8 miles and of course stay around the Boca Raton area (running distance from Spanish River high school, where the kids would begin the run).
We also decided to split the teams so that the faster kids would be required to “run with” and/or push the not-so-fast kids. Initially we were going to choose the team ourselves, but ended up having captains choose their own teams.
We also needed a way to prove that all of the kids were running the full distance (i.e. making their way to each of the clues)…and that’s where the selfie requirement came into play! (I borrowed that strategy from a Delray Beach “Seek In The City” event I participated in earlier in the year!)
There were 9 clues…and each was spaced a little less than a mile away from the prior clue. Clue locations included: local play ground, water park, cemetery entrance/bench, flags at local university, one of the team members’ houses, crossing guard, Publix produce section, and back the school.
Rules: We gathered the kids after school, named two team captains who went ahead and took turns choosing team members, and then listed the rules. (Earlier in the day, I had driven/run around Boca Raton placing our clues in their “homes” and hoping no one would move anything before our runners had the chance to find them! While most clues were hidden, I did put balloons in certain places where I felt the clues would be tough to find. Remember, the goal was not to get the kids lost but rather for them to run the full 8-mile distance and have a lot of fun!)
Following are the rules shared with the kids:
1. All runners must reach each location. And to prove it, they would have to take a picture of the “team” a the clue location and immediately text it to me.
2. No stealing or moving clues meant for the other team. (Each location had two clues – one for the green team, and one for the blue team – which looking back was a mistake! If I could do it again, we would have had one team go in the reverse direction…to allow for a real race!)
3. No jaywalking! This was critical as the Clue Run is lots of fun…but as we always tell our runners, safety is the priority and cars don’t stop!
4. Be professional! Some of our clues were in private locations (Publix, a park, etc.) and it is important that the kids understand that and act appropriately. On that note, dressing appropriately (wearing shirts) was important as well.
And with that, we sent them off with their first clue…
A few injured runners were on-site to help out. We wanted them to feel included, and I wanted pictures of the excitement…so we provided them clue locations in advance and they were asked to take pictures. As a result, we had awesome pictures…but having them out there with cars led to a few kids on the team bailing out early and/or being lazy and jumping in the cars. Not the intention…and lesson learned for next time!
As I said earlier, two teams going to the exact same location lead to the ultimate merger of the two teams…by the time the kids finished, there was a complete merger of the two teams…luckily the winning prize (a sheet of Rice Krispy Treats) was able to be shared! But next time, we’ll have one team go in a different direction!
Try and keep the number of clues below 8! By the time the kids got to number 7…they were bored and distracted.
Questions? Comment here and I’ll share more detail as needed!
RUNNER’S EDGE BOCA RATON, RUN FOR FUNDS FLORIDA AND THE CITY OF BOCA RATON PARTNER TO LAUNCH “KIDS RUN CLUB”
Kids Running Program Open to First through Sixth Graders; Kicks Off on Tuesday, September 30, 2014
WHAT: Runner’s Edge Boca Raton is partnering with The City of Boca Raton and Run for Funds Florida, a school and organization fundraising/event management business, to launch a highly requested Kids Run Club in Boca Raton, Florida. Runner’s Edge Boca Raton and Run for Funds Florida will provide the coaching and training for the kids and manage all logistical needs for the 10-week program; The City of Boca Raton is the official sponsor. The Kids Run Club will culminate with all participants running in the Boca Raton Holiday Mile, which takes place in East Boca Raton on December 3, 2014.
WHO: The Kids Run Club is open to first through sixth graders or kids ages 7 to 11. Lacey Chimienti, a teacher and track coach in Boca Raton and a weekend Runner’s Edge Boca Raton employee, will coach the program; she will be assisted by Runner’s Edge owners (and runners) Tom Vladimir and Carol Virga.
WHEN: The program kicks off September 30, 2014. Practices will take place every Tuesday and Thursday from 3:45pm to 4:45pm from September 30, 2014 through December 2, 2014.
WHERE: Countess De Hoernle Park aka Spanish River Athletic Facility, 1000 NW Spanish River Blvd, Boca Raton, FL 33431.
DETAILS: To participate in the Runner’s Edge “Kids Run Club,” please call Runner’s Edge Boca Raton at 561-361-1950 and/or email Coach Lacey at firstname.lastname@example.org to sign-up to receive details on registration. The cost of the Kids Run Club is $75 for residents and $93.75 for non-residents.
About Runner’s Edge Boca Raton The Runner’s Edge was founded in 1996 by Tom Vladimir and Carol Virga. It is South Florida’s largest running store with about 4,500 square feet in Boca Raton. Runner’s Edge carries all major running footwear brands including Nike, Brooks, Asics, Adidas, Saucony, Pearl Izumi, Mizuno, Newton, Innov8, Five Fingers, among others. The Runner’s Edge staff consists of current and former high school, college and professional runners at all levels; all are also trained in professional running shoe fitting. Runner’s Edge was recently awarded the prestigious award for “50 Best Running stores in America.” Learn more at www.RunnersEdgeBoca.com.
Melissa Perlman returned from the Maccabiah Games in Tel Aviv with both a Gold and Bronze medal.
BOCA RATON, FL (BocaNewsNow.com) — Leading Boca Raton Public Relations Executive Melissa Perlman is back from Tel Aviv with a bronze medal and a gold medal, both earned during a spectacular performance in the Maccabiah Games.
Perlman runs BlueIvy Communications and is the assistant cross country and track coach at Spanish River High. She secured an individual bronze medal and team gold medal while in Israel competing on behalf of Team USA in the 19th Maccabiah Games.
Those of us that live here, in Boca Raton, have known it forever! Between the beaches, the warm weather, and the money to spend – Boca Raton affords a lifestyle and location for the single and fit that can’t be beat. Now the rest of the world knows it as well! Check out this great article by my good friend, Steve Dorfman, reporter at The Palm Beach Post.
If you live in Boca, you’ll totally agree. And if you don’t, you’ll be looking for a way to move here ASAP.
Good news for health-conscious singles who are ready to mingle — and live in southern Palm Beach County.
In a study released earlier this month of its multimillion-member database, the matchmaking website Chemistry.com (a subsidiary of Match.com) ranked Boca Raton No. 3 in the nation for cities whose single residents pursue a fit, healthful lifestyle, and highly value similar traits in a potential mate.
According to Chemistry.com Chief Scientific Advisor Dr. Helen Fisher, “The site tallied profile information on factors such as active hobbies, commitment to exercise, alcohol-intake patterns and smoking habits. Boca Raton ranked among the top across the board.”
Doesn’t surprise me a bit.
(Although Boca Raton ranking behind some place called “Shawnee Mission, Kansas” — a sleepy little suburb of Kansas City — was not something I would’ve expected.)
I don’t reside in Boca, but live close enough that I’m quite familiar with how high a priority its populace — both single and married — place on recreational sports, health and nutrition. To wit:
The scores of runners, cyclists and power walkers inhabiting the city’s ubiquitous residential fitness pathways every morning
The numerous, immaculately maintained — and perpetually crowded — golf courses and tennis centers (both private and public)
Gyms and health clubs of seemingly every size and ilk (including a half-dozen Cross-Fit “boxes”) permeating the primary thoroughfares, from State Road A1A west to U.S. 441.
When driving on the roads, please see the runners that must pass through a crosswalk and/or cross a street and acknowledge them. Don’t assume that you looking at the runners while wearing dark sunglasses through a glare-prone windshield is enough. Remember, you are in a large, metal vehicle. And they are simply in running shorts and a shirt.
I bring this up because over the past two weeks while running on the roads with my high school track team, driver after driver has stopped to give us the right away but never really acknowledged that we were there. They assumed stopping their car was enough. I’m not sure if they were angry, annoyed, or whatever, but they all stopped their cars and just sat there waiting for us to cross. Those that know me well, know that while running (especially with the team) I will wave my arms, yell, snap, or do whatever I have to in order to get a driver’s attention and then cross (and signal for the team to do the same).
Today, while crossing at the crosswalk at St. Andrews and Yamato roads in Boca Raton, there was a white SUV trying to make a right hand turn into Broken Sound Country Club. Even though we had the right away and the crossing sign said “go,” I made sure the kids saw the turning car and told them to wait to run in front of the vehicle. (Right hand turners are always the ones you have to watch out for when running/crossing.) The woman in the SUV was wearing dark sunglasses. She stopped her car but I still waved to make sure she saw us. She did nothing in return. She did not smile, wave okay, or anything. With her in sunglasses, making eye contact was nearly impossible. I continued to wave in hopes that she would do the same. She did not. Rather stared at me (and the group) and sat there. After another few seconds of waving and her directly staring, I was sure she was annoyed at us (but most importantly saw us) and we continued to cross.
The question is, why couldn’t she wave back? Why couldn’t she acknowledge us and confirm that she saw us? I am running across a street with numerous high school kids behind me. Is it too much to ask you to wave back and confirm you’ve made eye contact so I can be 100% positive that you see us? It’s dangerous on the roads…for cars let alone individuals (specifically kids) that are crossing streets. With all do respect, staring back at me behind a pair of dark sunglasses behind a glare-filled windshield is not enough.
Thank you for your time…Now and of course the 5 extra seconds we took earlier today while trying to cross the road.