EEF33646-832E-47C7-9329-A006153AD436 Exercise | Baghdad By The Bay

Posts Tagged 'exercise'

Cabrillo Playground

Cabrillo PlaygroundFinding a nice playground for your kids is a bit more difficult today. Kids need more today than the swings and slide that I used to get on what was called a playground. Thankfully there are a few new playgrounds popping up that keep this in mind and today we got to visit the newly renovated Cabrillo Playground.

The main thing with playgrounds is that they have to be fun. That’s pretty much all the kids are interested in while the parents are hoping it will be so much fun that the kids will tire themselves out so they won’t tear up the house when they get home. Well I have to say that our playground tester Rebecca didn’t hesitate when she saw the playground. Autistic children can sometimes have something that sets them off by new places, but there was no problem here.

The second she got inside she was running for the play structures and jumping and sliding around on everything. The biggest thing we noticed was that she was interested in trying everything here. Usually she just focuses on one part of a structure or finds one slide, but here it was everything she had to try out. Granted it was a weekday so it wasn’t super crowded, but there were lots of kids and all of them seemed to understand that running around and crashing into other kids wasn’t what you do in a playground. This was a good thing.

It was fun for Wife and I as well as we got some exercise chasing Rebecca around and the place overall is very nice and kept clean. I’ve often wondered about what thought people put into building playgrounds. Sand just gets everywhere and it seems like other than the occasional boy the sandbox areas are ignored by the kids [I won’t ask how the local feral cats like the sandboxes, but that’s probably part of the reason why you do see many anymore.] Then you have playgrounds shaded by trees. While that’s nice on a hot summer day for some reason they only seem to make playgrounds like that in parts of the City that are normally foggy and cold which causes a large collection of leaves and bark from the tree which break down under foot and create a nice healthy mulch. Well, it would be nice and healthy if anything was supposed to grow there, but it’s a playground, not a forest.

Thankfully, Cabrillo was well thought out since it’s in the middle of a residential block without looking like the old Russian industrial playgrounds as I used to call them. The playgrounds used to have just a depressing look about them and Cabrillo’s redo doesn’t have any of that. There are tennis courts and basketball courts that are separate from the play area along with the brilliant idea of using pavers to form hopscotch areas off to the side. I’m not sure if anyone even plays hopscotch anymore, but it just seemed like an easy addition that might make a retro comeback in the future. There’s also a concrete ping pong table that has very modern look [as opposed to Russian industrial] that I’m surprised no one ever thought of before. The net is made of punctured metal which would let you use it as a table if you were having a party there and afterwards you would just need to hose it off if you spilled anything on it. This would explain the drain holes in the ground around it. Whoever designed this did their thinking.

Around the outside of the playground which is fenced in with about a 20′ high fence are planted areas with lots of annual flowers mixed with a few perennials. It adds a nice touch and is done in such a way that kids would have to work hard to get at them. Inside planting are made up of succulents and other hard to kill plants which also just makes sense in a high traffic area.

If you have a kid, you’ll want to check this place out. The best thing is that it’s free and it’s clean. There’s nice drinking fountains and bathrooms here as well as cans out in front for people walking their dogs to deposit the waste. It’s a big plus for the neighborhood  and if you don’t mind driving to the outer Richmond it’s worth the time. Just be sure to bring some coffee and snacks as you’ll be there for awhile and you’ll have a few blocks walk to get to food and drink. You can see more in the gallery below.

Time To Change A Few Things

I’m not as active as I used to be because I spend most of my day at my computer either looking for a job or doing freelance work for others. This is caused a little problem. I’ve passed 200 lbs. I’m just shy of six feet so it’s kind of hard to tell when I’m standing, but when I sit down I definitely have a big belly now.

Most of this is probably due to a lack of exercise and the fact that my morning breakfast consisted of two pieces of toast drowned in butter. That has changed as of today. I’m back to cold cereal and fat free milk. I’ve also started walking more in an effort to help burn off some calories.

Obesity is something that’s on a lot of peoples minds [except in the Marina were everyone is thin and beautiful all the time]. I started to wonder one day why my Dad got skinny as he got older yet everyone else around him was getting fat. Then I did the math. The normal intake for an active person is between 2000-2500 calories a day depending on who you ask. Say you eat a bag of those 100 calories snack whatever past that and don’t burn it off and you do that every day. In a month you’ll have gained a pound, which leads to twelve pounds in a year and if you keep it up five years from now you will have  gain 60 pounds. Keep it up for ten years and you have an extra 120 pounds.

It’s that easy to get fat. My Dad was active well into his seventies, drank lots of beer and smoked like a chimney. Heart disease finally did him in at 83, but it happened pretty quick. My Mom on the other hand got less active after I was born and was probably over 350lbs when she died at 80. Also from heart disease, but because she was so overweight. The funeral home actually told me that I better put my hand underneath the bag they gave me that had the box that contained her ashes. It was so heavy that I had to weigh it when I got home. Her ashes weighed in at 10 lbs. My Dad and Grandmother were hardly a pound.

I don’t want to be like that. I like having mobility and the best way to keep that up with with a little bit of exercise. I don’t need to jog. I can just walk and mow my lawn and pull weeds like my Dad did. When I used to do that I was down to 178 lbs. So today I’m making a change because I want to see my daughter grow up and not be a faint memory to her.