Yesterday started just like any other Tuesday morning. Breakfast in the car while driving to work…. I was already at my desk working when I receive an email from my husband that he had sent out to my family and copied to me. The subject read “Khania- The healthiest person I know”. When I opened the link I was surprised (and a little embarrassed) that my husband had nominated me for this award on the Healthy State website. After a few minutes I also started getting some notifications from Facebook that he had asked friends to join him and re-nominate me. I thought to myself “but why me? There are people out there that do so much more than me”. Several friends joined and re-nominated me, writing some very nice messages along the way. Now I was really surprised!
In the evening, when I got home from work I asked him where did all this come from? He responded: “I heard it on the radio and thought of you. I’ll show you the letter I wrote to nominate you”….
Here is his letter.
I nominated Khania Contreras for Health State’s health and fitness award because she is a regular person with an extra-ordinary commitment to health, fitness, and happiness that is contagious beyond words.
Just over two years ago my wife and I were overweight, eating junk food, doing no exercise, and probably enjoying wine a little too much for a healthy body. We (she) decided that would change. She started exercising, joined a bootcamp (Jungle Fitness), started eating better, and signed up for her first 5k (Susan G Komen 5k, 2009) – all the while taking me along for the ride. Soon after the 5k, we were hooked.
Since that time, Khania has changed her life and mine, and has inspired others through her blog “Khania’s Journal: Healthy Living in Progress” (https://khaniasjournal.wordpress.com/). She has run a full marathon, 4 or 5 half marathons, dozens of 5k and 10k races, and even 5 or 6 triathlons. She has inspired me to do the same, and with her help I have lost nearly 50 lbs, recently completed my first half Ironman triathlon and am now signed up for the 2012 Arizona full Ironman triathlon. Today, Khania continues to work out regularly with Jungle Fitness Boot camp, swims twice a week at the JCC Swim Gym, is an active member of Miami Pace, and occasionally joins me for long bike rides on Key Biscayne or down to Homestead on the weekends.
Khania’s commitment to healthy living goes beyond just exercise and blogging. Khania has become a first-rate healthy-living chef. Her diet centers on the Paleo diet, but is not strictly limited by any particular fad diet. Instead, she tries to focus on natural unprocessed foods, eats organic whenever possible, stays away from fried foods, and eats as many fruits and veggies as she can get her hands on. Every week she takes a day to cook for the week. In that day she cooks a few known dishes and then spends the rest of the time experimenting with new recipes and original healthy food ideas of her own. Her cook book/recipe list has become quite extensive (filling two large 3 ring binders) and is growing every day. She is always reading books on nutrition and diet, and is hungry for knowledge on the subject. Her wide knowledge of healthy and delicious food is such that both her trainer at Jungle Fitness (his name is Edwin Lopez and he was named “fittest person” in S.Fla. by SoBe Magazine in 2010) as well as my triathlon coach, Gian Gil of Reaction Coaching, have both recommended Khania’s blog to others interested in eating healthy.
Her commitment to healthy living and diet in particular has created quite a buzz among people we know. Her blog (up and running since October 4, 2010) has gained a loyal and growing following among both people we already know and “Internet friends” that were previously strangers to us. In fact, she was recently approached to create and run a healthy “cantina” food delivery service. However, she declined as her work with the elderly would likely be compromised by the double duty of organizing and running the “cantina.” That’s right! She works with the elderly. She is a social worker and case manager with Amerigroup Insurance and is tasked with overseeing elderly clients typically living in assisted living facilities, and her duties include evaluating the mental and physical health of her clients.
Khania Contreras is an ideal candidate for your healthiest person award. She eats well, exercises regularly, inspires others to do the same, and still manages to have fun. And the icing on the cake? She does all of this without seeking financial gain. Khania is not a personal trainer, a paid chef, or a consultant. I am not nominating her to increase her for-profit-health profile as she has no for-profit-health profile. Khania simply has a sound and healthy life style that can be matched by few.
This is by far the best compliment ever! It’s one thing when someone tells you something but to see it written, specially when shared in public that really makes it special for me. Thanks so much to my husband, he made my Tuesday not just another boring weekday but a special day!!!!! ❤ ❤ ❤