People On Bikes

Health, Habits & Honor: Celebrating Amanda Beal’s Community Influence by Biking

If anyone knows simple life changes can make a monumental impact, it is Amanda Beal. Her biking story begins in 2017, when her doctor told her: “If you want to walk the second part of your life, you need to start biking or swimming for regular exercise.”

For Amanda, biking started as a way of exercising, but soon became one of her passions. Her biking routine, along with additional lifestyle changes, allowed Amanda to lose 100 pounds. Her physical health, including pain relief in both knees caused by osteoarthritis, has improved since she began her biking journey.

In 2019, Amanda began biking to her job at Seminole County’s Florida Department of Health on Fridays. To celebrate Florida’s Bicycle Month in March, Amanda decided to bike to work on Tuesdays and Thursdays. She continued these new habits into April and encouraged her fellow staff members to participate as well. With May being National Bicycle Month, it was only fitting for Amanda to challenge herself to bike to work every workday.

She hopes to continue her biking habits in upcoming months while also transitioning to different modes of transportation, including the SunRail and Uber. “I would love to get rid of my car payment and auto insurance,” Amanda said. “The health benefit of biking would be the icing on top.”

Amanda’s encouragement for bicyclists was recognized after Amanda’s friend of 20 years, Cherie Sanders, nominated her for The Florida Bicycle Association 2019 Special Recognition of the Year award. The Florida Bicycle Association was honored to award Amanda’s hard work and dedication to bicycling as well as her efforts to uplift other bicyclists.

Amanda’s personal biking journey quickly left an impression on her community. She shares biking encouragement through her social media by using the hashtag #bikesunite on many of her posts. To motivate her co-workers to bike to work, Amanda created her own motto “Let’s Roll Seminole.” One of her social media posts documented her co-worker’s first time biking to work.

A graphic of Amanda Beal’s motto: “Let’s Roll Seminole” used to encourage her co-worker’s at the Department of Health

To promote bike safety within the community, Amanda became a certified bicycle helmet fitter in May 2019. She volunteers her time with various outreach events including initiatives held by Seminole County Department of Health or Orange County’s Best Foot Forward program and even coordinated a group to participate in the Department of Transportation’s “Safe Mobility for Life Week.” She is also an active member of the League of American Bicyclists, the Florida Bicycle Association and works part-time with the Best Foot Forward program.

Amanda Beal interacting with visitors at a Best Foot Forward community outreach tabling event

Despite the coronavirus pandemic, Amanda continues to share her enthusiasm toward biking: “I continually share with others that being outside in fresh air and sunlight is one of the best things you can do to combat COVID-19 and stay healthy.”

The Florida Bicycle Association, Amanda’s friends and her Department of Health co-workers celebrate Amanda’s bicycling accomplishments and the contribution Amanda has made to the biking community.

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