By Debbie Adams
Kat Pascal is one of the owners of the wildly popular Farmburguesa restaurant on Pollard Street in Vinton. She and Diane Simmons of “Simply Fitness by Diane” are partnering for a fitness and nutrition program, “Burgers and Bootcamp,” offered at the nearby Vinton Farmers’ Market.
The workout session itself is free of charge; the next session is coming up on October 7 at 6 p.m.
“Why burgers and fitness?” Simmons and Pascal ask. “Why not? Let us show you how perfect this partnership is— a great workout that makes you sweat and smile and then all-natural burgers at Farmburguesa.”
“The purpose behind ‘Burgers and Bootcamp’ is to form a community that is conscientious with nutrition choices and is dedicated to increasing their level of physical fitness. We plan to provide the community with health coaching tips, recipe demonstrations, workouts and events. We want to encourage farm-to-table nutrition paired with physical activity to create a healthy lifestyle.”
“Farm to table” is the main focus of Farmburguesa, which opened in Vinton over a year ago and will be expanding to a second location in Grandin Village in late October. It has sold 42,000 burgers in the first year in business.
The concept for Burgers and Bootcamp came from wanting to show others that a fit lifestyle isn’t about restricting yourself from certain foods and following a strict plan – it’s about finding a balance and enjoying great tasting food that is locally sourced and a fitness plan that is enjoyable.
“Join us for a great workout that will make you sweat and smile!” said Simmons. “Then join us at Farmburguesa for all-natural burgers.”
“Simply Fitness by Diane” is a fitness company that provides energetic hip hop-based group fitness training paired with nutrition plans. Owner and CEO Simmons developed the company. She has personally experienced an 80-pound weight loss.
Simmons is a certified fitness trainer, certified health coach, nutrition specialist, and respiratory therapist licensed in the state of Virginia. She also holds specialties in COPD education and metabolic syndrome. Other certifications include basic life support, advanced critical life support, neonatal resuscitation, and pediatric life support. She is also a sponsored athlete of Complete Nutrition supplements and vitamins.
Simmons was awarded the “Star in the Star City “award from Roanoke Mayor Sherman Lea and the Business award from the Urban Professional League of Roanoke.
Her business is located at the Roanoke Salem Plaza on Melrose Avenue in Roanoke.
The Burgers and Bootcamp plan is for monthly events on the first Monday of every month in warm weather months at the Vinton Farmers’ Market. Pascal and Simmons are working with the Town of Vinton to find another location in Vinton for the winter months.
The workout sessions last from 6 to 7 p.m. with burgers at Farmburguesa– just a block away– afterwards. The “Bunless Burger” is recommended as a burger you can enjoy without feeling guilty– proving that a balanced diet can include burgers.
Simmons says that all skill levels are welcome. The workout is intended for teenagers and adults, both male and female. Participants are encouraged to work out at their own pace. Modifications will be provided.
“The workout can be as intense as you want it to be, or modified for your fitness level,” she says. “It combines basic fitness moves such as squats, punches, and kicks with cardio-respiratory exercise to the beat of the music.”
Simmons leads the workout sessions.
“I believe the idea of Burgers and a Bootcamp is intriguing to many people,” Simmons said. “Food and fitness go hand-in-hand and we are all looking for balance and want to have a great time finding it.”
Over 80 people turned out for the first Burgers and Bootcamp workout event on September 2 at the Farmers’ Market. Simmons has a reputation for holding quality fitness events throughout the Roanoke Valley, which definitely added to the positive turnout as well.
In an interview with Vinton Area Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Angie Chewning on Vinton Chatter on Fox Radio 910, Pascal said that Burgers and Bootcamp evolved from her own personal journey with trying to maintain nutrition and fitness, be a mom, and also own a burger restaurant.
The program demonstrates that burgers can be part of a healthy lifestyle. The workout is perfect for working mothers pulled in many directions and provides fellowship for people in common struggles with more than busy lives.
Pascal says the workouts are improving her energy level to help her keep up with her children who play soccer. The workouts have helped her feel better about her body and what she is putting into her body.
Farmburguesa has made every effort to become engaged with the Vinton community since the restaurant opened in 2018. It has partnered with and supported Vinton in community events from festivals to concerts to the Boy Scout Klondike Derby to downtown trick or treating.
The Vinton Farmers’ Market has restrooms convenient for changing to exercising clothing after work. Water will be provided. Stop by on October 7 at 6 p.m. for Burgers and Bootcamp.