78704 Roundup: Dance Party with Monica

1526632_197896657077988_1791837052_nFor the 78704 Roundup, I planned to write about everything from profiles of cool south Austinites to awesome things to do in this particular zip, and I get to do both in my very first post. Say hello to Monica, the best dance+fitness instructor around. My best friend Melissa and I discovered Monica’s Zumba classes at Gold’s Gym a few years ago, and we have followed her around ever since- and we’re not the only ones! Monica turns “an hour at the gym” into pure fun. She now teaches at Lifetime Fitness as well as local dance studio Tiempo, right on South Congress. She’s also a born-and-raised local, a rare breed in this ever growing city. In addition to working a full-time job and teaching dance classes, she’s also nearly 8 months pregnant, so a big thanks to Monica for taking the time to answer a few questions about herself, and Austin. 🙂

Why is Dance so much more fun than a boring gym workout?

 The music, moves and energy you find in a Zumba class is what makes Zumba a more fun workout than your regular gym routine. The music is fast and upbeat, the moves are fun and easy to follow, and the energy is addicting and exhilarating. You also leave class with a feeling of euphoria from releasing endorphins.

What is your “day job”?

 During the normal work hours, I am an Enforcement Coordinator for the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality. I monitor compliance schedules and implementation of ordering provisions for formal enforcement actions until a case is resolved or closed; I conduct reviews of technical reports and determine compliance with applicable statutes, rules and orders.


She shares my love for dachshunds, too.

Where are you favorite places to eat in south Austin?

 Arandas! My favorite authentic Mexican Food in Austin. Umi – The longhorn roll is amazing! They also have a great happy hour! Amy’s Ice Cream – Desert is my favorite meal of the day! Chuys – I love their Tex Mex! Pho Thaison – Their vermicelli bowls are amazing!

What are you favorite “hidden gems” in the city that not many others know about?

Hamilton Pool – It’s very nice and relaxing. McKinney State Falls Park – Nice hiking and good swimming spots. Thirsty Planet (this one is a little outside of Austin but worth the drive): I don’t really like beer or visiting breweries but my husband loves them. This one is my favorite to go to and I actually enjoy it there. The people who work there are friendly and inviting. The facility is small and beautifully located in the hill country. Bull Creek District Park – Nice place for hiking and swimming. Juice Spot – The best smoothies and juice I have ever had. The service is always great and the drinks are amazing! Absolutely the freshest in town!


 Thanks for the awesome tips, Monica!

If you want to have a blast, check out Monica’s class schedule over on Facebook.

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