#FitBlogNYC – 2014 Fitness Magazine Blogger Meet & Tweet

Last week I was lucky enough to be invited to attend #FitBlogNYC – Fitness Magazine’s Blogger event. This was the third year of the event and the second time I attended. Last year, I knew nobody and I was so nervous going into the event. This year? It felt like a party, reuniting – and meeting in person – so many friends and bloggers I’ve had the pleasure of getting to know over the last year. Fitness Magazine really knows how to put on a blogger bash, as well. This is definitely the highlight of the year for many NYC based bloggers.

#FitBlogNYC - 2014 Fitness Magazine Blogger Meet & Tweet

First up - the food. Yup, starting with the important stuff (given that I am hungry about every two hours these days, it was wonderful to be well taken care of in the eating department!). There was a lovely spread set out for breakfast, as we all mingled before the start. Fresh fruit, gluten free pastries, juices, water and coffee, as well as fresh green juice provided by one of the sponsors, Oster Versa, who kept them coming all day.

#FitBlogNYC - 2014 Fitness Magazine Blogger Meet & Tweet

After Fitness Editor-in-Chief Betty Wong welcomed all of us, she introduced our first speaker, personal trainer and former pro-basketballer Holly Rilinger, who spoke on The New Formula for Fitness Success.

#FitBlogNYC - 2014 Fitness Magazine Blogger Meet & Tweet

  • Exercise is not one size fits all. What works for you may not work the same for someone else. Experiment, try new things, find what it is that makes you happy and keeps you motivated – Holly believes there’s a workout out there that will suit you – you just have to find it.
  • Pay attention to the way you work out. Plan it out ahead of time, so you’re not doing the really exhausting work first, leaving you unable to finish a workout.
  • It’s possible to get an effective workout in 20 or 30 minutes, but when asked about the 7 minute workout popular right now, Holly replied that if you have 7 minutes for exercise, she would spend it sitting down with your calendar to work out how to add more workout time to your schedule. ;)
  • Sleep is underrated and incredibly important. The recovery aspects of sleep, like the Human Growth Hormone released during REM cycles, is as important as the workout itself.
  • For fitness professionals, Holly recommends branding yourself – find the one thing you offer that no-one else can and run with it. Be authentic – people are drawn to authenticity.

Next up was Dr. Marci A. Goolsby, from the Hospital for Special Surgery in NYC. The HSS is really involved with New York Road Runners and Dr. Goolsby was speaking about extreme athletic pursuits and training, like CrossFit, marathons and mud runs, so I was looking forward to hearing her speak. She didn’t disappoint.

#FitBlogNYC - 2014 Fitness Magazine Blogger Meet & Tweet

  • Workouts aren’t inherently dangerous. It’s whether the workout is a good fit for you and your body, as well as how quickly and intelligently you get into the workout that can make it dangerous.
  • The biggest problems that lead to injury in the majority of Dr. Goolsby’s athlete patients are inappropriate training progression (i.e. too much, too soon); lack of strength training (preaching to the choir with me on that point!); and not adjusting nutrition for the amount of exercise being done.
  • For avoiding DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness), Dr. Goolsby’s number one advice was to keep moving during recovery – right away after your workout, then try to keep moving throughout the day.
  • Female-specific issues that are very common include lack of bladder control (not dangerous, but frustrating), and amenorreah, or loss of menstruation. Amenorreah, while common in female athletes, is not normal. Dr. Goolsby advises seeing your doctor as soon as you notice this happening. Not only can it affect fertility, if it’s due in part to inappropriate nutrition for how you’re working out, it can also develop into a form of disordered eating.
  • Pay attention to symptoms of overtraining. These include your heart rate increasing during rest and exercise, your immune system breaking down (catching all of the bugs), poor sleep, a higher rate of perceived exertion during exercise (i.e. a workout feeling harder than it should), or amenorreah.
  • Dr. Goolsby is a huge fan of working out during pregnancy (woo hoo!), saying it’s fantastic for mama, baby, delivery and recovery.

The morning sessions wrapped up with the hysterical Carla Hall, a former Top Chef competitor and a host on The Chew. Carla was such an entertaining speaker, making us laugh while sharing some awesome tips on healthy cooking.

#FitBlogNYC - 2014 Fitness Magazine Blogger Meet & Tweet

  • Carla’s philosophy is to cook with love. If you’re in a bad mood, the only thing you should be making is a dinner reservation. :)
  • Spices are your secret weapon. If you can only cook one protein well, but you learn 18 different spice combinations that can be used in a sauce, as a rub, for a marinade etc, then suddenly you have 18 dishes you’re able to cook.
  • Don’t be afraid to mix cultures with ingredients and technique. For example, making an Italian pesto with a Southern staple, collards.
  • Carla’s must-have kitchen equipment for healthy cooking include a non-stick skillet, so you use less oil; a baking pan with a rack so you can ‘oven fry’ instead of deep frying foods; and measuring oil rather than free pouring.
  • Don’t fear fat! Leave some fat, or add some in, or your dish won’t be satisfying  and you’ll end up eating more overall.

Once the morning sessions were over, I was STARVING again (surprise!) so I was so happy to find an amazing lunch spread for us:

#FitBlogNYC - 2014 Fitness Magazine Blogger Meet & Tweet

During the break, we had a chance to visit with all the awesome sponsors with booths at the event, all of whom were SO generous to us. Seriously generous – check out the gift bag we all left with:

#FitBlogNYC - 2014 Fitness Magazine Blogger Meet & Tweet

The sponsors included Balance Bar, Dermalogica, Eddie Bauer, Hoka One OneLuna, Oster Versa, Pure Protein, Tonalin and Tria. There were so many other companies who included gifts in our bag, including Reebok, Sparkly Soul, Erica Sara Designs (I met Erica in person at the event and she is lovely), Vega and so many more. Erica Sara is offering a 15% discount with the code FIT15 – use it! Her jewelry is SO pretty, you will love it.

And here’s what made it such an awesome day – all my lovely ladies! I caught up with friends I’ve met in real life before and met some favorite bloggers for the first time in person, too. One woman working at a sponsor booth remarked that we were all so friendly with each other and excited to hang out and it’s so true – we get to know each other so well through our blogs, that when we meet in person, it’s like reuniting with an old friend.

#FitBlogNYC - 2014 Fitness Magazine Blogger Meet & Tweet

Top, L-R: Nellie, me, Brittany, Kimberly, Cassandre, Patti and Allie. LOVE these ladies!

Bottom L: Michele and Allie. Bottom R: Me and Laura.

#FitBlogNYC - 2014 Fitness Magazine Blogger Meet & Tweet

Top L: Me, Allie, Christine.  Top R: Amanda and Allie

Bottom L: Brittany & Nellie getting the shoe shots! Bottom R: Susan and me (yay for meeting a Fit Mama Friday in real life!)

#FitBlogNYC - 2014 Fitness Magazine Blogger Meet & Tweet

Bloggers hard at work – there was some serious tweeting going on.

My blogger fail was not getting photos of two of my faves – Gabrielle (who is running NYC as her first marathon in just a couple of weeks!) and Lindsay, even though we had a chance to chat.

The final session of the day was the blogging panel discussion on making your brand your business, with Instagram star Laura Sykora (I love following her incredible photos on Instagram), Bianca Jade, aka MizzFit (who was a great speaker), and RD Anne Mauney, aka fANNEtastic Food.

#FitBlogNYC - 2014 Fitness Magazine Blogger Meet & Tweet

I could just write the takeaway was to Be Authentic (which is I think something every single speaker of the day mentioned as well),  but there were lots of amazing tips and advice shared with us.

  • Bianca: Emulate bloggers you love. Don’t copy, but build your own unique voice around concepts you love in other blogs.
  • Anne: Just jump in, then refine as you go. It doesn’t have to be perfect when you start out – it’s an ongoing, changing medium.
  • Laura: Don’t let your ego get in the way. Not everyone is going to like you, so just accept that and keep being yourself – you’ll attract the people who do appreciate what you’re doing.
  • Bianca: Work with other bloggers, collaborate and network, don’t compete. Blogging can be such a strong community and help you to build your brand as well.
  • In terms of working with brands, all three speakers advised only forming relationships or agreeing to work with brands that make sense for you and your blog. If it’s not the right fit, or you’re doing it for money with no passion, then your blogging voice will reflect that and your readers can tell (and are turned off).
  • Bianca: If you don’t know how to do something, you can learn it, even if it’s simply through googling. And remember, your mistakes help you become better at your craft.

I’m so grateful to Fitness Magazine for inviting me to this event and to all the sponsors for the amazing products we received (there will be lots of mini-reviews coming up as I try everything out!). It was so inspiring to hear some amazing women share their expertise and it’s always wonderful to see blogging friends in person.

Bloggers, have you met other bloggers in real life?

What’s the best work event you’ve attended?

Scenes from a weekend #47

Scenes from a weekend #47

It was a lovely weekend. In case you missed The Run Report, I told you guys I'm back to feeling normal - nausea free and more energy. (Well, the energy part has been assisted by some timely naps).  So, I got some great workouts done this weekend. Along with a 3 mile run on Friday, I did an hour on the elliptical on Saturday afternoon. I say … [Continue reading]

The Run Report – this little preggo went a runnin’

The Run Report - this little preggo went a runnin

You guys, I am feeling good. It's not a fluke anymore, I'm definitely feeling like myself, albeit with a bump out front (more on that towards the end of this post). So, the Run Report! This week has been about easing back into running. A couple of weeks ago, when I went out for a 4 mile run, I did it by feel at what ended up being a 9:47 pace. … [Continue reading]

Friday on my mind…

Friday on my mind - FitBlogNYC Fine Fit Day

Happy Friday, my lovelies! I've had a wonderful week, mainly because I am feeling normal again! Not too many headaches, nausea gone and a little more energy makes me a much happier bunny. I am also so happy it's FRIDAY and the weather is beautiful in NYC. Should be a lovely weekend. Again, no Fit Mama Friday, but the good news is I've had some … [Continue reading]

Running Tips – Making Races Fit Your Training Plan

Running Tips - Making Races Fit Your Training Plan

I originally wrote this as a guest post for Carla Bruns' blog Real Into, which sadly is no longer online. Carla was kind enough to agree for me to publish this as part of the Running Tips series, since it's no longer available elsewhere. It definitely helped Carla - she used the advice to run a  15K race in lieu of a planned 9 mile long run, with … [Continue reading]

Scenes from a weekend #46

Scenes from a weekend #46

If you saw my photos from Instagram this weekend, you know we went on a little out-of-the-city adventure, which involved apple picking and a pumpkin patch: The apple picking was so much fun - I had never done it before, but I think it will have to be a yearly tradition for us. Although I was concerned we would never pry Roman loose from this … [Continue reading]

What I’ve Been Cooking – cod and salmon and kale chips, oh my!

What I've Been Cooking - Cod with Tomato, Onion, Olives & Feta

I am not so great at meal planning and prepping. It rarely happens. But this past week, I was a cooking machine! I got inspired by some fish recipes in Real Simple this month. I don't cook fish a lot, but if I do, I always bake it in foil or paper. So, when I saw six ways to cook fish packets, I was IN! Also, I'm trying to eat a little more fish … [Continue reading]

The Run Report – realizing I’m not superwoman

The Run Report - very little running and a whole lotta link love

Oh hi, running friends! It's been a while since I last wrote The Run Report, I know. It's a tough post to write when there hasn't been a whole lot of running going on...! Since I was being sneaky and hiding my pregnancy from you guys for a while, I thought I'd go back and take you through how my running has been going throughout the first … [Continue reading]

Scenes from a weekend #45

Scenes from a weekend #45

Here was the big news from my weekend: After a few weeks of feeling pretty blah, this weekend I felt way better. I actually got out for a glorious run on Sunday afternoon. It was 4 miles, slower than I'm used to, but it was so good to be back out there. It finally felt like Fall here this weekend and the park is looking gorgeous in its … [Continue reading]

Fit Mama Friday – Meet Wendy

Fit Mama Friday - Meet Wendy

On Fit Mama Friday today, meet Wendy Ennis, a full-time mama and a part-time writer. Wendy and her husband, T. Scott Ennis, are the proud parents of their 22 month old daughter, Susanna and are expecting their second daughter very soon (Wendy is 8 months pregnant). Both Wendy and her husband live a life of gratitude, partly because of what they … [Continue reading]