Thursday, October 3, 2013

FitSocial Recap, Part 1...From Boston to Boulder

A couple of days after my birthday this past June, I booked a "Rocky Mountain High" adventure on a whim because I decided that I needed to "travel more"...

...BEST decision ever!

I predicted in my last blog post that I was going to love Colorado and I couldn't have been more accurate.

The motivation for booking this particular trip was to attend the 2013 Fitness & Health Social Media Conference, aka FitSocial, held in Boulder and Denver.

FitSocial is a cool blend of blogging, social media and hard science... basically, it's a conference FOR fitness professionals BY fitness professionals, with a sprinkling of social media specialists as well.  The agenda included presentations from esteemed industry experts, as well as the chance to meet peers from across the country!



Boulder - Day 1
I was meeting my co-worker and good friend, Caroline from Trendy Trainer, at the Denver Airport and since her flight was arriving about an hour after mine, I went ahead and picked up our cute little matchbox car rental car while waiting.

The very first thing I noticed when I got on the road was snow-capped mountains!!  Awww! I don’t know how Coloradans don’t just stare at them all day long…

Highway mountain views... pic does not do it justice

We initially planned to participate in the optional Flatirons hike that afternoon but by the time we got to the hotel we were STARVING and I had a bit of an altitude headache... also, both of our phones had about 2% battery left.  Not to mention, I really wanted to do some exploring since it was my 1st time in Colorado. Luckily Caroline was on the same page!

So we did what any normal Bostonian would do… found the nearest brewery for some yummy local craft beer and food!  

Immediately upon arriving to the Pearl Street area in Boulder, I loved it… ample parking, cute shops, street musicians and a slew of brewpubs to choose from.

We decided on the Mountain Sun Brewery & Pub and grabbed a fantastic people-watching spot on the outdoor patio. Come to find out, just about everyone else in this place was from Boston… talk about a home away from home!

Sampling our hearts out...
Although Caroline and I work together, we don’t have too many opportunities to chat on the job. So, we ordered sandwiches and a sampling of beers from our awesome server, Natalie, and enjoyed a laid-back, hours-long lunch while catching each other up on our lives.  And every so often, Natalie would introduce us to yet another person from Boston (I’m not kidding, they were everywhere)… it was a great start to our trip!

After indulging in a little pampering (manis!) and finally getting to charge our phones (yayyy for nail salons with iPhone chargers), we grabbed take-out dinner from Whole Foods' hot bar and went back to the hotel...

Of course, not before discovering THIS lovely memento on the car's windshield...

*sigh*... ok Colorado, now you're starting to feel a little TOO much like home...

Boulder - Day 2
Day 2 started off pretty much the same way Day 1 ended... headache like whoa despite practically turning Advil into a food group.  Damn you, altitude!

A relaxing YogaFit class helped me feel a little better, as did the Nature's Path-sponsored breakfast. There was an expo with all of FitSocial's sponsors and partners in attendance, and it was great to meet the folks behind these brands, but I was still not myself... Altitude sickness is no joke!

A quick snapshot of all the brands represented!



I definitely did not want to miss the start of the conference though...

Quick nap + large bottle of water + happy face = good to go :)

The 1st presenter was one of my favorites - Dr. James O. Hill, PhD, Executive Director of the Anschutz Health & Wellness Center, co-founder of America on the Move and an internationally known expert on weight loss, weight management and obesity.

Dr. Hill presented on Obesity, Health & Physical Fitness and shared staggering facts about the state of our nation's health as well as his tips and theories on what needs to be done to deal with it.  I took way too many notes to condense into this post but I intend on consolidating them in a future blog post, along with the rest of the conference speakers.

Dr. Hill imparting his wisdom

Next session was "Building Your Brand & Monetizing Your Fitness Expertise" with twin sisters Kymberly Williams-Evans, MA and Alexandra Williams, MA of Fun and Fit.  They presented lots of helpful information for working with brands, generating income through your blog and staying true to your brand.

Posing with Alexandra & Kymberly!
The 3rd and final session of the day was with Tracy Corwin & Scott French of Wave Cloud, who gave lots of great insights into writing an e-book.  This is something I've been wanting to do and they did not leave a single stone unturned.


Presentations done --- time to MOVE!

We took a hard "HIIT-ing" high intensity interval class with the energetic Chris Freytag of ACE, then took quick showers in time for dinner at the hotel.

Although my altitude headache had vanished by this point, Caroline and I were exhausted and decided to go to bed after dinner, in lieu of a final night out in Boulder.

In true Boston fashion though, we more than made up for it the following night in Denver :)

Stay tuned for Part 2...!


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