Thursday, August 21, 2014

IDEA World 2014 Day 3 Recap: Break The Rules

While the first two days of IDEA World were spent with the hundred or so BlogFest peeps, day 3 and 4 of the conference allowed me to see what a typical IDEA World is like a part of the larger whole (believe 12,000 fitness professionals attended). With that said, I was glad to get in a little extra time on day 3 with just my fellow bloggers and Under Armour's Shauna Harrison!


Shauna led our group in a 6 am workout. It was a circuit style training and everyone tried out the new Armour 39 heart rate monitor for athletes. Not going to lie, I was about 10 minutes late coming from off property (because the parking garage didn't open until 6 am), so I didn't get mine set up in time. However, I'm looking forward to testing it out at home in coming weeks and will share my review with ya'll on here! I'm really pumped to try it out because heart rate training is something I haven't really focused on in the past but as my fitness goals are changing, I'm becoming very interested in training more athletic style and pushing myself to the limits. This should be a great tool to help make sure I'm challenging myself! The circuit workout was great and challenging. It felt really awesome being amongst everyone training together and there were a number of workout moves I had never tried before. Fitness disks were a part of our workout at the end and WOW, those moves were pretty tough! If you're ever looking for a small piece of equipment you can use at home, those would be a good option! 

After the workout came the educational sessions and first for me was a NASM class called "True Metabolic Conditioning." Out of all the sessions I attended throughout the four days, this was the most technical and science-based one. I learned a lot but it definitely felt the most like being back in college compared to the other sessions. 

Sarah and I attended many of the same sessions throughout IDEA World!
Out of so many classes to pick from, kind of funny we kept ending
up at the same ones! It was awesome getting to know her more, and
SUPER cool to see her transformation on Instagram after the fact!
Be sure to check out her blog (link below).
'
Funny enough, fellow fitness blogger Sarah Martinez of SweetBlondesFitLife.com was in that morning session and we had a chance to chat a bit. She was heading off to the Transformation Saturday session next, while I was scheduled for a TRX class. Now normally I am a huge "rule follower," so I got a little nervous when thinking about switching classes last minute, but in the end I'm so glad I did. 

While TRX would have been a cool session to attend, the session I wound up attending was mentally and emotionally fulfilling, so thank you Sarah for the suggestion there! Like on the first day of IDEA World, tears flowed a little bit at one point while listening to Anita Moorjani, author of the book Dying to Be Me. Stay tuned for a follow up post that goes into this session as there were so many takeaways I'd love to share with everyone here (but don't want to get too heavy on ya'll in one post)! 

The Transformation Saturday Keynote
Speaker lineup at IDEA World
Because that Transformation Saturday session was so powerful, I felt compelled to go to the other Transformation Saturday keynote session later that day featuring Tara Stiles. Her session was called "Make Your Own Rules--How to Achieve Your Most Radiant Self From the Inside Out." Can you tell I like the self-help sessions? ha... And because of the session title, I decided to "break the rules" of the session I originally signed up for and go with the flow, instead. 

This also was a phenomenal session. We did a lot of breathing exercises and I loved hearing Tara's background story (she was essentially "discovered" because of her YouTube Yoga videos--e.g., yoga for when you're hungover, yoga for when you don't like your boyfriend, etc.). One of my favorite stories was one about her childhood. 

When Tara was about five years old, she would go out into the woods, sit down, close her eyes, breathe (basically meditating). She would see colors and wanted to "bring these colors to other people." She ran home and told her parents and of course they looked at her like she was crazy. Fast forward many years later and now Tara is one of the top yoga instructors in the world and owns a studio in New York City. She truly is that small town girl success story. She had this gift from a young age, one that many did not get and she even joked throughout the presentation how her parents still don't quite know what she does. Tara was super down to earth person and pretty much made me want to become "best friends forever" with her. So of course, I bought her yoga book and had it signed! Maybe one day I will become one of her Strala yoga instructor, but I should probably do a bit more yoga practice consistently throughout the rest of the year (dream big, right?) ;-)  

Tara Stiles! Fit girl crushing so hard! :-) 
'
My last session was back to the more personal training type of learning and it was a class called "The Latest in Pre- and Postnatal Fitness Training." The class was interesting and beneficial to me because I have not taken any pregnancy specific training classes previously, so I learned a ton. It's an area that's been receiving lots of buzz lately as we're learning more about pregnancy and fitness. Looking forward to continuing to learn more in this area, especially as my client demographic changes over time (e.g., hopefully continuing to work with current clients who eventually become fit mamas)! 

Gearing up for the pre- and postnatal fitness class with some equipment:
Bosu ball; disks and resistance bands

Once that session was over, I hit the road to stay at one of my best friend's Crystal's in LA. She was my freshman year college roommate and it's always a breathe of fresh air out here in California when we get to see each other. It's truly a little bit of upstate New York goodness wrapped into west coast love. And I may have had sushi again... second night in a row... with a good friend and good convo... Living the dream. YOLO.   




Monday, August 18, 2014

LittleMsFitness Semester Support College Fitness Program Launch

LittleMsFitness Semester Support Online Personal Training Program

While I have many wonderful memories of my college years, it was also a time when I was also super confused, especially when it came to fitness and health. I went to school truly fearing I would gain the "freshman 15." Looking back, if I had known a few fitness lifestyle strategies, it would have helped alleviate a TON of anxiety while also moving me closer to my fitness goals. 

If you are heading off to college or know someone who is, consider hiring me as your online personal trainer and guide for the ENTIRE SEMESTER! This makes for a perfect gift for anyone you know who is fearful of trying to balance fitness and a social life at college on their own.  

Email littlemsfitness@gmail.com to sign up or find out more information and receive a free online consultation to see if we would be a great match for each other. Sign up by Sept. 1. Payment plans are available (I was a college student once, too)! :-)  

Sunday, August 17, 2014

IDEA World BlogFest Day 2 Recap

Rockin' my T-Shirt and bright neon kicks from Reebok
 during day 2! Purple is one of my favorite colors and
anything bright or shiny is a good thing in my books!  

Day 2 of IDEA World was even better than the first day if you can believe that. The group of blog fest attendees kicked off the morning with a 7 am boot camp workout which included a lot of partner moves which was a fun way to switch it up. I have some ideas from that workout session to bring to the couple I train weekly.

Post Boot Camp Group Shot Courtesy of BlogFest 

Next we got a Tweet Break which was presented by Propel water. Growing up, we often had Propel in the house because my mom got it as a drink to consume more water. To be honest, I hadn't had it in years but I definitely downed a few bottles throughout the conference that were handed out. I forgot how tasty it is. My favorite flavor was the black cherry (definitely grabbed about three of those throughout the four days haha)!

After the break, we had two amazing speaker sessions to attend. The first was Cassey Ho, the creator of Blogliates. Cassey is super cool, down to earth and gave out such great information for anyone looking to become involved in the online fitness industry. The back story of how she got started with a YouTube channel (before that was the "thing" to do) is fascinating. While Cassey shared a number of useful tips, she also shared her failures, which is always helpful to hear from someone who is now so successful. What I really liked about Cassey is how real she seemed. Her pet peeves are ones such as people buying fake followers ... so true, right?!

Photo from my girl over at fitfulfocus 
(my phone did not get great shots during this session)

Next was Jillian Michaels and I must say that it seemed like the majority of those in the audience had similar feelings toward Jillian at the start of the presentation. Many (including myself) weren't the biggest fans because of how she's been portrayed on shows like The Biggest Loser. However, by about five minutes into her lecture, I'm pretty sure everyone in the audience was having mad hard girl crushes on her! She truly is a phenomenal speaker and her outlook on fitness is a balanced approach. Jillian's big pieces of advice and thoughts on how she has become so successful include the following concepts:

  1. Fitness is not just about building a body. It is a tool in the tool box to help people build better lives. 
  2. Define SPECIFIC, INFORMED AND FOCUSED Goals
  3. Know Your Weaknesses 
  4. Keep an open mind (she has a very holistic approach to fitness which I truly loved to hear...she may seem super hard core but she is not one to be into any fad or extreme diets... she follows the 80/20 rule)
  5. Think WHY NOT ME?  This is the one that really hit home because she made it seem like this part alone is what made her stand apart from her peers (even the smarter and more talented ones). She knew she could do it and feels she deserves it. Why don't more of us feel that way? We all deserve it! 
Next, we had another Tweet Break and did a little mini workout with fitness circles led by Merrithew Health & Fitness!

Fitness Circle Selfie! 
We got into some nitty gritty sessions (and yes, all this happened before lunch). We had lawyer Ashley Long speak to us about legal advice for blogging (very useful). Then came CPA and health coach Jessica Mishra to talk to us about finances (extremely useful) and finally came Katy Widrick who came in and killed it with a ton of super useful tips in regards to blogging and PR. Really this entire portion of the day focused on the Business of Blogging. I learned a lot but also was very happy that the amount of information I knew in advance from doing research and listening to podcasts in recent months. It was a great mix so I still learned a ton but didn't walk away TOO overwhelmed, which I was slightly concerned about going into the conference to begin with. 

Next, we had free time so once again I stumbled around through the expo checking out lots of cool brands and that was when I sat down to write my day one recap in the Reebok One Lounge. 

Hanging with my teammate and friend Rachel Schwartz and
Natalie Minh at the Natalie Minh Interactive expo booth!

The afternoon session was called "Bloggers Tell All" and was one I enjoyed listening to. Three professional bloggers, Julie Fagan, Gina Harney and Monica Olivas also known as bloggers Peanut Butter Fingers, Fitnessista, and Run Eat Repeat were all super fun to listen to speak. Again, just overall super down to earth ladies with great advice. A big takeaway for me in this session is the importance of bloggers empowering other bloggers. I already felt a good connection to everyone in the room, but it was apparent these three have become true friends because of their love of fitness and blogging and it was really cool to see that. The world of fitness is often a competitive one and it's important to keep in mind that there's always room for more people at the top. Helping someone else doesn't take away from you but only makes you grow yourself! 

(L-R): Monica, Julie and Gina
Original photo from BlogFest

Also, a big key takeaway for me came when I heard how long Julie, Gina and Monica have been blogging. They now do this as their full time careers but it didn't happen overnight. It often seems like so many people "hit it big" quick that it can be discouraging to others, but in reality it all takes time, which is why it's important to enjoy the journey, too, and not always be looking one step ahead at what's next. 

Next we had a mini session with Under Armour to discuss their new I WILL WHAT I WANT campaign. This is one I already mentioned in a past post just because I loved it so much when seeing the Mistry Copeland commercial the first time. We got to take a look at a behind the scenes film of the UA Women who are part of this campaign, which was really empowering. It was also SO cool to meet Shauna Harrison who I've followed on Instagram for quite a while now. She always puts out helpful and interesting workout moves if you're interested in checking her out, as well. 

Meeting Shauna Harrison!

Next came a yoga class taught by Tara Stiles. It was my first time really hearing about Tara (and after realizing how AMAZING and also famous in the yoga fitness world, I feel like I've been living under a rock). It was definitely the most people I've ever done a yoga class with, so it felt really powerful in the room... Not to mention the mood lighting in the room was peaceful. That's perfect considering it was called the "Showcase Sanctuary." And Sanctuary it was. 

Yoga with Tara Stiles powered by Reebok

Then, six fellow fit bloggers did the Lightning Round presentations. This was one of my favorite parts of all four days so I'm going to save that recap for an entirely separate blog entry as I'd love to spotlight all of these ladies you should check out! 

Finally, we had our parting BlogFest party where I got to meet even more fellow bloggers that I can't wait to learn more about when I'm able to read their blogs. Following the class, headed over to my friend Chelsea's house where we went out for sushi and froyo. The perfect end to a perfect day. 

Rainbow roll with extra ginger - My go to sushi order!
Finally a dessert date with my teammate and friend Chelsea Clark!
She was just in Iron Man magazine so check out the latest issue - she's got ups! 

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