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Posts Tagged ‘fitness’

August 19, 2014

IDEA World Fitness Convention

Good afternoon! I intentionally didn’t check in early with the sunrise this morning. While catching up on some extra z’s (why my body is still adjusting to E.S.T. is beyond me), I wanted to give you a chance to catch up on last weekend’s happenings at the IDEA World Fitness BlogFest!

I said it before and I’ll say it again: IDEA is where it’s at, ya’ll.

I was interested in attending the conference last year, but now that I am in the process of getting my CPT and continuing on with a career in group exercise and small group training, I convinced myself that I had to be there this year. And I’m so, so glad I made it happen.

The first two days of the conference were focused on two of my favorite things: fitness and blogging. Thanks to Sweat Pink, close to one hundred and fifty fitness bloggers gathered to discuss the business with tips and tricks we have gathered along the way. I felt in my element the whole time!

Need a refresher?

IDEA BlogFest 2014 – Day One

IDEA BlogFest 2014 – Day Two

As great and beneficial as BlogFest was for me to attend, I was really excited to join the rest of the community at the IDEA World Fitness Convention in Anaheim on Saturday and Sunday!

2014 IDEA World Fitness Convention

The IDEA World Fitness Convention provides around 400 well-respected fitness experts to lead sessions holding a total of over 12,000 fitness professionals (or fitness professionals in training, like me) throughout four full days of sessions and certification training opportunities.

IDEA World Fitness Convention Welcome

Before I arrived, I signed up for a handful of sessions – one for each time slot provided – but knew I would probably change my schedule around once I got there. As someone who has never been in the environment before, it was pretty overwhelming for me to decide on my own.

Luckily, I had a pack of friends that have been through it before and helped lead the way. We didn’t all stick to the same classes, but because a lot of us have similar interests in the types of workouts we like to enjoy and possibly teach, I had some familiar faces with me throughout the majority of my sessions.

Saturday started with a 7:30 a.m. Total Barre class that lasted two hours.

Total Barre class at IDEA Fit World Convention

I wasn’t sure how I felt about the time, but it was clear once we started that this session was meant to incorporate new exercises and Merrithew equipment into the classes of those who already teach or have an interest in teaching barre.

I thought these ankle cuffs were interesting. They were great for that exercise, but served the same purpose as a multi-use resistance band (you can double for intensity) I often used in my classes in Orlando.

barre ankle cuffs

I liked the class, but could tell that the style of exercises and music would most likely appeal to an older audience. I kept thinking that my mother would love this class! We did, however, have a young male in our class who had the highest kicks (<- ballerino, possibly?), so you really just never know.

All in all, it felt great to get back to the barre and start the morning off learning some new exercises.

Total Barre class at IDEA World Fitness Convention

Directly after class, we walked over to our next session, Schwinn Cycling: Pimp My Playlist with Jeffrey Scott.

Schwinn spinning class IDEA World Fitness Convention

He started the session off with his tips on how to find and get the best music playlists his students love in his classes. As someone who is obsessed with music, I knew a lot of his tips but picked up a ton of new and helpful information!

Resources for music and playlists you need to check out:

• iTunes, Spotify, SoundCloud (uploads directly into iTunes!), ClickMix, Shazam (how I remember half of the music I like and end up downloading), SoundHounddirrtyremixes.com

• Schwinn Indoor Cycling Class Tamer app for your iPhone – amazing!

Schwinn Cycling Tamer App

Even if I don’t ever teach spinning, I think it would be great to use during other types of workouts with the sound effects, timers, and ability to control your music and volume through it all!

Schwinn Cycling Tamer App 2

• Radio streaming and talent shows on television like So You Think You Can Dance, The Voice, American Idol, The X-Factor, etc.

how to find good playlists for classes

(I so do this! I can barely get through one episode of SYTYCD without Shazam-ing and downloading something. It’s a great resource!)

After he wrapped up his tips for putting memorable playlists together, he turned on one of his favorites and put us to work with a Schwinn Cycling class. It was fabulous and now I’m dying to find one near me.

The Schwinn bikes were so great and easy to use!

Schwinn Cycling Class IDEA World Fitness Convention results

Jeffrey is one of the best instructors I have ever had the pleasure of taking from, which makes sense, considering he is a Master Trainer for both Schwinn Fitness and Reebok. But really, he has to be one of the best out there and had me smiling and loving the workout the entire class!

Julie also did a fantastic job recapping this session with Jeffrey’s tips!

I already said this about Tara Stiles and yoga, and it happened again during this session with indoor cycling.

Usually at some point during a spin class, my mind wanders off for a bit and wonders how much time is left. This time around I was ready for more and legitimately enjoyed myself, which isn’t an easy thing to do when you are on those uncomfortable bike seats bouncing about.

After schwinn spinning at IDEA World Fitness Convention

(Me fancy with my mustache and tie – duh, Gina, Katy, Julie)

We all couldn’t stop raving about it. Thanks for a great session, Jeffrey!

After a quick change of shirts (we were all embarrassingly sweaty), we walked over to the EXPO to make our final rounds. Obviously, this included another trip to the massage chairs.

We made appointments for five minute massages, but before it was our turn to go, found this DS MAREF circulation and massage machine. I had never tried something like this!

compression and massage therapy pants IDEA World Fitness Convention

They looked like space pants and felt like someone was pressing the hardest, most intense foam roller all up and down my legs and feet. I didn’t realize how much it did until I stood up feeling loose like I just got a massage on my lower half. It was great!

We spent the next hour or so walking around, grabbing snacks, chatting with vendors, and may have even played a few rounds of Dance Dance Revolution. Somebody had to.

dance dance revolution at Dirty Energy booth IDEA World Fitness Convention

We wrapped up our time at the EXPO passing the Reebok booth and I fell even harder for certain pieces in the Reebok Yoga line.

Reebok Booth IDEA World Fitness Convention

Thank you, Tara Stiles, for making me want all of the sports bras per your recommendation and stylish, comfortable designs.


There’s just a bit more of the IDEA World Fitness Convention to cover along with what I learned from going to share. Instead of rambling on further, I am going to address it in a separate post. Do have any questions? Feel free to leave them below in the comments section.

I would love to answer them in my tips with what I plan on doing the same and differently at the conference next year.

Stay tuned for the final recap coming up!

August 18, 2014

IDEA BlogFest 2014: Day Two

I think we were all pretty wired from the non-stop (awesome) festivities that happened on Day One of BlogFest. If you happened to miss my recap of my first day at the IDEA World Fitness Convention, catch up and get in on the details!

I was going to wait until the morning to post the next recap to avoid burning you all out with conference talk, but I just can’t. I have so much to cover and share. So let’s cut the small talk and get to it!

IDEA BlogFest 2014: 

Day Two

Friday morning started with an early morning seminar with the one and only Cassey Ho of Blogilates, and she might just be the sweetest person ever.

Session on Business Blogging with Cassey Ho Blogilates

(Courtney, Cassey, Gina, Julie, Me)

I always got a great vibe from her on her YouTube videos, but I loved seeing how she intently engaged and interacted with people, taking the time to even ask me about my life and interests.

Her business(es) and success with blogging absolutely blows my mind!

She opened the morning with a session on how to turn your blog into a money-making brand, and just like most of the other ones I took a ridiculous amount of notes that I will be happy to share with you all in a separate post. Stay tuned!

The biggest takeaway I can mention now is her advice to stay true to who you are. Avoid trying to copy what others do just because they are successful, and find your own voice! Your following will eventually grow if your passion in your writing and what YOU do stays with it.

We didn’t go too far before a large group of people entered the room all at the same time. It was Jillian Michaels and some of her staff!

Jillian Michaels at IDEA BlogFest 2014

(Photo credit: @digdeepplayhard on Instagram)

Once again, I plan on posting the details later, but let me just say that Jillian rocks. I always respected her as a trainer, but I never realized how down to earth and hilarious she is. She has a “this is who I am and if you don’t like it, that’s fine, I’m moving on” attitude, and we could all learn from that type of focus.

She addressed some issues she came across as a trainer on The Biggest Loser, and tips she has learned on how to become a successful one. I promise I’m not just teasing you! To get past information and session overload, I will trickle breakdown posts in as a series over the next couple of weeks.

For now, I will leave you with her biggest takeaway (in my opinion):

To excel in your business, you have to have flexibility. Have an open mind and think about the possibilities that could follow (good or bad)!

Up next was Katy Widrick, a blogging and social media guru I had the pleasure of meeting a couple of times in Orlando through Central Florida Lady Bloggers events. Besides getting to relish in her always enjoyable company, I was so happy to hear she was speaking at BlogFest!

Katy Widrick at IDEA BlogFest

(Photo credit: Katy’s Instagram)

She has so much to offer on the business of blogging, plug-ins, SEO, and tricks and tools of the trade. I legitamitely want hire her for an entire weekend of consulting to completely revamp everything of mine one of these days!

We broke for the next couple of hours for lunch, which to us meant EXPO time. There was so much to see and we would end up going up and down the aisles and eventually felt satisfied with allll the samples.

Smack dab in the middle, we stumbled upon Cassey’s BODYPOP Active booth that introduced her brand new line of workout apparel! Isn’t it cute?

Blogilates booth at IDEA World Fitness Convention 2014

I can’t get over the Peplum Tanks and am still swooning over the sports bras. Where were these when I was auditioning for NBA dance teams? Love!

Before long, it was time to head back to the conference room for a Bloggers Tell All Panel with Monica, Julie, and Gina!

BlogFest Bloggers Tell All Panel 2014

(Photo credit: @blogfest on Instagram)

Katy moderated questions and brought up subjects and issues I know I was curious about when I started blogging! Somehow, I have become real life (ha, that sounds so funny and awkward when you type it out) friends with these girls and have been picking their brains on the subject for over a year now. They are always so supportive and helpful!

Monica posted a breakdown of some of the questions and her answers earlier today, in case you’re curious to hear how part of the session went. I definitely picked up a handful of new tips as well and can’t wait to start getting to that giant Blogging TO-DO list I made in my phone over the weekend. All in time.

Directly after the Q&As, we joined the rest of the IDEA World Fitness Convention community for a Strala Yoga class with Tara Stiles!

Strala Yoga with Tara Stiles at IDEA World Fitness Convention

Do you remember me recently sharing some Q&As with her? Ahhh! I still think it’s amazing I got them to and from her so quickly.

I had never taken a Strala class before, but I knew I was in for a treat when I felt calm and focused on my mat, even in the ambiance of a packed showcase room.

Reebok Yoga with Tara Stiles

As soon as the music started and I recognized a popular nineties throwback, I knew it was going to be different!

In just under an hour, we went through a series of movements that fused a lot of her different classes together. She challenged us with holds and balances, but always gave options to stay where you were or a “try this to give you something to do” followed by a giggle. She made it so enjoyable!

I mentioned this to the others after class, but not once did I think about how much time we had left. I love yoga, but there always comes a point where I zone out for a minute and wonder what’s next. That never happened here!

I can honestly say it was the best style of yoga teaching I have ever experienced.

Tara Stiles Yoga quote

I would love to take a class at her studio in New York City one day!

After the session ended and the room cleared out, I followed Katy to go try and grab a photo with her. She was super cool, ya’ll. She wasn’t in any kind of rush to get anywhere and was happy to do fun yoga poses when prompted.

When it was my turn, I asked her to do a heel stretch and she was all about it. And hey… who knew I could still do that?

Yoga with Tara Stiles IDEA World Fitness Convention session

It was a proud moment on many levels. I casually mentioned my virtual interview with her and thanked her for taking the time to chat with us! She was so, so sweet.

While we originally planned on getting ready and exploring the area for a dinner out, we decided to have a sweats and room service dinner party in Julie and I’s room instead.

room service salads and treats

You probably couldn’t have paid me to actually wash my hair and get ready to go somewhere right then, and we were all on the same page!

We spent the evening chatting away about blog stuff, life, families, and had the greatest time lounging around, which immediately paused when this beautiful shrimp salad entered my world.

shrimp market fresh salad marriott anaheim

Grandma and/or geek foodie status? Maybe. But it was well deserved and very delicious.

While I have two more days of the IDEA World Fitness Conference to cover, I will probably wrap them up into one last recap that will be up tomorrow or soon after. I hope you are enjoying them!

Meeting Blogilates at IDEA World Fitness Convention

Have a great rest of your Monday!

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I am not a registered dietician, nutritionist, or certified fitness professional. The workouts I post are what work best for me, but might not be the right type of exercises for you.

I do NOT post everything I eat. All content I post on this blog stems from my personal experience and knowledge, and I recommend consulting a doctor or health professional before making changes to your diet or fitness routine.

Also, please understand that affiliate links may pop up on the blog from time to time. I acknowledge when they appear and always genuinely appreciate your support! ♥

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