This past Thursday, the day I had been waiting for, finally arrived…. FITNESS magazine’s Meet & Tweet, also known as #FitBlogNYC!
I woke up bright and early to catch the bus and head into Port Authority. From there, it was a quick walk over to the venue and the meeting spot where some of us had agreed to meet. We grabbed some coffee, exchanged business cards and just chit chatted before heading over to the Mercedes Club, where the event was being held.
Some of the amazing bloggers I got to meet before the event. To name a few @ExSoyCise, @SusanFishback, @TreadmillRunway, @weightsover, @MsHealthyWife, @BlondesRun, @DianaAntholis and @Frolic_Life_Syl who was kind enough to be my buddy for the afternoon. I know I forgot a few people here, but my brain is still in overload, my apologies.
Upon arriving, we headed upstairs to check-in. We received our ID badge, an awesome Camelbak water bottle and there were morning snacks/refreshments for us. After grabbing a muffin and some juice, we headed outside to the rooftop patio where the speakers would be presenting.
First up, were introductions by FITNESS magazines Editor-in-Chief, Betty Wong (@FITNESSBetty). She introduced us to the lovely Heather Muir (@PYTbeauty), who is the Beauty Director at FITNESS as well as Sarah Lucero (@stilaPROartist), who is a celebrity make-up artist and Executive Director of Global Artistry for Stila Cosmetics, as well as a Stage 3 Breast Cancer survivor.
Top: Betty Wong telling us about the day in store. Bottom: Heather Muir (L) & Sarah Lucero (R)
During their seminar on “Insider Beauty Secrets to Get You Glowing”, they discussed ways to get pulled together in a flash, even when it’s 95 degrees outside. Their top tip? Less is more when it’s hot out!
- Match the weight of your make-up to the weight of your clothing.
- Use waterproof/water resistant beauty items.
- Always carry blot papers with you as well as a refreshing mist.
- Use sheer foundation – Don’t try to cover up every little imperfection!
- “PowerPout” is hot this season! Use a punchy orange to achieve the look.
- Use vibrancy in your lip & eye color by using neon or pastel colors.
We also learned Sarah’s Top 3 Beauty Secrets:
- Make sure you get enough rest (8-9 hours of sleep per night)
- Use a good moisturizer or balm that is multitasking and color correcting.
- Wear the same color tone on your check and lips.
“Believe in the Beauty of the Future”
Our second seminar featured, FITNESS magazine’s Senior Editor, Lisa Haney (@FITNESS_Lisa) and Jennifer Ashton, M.D. (@DrJAshton), who is an ABC News Senior Medical Contributor, ob-gyn, triathele and author of the book, “Your Body Beautiful: Clock Stopping Secrets to Staying Healthy, Strong and Sexy in Your 30s, 40s and Beyond” as well as “The Body Scoop for Girls” – which I plan on picking up for my daughter.
Lisa Haney & Dr. Jennifer Ashton, speaking about being “Healthy, Strong and Sexy in Your 20s, 30s and Beyond”
They hosted a seminar on “Healthy, Strong and Sexy in Your 20s, 30s and Beyond”. Dr. Ashton gave her down-to-earth advice on a holistic approach to health and why you need to be able to talk to your doctor as if they were BFF.
Some of the topics covered and take away points included:
- Angelina Jolie’s recent mastectomy.
- You need to treat the whole person, not just the symptom.
- Your body needs to move, rest and be nourished.
- Size and body weight does not matter. It’s about the type of fuel you put into your body.
- Bad carbs in excess are not our friends.
- Alcohol increases your risk of Breast Cancer
- Follow a 5/2 diet. Eat healthy 5 days a week & enjoy the weekends. This will help to curb the unhealthy food cravings over time.
- 2.5 servings per day of fruits and vegetables can help reduce your risk of Breast Cancer
- Birth Control pills can reduce your risk of ovarian cancer, which is why Dr. Ashton prescribes them for her gay patients, despite not needing the birth control aspect of them.
- Grapefruit juice interacts with many medications!
- You can Google “Drug Drug Interactions” to check if you have any. Make sure you include all supplements you are taking, even OTC!
“Life Is An Olympic Event and We Have To Train For It”
Our third seminar was one I was looking forward to! It featured FITNESS magazine’s Digital Director, Christie Griffin (@ChristieGriffin) – who is one of the sweetest people ever! – Dana Weiss, Possessionista (@Possessionista), Deb Perelman, Smitten Kitchen (@SmittenKitchen), Jill Hanner who is a Ford Fiesta Agent and YouTube guru (@JillHanner) and last but not least, Erin Whitehead from Fit Bottomed Girls (@FitBottomedGirl) discussing their unique success stories and how they turned their passions into profit, during “My Blog Is My Business”
L to R: Christie Griffin, Dana Weiss, Deb Perelman, Jill Hanner and Erin Whitehead
Some of the biggest take away points from this seminar where:
- Don’t blog for money. Blog, then make money. – Dana
- Make what you want to talk about the center, then make money. – Deb
- Have a strong message and know who you are! – Erin
Don’t Waste Your Time:
- Worrying about what other bloggers are doing.
- Comparing yourself to other bloggers.
- Obsessing over numbers or followers.
- Give too much weight to negative comments you may receive.
- Ignore search engine optimization offers.
- NEVER pay to rank in a search engine.
Tools They Love:
- Skimlinks: It’s Dana’s “Magical affiliate fairy” and allows her to focus on content, instead of links.
- Make sure you auto-redirect if you change your RSS feed! – Deb
- Google is Erin’s best friend. She uses Google Docs, Analytics and more.
- Jill is also a fan of Google but mainly uses Instagram and Twitter as her tools.
How To Pitch Yourself to Companies:
- Email links of your work with other companies when reaching out.
- Make sure you be yourself!
- If you are offered a book deal, make sure you write a proposal.
- Be passionate with your blog. It’ll bring new followers and eventually bring money.
Other Tips They Offered:
- For Pictures – Use a DSLR camera with a 50mm lens. It allows for a good photo, even when less lighting is available.
- On YouTube – Lighting and Sound are key! Also just like with your blog, BE YOURSELF!
- BlogAds is a site that sells ads for you and can formulate a starting price based on readership.
- Should I blog for free? – You bring value to these companies. Make sure you know your value, however, if you would write about them anyway, don’t push for more money.
“Don’t Blog For Money. Blog, Then Make Money.”
Our fourth seminar featured FITNESS magazine’s Deputy Editor, Mary Christ Anderson (@FITNESS_Mary) and Celebrity Trainer Brett Hoebel (@bretthoebel), Founder of Brett Hoebel Fitness, featured trainer on The Biggest Loser season 11 and creator of RevAbs.
Mary Christ Anderson and Brett Hoebel discussing the Extreme Fitness Trend.
The topic of discussion here was “The Extreme Fitness Trend: Should You Try It?” They discussed how going to extremes is the new thing in fitness today…but does it work? We learned how and why 20-minute workouts can get the job done better than long, all-out sessions.
First off they discussed CrossFit:
- CrossFit took fitness and turned it into a sport.
- CrossFit is competitive but has a strong community base.
- CrossFit is AMRAP (As Many Rounds As Possible) or Time Based.
- Shorter means it must be tougher!
Then they moved into the Tough Mudder trend and how many people where doing them for social media bragging rights. Brett’s advice was to “Know what you’re getting into when doing Tough Mudders”.
Programs like P90X and Insanity were also discussed, since they are also extreme in nature. The subject of lack of time being the biggest excuse when it comes to not working out was discussed, too. Brett said that 20 minutes is the magic bullet for many busy moms and people who are short on time. It allows you do a few rounds of moves with maximum benefit, but you HAVE to get breathless while doing it!
When asked about his thoughts on TRX, Brett responded “I thinks it’s amazing!”
“If Want Results In A Short Amount Of Time,
You Have To Get Breathless!”
Our fifth and final seminar was all about food, and you guys know how much I love food and cooking! It was hosted by FITNESS magazine’s Executive Editor, Pam O’Brien (@FITNESSPam), along with Rocco DiSpirito (@roccodispirito), who if you don’t already know from Food Network, is one of FITNESS’s favorite celebrity chefs, author of “Now Eat This! Italian” and star of the AOL web series “Now Eat This! Italy“.
Pam O’Brien and Rocco DiSpirito discussing how to Eat What You Love – and Lose Weight!
In this seminar, they discussed how to “Eat What You Love – and Lose Weight“, and Rocco revealed secret ingredients for speedy, healthy meals, as well as cooking tricks that slash the fat, but keep the flavor!
Some of the advice given to us during this segment were:
- Eating healthy doesn’t have to be expensive. (Check out this link, from his tweet above in the photo, for 10 Healthy Foods Under $1)
- Always say no bread at restaurants.
- When eating out, split meals to go, when ordering, this way you won’t be tempted to over-eat.
- Make sure you are eating 100% whole wheat or 100% whole grain foods.
- Juicing is good, but blending is better. Blending keeps all of the fiber from fruits and vegetables
Items to keep on hand in the kitchen:
- Non-fat Greek yogurt
- Non-fat cottage cheese
- Parmigiano Reggiano – Tip: Use a micro plane to grate instead of a box grater! A little goes a long way.
- Low calorie, Stock in a box
- Herbs and Spices. These are calorie free/guilt free and big on flavor.
- Dijon Mustard – Only contains 7 calories per tablespoon!
Two of Rocco’s favorite ways to prepare Spaghetti Squash are with garlic and oil – OR – with butter and parmigiano reggiano.
As you can see, the morning was full of amazing and informative speakers. I feel so lucky to have been invited to this event and to have listened, met and spoken with so many inspirational and wonderful people.
I will be sharing information on the wonderful and generous sponsors from #FitBlogNYC in my next post ….so keep an eye out for it!
CLICK HERE FOR PART TWO!