I am finally getting around to putting my thoughts about this year’s FitBloggin’ conference into a post. This was my second conference (my first was Savannah in 2014). Like many others have shared, I wasn’t super pumped about Indianapolis, but then again I didn’t know about the city or the state to begin with. I am not a person who attends the conference for the location. I go for the people. If the city has cool sites, that’s just another perk of the deal.
I left Wichita at the ass crack of dawn. As I try to always fly Delta, my connecter was in Atlanta both to and from Indy. After looking over the schedule, I was pretty psyched about the Lifetime Fitness excursion before the opening of the conference. The bus departed the hotel before my flight landed, but luckily Angela (from We Beat Fat) was also headed over late.
We checked into our rooms and hopped (a very chatty) Uber over to the Lifetime Fitness location. Now, I will be the first to admit that I don’t always thoroughly read through emails. Much to my dismay I misunderstood what the Lifetime outing entailed. Arriving around half an hour late, Angela and I missed the tour,but made it just in time for the class sessions. I thought we were going to choose one of three options to try: spin, T.R.X., and yin yoga.
I feel like I should insert a disclaimer here stating that it has legit been months since I’ve had a steady workout routine or did anything that could be deemed as ‘exercise’, so I was somewhat unprepared for this outing.
Spin was awful. It felt like someone dropped kicked me in the vajayjay and it took me at least 24 hour to recover. The instructor was awesome though. She had incredible spunk and fire which really kept us pumped during class. The T.R.X. class was sort of like a weights/cardio class (reminds me a lot of muscle pump type classes) and was decent. I loved how easy it was to scale the workout to my level.Yoga was by far my favorite. We did a restorative style called yin yoga. The teacher was fantastic and it really brought the whole experience to a well rounded end.
I failed to snap a pic of the awesome food spread Lifetime provided from their cafe, but it was super tasty. They had croissant sandwiches, fruit cups, and delicious dips. It was the perfect cap to a sweaty workout. This also gave us a chance to sit down, chat, and learn about each other. They even gave us loaded swag bags. This was unexpected, yet awesome. They included a nice metal waterbottle, a fitness tracker, and a sturdy workout draw string bag.
After cleaning up back at the hotel, people meandered over to Scotty’s Brewhouse. If you don’t already know, my fiance and I love craft beer, so I was excited to visit a local establishment for the opening mixer. Unfortunately, it certainly did not blow us away. We were gathered in a room set off from the main dining area, but the layout wasn’t conducive to mingling. One wall had booths and the center had high top bar tables. I snagged a booth with Jill and Danielle. I promise you I was not as thrilled as this picture makes me out to be. We all ordered dinner and some local beers, but didn’t hang out too long. We had a short speech from a manager at Scotty’s and that was that. We were back at the hotel by 8:30pm. Of course I said I was going to bed, but those are famous last words. I stayed up a little too late chatting with some of the other attendees.
Considering I was running on 4 hours of sleep, I skipped breakfast on Friday. A lot of other attendees have covered this, but long story short: there was no bacon. I have to eat some form of protein in the morning, so when I heard all the was served was a yogurt bar, I was 100% okay with my decision to sleep in. I do admit I wish I would have heard the keynote speaker, but I would have thought that would be been a topic for an afternoon or evening session.
Since I slept in till almost noon, my first meal of the day was fish and chips from Loughmiller’s Pub.
If there was one thing Indy didn’t lack, it was good food. Holy smokes was this fish good. I can’t even begin to explain how perfectly crunchy and season it was.
After lunch I did attend some sessions, but I feel like each of those need their own posts (I promise I will right them, seriously). Before day 1 wrapped up, there was an expo featuring many of the conference sponsors.
The most exciting thing for me? Wine! Zephyr runs many other conferences, most to do with wine or craft beer, so they were able to feature one of their partners products at the expo. Second thing you should know is that I love wine. Like, really love wine. Certified wino here.So when I finally got to try the wine, I was surprised to taste something more like Boone’s Farm than a dry cabernet. Definitely wasn’t up my alley. ( This is what I’m currently drinking).
The expo gave me a chance to reconnect with a number of people who actually attended in Savannah, but I didn’t get a chance to meet. I am so glad I was able to make so many new connections and memories!
Photo Credit: Angela from We Beat Fat
Friday night a group of us went to a latin/asian fusion restaurant called Nada. Everyone was a bit hesitant after seeing the menu, but we pleasantly surprised! Martinus and I both had the Korean Fried Chicken and truffled potatoes. Absolutely mind blowing!
Like I said before, the restaurants and all around atmosphere of Indy was phenomenal. I, again, wrapped up my evening at the hotel bar catching up with some fellow attendees (I told you I came for the people!!).
Saturday was all about the sessions for me. While I skipped breakfast again, I attended sessions all day. I was most excited for Angela and David‘s session because they are small group, personal discussion. I reap much more from personal weight loss experiences than I do from professionals who talk about weight loss though they have never had to lose a major amount of weight.
One of the two best moments from Saturday? ZUMBA baby!
I only attended one afternoon session so I could get ready for dinner. My fiance had visited Indy the previous year and there were two restaurants that he said I had to go to. Harry and Izzy’s and Shula’s (which for some reason I kept calling Ditkas).
Oh. My. Good. GRAVY. He did not lie. While Harry and Izzys was too busy to get a reservation, Shula’s was able to accommodate our group. I loved being able to connect with others on such an intimate level. Everyone was very open and candid and that was what made this conference so fantastic.
Martinus and I shared a Lyft early Sunday morning back to the airport. While we didn’t get our mimosas (I got one inside at Harry and Izzys), we did have another great meal at Cafe Patachou.
All around I would say this conference was worth it.There were quite a few times I doubted my choice (this was expensive y’all!). But I wouldn’t trade it for all the new friends I made. Much has been said about Zephyr’s handling of the conference. I believe they did the best they could with what they had. A lot of alumni didn’t give the conference a chance because of location and administrative changes. But Zephyr also needs to understand what the conference has been and the expectations we hold. It is going to take compromise on both our parts to keep this alive. Here’s hoping they announce next year’s location soon.
Until next time…