7 Things I Loved About Fitbloggin ‘14

While there are really about 500 things I loved about Fitbloggin 2014, I did my best to condense the list to just 7 highlights… If you’ve spent time out in the healthy blogiverse over the past week, I’m certain my other blogger friends have filled in the gaps with their recaps.

Fitbloggin 14  7 Things I Loved About This Conference | No Thanks to Cake(Photo Credit:  Carrie D. Photography)[pinterest]

7.  Thought-Provoking Sessions

Fitbloggin 14, as in years past, came with a full list of sessions that I could attend to grow my blog in new and exciting ways.  I attended a little bit of everything, and walked out with notes from just about every session.

As someone who takes way too many notes everywhere I go, I decided to spend time in the moment this year rather than attempting to capture every word spoken.  Instead, I walked out with a simple notepad speckled with a few notes and a quote or two.  These “nuggets” of information are all I need to upgrade NTTC in the next year… no transcription needed.

Fitbloggin Small Groups | No Thanks to Cake

The small group sessions are always the most moving for me.  I love hearing my peers talk about their experience and sharing my story as well.  I attended two in particular that I loved:  Maintaining the Mojo and Life After Goal.   I’ll tell you more this week about how I was inspired by Roni Noone herself in one of the sessions….

6. That 80’s Dance Party

Every single year, it’s my favorite class.  The energy is fantastic.  The smiles are abundant.  And this year, it was 80’s themed!??  Totally tubular….

80s Zumba | No Thanks to Cake

This Zumba-inspired class was incredible with Sue, Sam, and Nellie making sure that I shook my money maker and laughed all the way through.  I got to dance with Monica, Aliyah, Dawn,  and Nathan and 100 of my closest friends. What’s not to love??

80s Zumba | No Thanks to Cake

PS… This outfit made an appearance.  Thanks, Amazon…

80s Zumba | No Thanks to Cake

Lastly, if I could have squished Sam and Sue (and Thing 2) into a carry-on, I would have brought them back to Denver with me… so that they could make me sweat and dance it out on the regular.  The fact that we’ll be dancing in Denver next year makes me SOOOOOOOO happy.  Thank you for inspiring me… every single year!

5.  Ignite Fitness

In past years, I’ll admit I haven’t loved Ignite… but this year, the presenters REALLY outdid themselves and made it an incredibly interesting, motivating, and entertaining session!

We listened to Dre rap (thanks for the shoutout!), heard Allie’s tremendous story of competing on behalf of the US, watched Alan take the stage, and even learned how to make a proper cuppa tea!

Ignite Fitness | No Thanks to CakePhoto Credit:  Carrie D. Photography

I love the personality and preparation that the team brought to the table.  It’s not easy to rock a mike like they did… and they crushed it!  Can’t wait to see what Fitbloggin 15 brings… 

4.  Savannah Shopping

Oh my, Savannah was so hot… this girl was super sweaty throughout the weekend.  Thank goodness there were a bunch of cute shops to pop into to cool down!

I found two unique culinary stores to stop into that I’m so glad I found.

The Savannah Bee Company:  How often do you walk into a store that offers honey tastings??  It was so awesome!  I ended up with a few flavors for myself (Savannah and whipped honey!) and a few jars for gifts.

Savannah Bee Company | No Thanks to Cake

I was heading to the airport when I stumbled upon The Salt Table, and couldn’t pass it by!  The Foodette sent me to this awesome store, and wow… she made an amazing recommendation!

The Salt Table Savannah | No Thanks to Cake

The shop was full of flavored salts and sugars…. Popcorn seasonings, dips.  I was in heaven!  I ended up walking out with some mesquite flavored salt, maple salt, coconut sugar, and some Ghost Pepper salt for my bro for Christmas!  It was probably better that we were in a hurry.  Had I more time, I would have bought the entire store… and had to figure out a way to get it home in my carry on (along with Sue and Sam)…

3. The Avocados

Prior to the conference beginning, I entered a recipe into the California Avocado Commission’s Culinary Cutting Edge Contest.  And, as luck would have it, I was named to the finals with the lovely Alyssa and Kia, for this recipe!

Grilled Avocado Caprese | No Thanks to Cake[pinterest]

The session on Avocados was amongst my favorite because I got to learn all about one of my favorite fruits… and they announced the big winner:  My roomie Alyssa!!!  While my caprese salad took second place, it was Alyssa’s yummy tarts that brought home the grand prize!!

California Avocados Contest Fitbloggin | No Thanks to Cake Photo Credit:  Double Chin Diary

The chef even did a live demo of her recipe and they let us try the winning recipe!  So delish!!!

Avocado Cream Tarts Double Chin Diary | No Thanks to CakePhoto Credit:  Double Chin Diary

I loved this contest for many reasons… my love of avocado being one of them, but also I love the art of creating deliciously healthy dishes.  I put some time into coming up with just the right dish to present… and I’m incredibly proud of what I entered.  I also am bursting with ideas for more avocado dishes.  So get ready, readers, there’s more avocado recipes on the way!

Lastly, it also made me really consider the types of brands that I want to work with in the future.  These guys completely align with my vision for NTTC… so, expect more like it in the future!

2.  Reflecting on the Year that Passed

2013 was a rough year for this girl.  So much going on… and frankly, not a lot of happy.  I battled with myself trying to figure out what my next steps were going to be… and felt a little lost at Fitbloggin 2013, as a result.

There were multiple sessions where I just cried.  (Yep)  I cried because the topics touched a little too close to home… and I felt sort of lonely in a crowd of people.  It’s not something I’ve spoken of until now, but it was a tough time… mostly, I was just trying to Pollyana my way through, hoping that it would pass.

Thank goodness it did!!!!!

AND THIS YEAR… so different.  For the past few months, I’ve been so genuinely happy.  To be at Fitbloggin and to be able to share that “happy” was awesome.  Nice to have my head held high again.  It’s so nice to be back…

1.  The People

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again.  The people are what make Fitbloggin for me.  This picture below is from my favorite moment of the conference…

Fitbloggin | No Thanks to Cake

You’ll notice that we aren’t even at the conference.  We didn’t even find a swanky restaurant to dine at.  We’re at a cheesy Mexican joint across from the hotel that could seat 8 with no wait, and later add a table to grow our group even more.

This is the night I got to meet Beth, hear about Jessica’s job transformation, understand how Sarah’s world is changing, sit next to my girl Monica and unknowingly order the same dinner (life twins!), visit with Dawn and meet her friend Lynne and plan yoga time for my December visit, hear about Sam’s tattoo plans, visit with Emily and gush about how I adore Harper, and spend more time with my girl Ash fiercely getting to know these women.  Awesome night.  Beautiful people.  

It’s moments like this that keep me coming back for more.  It’s people like this that make me want to be a better person.

Roni, I can’t thank you enough for another wonderful conference year.  I can’t wait to see you all in Denver for Fitbloggin 15.


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  1. says

    Oh friend, it was SO nice to finally meet you and spend a few minutes chatting. There’s never enough time, right? Too many friends, too much adventure. What an awesome problem to have. 🙂

    I’m thrilled for Denver! I think Adam, Harper and I are going to make it a family vacation. Maybe we can meet up for dinner (or something) before the conference! 😀

    • nothankstocake says

      Awwww.. thanks, Emily! There is truly NEVER enough time, but I’m thankful for that time we had! 🙂 Bring the whole fam to Denver! Can’t wait to see you then!! xoxo

  2. says

    I loved this recap so, so much Kelly! The best (and only) Zumba class I’ve ever taken was at Fitbloggin in Baltimore and it was a blast. Hearing about it and seeing the pics is inspiring me to find a class near my new town! Your picture of your avocado recipe entry is so professional too! It looks like it could be in a cookbook! Finally, that table of bloggers at the end looks so fun – some of my favorites in there :).

    PS > you are so thoughtful! The postcard is hanging on my fridge 🙂

    • nothankstocake says

      You’ll be at the table next year, dear! Seriously, I don’t know what I’m going to do if ALL of my people are here in my town next year! So freakin cool! Missed you in Zumba, and again… it was amazing. I need to find a class here locally.

    • nothankstocake says

      Agreed! I love your site! Thanks again for the Salt Table recommendation… 🙂

  3. says

    I see myself grooving in your Zumba photo 😉 So great meeting you. Glad that you had a great time down south.

    • nothankstocake says

      You are totally grooving, and totally smiling in that pic… so awesome! So nice to meet you, lady!

  4. says

    Awesome recap! I know how you feel when you say “lonely in a crowd of people”. If I make it to Denver, I hope to put myself out there more.

    • nothankstocake says

      Last year, I was just in a weird funk. Lots going on… being alone in a crowd of people is the worst, but I’m so happy it felt different this year. Definitely come to Denver if you can make it… and I look forward to meeting you then!

  5. says

    Great recap! I loved meeting you and glad you had a great time this year. You are such a warm and friendly person-you definitely made me feel less of a loner! Your avocado caprese salad is definitely on my list of summer dishes to make!

    • nothankstocake says

      Thanks for stopping by Lauren, and saying hello! So fun to have had a chance to spend some time with you last weekend! Let me know how the salad goes. 🙂

    • nothankstocake says

      Awww… thanks, Jessica! So great to meet you too! Looking forward to seeing you again next year (and in Cleveland 2016 – – Work it, #teamCLE)

  6. says

    You are so awesome. You really nailed so many key points of the conference (especially just hanging out with other bloggers!!) and thank you so much for the shout-out. It was truly great meeting you and I look forward to getting to know you more by reading your blog!!! 🙂

    • nothankstocake says

      Thanks, Allie! Your presentation in Ignite *literally* gave me chills… such a cool story, and such an inspiration! xoxo

  7. says

    Oh, my life twin! I’m glad that Fitbloggin 2014 had us both in a brighter, happier head space than the year prior. I’ve said it a million times now but I’m so glad we connected last year and I’m grateful for the time I spent with you in Savannah. I can’t wait to visit your stomping grounds in 2015. Save some hugs for me! 😉

    • nothankstocake says

      I am so glad too! It is almost hard to believe I was in a funk last year, looking at where I am now! I feel like we didn’t have nearly enough time in Savannah! You’re going to have to come in early or stay late, I’d say! xoxo

  8. says

    Love your recap and all the photos.
    Looking forward to seeing you again next year – remember the beers are on you!
    Remember I will be hassling you to keep on top of things 😉

  9. Beth says

    Hi Kelly – so great to meet you at FitBloggin! I’ll let you know how my blog works out 🙂 Great recap – FitBloggin was definitely worth the adventure 🙂

  10. says

    Hello Kelly! I’ve really enjoyed reading your blog. I’m on a quest to lose 160 pounds, and being able to read everyone’s recaps of FitBloggin ’14 has been SO inspiring! Thank you for sharing!

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