Healthy Living Summit 2013: Friday & Saturday

Sometimes when I tell people I write a blog, I get kind of embarrassed. Actually, my old co-worker Brady used to make fun of me because I would turn bright red when he told other people about my blog (he also liked to point out when I turned red in the presence of attractive men… awkward). But this past weekend at the Healthy Living Summit 2013 made me proud to be a blogger.

Healthy Living Summit 2013 - Whole Foods trip

This weekend I met some of the nicest, most genuine girls. Bloggers are truly some of the most down to earth people out there. There were no egos to be found in sight; just friendliness, sincerity, and lots of inspiration! I came out of the Healthy Living Summit sessions feeling motivated to step out of my blogging comfort zone, grow my blog, make new connections, and be more proud of who I am as a blogger and what I have to offer.

My only regret about the weekend is that I couldn’t be there longer – because of my internship, I couldn’t catch a flight until 8:30 pm on Friday night, meaning I missed all of Friday’s activities. I was just itching to get there already, but Kindfood take out and blog reading made the airport wait a bit more enjoyable.

Kindfood takeout

When I finally got to the hotel at 10:30 pm (… one $45 cab ride later), I met up with Gina from Health, Love, and Chocolate, Amanda from Running with Spoons, and Sam from Better with Sprinkles for a good late night gab session. It was my first time meeting Gina and Amanda in person, but we connected instantly. It’s not every day you find people who enjoy carrying on 10 minute conversations about kabocha squash!

The next morning started with a buffet breakfast that was actually much better than I was expecting. There was tons of fresh cut fruit, baked goods, one of the best egg scrambles I’ve ever had, bacon and sausages, oatmeal and yogurt with toppings, and smoothies provided by one of the sponsors, Ninja Blender.

Healthy Living Summit 2013 breakfast

After breakfast we had a chance to check out the sponsor tables – the hallway outside the conference room was filled with them! Some of my favourites were Driscoll’s Berries, Blue Diamond, Ninja Blender, and Wild Harvest.

Healthy Living Summit 2013 sponsors

360 PR was also there with some fun props for a photo shoot – of course we took advantage!

Healthy Living Summit 2013 goofy photoshoot

The rest of the day was devoted to the Healthy Living Summit sessions, which I plan on talking about in a later post. I took away a lot of good points from them – I’m actually really energized with motivation to do some work to improve my blog!

Healthy Living Summit 2013

In between the sessions though there was lunch, which was another buffet with some kind of creamy pasta salad, Greek salad, fajitas (I just got the veggies, chicken, and tofu without the tortilla to save room for cake!), rice, and refried beans. There was also a make your own soup bar, which I didn’t try, but it seemed like a cool idea.

Healthy Living Summit 2013 - lunch

The highlight of the meal was by far this chocolate mousse cake! For minute after my first few bites I thought I was having an allergic reaction to it, but then I realized it was just in my head, so I was okay to keep eating. Phew!

Healthy Living Summit 2013 - cake

The formal blogging sessions were over by 5 pm, but afterwards there were some planned activities hosted by individual bloggers. Katie from Katie Looking Forward was putting on a yoga sculpt class, so Gina and I decided to go. It was definitely one of the most creative yoga classes I’ve attended, combining flows, cardio, and ab work – and I loved it! It was nice to get my heart rate up a bit after sitting all day.

Healthy Living Summit 2013 - yoga

Following the class we met up with Amanda and Sam to go to Whole Foods. There are only a few Whole Foods in Canada, and they don’t have as many cool products, so us Canadians are always so excited to check them out in the US! For the sake of ease, we also decided to grab dinner there. Unfortunately their hot bar and salad bar were seriously lacking and a lot of the dishes contained nuts, so I was pretty limited in what I could have. Enter my sad box of broccoli salad, sesame spinach salad some kind of grain salad, roasted beets, chickpeas, chopped hard boiled egg, and raw cauliflower and kale. Lamest Whole Foods dinner ever? I think so.

Whole Foods salad bar

The meal sucked, but browsing the shelves afterwards was fun! Then I pretty much crashed when we got back because I was running on just 4 hours of sleep – I always have such sucky sleeps in hotels. But luckily that night I slept like a rock and woke up super refreshed for Sunday… but that’s for another post!

Have you ever been to a blogger conference? Which one?

Do you ever feel embarrassed or awkward telling others you have a blog?


Filed under event, travel

44 Responses to Healthy Living Summit 2013: Friday & Saturday

  1. Ah it looks like so much fun and glad that you girls had a blast! I’ve never been to a blogging conference but I have met a couple of bloggers in the past (one who doesn’t blog any more and Tara from both were lovely especially as there’s so much common ground to discuss :)! I have always been open about my blog and it makes me proud to tell people about it- fortunately the reaction has only ever been positive!

  2. I happened on your blog today and loved reading about HLS….I so badly wanna attend a blog conference now and meet other bloggers! I had the good fortune to meet Dixya from when she came to Atlanta for a visit. I do tell people about my blog, but I feel awkward about doing so around peeps I don’t know too well.


      Thanks for dropping by my blog and leaving a comment! If you’re interested in meeting other bloggers, you should definitely come to HLS next year – it’s such a blast!

  3. I feel the same way…oftentimes, when I tell people about my blog “in real life,” I get shy and almost embarrassed about it too because they usually don’t really understand what it even means to write a blog. But, HLS totally made me embrace it and reminded me of why I love to blog in the first place!

  4. Sounds like such a fantastic weekend! I love Whole Foods – I think I went every day when I was in the US back in June :-)
    I felt very awkward in the beginning to speak about my blog, but meanwhile I am proud and I don’t get shy when someone makes a joke about it. I know it is good for me and that I get gret positive feedback, so that’s all what matters.

  5.! Gah! Why’d the weekend have to go by so crazy fast? It was seriously crazy how well we all connected, and I’m still upset that I didn’t get to spend nearly enough time with you. Future meet ups are definitely going to happen.

    But I know what you mean about feeling embarrassed about telling people about your blog – I’m the same way. It’s especially awkward when it involves taking pictures of food :lol: But really, most people I’ve come across that know think it’s pretty awesome… and I’m doing my best to be a lot more confident about it because that’s kind of what rubs off on people.


      I miss you too! :( But I’m seriously looking forward to future meet ups!

      Oh gosh, yeah I’m so awkward about taking food pictures. In some situations I won’t take pictures of food, but then I’ll regret it afterwards because it would have made awesome blog content.

  6. I wish I could have gone too. I wanna be proud to be a blogger! I get embarrassed as well, and I hate it when my hubby brings it up in public.

  7. I really need to attend something like this!! Could really use some motivation!!

  8. Wish I could have been there!!! I very rarely tell people about my blog. I just posted a link to it on instagram one day and let my friends check it out if they wanted to. I also generally don’t tell strangers…My mom on the other hand tells the entire world!!! I have my doubts as to whether she actually reads the blog or not though lol. I don’t think I’m embarrassed as much as I tend to feel self-conscious. I put so much of myself into the blog so it can be very vulnerable sharing it with other people. I find it easier to just let people discover it on their own terms and if they like it I am more than happy to chat about it.


      Yeah, I think self conscious is maybe the better word for how I feel. It’s like letting someone read my diary (although I’m not quite that personal on my blog, it still feels like I’m sharing a part of myself on it)!

  9. Gah, I’m still so jealous! Looks like you guys had so much fun. I don’t really tell people about my blog. My family and friends know, ofcourse, but that’s about it. I don’t tell my co-workers or post on FB just because some of the stuff I discuss can be personal and I don’t know if I’m ready to share it with people who know me. You know? It’s odd.. but I’d rather share with people who know where I am coming from and can relate to (aka other bloggers).

  10. Yep, and I usually don’t want them to read it – but hey it’s out there and if they don’t like it they don’t have to read it! That mousse cake looks amazing :D

  11. I am with you on getting embarrassed about having a blog. Some people just don’t get blogs and everything behind it. I actually stopped telling people I was going to a blogging conference last weekend and instead told them I was going to a Healthy Living Conference. Completely different reactions! I am proud of my little blog, but get tired of defending it in a way. But I am glad you were able to make it up on Saturday. Sucks Whole Foods was a disappointment. I’ve never even been to one!

  12. Haha the 10 minute kabocha conversation was kind of funny…and I checked Remark on Monday and still nothing! So…trying Covent Garden on Saturday :-p
    But seriously, hardcore HLS withdrawals. At least I know I’ll be seeing you next weekend, which is awesome! Also…cake withdrawals. That stuff was so good.


      Oh darn! I would keep on checking back at Remark – maybe it doesn’t get in until later in the season? I remember buying mine in January or February. I never had luck finding it at Covent Garden though.

      I’m missing HLS too, but next Friday is going to be so much fun! We could even make a stop at the St. Lawrence Market to get kabocha. ;)

  13. Looks like an awesome weekend! So cool that you got to connect with some genuinely nice people! The sessions and food sound amazing as well! I think that yoga class sounds really interesting too!

  14. Such a bummer on the Whole Foods experience :(.

  15. I am getting so jealous reading all of these HLS recaps! The sponsors looked amazing.

    I also get embarrassed when I tell people about my blog- it feels so awkward. I haven’t been to a blogger conference but I would love to go so that I could feel normal!

    You are so tiny and adorable! :)

  16. I’m the exact same way about being embarrassed sometimes because I know that “normal” people just don’t get it. ;) That is the one thing that I loved about being around other bloggers… everyone talks about food like crazy and takes a billion pictures. It was super great getting to meet you!

  17. Here I was thinking I was finally recovering from the residual sadness of coming home after Monday’s and yesterday’s recaps on everyone’s blogs and here you go making me sad again. ;-) But I forgive since I had so much fun with you all this weekend, and am already planning a Canada reunion in my head.

  18. It’s awesome to hear HLS confirmed you in your status as a blogger and made you feel more confident about it. Just look at how far you’ve come and the work you put into your blog – that’s definitely something to be proud of.
    That being said I don’t have the confidence myself yet as I feel I’m still in my “blogger booties” and searching for my blogging identity. Hence why I haven’t shared my blog address with my family and friends yet. When I do mention the blog, though, I feel like they don’t understand and that’s something I can relate to so well. Before I started blogging myself I was a little skeptical about it, too. So yes, I feel awkward talking to others about my blog.


      I think finding our blogger identity is the key to feeling confident about our blogs. I’m still in the process of finding mine, but I think I’m getting closer to it.

  19. That’s too funny! I have always felt embarrassed to about blogging, but not after this weekend! I’m so proud :) So good to meet you!

  20. Aww, you are so adorable! I just want to put you in my pocket and carry you around me with me all day. :D

    I don’t volunteer any info about my blog to any of my friends or family… I’ve let them figure it out for themselves. Oddly enough, my blog has created some employment/freelance travel/tourism opportunities for me within southern Alberta – so that’s always exciting!!

    Wish I could’ve been there with you guys – DID WF HAVE OUR BELOVED GIDDY YOYO?!?!


      LOL! I get that a lot… :P

      That’s awesome that your blog has created some job opportunities for you! I’d love to hear more about that. Are you planning on posting about it?

      Nooo sadly it didn’t. I think Giddy Yoyo is more of a Canadian thing – it’s in the Canadian WFs here!

  21. I would have been surprised if you didn’t talk about kabocha squash haha…

  22. Love the recaps, Chelsea! That cake at lunch time…I probably would have eaten it even I did have an allergic reaction- looks so good!

    I haven’t actually told many about my blog yet… I kind of don’t know how! All of you guys recapping the sessions are making me want to really put more of an effort into it!

  23. P

    Looks like it was so much fun!
    I don’t tell people about my blog except for my fam and close friends. It’s too awkward to tell anyone else ><!

  24. I remember being impressed by the whole foods salad bar in New York City because it was not only plentiful but also inexpensive! That’s too bad that the selection was limited. Oh boy, my mouth is drooling over that cake and even your breakfast buffet. I’ve never had egg scramble since I’m only just getting used to their taste. I think a blogging retreat is exactly what I could have used so I hope I get to attend one in the near future. It sounds like it was not only a fun trip but also educational. Can’t wait to see what stores you have in plan for your blog although I do really like the design as is! It’s great that you enjoyed the company of other bloggers – I find the people whom you surround yourself are a reflection of yourself so clearly you are a pretty amazing young lady! Looks like it was a worthwhile trip even if it was short.

  25. Glad I am not the only one who turns red when mentioning the blog! Well… I actually turn red quite a lot :-) That conference looks like a lot of fun, hope to go to one someday!

  26. I used to get really embarrassed about the blog, but now that I’ve been at it a few years (and actually have something I’m proud of), it doesn’t really bother me anymore…well, unless I get the “what the heck is a blog?” sort of response. It’s always a little difficult trying to explain to someone why I take pictures of my food and put it online when they’ve never heard of such things! Ha! In those cases, I usually just skim over it and say that I write recipes and do restaurant reviews!

    Sorry about the WF’s hot bar fail…been there, done that! I actually returned it after a few bites and went through the store for other fare! #noshame! Lol

    That cake looks amazing! And you know me…I’m not even that big on chocolate! I’m sure one bite would have put me in a coma…but I’m also sure it would have been worth it! Good to know it didn’t kill ya! ;)

  27. Pingback: Healthy Living Summit 2013: Sunday | Chelsea's Healthy Kitchen

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