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Catching Up On HLS

by Courtney on August 21, 2011

The Healthy Living Summit is in full swing! (And this post was supposed to go up yesterday, but I was just SO busy that I did not even get a chance to get to it. Sheesh! We’re a little behind, but don’t worry…I’ll get us all caught up.)


Before things really got started yesterday, I actually felt slightly motivated to get my sweat on. It may or may not have had something to do with the fact that a number of bloggers were up at 5am running 14+ miles that morning. Yes, I am very much influenced by others…but 30 minutes of HIIT on the hotel gym’s treadmill was plennnnty for me.

After showering up, Julie, Tina and I headed down to the hotel Starbucks to grab some iced coffee because, well, it was very necessary after another late night of chatting and slumber partying it up in our hotel room. Winking smile


Breakfast, which was sponsored by Attune, included a variety of cereal, fresh fruit, and hard boiled eggs. I made sure to include a box of Quaker Oatmeal Squares from my swag bag to put together a little cereal combo for myself.


I also had some melon and the whites of a hardboiled egg.


After breakfast, we had a fun little icebreaker game which allowed everyone to walk around and get to know each other before the different panels started.


The first panel I sat in on was about how to write a better recipe. The presenter, Stepfanie Romine from SparkPeople, did an amazing job of bringing a bunch of things to light that many of us might not always think about when writing recipes. It was great, and I’ll definitely be sharing some of those tips with you all later this week!


The next panel I sat on? Oh yeah…that would be MINE!


I survived!

The panel was actually really fun and Brittany, Heather, Julie and I were so happy with the amount of audience participation we had. In our panel, I was able to share some of my personal experiences with dealing with negativity and how I’ve dealt with it.

Honestly, they way I’ve learned to handle negative feedback has completely changed from the way I viewed it when I first began blogging. This is something that I definitely plan to discuss more at another time, so if there’s anything else that you’d like to have discussed here on the ‘ol bloggy, just let me know. I have a lot I can talk about!

Luckily, from anyone I talked to, they claimed that they could not tell I was nervous, so that’s good (as long as they’re not fooling me!)…because little do they know that my nerves were rockin’ that whole time. Winking smile


I’m not quite sure what I’m saying there, but it made me laugh, so I figured it’d probably make you guys laugh, too.


I LOVED my group! Open-mouthed smile


Right after our session was over, lunch was served which was a great thing because since my nerves were gone, I was really ready to get my chow on.

The lunch spread this year was completely vegetarian, including a mix of chickpea and quinoa salad, veggie salad, and an assortment of sandwiches and wraps with bread provided by Great Harvest.


I had never had the opportunity to try Great Harvest bread up until now, since we don’t have any remotely close to where I live; but I will say that this bread is out of control amazing. We learned from one of the representatives at the conference that this particular batch of bread was actually made fresh from the grains the night before. I mean, talk about fresh, right? I’m not even kidding when I say that I’d probably eat a whole loaf just plain. It was incredible.

I chose a half Caprese sandwich and half of a grilled vegetable sandwich, and both were equally delicious.


Throughout the day, there was no shortage of sweet goodies to go around, including my sugar cookies which successfully ran out. Paige’s cake pops were probably one of the best I’ve ever had. No joke…melt in your mouth deliciousness.


I was also lucky enough to snag some of Diana’s famous Dough Balls and a homemade granola bar. I decided I’d like her to come and bake for me once a week.



The afternoon consisted of a few more panels, chatting with friends, and eagerly checking the #HLS Twitter stream from our phones.



We were given an afternoon snack break provided by the lovely folks at Quaker, which consisted on some fresh veggies and hommus, Quaker rice cakes, and Naturally Nutty nut butters.



I never had the chance to try Naturally Nutty nut butters before now, so I had to be sure to get my hands on all of them


Seriously, all of them were awesome, but I think my favorites were probably the Cinnamon Vanilla and the Chocolate Cherry. I’m seriously checking into this stuff when I get back home.


I still feel like I have so much more to talk about with this conference, and trust me, I will. Not only did I learn some great information in the panel discussions, but I also had an absolutely incredible weekend. I’ll be working on catching you all up to speed in the next couple of days, but for now…it’s time to head back to New York!

Questions for the Morning:

How do you deal with public speaking?

What’s your favorite nut butter brand?

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{ 35 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Aine @ Something to Chew Over August 21, 2011 at 11:47 am

I really wish I had been there! It looks like it was such a great experience. I bet your panel was amazing! :)

I’m ok with public speaking – I’m used to giving presentations and I was a teacher for a couple of years. Still get nervous though!
Aine @ Something to Chew Over recently posted..Chicken and Spinach Lasagne


2 carissa August 21, 2011 at 11:53 am

Looks like ya’ll are having so much fun! Im glad the panel went well..I can’t wait to get a full recap!!
carissa recently posted..Eat your vegetables!


3 Leanne (Bride to Mrs.) August 21, 2011 at 12:22 pm

That picture of Julie and you checking out your phones is super cute!

I’m happy to hear your presentation went well! :)


4 Khushboo August 21, 2011 at 12:23 pm

Just the thought of public speaking fills me with dread- I get SO jittery with nerves and feel so flustered! Congrats on your successful presentation and cant wait to hear more about it!

Btw- all these recaps across the blog world make me feel like my best friend is filling me in about the night before! Love it :)


5 Julie H. of Spinach and Sprinkles August 21, 2011 at 12:27 pm

I bet it was the teacher in you that came out and you were great! :) The topic is REALLY helpful and I’m glad you guys went there, even though I didn’t get to hear it…. What a lovely day! :)
Julie H. of Spinach and Sprinkles recently posted..California- Day #3


6 Brittany @ Itty Bits of Balance August 21, 2011 at 12:58 pm

Don’t worry about being too busy to post yesterday, Courtney! If HLS wasn’t amazing and enjoyable– then not many people would want to read about it anyway ;)
Brittany @ Itty Bits of Balance recently posted..Saturday of New Beginnings


7 Erica @ For the Sake of Cake August 21, 2011 at 12:59 pm

Congrats on your presentation; it seems like it was really successful!

I like to think I’m a good public speaker since I teach high schoolers for a living. I tend to get a little more nervous, though, when I have to speak to people my own age!
Erica @ For the Sake of Cake recently posted..The Honeymoon, Day 3


8 Mary @ Bites and Bliss August 21, 2011 at 1:01 pm

Definitely a spread for bloggers right there! ;) I’m alright with public speaking. I used to be HORRIBLE at it and get terribly nervous..but ever since teaching yoga it’s pretty normal now.
Mary @ Bites and Bliss recently posted..Sunday sunrise surprise. [RCM long run #3!]


9 Anita August 21, 2011 at 1:33 pm

Reading about your experience makes me want to go to a similar conference! It looks like you guys had a great time. I’m really interested to hear what you have to say about the panel discussion. And I totally agree about Great Harvest Bread– it’s incredible!
Anita recently posted..5 Underrated Disneyland Rides (or) Taking Flight


10 Melissa @ Will Work for Veggies August 21, 2011 at 1:49 pm

I can’t wait to read more about how you deal with negativity! I really wish I could have been at that panel! Recap for us for sure :) As a blogger, it’s tough putting yourself out there and having strangers say whatever rude or cruel things they want. I’d really like your and others opinions on it!

To answer the questions: I took speech in HS on a lark, and was someone placed on both the comedy AND debate teams. I was shockingly more successful at debate than comedy, but that’s besides the point. Since I was ‘on stage’ arguing/cracking jokes at the ages of 14-18, I got over my stage fright pretty easily. I’m not bragging when I say I’m not afraid to speak publicly at all… even though you’d think differently from my sweaty hands lol.

As for nut butters… I’m still a plain Jane– peanut butter all the way!


11 Diana Amy August 21, 2011 at 1:51 pm

The conference looks amazing – can’t wait for a full re-cap!

I actually LOVE public speaking and it’s one arena in which I feel totally comfortable – one-on-one small talking at a cocktail party, on the other hand, is awkward city for this girl. Congrats on conquering your nerves, I’m sure y’all were extremely poised and articulate! :)
Diana Amy recently posted..Au revoir, Grande Bold with Soy


12 Sweet and Savvy August 21, 2011 at 2:04 pm

I’ve never tried Naturally nutty! They look awesome!


13 heather August 21, 2011 at 2:21 pm

that conference looks like it was a lot of fun(um, yes, this is partially because i’d have enjoyed all the feedings they provided). philly is a cool area and negativity in blogging seems like an interesting topic to cover. i’m glad you had a good time. : )

if youve not tried the brand, i’d absolutely suggest *ANY* flavor of nut butter from line called Justin’s. they have these(generously sized!)samples at most whole foods. all the flavors i’ve tried have been incredible, honey almond in particular.


14 colleen laquay urbaniuk @ thegiftofmondays August 21, 2011 at 2:38 pm

glad your panel went well…can’t wait to hear more about it and the conference in the upcoming weeks!

chocolate cherry nut butter?? yeah, i’ll be looking into that….

safe travels!!!
colleen laquay urbaniuk @ thegiftofmondays recently you know who your friends are?


15 Tracy @ Tracy's Treats August 21, 2011 at 2:58 pm

Congrats on your presentation!!

I try to take a few deep breaths before any major presentation and I tell myself that no matter how I do here, I will be OK!
Tracy @ Tracy’s Treats recently posted..Long Walk


16 Jamie aka "Sometimes Healthy Living Girl" August 21, 2011 at 3:00 pm

You did such a good job, Courtney! Your stories were very relatable and you provided great tips! And I definitely couldn’t tell you were nervous at all.

So great meeting you and running into you at the gym in the AM :-).
Jamie aka “Sometimes Healthy Living Girl” recently posted..Spaghetti Squash with a Side of Snoop


17 Shana August 21, 2011 at 3:01 pm

I really enjoyed your panel on negativity and especially the fact that you turned to a friend to help you write an (extremely) tactful response to an obnoxious comment. I ran into a couple of times but never got to formally introduce myself. Maybe next time? Hope you have safe travels home and I can’t wait to read all your recaps!
Shana recently posted..Sunflower Power


18 Shana August 21, 2011 at 3:02 pm

I really enjoyed your panel on negativity and especially the fact that you turned to a friend to help you write an (extremely) tactful response to an obnoxious comment. I ran into you a couple of times but never got to formally introduce myself. Maybe next time? Hope you have safe travels home and I can’t wait to read all your recaps!
Shana recently posted..Sunflower Power


19 Mallory @ It's Only Life August 21, 2011 at 3:11 pm

Great pics! I am a horrible public speaker and shake uncontrollably as I speak! I also get a mad case of butterflies and can’t eat anything beforehand~! I like to think I’m getting better though.
Mallory @ It’s Only Life recently posted..Best Wedding Ever: Part 1


20 Sam @ Mom At The Barre August 21, 2011 at 3:30 pm

I loved your talk. You all provided such great tips on how to handle these unpleasant situations. I really wanted to say hi at HLS and am sad we didnt get to chat. I am a relatively new reader of your blog and really enjoy reading it. Hopefully next year!
Sam @ Mom At The Barre recently posted..Physique 57: New UWS Studio + Class Review


21 Lauren @ Sugar Coated Sisters August 21, 2011 at 3:50 pm

Did you talk about the comments on the bachelorette party post? I’d love to hear your perspective on how to handle something as intense as that!

When I’m in public speaking scenarios I always crack jokes to ease tension, seems to work … and favorite nut butter? HOMEMADE! I love using Ashley’s instructions at Edible Perspective, she’s a recipe genius.
Lauren @ Sugar Coated Sisters recently posted..Pure Barre Sandwich


22 Ashley@MyFoodNFitnessDiaries August 21, 2011 at 4:02 pm

Can’t wait to hear more about all of the excitement of the weekend!

I don’t deal well at all with public speaking… in fact, it’s one of my biggest fears. Over the years, through different college courses I’ve been able to get better with it, but I still despise it. Way to go on your presentation by the way!

My favorite nut butter would have to be Adam’s Natural Crunch Peanut Butter. I love it!
Ashley@MyFoodNFitnessDiaries recently posted..The Smell of Pumpkin Muffins Baking in My Oven is Heavenly!


23 Lindsey August 21, 2011 at 4:36 pm

I got used to public speaking in University with all the presentations. But now I have been out of school for 5 years and it scares me again!
I love Justin’s nut butters :)
Lindsey recently posted..Jazz at the Lake


24 Kristen @ notsodomesticated August 21, 2011 at 5:40 pm

Those cake pops have my name all over them! For our wedding reception, we had brownie pops and I could have eaten a dozen!

For public speaking, feeling prepared always helps, of course. And just remembering that slow is better … if it feels WAY too slow to you, it’s probably just right for the audience! :)

I’m sure you guys rocked!
Kristen @ notsodomesticated recently posted..Fairs, Festivals … and mud volleyball?


25 Lindsay@ In Sweetness and In Health August 21, 2011 at 7:11 pm

Oh my goodness, what an amazing and memorable experience! I’m so bummed I wasn’t able to meet you awesome and inspirational ladies! Congrats on making it through your presentation, and from the looks of it on twitter- it went really well! I totally get nervous when I’m public speaking. I get kind of sweaty, and sometimes my voice shakes. Totally attractive ;). I don’t really have a favorite brand of nut butter, but I usually go with peanut butter and co. because it’s a healthier kind that I can afford with my grad school budget!
Lindsay@ In Sweetness and In Health recently posted..The Help (movie) and Germs


26 Bri @ Fashion Snack August 21, 2011 at 7:23 pm

The sandwiches at HLS look SO good!! And the whole conference looks like a fun time, I’m jealous!

I had to take a public speaking class last semester and I was so terrified! I got through it though and I’d say I’m a little bit more confident with it now.
Bri @ Fashion Snack recently posted..Banana Bananza, pt.2


27 Brittney August 21, 2011 at 7:51 pm

Great seeing you again Courtney and you guys did great on your presentation!
Brittney recently posted..HLS Cocktail Party


28 Courtney August 21, 2011 at 8:08 pm

Thanks, Brittney! It was great seeing you too…I only wish we had more time!!


29 Paige @ Running Around Normal August 21, 2011 at 8:55 pm

Thanks for the shout out, Courtney! It was so nice meeting you this weekend :D
Looking for the recipe for those sugar cookies of yours…they were amazing!


30 Paige @ Running Around Normal August 21, 2011 at 8:57 pm

oh wait – found it!


31 Cute~Ella August 22, 2011 at 9:07 am

Congrats on getting through it!

Public speaking is no big deal for me as long as I’m given enough time to research and prep. It was actually a big part of my college experience and that combined with many many years of teaching kids to swim, it’s never been a big deal. (Seriously, after you’ve taught the butterfly to 12-14 year old boys in your bathing suit, not much gets to you up on the podium.
Cute~Ella recently posted..Five Questions for Your Friday


32 Debbie@ Great Harvest August 22, 2011 at 10:17 am

Thanks for the kind words about your sandwich with Great Harvest bread!

Love all the peanut butter discussion — my favorite is Dark Chocolate Dreams by Peanut Butter & Co.
Debbie@ Great Harvest recently posted..Great Harvest Goes to the Dogs!


33 Courtney August 22, 2011 at 12:30 pm

Oh thank YOU! The bread was fantastic…I’m just super sad that I have no idea when I’ll get another chance to have some more. There’s no Great Harvest locations near me :(


34 Misty August 22, 2011 at 11:30 am

Where can I find the recipe for these cake balls?? They look delicious and I’d like to make them for this weekend!


35 Courtney August 22, 2011 at 12:32 pm

I wish I could help you, but they weren’t mine! :)


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