Thursday, August 20, 2009

Healthy Living Summit Recap!

I promised I would get to it today three days ago…whatever…so here’s my recap of the Healthy Living Summit

Friday Night – Cocktail Party!

I was SO nervous going into the cocktail party…I am an incredibly shy person, so walking into a large group of girls where I didn’t know anyone was a huge deal for me.  I ordered a beer (Sam Adams Summer!) when I got there to try and calm my nerves, although I’m not sure how much it helped…at least it tasted good!  Heading into the party, I thought that I would recognize more people.  Of course I knew who the organizers were, but I honestly didn’t know anyone else!  I’m more into the running blog world than the food blog world, so that’s probably why.  It was a good test for my social anxiety, and I think I passed with flying colors.

I mingled around a few groups and eventually met Heather from Running Leaner and Greener.  We chatted for most of the night and sampled some of the wonderful eats that were out.  It was so funny to see all the food bloggers taking pictures, and now I wish I had snapped some too!  Oh well.  Here’s Heather and I the next day at the Summit!

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It was really fun to meet other bloggers, especially those who share my interests in healthy living…and good food!

Saturday – The Summit!!

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As noted earlier, I ran with Sarah on Saturday morning, so I was hungry when it was time for breakfast.  Breakfast did not disappoint!  I jumped in with all the food bloggers and snapped a picture of my breakfast:

Healthy Living Summit 2009 016 Stonyfield yogurt, Mix My Granola, blueberry muffin, and pineapple!  I tried the smoothie because I hadn’t had one before and snagged the Kashi TLC bar for later.

Healthy Living Summit 2009 025 Let the Summit begin!!


First up was Janel Ovrut, a dietitian in the Boston area.  She gave us basic tips on healthy eating, provided examples from her own life, and answered questions from the crowd.  Having a degree in dietetics, nothing that she said was too surprising to me.  In general, I believe that healthy eating is common sense, but hard to follow.  Most people could tell you that you should eat more fruits and veggies than burgers and fries, but it’s difficult to put that into action.  (Especially when someone thinks that fries = vegetables because it’s a potato!)

Blog World

Next on the list was Blogging 101 with Zesty Cook.  I learned a lot about the blog world that I didn’t know before.  For example:

- People make money off of blogs…I had no clue!

- Self-hosted is the way to go.  Sadly, I think nurseontherun is already taken (probably should have looked into that prior to picking that name…oops?), but I convert to self-hosted sometime soon.

- Have a logo that people recognize as you.  I like my self-made header at the top…I’m sure no one else has it!

- USE WINDOWS LIVE WRITER.  It is a life changer.  Why didn’t I know about this before??

Stonyfield – Go Organic!

After lunch, Regina Beidler, an organic dairy farmer, spoke to us about her farm and what it means to be organic.  I haven’t spent too much time looking into organic foods, so this was an interesting session for me.  It seems obvious that allowing animals to graze and be fed naturally will result in more nutritious food.  That may be why I bought Stonyfield milk at the grocery store today!  I would buy more organic food, but it’s just so expensive, and let’s face it…I’m a cheap girl.

POM Wonderful

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Gatsby came out for the juice!!  We had a POM juice bar as an afternoon snack.  After seeing POM juice on many blogs, I was excited to try it.  Like many reviews I’ve seen, I’m not so sure I would drink this straight…I’m not a juice person to begin with, and it’s a bit tart.  It would definitely be amazing when mixed with seltzer water…or vodka.  (Oops?)

Fitness for Everyone

The main gist of this part of the Summit was for all the headlining bloggers to talk about how they workout, demonstrating that there is something out there for everyone, and that what works for one person may not work for you…and that’s okay!  Some people are runners, some people are not.  You may love yoga, others may think it’s crazy.  Being a runner, I can’t imagine NOT liking running (okay…maybe I can).

The only part that bothered me about this presentation was when the presenters talked about marathon training.  Not an exact quote, but it was presented that you don’t necessarily have to do high mileage to train for a marathon.  While there are plans out there for running fewer miles (like the FIRST program), I don’t think it’s the best idea to advocate low mileage programs.  For my first two marathons, I did Hal Higdon’s Beginner program, which peaked at 40 miles per week, and I think that was a little low, at least for me.  I definitely didn’t feel like I was overexerting myself, but I did get to the starting line and finish line without injury.  While I understand that cross training can complement marathon training quite well, I also think that it’s important to realize that marathon training is not for everyone.  If you are injury prone and your body can’t handle the higher mileage, maybe marathoning isn’t for you.  There’s nothing wrong with that at all!  I’m not coordinated and would break my neck doing gymnastics, so I stay away.  Same idea.  (Maybe.)

Okay, I hope that didn’t come across as mean…or something.  It’s just my opinion.  I get a bit bug-eyed when people run long distances on little training.  Moving on.

Saturday Night – Tastes of Boston!

After the Summit, I headed out to the North End with the Rocket Scientist and our friend from college who lives in Boston.  I had intentions of meeting up with bloggers at the Fisherman’s Feast, but it didn’t happen…oh well!  We headed to this place:

Healthy Living Summit 2009 002 SO GOOD!  And super crowded.

Healthy Living Summit 2009 006 Holy Cannoli Sampler!  My chocolate mousse one was the best.  :)

Healthy Living Summit 2009 052Rocket Scientist post-cannoli.  Awesome.

We then wandered around Boston and I got some good photo ops:

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Don’t mess.

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They mean business.  I do not.

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Boston is such a pretty city.

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I am in LOVE.  Oatmeal cookie hard yogurt.  SO GOOD.

My thoughts

The Summit was an awesome experience and I would highly recommend going to it next year…if you can get a ticket!  It was great to be around so many health-minded people and to get so much free swag.  The presenters opened my eyes to things I didn’t know before, and I learned much more about organic farming. 

As a non-food blogger, it felt like I was in a different world.  Food bloggers are so dedicated!  While I could make the time to have a food blog, I don’t necessarily want to.  Nor do you all want to see the ice cream and Sour Patch Kids I down on a daily basis.  I love food blogs because I get ideas for recipes from them and they inspire me to cook more.  I’ve been a bit down lately (related to my job/moving/new life), so I’ve been less motivated to cook/bake, which is something I love to do.  Being at the Summit helped bring back some of that motivation, and I have a whole list of new blogs to get ideas from!

In the blog world, I realize that I am quite small, although I do have readers that return day after day.  It blows my mind that some of the bloggers have thousands of people who read their blog every day!  I like the connection that I have with the readers who comment and who have blogs that I read, although it would be crazy to be big one day!  I think that it would be awesome to do a running version of the Healthy Living Summit, or maybe just a blogger meet-up race??  I like the idea that Kristin from ChasRunner has about a blogger relay race (which some have already done!).  I’d be in…

The Summit made me think about where I would like to take this blog in the future, as well as where I want my life to head.  My blog is very focused on what has already happened…my runs, how work went, and I would like to incorporate more content about healthy lifestyles.  I have a few ideas in my head, so look for some upcoming posts!  In my real life, I’m not sure where I want to head.  I like nursing (really, I promise!), but I like the idea of focusing on preventative health and health promotion.  On the drive home, the Rocket Scientist and I came up with the idea of being some sort of health/wellness consultant.  Grocery store tours, kitchen makeovers, cooking classes, exercise tips!  I want to go to grad school at some point, and I’m torn between becoming a nurse practitioner (because I really do like medicine/nursing/health) and doing some sort of MPH/Health Promotion degree.  This could be a totally different post in itself!  It probably will be…haha.

I hope you enjoyed my recap of the Summit and my ramblings.  The Summit was a fantastic opportunity to meet other bloggers (I mean…I don’t really know any in my real life!), to get free swag, and to make me think.  What more could you ask for?


Never fear, I will post about my MISERABLE lactate threshold run tomorrow…


  1. I know that when I do start training for a marathon (hopefully next year), I will need a higher mileage to be able to do well and feel confident through the race. But I do know people who have run marathons without injury, and at a faster pace than I can run a 10k, without running more than 25 miles a week. I say figure out what works for you and your body :)

  2. Great recap. I would feel REALLY SHY also around people b/c you "kind of" know them, but not really at all. Sounds like you learned a lot of great stuff for sure. I would totally suggest joining a relay for bloggies if another one crops up (and it had better) b/c WWR was a blast and super fun to meet running bloggers!

  3. Sounds like you had a great time at the Summit! I really wish I could have attended, but I started my dietetic internship last week, and there was no way I could have sneaked away. :-)

    Let's start our own sports nutrition/ nutrition counseling business! :-)

  4. What a great recap..with all the stuff I've read on blogs about the Summit I almost feel as though I was there (note:almost). Maybe next year. A runner's summit would be the coolest thing ever, though I think I'd feel a little out of place there, I'm no runner that's for sure! Glad you had a good time though!

  5. It sounded like a lot of fun and I'm disappointed that I was in Boston just a few weeks earlier visiting family and missed out so close! I like your blog because it is a mix of healthy lifestyle, exercise, and NURSING, WOO.

  6. Good lord I have so much to say about this post - I feel like you're my missing sister or something! I definitely feel that way about low-mileage marathoning.. it's one thing when you're a seasoned veteran and you know you can go the distance. But now days.. it's like everyone and their mom thinks they "need" to run a marathon. Not everyone has a body built for long distance running, and I agree - that's not a bad thing! I wish everyone could just find an activity that makes them HAPPY, and not feel like they need to _____ just because "everyone is doing it". End rant.

    It would be so awesome if there was like a Runners Summit. I'm all for it! Did you know I love reading your blog - it's like a little peak into the medical world, and seeing how you still fit in running! Did you know I'm planning on going on to med school? I'm majoring in Kinesiology, and I'm hoping to go into sports med or orthopedics when all is said and done (which is forever from now). Wherever your career path may lead, I'll be here reading!

  7. Great recap!! I think it would be awesome to have a running version of the healthy living summit too!

  8. love your coverage! thanks for sharing everything, honest opinions and all! i think a running summit would be great, and your new thoughts on career planning sound very intriguing.

    personally, i've done the higher mileage thing, and i've gotten injured . . . time after time. but i've run 3 marathons and i want to do more because i know how much fun it is! i think that lower mileage programs (ie, FIRST) when employed properly can help get people like me to the starting line without a hip that is throbbing.

  9. Looks and sounds like a fun time was had by all. The cannolis look delicious. They make me miss living close to such great bakeries. Have a fabulouos weekend.

  10. thank you so much for coming to the HLS!

    and thanks for your marathon advice... you gave me some good tips. i will definitely avoid speedwork as much as possible (it irritates my knees).

  11. By the way, whenever I visit your blog, the few hours following, I continually cannot stop singing the song, "Band on the run," but I replace it with "nurse" lol!!

  12. Great recap! It was great meeting and running with you this weekend. And I totally respect your opinion on the marathon stuff, we were just stating what we thought, but obviously we do not know everything and are definitely not experts! lol Next time speak up and voice your opinion! :)

    If you are up for it I am beginning to plan another relay race that goes from Miami to Key West that occurs in february. Shoot me an e-mail if you're interested!

  13. Thanks for your recap Susan!

  14. Dead on with the marathoning comments. I like hearing your take on this for that reason. Why does everyone feel the need to run a marathon these days? And by "everyone" I mean people who blog about having a "long" 7 mile run. They wonder why they are injury prone, but can't be bothered to put down a real base.

    -Cate ;)

  15. I am happy you enjoyed it. I think I would feel lost there! I don't get those food blogs. I read them and comment on some, but it's a bit overwhelming for me.

    I think the low mileage would correspond to a huge portion of walking the marathon. I am so far behind on mileage now, that I think I will have to cut back to a half and try for a full next year. Anyway, I would be game for a blogger relay run. Fun!

  16. I really enjoyed reading this recap and I appreciate your honest take on the summit! I wasn't there but from what I saw on the live-stream, I would agree with a lof of your comments. I'm glad you had a good time :)