Inspirational People at #HLS12
On Tuesday I gave a brief overview of some of the events that took place at HLS12. Fun times were definitely had and many memories made!
The big takeaways I had from the weekend, however, were not always from the sessions or the events, but the conversations I had with people. I met a lot of great people full of optimism, determination, and humour. A few definitely stood out for me and I thought I would share a bit of what I learned about them and from them. I wish I could highlight everyone I met as they are all deserving of recognition!
Amanda from Run To The Finish reminded me of the pure joy of running. She is currently training for the NYC Marathon (which impresses me to no end!) but told me that she doesn’t need to have a race on the schedule to get out there and run; she would do it anyways because she loves it so much. When she shared this, she had a hint of a smile on her face, like she was recalling a run on the beach along the ocean (she lives in Miami) and how happy it made her. It reminded me that I should run because I love it, not because I feel like I “have” to. She was also my partner for the Friday morning conditioning class and somehow we managed to coordinate during the partner resistance band moves!
I loved hanging out with Kristen of FoodFash. Her enthusiasm for food was contagious! She is a bundle of energy, so positive, thoughtful, and generous. Her passion for food is probably pretty well matched by her passion for photography, something which has inspired me to take more time learning how to take good photos. She has also promised to keep me stocked with corn tortillas. That alone makes her an awesome person. She also made me feel so welcomed at HLS12.
I loved hanging out with Alicia! She’s someone that I could totally see ourselves hanging out and saying/doing silly things. On Thursday she did cartwheels down the hall just because she felt like it. I love people who find joy in the little things, and Alicia does that. She is such a happy person and I think whenever I saw her she had a smile on her face. She’s also agreed to walk 2.5 days to meet me halfway between Ottawa and Albany. Major respect for that. She’s also supportive of my love for Irish men, and, apparently, my love for Irish men who are gingers. I don’t know how that started, but it did.
Emily is a great person. She has a sharp sense of humour, is calm, and is so nice. We had some great chats throughout the summit and I wish we could have had more! She’s also the one who made sure we got to Mike’s Pastry and for that, I will bow down and praise her for hours on end.
Meghann (on the left) is one of the founders of the Healthy Living Summit and one of the main organizers for HLS12. Throughout the weekend, she made everyone feel welcomed, had a smile on her face, and worked hard to ensure everyone was having a good time. This, despite having learned that her family’s beloved dog, who had been ailing for quite some time, would have to be put down on Monday. Her determination to keep going and put a smile on her face for the sake of others was admirable as she was dealing with her grief.
Mary (on the right) was great. I had a lot of great chats with her and she provided a lot of encouragement when I shared some ideas and goals of mine. She is the only person I have told about a logo I am thinking about using for my blog and her response was so simple, essentially saying that if it feels right, then it is right. Her calmness, kindness, and support was much appreciated. Also, she’s run the Boston Marathon. Umm… kinda awesome.
In real life Heather and I aren’t that blurry! Apologies, but I love this pic of us. Heather was one of the other organizers, representing Healthy Living Blogs (the other person was Julie). This girl is awesome. She has a delightful sense of humour and way of incorporating her, let’s call it “Heatherisms” into conversations and presentations. She is passionate not only about blogging, but about establishing a blogging community. Her enthusiasm for bringing people together, to help them connect, network, and to grow was awesome. Her humour also provided a lot of smiles and laughs. She, too, is willing to walk 2.5 days to meet somewhere around the Canada/US border. I’m hoping to do some stuff with HLB to get more Canadian bloggers involved and perhaps some Canadian brands. Bonus is that I would get to work with Heather! woot!
There are so many more people I could write about: Rachel, Becky, Heather, Julie, Kelli, Krista and others all helped to make the weekend memorable. I would, however, be remiss in recognizing a certain few ladies with whom I shared some great conversations and laughs, not only during the weekend, but prior to.
Mindy, Min and Danielle were delightful roommates. I have no idea why, but the only picture of the four of us together is from the photo booth!
We all met for the first time in person at HLS12 but had been in touch via email and twitter in the months leading up to our arrival in Cambridge. We all registered individually and then started looking for roommates. I was lucky to room with three women who are intelligent, kind, funny, fun, caring, and great to hang out with. I really hope to keep in touch with each of them of the coming months and years and will love following their lives as they each do amazing things.
Mindy is training for a half marathon in the fall but I see her doing much, much more than that. She is a determined woman and I think she has some ideas spinning around in her head!
Danielle is getting married in 2014 and while I know wedding planning is going to take up a lot of her time, I know she is also going to be working hard to advance at the job she enjoys, grow her blog, seek new opportunities, and live life to the fullest.
Min’s passion for healthy living and nutrition specifically is going to take her far. She is studying for her master’s in nutrition and she wants to work with children. We had a great talk about how important it is to make sure children have access to healthy, nutritious meals and her passion was evident. She herself has overcome some health challenges and her openness in discussing them is admirable. She and her husband are also hoping to start a family and I can’t wait to hear one day hear the news that they are going to have a baby. She is going to be a great mother.
So there you have it. Some people who inspired me throughout HLS12 and in sharing themselves, helped me to learn a bit about myself and motivate me to do more and be more. These ladies are going to do great things and I am excited to read about everything they are doing. I hope that next year we can all reconvene at HLS13 and marvel at all that we have accomplished over the year.