My Journey to Idea World 2018 and Why This Year is so Special

When inspiration struck

10 years ago I was volunteering in the home office for Idea Health and Fitness Association with a mouth-watering craving to become a presenter myself someday. I wanted to be as inspiring, as captivating, and as skilled as the presenters I admired.

Being an Idea World presenter seemed like an essential milestone to achieve for a budding fitness professional like myself. Like a masters degree or a PhD. I deeply desired to grow my skill set and feel confident teaching on a stage. I wondered to myself that if I got the chance, “what would I teach?”

How I got my start

Six years ago my mom helped me gather my courage, thoughts, and ideas into the online proposal form. Was it even possible to be selected my first time submitting? I had four presentation ideas.

The session I thought most unlikely to be chosen was - Back to the Basics with Anatomy. Much to my surprise, they picked it. And they wanted to film me! The session would have eternal life.

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I was elated, and, I was nervous. I was so excited that I got sick two days before the 2013 event. But, I presented to the audience and a camera crew with an uncomfortable head cold anyhow. The session was a success. I was welcomed back in 2014 with two more anatomy sessions.

After presenting for the first time I realized it wasn’t such a big deal. It certainly wasn’t worth getting ill over. I was sharing my passion with group of eager listeners just like I did many times in the classroom at San Diego Mesa Community College.

I’ve continued to present every year since 2013 and have been filmed four times total. By audience demand I also created an online anatomy course. I’m glad I took the leap of faith or I would still just be dreaming about it and Andy (my skeleton) wouldn’t have his own Facebook group with people around the world chiming in about our favorite subject (anatomy).

I still get nervous every time I present - but I don’t make myself sick anymore. Instead of storing stress in my body I place the energy into preparation time and thought. I care a lot about doing a good job, especially when being filmed because the presentation lives on way past the event.

Also after a presentation, filmed or not, there are always reactions. People praise me. People criticize me. People take what I say to heart, for better or worse. So I feel the pressure to.... But, it’s worth it. I love sharing my fitness obsessions with people who are eager to listen and the chance to contribute to the community.

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Something special about this year

Four years ago I attended a barefoot training session with Stacey Lei Krauss and fell in love with her teaching style and perspective. I got in touch with her and cultivated a relationship

Two years ago I proposed to Stacey that we present together. Last year we pitched a co-presentation to IDEA and we were rejected.

This year Stacey and I are presenting side by side about foot fitness in a sold out session that is being filmed. Plus another unlikely proposal of mine was selected for this convention and is also being filmed - Sleep Science for Fitness Professionals.

I hope I put everyone to sleep

It’s one thing to be selected for programming at a conference, but another to draw a crowd. For months I’ve wondered if anyone would sign up for a lecture about sleep science on a Friday at 5pm. I’ve hoped that attendees would choose me over happy hour. So far so - good - I’ve got 100 people signed up.

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This session is part of my own personal awakening (pun). For decades I avoided some of the sleep habits I will be talking about and I am certain my resistance to the truth had a negative impact on my life - and - my reality. I’ve grown to appreciate and understand … and I’m sharing what I’ve learned so that others can benefit.

Sleep is essential for fitness goals. I believe sleep is a missing link in programming and behavior change.  

It’s time for the industry to open their eyes to the power of shut eye. And not just getting 7-8 hours. There is so much more beneath the surface of sleep that we need to know and advocate for.

I’m not just giving a lecture at Idea World 2018, I am teaching a method that you can bring home to share with your clients and your community.

Athletes need this info. Pregnant and postpartum women need it. Clients trying to lose weight will continue to see-saw without it. And disease will continue to be challenging to treat until we wake up and pay attention to our biological needs.

I’ll be simplifying the science and providing an action plan for you to take home. I hope to see you there!

Session 518 Sleep Science for Fitness Professionals goes live at Idea World 2018 on Friday June 29th 5-6pm.

Grab your spot and share this article with your fitness friends!

In the meantime join the Sleep Fitness Facebook Group and start sleeping better.

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