Tuesday, June 3, 2014

FitCon Weekend 2014

Last weekend, J and I went to the 2nd annual FitCon expo in Waxahachie, TX (just South of Dallas). As I mentioned, we gave a talk about how we make our relationship work with him being both my boyfriend and my coach. As promised, here are more details about FitCon weekend!

The official FitCon 2014 t-shirt

FitCon is the brainchild of Jason English, aka Big J's Extreme Fitness. He grew the event from a small gathering last year to an expo this year with booths, speakers, and an ANBF bodybuilding show. Big J's vision of connection many of the fitness YouTube channels brought together people from all over the U.S. Attendees could meet their favorite YouTube personality in person, buy t-shirts and training gear, and get samples from some of the awesome supplement vendors in attendance.

J had a table where he sold his t-shirts and signed photos of himself. We were so excited to meet others who watch his channel and listen to his advice, experience, and stories!

J and me near his table at FitCon
I was his "camera crew" all weekend, so I walked around and shot footage all day. We're high tech - using an iPhone for all footage. ;)

Metroflex Arlington

We spent all of Saturday at the expo hall and then when the event wrapped up, we all headed out to Metroflex Arlington to train at the famous gym where Ronnie Coleman used to train when he was Mr. Olympia.

The sign is indicative of the state of the gym
Metroflex was ... um ... well, it was small. And dirty. And gross. J loved it, I was ... less than impressed. The place was packed with FitCon attendees and I quickly saw that there was no possible way I could get my workout done in there. I did a few sets to say that I've trained there, then I headed to a 24-Hr Fitness club to do my actual workout. To my surprise, I found a bunch of other FitCon peeps there too, who also realized they couldn't train at Metroflex. I ended up having a great workout! It's so motivating to be around others who are also training hard and having a good time.

Sightseeing, Family, and Friends

On Sunday, J and I went up to Dallas and checked out Dealy Plaza, where JFK was shot. It was both somber, moving, and fascinating to be there.

Across from the "grassy knoll"
The "X" behind us is where one of the bullets struck JFK
We met my cousin, Mike, and his kids for lunch. I hadn't seen my cousin for about 7 years and had never met his kids, so it was so wonderful to spend time with them!

Me with Cousin Mike and his kids, Matthew and Caleb
Later in the day, I met up with an online friend, Faith, and her family. We'd never met in person before and had a fun time chatting.

Faith and me with her son, Lidon
The Prep Elephant

The only sort-of downside to the weekend was that I didn't get as much sleep as I wanted to get because I needed to get all of my cardio sessions in. That meant I woke up 1.5 hours before J in order to have time to do cardio, get ready, and be places in time. We had to be at FitCon at 7:30 am on Saturday ... which meant my butt was up before 5 am in order to do cardio. On Saturday night, my evening cardio began at 10:30 pm. That's usually when I'm in bed. I wasn't happy about having to get up early and stay up late, but prep isn't about being "happy"; it's about doing what needs to be done. And cardio and training needed to get done.

Another challenge was that while the hotels we stayed at claimed they had "fitness equipment" ... in reality, NONE of the equipment actually worked. What a disappointment! I sprained my ankle a few weeks ago, and was relying solely on equipment to do cardio instead of running while my ankle healed. I didn't have an option, though; I laced up my running shoes and hit the road. Thankfully, my ankle held up and I was able to get the cardio done.

Early morning run before FitCon
Speaking of cardio, one of the highlights of the trip for me was going to Destination Dallas, formerly Metroflex Plano. It's a newer gym and it's bad ass!! If you're in the Dallas area, I highly recommend it! It's where Adela Garcia, Branch Warren, Steve Kuclo, Alison Frahn, and many other top competitors train. And I can see why! It's not the biggest gym (although not as small as Metroflex Arlington), but it has such an electricity in it. Steve Kuclo was actually training there (SO COOL!) while I did cardio. Talk about motivation!

Destination Dallas. Badass gym!
I brought all of my food for the entire weekend with me in my new IsoBag cooler. I LOVE my new cooler!! I bought it in Pittsburgh a few weeks ago, and this trip was the first test of it. It passed with flying colors! I was even able to get the ice packs through security (hint: make sure they're completely frozen). I was able to stick to my diet because I had all my food with me.

Fail to prepare, prepare to fail. I was prepared all weekend!
All in all, we had a wonderful weekend, met some great people, and made new friends. I'm looking forward to FitCon 2015!

Have you been to Metroflex Arlington or Destination Dallas? What did you think? Have you stayed in hotels that claimed to have a "fitness center" that just contained broken equipment? How did you handle it?

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