Fitness, Friends and Fun at Fitcation ‘13!!!
I have been blogging for over 5 years now and have been to several events representing The Mommy-Files, but none had quite topped the experience I enjoyed recently at Fitcation ‘13. If you know me, chances are probably pretty dang good that you know I am NOT a fitness guru, nor am I an all-organic, all-natural food type of gal. I drink beer, eat fried foods, and eat chocolate (a lot), so I was a little worried at first about “fitting in” with the group of ladies at Fitcation ’13. Boy was I wrong!
Fitcation ’13 was filled with women who wanted to get in better shape, eat healthier and make new friends and memories in a beautiful surrounding. Fitness + Vacation = Fitcation. It was an awesome experience and I can honestly say I don’t think I’ve been to an event before where I’ve laughed so hard in a long time (remembering wine in a bottle and “Clone-a-what!”)!
Day 1 started with driving up a whole one hour from Nipomo to beautiful Paso Robles. Caroline and I carpooled up and checked into our hotel room at the Holiday Inn Express in Paso Robles, awaiting Chelsea, our 3rd roommate. What a fun bunch of gals in our hotel room! After checking in and dropping off our bags at the room, it was time to register and pick up our nametags and swag bags. Oh my gosh – there were so many goodies in our swag bags, not to mention shirts and pullover shirts that I wear on a daily basis now. Leah was such a sweetheart, but I knew we would instantly click anyways (power of the redheads)!
After everyone checked in, they headed to Downtown Paso Robles. While Caroline and I didn’t get a chance to, several of the other bloggers explored the Pithy Little Wine Co. Winery & Mercantile, Brown Butter Cookie Company and General Store. In the evening, we all met together for some of the area’s best SIP Certified Wines and a delicious dinner at Studios in the Park. Dinner was catered by FIG Good Food of Atascadero, with a surrounding of one-of-a-kind works of art from local artists.
After reading that last paragraph, you may be wondering what SIP Certified Wines are? I hadn’t heard of the SIP Certified Wines before this trip! For over 15 years, SIP Certified Wines have been helping growers, vineyards and consumers rethink their approach to sustainability. SIP Certified sustainable vineyards and wines is about great wines, healthy vineyards and the well being of workers (in every aspect). While many consumers look solely for wines that are labeled as “green wine” or “organic wine,” SIP Certification is a unique combination beyond those two labels. SIP Certified Wines promote (1) Fertile soils that exist to produce hearty grapes for years to come; (2) Vineyards and their workers being dedicated to the same sustainable practices; and (3) Green wine and eco-savvy consumers being given another choice they can make – one that supports both the land and the people that create their favorite wines. The weekend long event would be providing us with plenty of opportunities to enjoy SIP Certified Wines.
Day Two was a challenging, but way fun day for me! The day started off with a Boot Camp-style Morning Workout at Barney Schwartz Park. Oh my gosh – it was tiring, but so much fun! Everyone had different levels at which they could work out and I don’t think anybody felt judged by anyone else. I mean, our instructor was like 6 months pregnant and was doing squats, jumps, everything! She was so much fun!
After the workout, we headed back to the hotel and showered and got ready for the day’s activities, which included lots of wine – yay! Our first stop was to the gorgeous Castoro Cellars Winery. The rep of the company took us on a mini tour and the one thing I noticed him say was how beautiful it was for a wedding, especially during the months of October or November. Frank and I have some friends getting married next year at a vineyard and I immediately thought of them for this venue, not to mention semi-dreaming about my own someday. What a gorgeous view!
Castoro Cellars Winery is tucked in the rolling hills of Paso Robles and is owned by a husband and wife team (Niels and Bimmer Udsen) who had the goal of producing world-class wines from Paso Robles-appellation grapes. At the winery, we also had a lesson on wine tasting from Stasi Seasy of Unlock Wine.
After wine tasting and a yummy lunch at Castoro Cellars Winery, we headed to Pasolivo for a hike and some olive oil tasting. Wow! Their olive oils were so good! I even purchased some Olive Tapenade and a large bottle of Extra Virgin Olive Oil to take home with me. With over 45 acres of olive trees that are farmed organically and sustainably, Pasolivo offers an orchard and mill tour plus a scenic hike. At Pasolivo, the olives are hand-picked and pressed just steps away in their very own olive press.
After touring Pasolivo, we headed to Halter Ranch, another gorgeous and peaceful winery in Paso Robles. We started with a tour of the ranch and walked through the vineyards up to the awe-inspiring Ancestor Tree. Afterwards, bloggers toured the winery, but I hung out in the Adirondack chair with fellow blogger Ana Lydia and sipped wine as we discussed our goals for our careers and blogs.
Following the hike, winery tour and some wine tasting, it was time to head to a dinner sponsored by Earth Footwear. Not only did we enjoy delicious appetizers and wine, but we also received a pair of cute shoes and Reflexology massages, followed by a yummy dinner. It was a fabulous day filled with fitness, friends and lifelong memories I’ll carry with me!
On Day 3, we packed up our suitcases and checked out of the hotel. Caroline and I followed in our vehicle and headed to Hearst Castle bright and early in the morning. I had never been on a Hearst Castle Tour before and was super excited to be going during Fitcation. It was beautiful and I shot so many gorgeous pictures that I’m going to have write a whole other post on my experience.
After touring Hearst Castle, we headed to the Leffingwell Landing in Cambria. There we enjoyed a picnic lunch, breathtaking views of the ocean and a Yoga workout on the beach. As we drove into Cambria, we noticed the various Scarecrows in front of businesses as part of the Annual Scarecrow Festival. How cool is that??!!
The next destination of the trip was to the historic fishing village of Morro Bay. Many of the bloggers went kayaking (thanks to Kayak Horizons), while a few of us headed over to a local restaurant and enjoyed some yummy appetizers, beer and good conversation. Following the kayaking, we headed to the Marina Clubhouse and met with reps of the Travel Bureau of Morro Bay. Caroline and I were pretty tired, so we headed home. Other bloggers headed to the city of San Luis Obispo and enjoyed dinner from Eatz and wine from Tolosa.
My overall thoughts of the event can be summarized in one sentence – AWESOME, FUN GOOD TIME FILLED WITH FRIENDS, FITNESS, & WINE!! A big thanks to Leah Segedie of Mamavation for putting this fun event together and the sponsors mentioned above for showing us a great time in the beautiful city of Paso Robles, California!