We are trying this again. Our first winner never responded, so the new winner is #11 Stephanie. Congratulations! Email me your address and t shirt size and Self will send your prize right out.
While I was lamenting the fact that I couldn’t go to Fitbloggin with the rest of my Sisterhood writers, I was given the opportunity for an amazing alternative. Christy asked if I wanted to cover the SELF Magazine Workout in the Park event in Chicago. I jumped at the chance.
I boarded the 7:52 train with my daughter and a good friend and we were off to the big city. I was so excited. It was my first real press event for Shrinking Jeans. I had my camera and a notebook and was ready for anything.
We walked to Grant Park/Butler Field from the train station. It was only five or six blocks away. We walked through Millenium Park to get there. We saw the Bean and lots of beautiful flowers and artwork. The weather kept threatening rain, but it stayed dry all day.
My first hang up came when my name wasn’t on the VIP/Press list at the gate. The lady was very nice. When I showed her my emails (luckily I had the presence of mind to print them and bring them with) from the SELF rep and the PR firm, she gave us wrist bands and sent us on our way. From there, we waited in line for what seemed like forever.
They finally let us in and it was awesome. So many people and vendors and everywhere you looked there was swag to be had. There were special workouts that you had to sign up for and there were workouts that were going on all the time on the main stage. We signed up for a Pilates Fusion class and the Reebok Tighten and Tone class. We also did several of the main stage workouts.
We listened to Alison Sweeney talk about working out and being healthy. She also talked about the Biggest Loser finale. She was as normal as the girl next door. She didn’t act like a celebrity at all. She was out there with us working out. She didn’t care who talked to her or who took her picture. She was just another girl working out in the park. She was awesome.
Now comes my second hang up. My daughter decided to do a super intense workout and that was my cue to head to the VIP tent for my interview. I show them my wristband and they let me right in. I tell them why I’m there and nobody has a clue what I am talking about. Once again, I pull out the emails and give them my contact names and they start trying to figure it out. They ask if I would like to meet Alison Sweeney while I wait. OMG!!!! Yes, I would, thank you very much. I hadn’t planned on this, so I start thinking in hyperdrive. What can I ask her? How much time do I have? Do I have food in my teeth? OMG!!!
Alison Sweeney is one of the nicest people I have ever met. I just had a quick minute with her, but she was so nice. She said she loves doing things like this. She enjoys meeting real people who are just trying to be healthy. She has a new book out called The Mommy Diet. She was awesome!
I have just met Alison Sweeney and then everything is worked out for my interview and I get to meet Yung Moon. Yung is an associate publisher at SELF in marketing and creative services. She was very helpful in explaining about the ins and outs of an event like Workout in the Park.
I asked her how they came up with the concept for the event. She said they want their readers to be happy in the real world. To be happy and healthy and to have fun ways to do that. They wanted to provide an outdoor community for women (and a few men) to come together and feel good in the fresh air. She said she thinks that an outdoor workout like this promotes motivation and high energy.
I asked her how long it takes to plan such a large scale event like this. Yung said that it literally takes a full year. They will take a week or so off and then start the whole process over. They will go over what worked and what didn’t and start getting their sponsors in place.
I asked Yung if it was hard to get sponsors easily in this economy. She said the economy is coming back. She thinks that one of the few things you can control is your health and fitness. As long as people are looking for a happy healthy lifestyle, sponsors will be available to help make that goal a reality.
Yung calls herself a “brand evangelist”. She said she totally believes in the brands. She said that if you set a goal and work from the inside out, you can totally achieve that goal. The brands are there to help you in that process. She said if you take one step at a time, your goals are certainly attainable.
Lastly, I asked Yung if she was willing to sponsor a giveaway for our Shrinking Jeans readers. Lucky for you, she said absolutely. She is going to give one of our readers a one year subscription to SELF magazine and a Workout in the Park t-shirt. Just leave me a comment and tell me what your summer fitness goals are and you’ll be entered.
My first press gig for Shrinking Jeans was more than I ever hoped for. I had a few snags, but they all worked out. I want to thank Christy for asking me to go. It was a totally awesome day.
Did I mention that I even got my picture taken with Alison Sweeney?