from food to fitness.`

It is incredible how much things can change in just a moment, a day, 10 months...

in less than one year I've opened a profitable business, rekindled and ultimately let go of a boyfriend, moved apartments and continue to get to know myself. And now, on return from my first offsite wellness event, I reflect on the jump from food to fitness…

For eight years, I spoke all things food while helping scale a global restaurant company.  Those well spent years also meant work trips to food + wine festivals in south beach + aspen, with overwhelming excitement and everlasting hangovers. My last year at Altamarea Group and last Aspen Food + Wine was a sure sign that fitness had captured my heart and wellness was where I'd find solace. While revelers were up partying, I was running 9 miles thru the Rockies to my favorite yoga studio near the Aspen Airport. Yet my time spent in the food world was as good as it gets.

The instant gratification of huge burger events followed by late night partying and early morning pickle backs with celebrity chef elite was addicting, as instant gratification typically is. Besides, who would refuse hang time with the world's hottest chefs in private mansions in Aspen + Miami, complete with endless appetites for all things open bar + caviar?

Aspen, CO. black spandex. always.

Aspen, CO. black spandex. always.

meat is usually for dinner.

meat is usually for dinner.

Fakahany + Michael White.

Fakahany + Michael White.

 Its been a year + a half since I left foodie life and one day since returning from Mind Body Green Revitalize, my first wellness offsite -- a refreshing peak into a world I jumped into head first – via box + flow (with beer in the fridge and bunless burgers galore).  No need to scour the internet for party attire, instead I arrived with a suitcase full of black spandex, two pairs of heels I didn’t wear, and zero worries about late night gluttony via pigs in a blanket + momofuku cake balls.

it was a real treat.

200 top wellness experts flocked to the remote Ritz Carlton Dove Mountain  for 48 straight hours of connection via fitness, wellness + love. Instant gratification was found in the giveaway suite stocked with sustainable healing. This gluten-free-toxin-free-sugar-free candyland offered feel good fuel from the inside out: vital collagen proteins, moon dust, swell bottles, sakara life, bombas socks, healing crystals, hum vitamins, probiotics, and things I never imagined I’d care for. Needless to say, my initial reaction was where’s the beer? So I scooted towards the Krave Jerky stand to be sure i'd have snacks for safety. 

But once I found comfort in discomfort, I let go.

Its incredible how good feeling good can be! Exhausted from travel, I passed out at 6pm night one and woke up 10 hrs later. I strapped on my sneakers and ran thru the desert before taking on breathwork lessons and ear acupuncture. One full day of programming ensued, complete with panels + speakers on coping with cancer, microbiome, intermittent fasting, ketogenics, climate change, intuitive healing and more. 36 hours in and the only beer consumed was with a firefighter on the plane. 

I felt amazing.

My past career was thrilling. Every food festival was my quarterly excuse to party past midnight and find trouble after too much tequila. Regardless, I always woke up by 5am and worked out before bloody marys at noon. But today, my priorities have shifted. Im finding a high in vital proteins and chaga tea, in serums instead of sodium, and connection rather than competition. Instant gratification from late night partying is now sustainable gratification from feel good fuel from the inside out for the long term. At revitalize, group hikes start at 6am, limited booze isn’t served until happy hour and no one complains.

I would safely assume that I am not alone in this feeling. So many of my chef friends are waking up to work out, and finding their own balance in work, fitness + food. They’re choosing wellness over illness, and i'm on board. So, if this is the wellness world, then i think I'll stay awhile. Next year, I just might bring some beer + bubble gum. I'm looking forward to it.

#workhard #livyoung

South Beach Wine & Food Festival. 2009.

South Beach Wine & Food Festival. 2009.

Andrew Zimmern + Michael White

Andrew Zimmern + Michael White

boxing, burgers, backbends, beer. Vaucluse, NYC.

boxing, burgers, backbends, beer. Vaucluse, NYC.

Capon, Cardoz, Besh, Becker, White.

Capon, Cardoz, Besh, Becker, White.