Ben and I have been members of the OAC- Obesity Action Coalition– for a few years. This is a wonderful non-profit geared towards awareness of obesity-related issues and weight bias and stigmas and education about the disease of obesity. Members do a lot of lobbying in Washington DC which is no easy task!
I have had many OAC board members on my radio show to talk about the good work they do and we are proud to be members of such a wonderful group. Last summer, Ben and I had the pleasure of getting to speak at a lunch session and me to teach Aquafit at their annual convention in Phoenix called the Your Weight Matters national convention. All I can think of to best describe the experience is WOW! I have been to my share of obesity weekend conferences but I had never experienced something like this.
These are some fun photos from my Aquafit class. I cannot tell you how much fun this was. The plan was to teach one class on a Friday, but everyone had so much fun they asked me to do a second class Saturday and I was SO HAPPY to do this. It made my heart feel so good to see people doing things in the water that they could not do on land because of knee and joint issues.
But see this is the thing about the OAC that we LOVE. They think of everyone and have classes and things to do for everyone! It did not matter what your level of fitness was, there was SOMETHING you could enjoy if you wanted to do so. There were so many choices!
The most impressive things about this convention were the educational components. Literally there were dozens of different educational topics spread out over the course of the event so that attendees could go over a list ahead of time and sign up for the sessions they wanted to go to and some, like the lunch round tables we spoke for, were small and intimate and so each person really got to interact with the presenter.
Meals- for me, being in school to be an RD and being a fitness nutrition coach and radio host who’s show is all about healthy living and eating, the food choices at these conferences are always important to me. The OAC does this RIGHT! For every meal, you had the nutrition info listed in your guide for the weekend and so making smart choices was so easy! Meals were always healthy and offered lots of options. it drives me nuts to be at a medical conference and see a huge desert table of unhealthy options. NOT HERE!
The OAC took every detail into account and it was even the tiny things. Their goal was for all to feel happy and welcome and GOOD! Something most would never think of, but that I noticed immediately was the rubber bracelets they gave attendees. they said MY WEIGHT MATTERS. In fact mine is still hanging over my desk in my office. Well these came in two sizes. That was thoughtful and smart thinking. Something I had never seen before either. Heck, I didn’t even KNOW those rubber bracelets CAME in different sizes!
If you want a place to go and spend 3 days learning, sharing, growing, and just having fun in a friendly environment where you can just be you and feel accepted and not judged because of weight or any other issues, DO NOT MISS THIS EVENT! Check out this YouTube video!
After you watch the video, GO REGISTER! I promise you will not regret it at ALL! Once you attend one, you will want to go back every year!
Have a blessed weekend!