Arnold Sport Festival 2012

As I mentioned yesterday, I was given the opportunity to attend the Arnold Sports Festival in Columbus thanks to FitFluential and GNC.  It started with a fun brunch at the Hyatt at 10 in the morning with GNC, some fellow FitFluential Ambassadors, and FitFluential CEO & Founder Kelly Olexa!


She was just as sweet and kind in person as I imagined, and she is an OSU alum too!  Thanks for everything Kelly!


We spent about an hour and a half getting to know each other, sharing blogging experiences, and meeting some of the GNC staff.  There was such a wide variety of interests and blog focuses between us all, and that’s one of the things I love about FitFluential:  Diversity!  Everyone has their own beliefs and ideas of what is considered ‘healthy living’ and I encourage all of you to remember that too!  You don’t have to try and compare or live up to someone else’s goals or expectations, whether in nutrition, exercise, career goals, etc.  Just live your own life, be proud of yourself and your accomplishments.  Own it!

After breakfast I headed out to the expo where it was absolutely packed!  Seriously.  It was not easy to move, hard to breathe, warm, and I began feeling slightly Closter phobic!  However, it was amazing to see that many people there celebrating and enjoying such a wide variety of fitness and sports:  Armwrestling, Karate, Power Lifting, Track & Field, Gymnastics, etc, etc!  According to the website:

"The Arnold Sports Festival is the largest multi-sport event in the nation and the greatest sports-fitness experience of your life! The Festival welcomes more than 18,000 athletes annually who compete in more than 45 sports & events, including 12 Olympic sports. More than 175,000 fitness enthusiasts attend the Arnold Sports Festival each year to experience thrilling moments of sports competition and fitness entertainment.”

There were tons of booths at the Expo filled with products, clothing, fitness celebrities, competitions, and contests.  With over 700 booths at the Expo, you would think I would find everything I would ever want in the fitness world.  However, I was slightly disappointed that there weren’t more booths focusing on running, work out gear, yoga, pilates, or other activities that I enjoy and pursue.  I would have been so excited to see brands such as New Balance, Nike, Aasics, or nutritional products like Cliff, Kashi, or similar companies.  I knew going in to the event that the main focus of the Arnold was weight lifting/body building and that there would be clothing lines and products geared toward these interests.  I don’t use many supplements or eat many bars, so a lot of the sample products weren’t for me, (but that’s okay)!  The truth is though, I figured with all of the activities involved (including a 5K on Sunday) that this would mean running gear and similar interest minded companies to coincide with the event.

However, I was still able to find quite a few interests.  One of the most popular booths I loved?  Headbands were everywhere!  I have seen Sparkly Soul all over blogs, but it looks like there is some other competition in this category too.


I especially loved the following company, and it’s not just because I was given a headband to try (Review coming soon!  I am in love so far though!).

DSCN1196 Sweaty Bands!  What’s even better is that this company is local to me, based out of Cincinnati, OH.  The company has such a variety of headbands and the sales girls (I so wish I would have gotten their names!) were so incredibly kind, happy, and helpful.  I am planning on taking the headband out on a test run today and will let you know more after I put it to the test!

DSCN1197The #1 Fitness Headband in the World! According to the brand.

Good Greens stood out to me as well, for they are similar, (but claim to be better!), than my beloved Amazing Grass!


The company specializes in nutrition bars that offer 100% of your daily intake of fruits and vegetables.  The company compares itself to similar products in its field including Clif, Larabar, and Kind Bars.  According to the chart below, Good Greens leads the way in vitamins, proteins, less sugar and is the most organic of the four.

How was the taste you may ask?  It was pretty good.  I tried the Chocolate Peanut Butter flavor and I could taste a little more protein powder than a Clif bar, but it also has some decent nutritional stats that can cause products to sacrifice some of the taste.  I was really interested in the drink powder, which I tried a shot of and it was surprisingly easy to put down.  According to the website:

“Goods Greens Superfood Powder contains more plant antioxidants per serving than any other superfood. It is powered by the Z-52 formula which is a blend of the highest concentration of the worlds most potent super green foods, berries and other whole food ingredients. This powder will provide you with essential nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, phytonutrients, essential fatty acids, fiber and more. Before you buy our product, or any other product, we encourage you to compare ingredients.”

I liked too that this is another Ohio vendor and is based out of Shaker Heights, Ohio.  I love Amazing Grass, because it has truly helped me a great deal with overcoming my chronic fatigue in thanks to my bouts with mono.  I am always looking for new products though and love the idea of getting all of my fruits and veggies in one serving.  Of course, I prefer to get those servings some real food, but the truth is that I don’t always have an apple or a carrot available and my servings of fruits/veggies can dwindle fast!  That is when I prefer to fill in the gaps with products like Good Greens.

Here are some other quick pics from the expo:








Thanks again GNC for sponsoring me!!  Round 2 of the Arnold re-cap is to follow.  There were a few other events I got to check out that I enjoyed too, and I hope all of you will like them as well!


Have you ever heard of the Arnold Sports Festival?

Have you ever tried any of the mentioned or photographed products?

Tell me about your Saturday!

22 thoughts on “Arnold Sport Festival 2012

  1. Hey Jana! Even though not everything was up your alley, it sounds like that was still a cool experience! Love all of those cute headbands 🙂 I always wear my same cotton, stained ones from Walgreens so maybe it’s time for me to make the switch to something a little more fashionable!

    My Saturday was spent shopping and I got some pumps that I LOVE! I was so excited because I don’t buy shoes very often.

  2. What a fun experience, now I feel like I’ve been there thanks to your pics. I’d never heard of the Arnold before but I certainly know many of those products. : )

  3. I just came across your blog from Electra over at Vanilla Bean Lean and I can’t stop reading! I live in Columbus, but wasn’t able to make it to the Arnold Festival this year…it would have been great to see all of the new products. I usually have a larabar, but the Good Greens seem to be a great alternative.

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