It’s so hard to even begin to sum up my time at the South by Southwest conference in Austin, Texas this week. It was by far the best conference I’ve ever been too — and I feel like I barely got as much out of it as I wanted to.

It’s an overwhelming situation — so many amazing panels, discussions, subjects and people. I was immediately energized just reading through the book of panels. I felt like I was learning and inspired just being in the atmosphere.

I know how fortunate I am to have a job that allows me the opportunity to attend this amazing conference. Of course, @Heritage was already represented on the Facebook Austin wall, where I attended a special brunch on Saturday morning:

I arrived Friday and dashed to catch at least one panel after my flight. But, before I get into the panels, of course I had to get some fitness into the weekend!

I was so pumped that Brooks Running was hosting a “Cowboy Run” each morning at 7:30am. I was staying a bit far away so I only made it the first morning but was glad I made some connections and had a little fun. I even met the creator of Map My Run, Kevin:

Annnd….those bags under my eyes look sweet!

Brooks had it set up just like a 5k/10k so we grouped together and all got some sweet dry-fit cowboy Brooks running shirts:

It was a bit rainy — and supposed to be rainy the whole time — but luckily the weather pretty much held out the whole time. My last day, today, was actually beautifully sunny and awesome!

As for the run, I opted for the 5k because I had to shuttle back to my hotel, shower, change and jump back on the shuttle to be back at 9:30am for the first panels. I grabbed a shot of some fellow runners:

I really wanted to do the 10k but just didn’t have the time. We ran around a popular Austin trail so I was able to see the buildings, the water and different parts of the city.

I had planned on getting in a work out everyday, but that didn’t happen thanks to daylight savings. I forgot it hit over the weekend so Sunday morning I was up too late!

Oh totally loved the Map My Run staff shirts, btw. They said: “The only difference between “Try” and “Triumph” is a little “umph.” (runner wearing on the right below):

Monday morning, I got myself up to run on the treadmill — pounded out 6 miserable miles and said done and done. Additionally, I walked around like crazy each day so that was some calorie burning. Here’s a shot of me and my fellow Cowboy runners after the 5k:

After starting off the conference with a bang, I was ready for a full three days of amazing sessions. I met some awesome people and learned so much — and I’ll be sharing all that awesomeness in another post 🙂

I actually need time to collect my thoughts. Also, there were so many sessions I wasn’t able to attend (they schedule about 6-7 things at the same time) so I would really like to watch those sessions on line and find out all the good stuff I missed! Stay tuned for lessons learned and to find out some of the very cool kids I got to hang out with! Here’s one little shot of Austin I took but there are more to come:

Have you been to Austin? Have you been to South by Southwest? Let me know what you loved about either!
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