When I typed up this post, I initially titled it “A Lady Goes West 2017 round-up,” in case that gives you any indication of how 2016 has been.
It seems like the media is calling 2016 a terrible year because of the drama of the election, the death of many beloved icons and even the advancement of global warming. While I’m not going to touch on any of those subjects, I will look back at 2016 for its highs and its lows in the life of me and this here little space on the Internet — A Lady Goes West.
State of the job
There were some major changes this year, one of which was most definitely the fact that I nearly cleared the slate at the end of January of 2016 and started a new full-time job with 24 Hour Fitness. I left my coaching role at Orangetheory Fitness, said goodbye to a ton of other group fitness classes and ended some freelance and blog relationships in order to make the transition. While I already worked for 24 Hour Fitness as a group fitness instructor, I took on the additional role as the editor of the company’s new blog 24Life.com. Transitioning from a fitness/blogger/trainer/freelance writer into a full-time corporate employee who teaches just a couple group fitness classes on the side wasn’t easy. And it still isn’t. I struggle every day with the right balance and never think I’ve quite achieved it. But I learn to manage and am thankful for having a very full plate and endless opportunities for learning!
State of the blog
That being said, in 2016, A Lady Goes West went from a five-times-a-week posting schedule to three, finally landing on two, where it mostly stands today. But we’re still going strong and most of you have stuck around, with a few new faces too. Thank you!
Because of my time commitments for the job, I had to say no to most sponsored campaigns and opportunities that came my way and also said no to far too many blogging events in San Francisco. But I still sat down to write at least twice a week and managed to “keep it alive.” In spite of not being able to put as much time and effort into A Lady Goes West as I would like to, I’m still totally proud of this space. (And grateful for you reading this!) And I promise you I have some cool things planned for 2017 here.
Top posts from 2016
Just as I expected, nearly all of my top posts on the blog as ranked by visits in 2016 (although not necessarily written in 2016) were fitness related. Here they are in order …
- Everything you need to know about the Orangetheory Fitness workout
- CXWORX 101 overview and tips for first-timers
- Class review: CorePower Yoga is hot, hot, hot
- BODYPUMP 101 overview and tips for first-timers
- How to get more out of your Orangetheory Fitness workout
- A super-fun Key West bachelorette party
- BODYATTACK 101 overview and tips for first-timers
- Signs you’re taking a class from a bad group fitness instructor
- How to make zucchini noodles
- How to beat the afternoon slump
And while these didn’t rank in the top 10, here are a few of my favorite posts from 2016 …
- Six habits of healthy and busy gals
- Five ways I’ve improved my sleep based on the book “Sleep Smarter”
- Seven sure-fire ways to look and feel vital during the holiday week
- What the latest news about lifting heavy weights means to you
- A meal-prep plan for five days of healthy lunches
- How to have a seriously awesome vacation in Las Vegas with friends
- Real-life details: Seven elements of a healthy weekly routine
- How I snack on the go
- Beautiful North Lake Tahoe in the summer
State of my life
I didn’t set any goals for 2016, unlike other years, so I don’t have any big checkmarks to make on a list. But I will tell you that I encountered some ups and some downs — accomplished a few things I didn’t expect and fell short on others. I like to keep most of the ups on A Lady Goes West, and keep some of the downs on the private side. But you can be sure that a lot of growth was had! Both professionally and personally as I moved through the months.
Overall, I’m incredibly grateful for my amazing husband, Dave, our fuzzy guy, Rudy, my family and my health. We love our home in Walnut Creek, our great group of friends in the Bay Area and in Florida too. Dave’s job is better than ever, and we never have a shortage of fun things to do. So that’s all good stuff.
Looking back, this year had some major highlights. For instance …
- Family and friend visits. While 2015 was light on visitors, I was incredibly happy to have two visits from my Brother (once with his girlfriend), two wonderful long visits from my Mom, as well as a visit from my dear friend Judy too.
- Vegas baby. The most fun vacation I’ve ever had with Dave and our best friends, Grant and Bre, in wild Las Vegas happened in August, and we are still laughing about it and telling the stories.
- Work travel. I went to L.A. for my 24 Hour Fitness job about six times and was able to take part in so many cool fitness and wellness photoshoots (including one with the E! network in which I met Chalene Johnson and Travis Kelce and one in which I interviewed my favorite podcaster Shawn Stevenson on camera). I also went back to IDEA Fitness Convention and IDEA BlogFest and got to hang out with my blogger friends and learn, learn, learn!
- Recognition. Dave and I were named part of Diablo Magazine’s East Bay “40 Under 40,” which was super cool. And some of our friends still joke that we’re a “power couple.”
- Local fun. I went to Napa four times, a bunch of Golden State Warriors games, including game 7 of the NBA Finals, as well as did some hiking, hit up Santa Cruz, a San Francisco 49ers game and much more. The Bay Area is the greatest!
- Travel. Dave and I went to Carmel twice, to Mendocino for the Fourth of July and we joined my family in the mountains in Georgia too. I also went on my first official press tip in Tahoe and had an awesome experience.
- Fitness. I took on a new program, went to instructor training and became certified to teach Bootybarre, which is a great addition to my repertoire. I also got to be an extra in a Les Mills Reebok commercial shoot, but got cut out of the final footage heheh.
- Blogging. Toward the second half of the year, I went to a few more blogging events around food and fashion and got to meet new local bloggers, which I absolutely love. Speaking of events, I’m hosting a free class on Sunday, January 8 at Kit and Ace in Walnut Creek at 10 a.m., and I’d love for you to attend. Email me for details!
- Holidays. A beautiful Thanksgiving in Carmel with Dave’s family and a sunny Christmas and holiday trip to Florida with my family.
Overall, this life we’re living is a new adventure every single day. This year, I’ve tried to let go of looking for perfection and instead seek a little bit of happiness in the present. It’s a daily process, and I will keep working on it in 2017. Throughout it all, I’ve got good people in my life and a lot of positive things going on.
Thank you, friends, for letting me share my life with you. I promise to keep getting better and trying to give you cool information along with regular old stories from the day to day. And I have a few things up my sleeve for the new year, which are going to be awesome. Sending you so much love, everyone! I’ll see you next year!A blog round-up! Check out the top posts of 2016, life updates and thoughts by @apstyle ... Click To Tweet
Questions of the day
What was the highlight of your year?
What are you most looking forward to in 2017?