Current faves: Back to the real world, a win, a fiction book, the best dress and more

Hi, friend! We’re back! In case you missed it, I wrote a whole post about the highlights from our vacation in the Dominican Republic, and you can catch that one here. We loved our trip!

But, to be honest, it wasn’t the best return home. I came back from the Dominican Republic with a little bug (which Dave ended up with too), and so it was a slow crawl back to normal, with unpacking, organizing, prepping for the week and launching back into my routine, all while not feeling 100 percent. I truly enjoyed our time away, but I also love being home in our house with our little family too. And I’m now settled back into all the things, and I’m happy to feeling strong again.

This week, I taught six classes (five of my own and one as a sub), Brady was in camp for a couple days, I took Brady to the dentist and to his various activities, I took Rudy to back the vet (long story, but Rudy has had bad allergies since we moved to Charlotte, and we’re now on an elimination diet with him), I worked a ton, I went to a wine night with some girlfriends, and for the big one … I had my first official USTA match with the 5.5 combo team I’m captaining for the fall season. Not only did we win, but all three of our doubles lines won. It’s an awesome feeling, and we hope to keep up the momentum for the rest of this long season, running through the end of October.

I’m learning so much as the captain of my team, and it’s actually a lot of fun to do. Never in a million years did I think I’d be a tennis player, nor be on a team or be the captain of a team. But I am. Here I am with my doubles partner for the first match, Nadia. She’s really good at tennis, and she’s a sweet person who also comes to my barre classes at Life Time.

Tennis winners by A Lady Goes West

This weekend, I have a practice session with my tennis team, some work and hopefully some chill time. 

Also, before we get into the faves, could you do me a favor? Show a little love for some of the sponsored work I did this week for Atrium Health, both here and here. Thank you, friend! xoxo

Now, let’s get to the current faves of the day …

Current faves


“The Year We Turned Forty”

I don’t know how I heard of this book, but the title pulled me in — with a pending birthday on the horizon for me. I grabbed “The Year We Turned Forty” by Liz Fenton & Lisa Steinke from the library a couple weeks ago and ended up with the large-print version (again, I always end up with large print, unintentionally).

This book is a fictional tale about three friends who get a magical chance to return to the year that they all turned 40 and redo a few things that happened. While the premise of time traveling in reverse is certainly not realistic, I actually didn’t mind it. I liked reading this book very much and got through it in just a few days, with a few marathon reading sessions on the beach under an umbrella in the shade.

The Year We Turned Forty Book by A Lady Goes West

(“The Year We Turned Forty“)

I won’t say too much to spoil it, but basically, the three female friends all made different choices in their lives that they always questioned. Upon going back to their 40th year, they were able to make slightly different choices, and the rest of the story is about how those different choices affected other things in their lives. 

I enjoyed how the story flowed, I liked the writing style, and I liked the conclusion, because it was all about how you are always in charge of your own destiny, and you deserve whatever it is you want — even if you make some mistakes along the way. This isn’t the best book I’ve ever read, but there was something slightly special about it. And if you’re about to have a significant birthday and are thinking about the path you’ve taken, this book is one you should consider.


The best dress

I already shared about this dress in my post about the things I’m looking forward to wearing on vacation. But now that I’ve worn it, it has to have a spot on the current faves. I love everything about this dress, and I felt like a million bucks in it. For real. I will wear this over and over again. I already plan to wear it on a girls’ trip at the end of the month and hopefully again before that.

Vacation dress by A Lady Goes West

(The best dress.)

I’m in a small in this dress, and it’s a light cotton material, and it’s incredibly flattering. I know it’s bright, but it doesn’t feel loud once you put it on. The puff sleeves feel so feminine and put together. All around, the best dress I’ve ever had. I’m in love!

That’s it for the faves. Let’s get to the movement …


My workouts from the last two weeks

Now, it’s time to take a look at my workouts from the last two weeks.

I share this recap to show you how I try to get diversity of movement in my week (with a focus on lifting weights), and how I always take a rest day (almost always). But remember, I do a little bit more than the average person, because I’m a group fitness instructor, so you don’t need to compare your movement to mine.

New weekly workout recap by A Lady Goes West

Workouts from the week of 7/24

  • Monday: Taught 1-hour barbell class, 9:45 a.m., played 90 minutes of tennis, 4 p.m.
  • Tuesday: Taught 1-hour barre class with light weights, 9:30 a.m., took 90-minute tennis clinic, 11:30 a.m., took 1-hour neighborhood walk with friend, 7:45 p.m.
  • Wednesday: Taught 45-minute barre class with light weights, 9:30 a.m., taught 45-minute barre class with light weights, 5:30 p.m.
  • Thursday: Taught 45-minute combo class, 9:45 a.m., played 60 minutes of tennis, 11:30 a.m.
  • Friday: Taught 45-minute barbell class, 11:30 a.m.
  • Saturday: Played 90 minutes of tennis, 8 a.m.
  • Sunday: Did 75-minute full-body weights workout, 8 a.m. (shown below)

Workouts from the week of 7/31

  • Monday: Taught 1-hour barbell class, 9:45 a.m., played 90 minutes of tennis, 12:30 p.m.
  • Tuesday: Rest day
  • Wednesday: Rest day
  • Thursday: Rest day
  • Friday: Rest day
  • Saturday: Rest day
  • Sunday: Did 20-minute full-body weights workout at home via Peloton, 5 p.m.

These past two weeks of workouts couldn’t have been more different. I needed a real break on vacation, and I took one. I didn’t miss the gym or weights or tennis or classes at all. I enjoyed taking some real time off. I did, however, do two 30-minute stretching sessions over the water on a beach-side hut, and those were nice — but they do not equate to real workouts, that’s for sure.

Here’s my workout from the fitness floor from the previous week …

Deadlift Sunday workout by A Lady Goes West

Best watch of the week

Here’s a video worth sharing with you …

Morning tips. Here’s my latest video for Neighborhood TV, and in it, I’m sharing some tips on how to start your day off right. Check it out here.

Quote of the week

Here’s a thought worth sharing with you from Julia Cameron via James Clear

Beginner quote by A Lady Goes West

Blog archives of the week

Let’s look back at two posts worth revisiting …

All about our trip. In this one, I’m sharing some of the big things I’ll remember about our vacation … “Highlights from our adults-only all-inclusive vacation in the Dominican Republic.”

Dominican Republic vacation 2023

Vacation attire. Did you check out this one with all the new stuff I debuted on our trip? I’m excited to be wearing these items while the weather is still warm here in Charlotte … “Vacation attire: Five things I’m looking forward to wearing on my vacation.”

Vacation attire Five things I'm looking forward to wearing on my vacation by A Lady Goes West

Thank you so much for reading A Lady Goes West today, my friend. Take care!

Questions of the day for you

How was your week?

Have you read anything good lately?

Do you have any more trips planned for the summer? I have one more, yay!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.