Current faves: Review of The Class, good food and weekly workouts

Hi, friends! It’s me again! How are you? What’s new? How was the week? Everything was pretty routine over here. This weekend, I’m teaching barre and catching up with a friend, and then Dave, Brady and I are off to Santa Cruz on Sunday for a little get-together with our rotating dinner party group of couples. That’s about it, so let’s do our weekly round-up of favorites.


Review of The Class at The Assembly with Navitas Organics

This was an event that I’m glad I made the effort to attend, because it’s not always easy to head off during the day and leave Brady behind — but luckily Dave was able to work from home this day.

Ashley in the Mission August 2018 by A Lady Goes West

Last Friday, I went into the Mission neighborhood of San Francisco to The Assembly, which is a clubhouse just for women focused on wellness and which is also perhaps the best decorated and designed place I’ve ever stepped foot into. It’s in an old church and is just amazing. I totally want to go back. I had heard of it before and had seen the inside of the walls on Instagram, but being there in person was even better.

The Assembly in the Mission August 2018 by A Lady Goes West

Anywho, I was invited by Navitas Organics, a deliciously wholesome company founded on the idea of supplying quality superfoods to more people. I’ve been to an event with Navitas before and even met the founder (a very nice guy) and worked with them on this post all about superfoods 101. (Fun fact: I actually use at least two Navitas products EVERY single day with my breakfast, sometimes more — usually cacao powder in my overnight oats or goji berries or chia seeds on my toast, and it’s been that way for years.)

Navitas smoothie at The Assembly in the Mission August 2018 by A Lady Goes West

Before diving into some delicious Navitas smoothies and matcha lattes and mingling, we were given the opportunity to take “The Class,” which is a workout I had only heard in celebrity magazines, because Christy Turlington and Naomi Watts are big fans, just to name a couple. “The Class” was started by Taryn Toomey in New York and is all about learning about yourself through movement — sort’ve like therapy, and the instructor of the day flew in from L.A. just for us. Here’s the description:

Through simple, repetitive calisthenics and plyometrics, participants challenge the body to engage the mind. With guided instruction and carefully curated music, this Class invites students to witness their resistance to discomfort. The result is an expansive, heart-opening, body-strengthening release. This Class will challenge and enlighten you all while building an incredibly strong, lean, resilient body. You will find that you are much stronger than you thought.

I would say that about sums it up. Basically, you do simple moves for a long amount of time until they are really hard and you are sweating and huffing and puffing, and then you start to let out yells and sounds with the beat of your moves. After the song finishes, you stop, take a breath, put your hand on your heart and hand on your belly and soak up and appreciate what you just did. Then you repeat the cycle with different moves until 45 minutes has gone by. It was unlike anything I’ve ever done before. And I realized that the second the instructor of the day started sage-ing the room before we began and our mats were basically on top of each other in proximity that perhaps this would be unique.

The Assembly in the Mission August 2018 by A Lady Goes West

We did air squats for an entire song, jumping jacks for about two songs, push-ups, hip openers, bridges and more. And there were a few stretches thrown in, as well as a final meditation. It was insane, because the instructor was screaming, we were screaming, the music was blaring and I really couldn’t tell you the last time I sweated so much. (And I didn’t have a towel, so that was fun … also, my tight ponytail fell out in the first song, so I struggled with my hair throughout hehehe.) I was moved by the words and the chance to really reflect on my life while my heart was racing after each movement. It was unexpected. I loved it. And I’d totally do it again!

After trying The Class at The Assembly in the Mission August 2018 by A Lady Goes West

Back to Navitas Organics — they just launched some new essential blends, which are full of quality ingredients and give you a nutritional boost. Check them out, because who doesn’t want some extra nutrients and superfoods in their daily diet?

Navitas products at The Assembly in the Mission August 2018 by A Lady Goes West

Food and Drink

Watermelon water

If you’ve been watching my IG stories, you’ve seen that I recently went through a delivery of WTRMLN WTR (watermelon water), and I literally couldn’t get enough. It’s SO refreshing, I would go as far as to say I like it more than coconut water (and I love coconut water). It’s cold-pressured, gluten-free and vegan, of course. And there are multiple flavors combined with the watermelon, and perhaps this mint one below was my ultimate top choice, although they were all good (outside of the cayenne one — that was just too hot for me).

Watermelon water August 2018 by A Lady Goes West

Here are some of the benefits of watermelon: it has a ton of potassium, it aids in digestion, it helps relieve muscle soreness, it’s hydrating with a lot of electrolytes and it has a ton of vitamin C (more than a glass of OJ and way less sugar). So in addition to having a tasty flavored drink (with not too many calories and no added sugar), you’re getting some good effects. Thanks for sending, WTRMLN WTR peeps! I’ve enjoyed downing this bev on the hot summer days we’ve been having in the East Bay of SF.

Salad dates with my little man

The way Brady’s nap schedule works out most days, I’m eating a late lunch while he is taking his afternoon nap (around 2:30 p.m. or so). However, on Tuesday of this week, I decided to go to BODYATTACK and CXWORX in the morning, during what should have been his preferred first nap, and so our whole day of sleep got pushed back a bit — (side note: If it were up to me entirely, I’d hit up a morning workout class every single day, but it’s not ideal for Brady to be in kid-care at that time when he is usually tired, so I rarely do it anymore). Because of the change that day, I felt like it was the perfect day to get out of the house and go to lunch — so off we went to Lettuce in downtown Walnut Creek, one of my faves.

I love going out to lunch, but really don’t get to do it very often anymore, so it was a treat. Whenever I go to Lettuce, I “create my own salad” rather than ordering from the menu, and I like to add hydrating and juicy fruits and veggies and get the smoked salmon, with usually the lemon dressing. And they are generous with the avo at Lettuce …

Lettuce salad with Brady August 2018 by A Lady Goes West

Brady and I sat outside in the shade and people watched and he just stared sweetly at me as I ate. I didn’t even really mess with my phone during lunch and just chewed in silence. It was peaceful and something I want to do more of. He won’t be happy hanging in his stroller forever, and so I may as well take advantage, right? 


Fresh mani

I’m still going strong with my SNS dipped powder manicures rather than gel, and my nails are in pretty good condition. I usually only have to get my nails done every 3.5 weeks, rather than the 2 weeks I would go in between gel manicures. And my nails never break and feel thick and sturdy.

Ashley dark red nails August 2018 by A Lady Goes West

(My shoes of the summer, these slides.)

Last weekend, I popped out for a mani and decided to go with a very dark red– which perhaps isn’t seasonally appropriate, but felt right. Hopefully these babies last me for another 3.5 weeks, because I don’t really enjoy spending time at the nail salon. Now a blowout? That’s the kind of pampering I can’t get enough of, but not nails.


Weekly workout recap

Here’s a look at my workouts from last week …

Weekly Workout Recap by A Lady Goes West

  • Monday: 45-minute SoulCycle class, 6:30 p.m.
  • Tuesday: 30-minute upper-body weights workout, 12 p.m.
  • Wednesday: 30-minute lower-body weights workout, 12 p.m.
  • Thursday: Taught 1-hour Bootybarre class, 12 p.m.
  • Friday: 45-minute bodyweight The Class workout, 8:30 a.m.
  • Saturday: Taught 1-hour Bootybarre class, 11 a.m.
  • Sunday: Rest day

This past week, was lighter than the one before, because I didn’t sub any extra classes. I did cardio with SoulCycle, The Class workout and parts of Bootybarre. And I lifted weights two times (fell short of the weekly goal of three), but overall it was a good week. I actually returned to the squat rack at the gym on Wednesday of this week and lifted slightly heavier than I have been. I was SO SORE from just three sets of heavier squats, so that made me pretty happy.

Ashley at the squat rack August 2018 by A Lady Goes West

Also, I LOVED doing something different with my body during The Class, so it was a fitness highlight. A full rest day was enjoyed this past week as well.

Suggested reading

Best links from around the web

  • Wellness. I enjoy a lot of the articles you can find on The Wellness Mama website and just found out they have a podcast, which I may need to check out. Anywho, here are a few good reads as of late:
    • All about the blue zones. I’ve shared an article before about this recent study about the lifestyles of the people in the healthier areas in the world, and this is another good round-up. You’ll notice that drinking wine is on the list of healthy habits. Score!
    • Energy drinks. Nooooo thank you. This article details why you shouldn’t be downing energy drinks, but hopefully you’re not.
  • Skincare. There’s more to good skin than using face lotion. Here’s a list of habits to avoid in order to keep your skin looking great.
  • Productivity. Do you time block? I’m not sure I have the luxury to do so, because my work windows are so darn short during Brady’s daily naps, but I love the idea of it. One of my favorite blogging personalities tells us all about time blocking here.

A Lady Goes West favorite archives

Blog housekeeping

You made it to the end of the post, so I want to talk about something. I don’t really ever bring up back-end blog stuff to you, because all I want you to do is come here to read, get entertained or educated and carry on about your day. However, you may notice some new and different ads popping up on the blog and within posts. I’ve just transitioned over to a new ad network (a company that manages the ads on my blog, from which I make money), and for the first 90 days with this company, I have to keep the ads as they have installed with no changes. After 90 days, I can pull some ads off or move them around. I appreciate your readership SO much. And with the way the blog world has gone these days, I hope you understand this change and are able to roll with it for now. Much love to you, my reader-sister-friends.

Fitness and food faves and weekly workouts on A Lady Goes West ... Share on X

Hope you have a wonderful day and weekend, my friends! See you back here soon!

Questions of the day

What are you up to this weekend?

What’s something good that happened in your week?

Do you have any productivity hacks or tips?

Have you ever gone out to lunch alone? 

What’s your favorite way to get pampered?

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    1. Well you are the very best ever, Courtney! So THANK you. Happy Friday, my friendddddd! Three cheers for the upcoming weekend. I hope you get a chance to relax! 🙂

  1. So many comments on this post, loving all these favorites today! The Class sounds so amazing and that space is gorgeous. I love trying a new workout class or getting a mani/pedi or massage for some self care. And in order for me to be productive I need to write down a list of things to do the night before or I putz around the house, lol. Enjoy your weekend and dinner party, I keep saying we need to get a group of friends together to do that. 🙂

    1. Hi Patricia! I was the queen of lists before having Brady — actually, I used a bullet journal for every single day, and I’ve gotten out of the habit because getting a lot done is not as easy these days hehehe — but I think it’s powerful to write things down, so I like that you do that. And YESS — you totally need to assemble your group of dinner friends! Write it down as a to-do hehehe! 🙂 Happy Friday, my friend!

  2. The Assembly is gorgeous! I wonder how I would like The Class. I’m not a big yell out type of person, so I would wager that I would get super self conscious about it (I would even if the room was empty). But I would be interested to try!
    I don’t often take myself out to lunch anymore, but that is probably because we are trying to keep money a little more on lock down (as I spend it constantly). That said, I do love an occasional date out with myself!

    1. Hi Susie! It was totally weird to do the yelling during the workout, or the chanting and grunting, but MAN it felt like the safe space to do it hehehe — you know? Anywho, I feel ya on budget — but sometimes a self-care break that costs money is called for, so I hope you take those opportunities when you know you really need it. Happy Friday, momma! 🙂

  3. Loved hearing your thoughts on The Class. I’ve only been able to take it once as a part of a bigger event but want to visit their studio here. Although it might be a bit too woo-woo for me with the crystal infused floors and what not ?

    1. Hi Kayla! Ahhhh you are in the mecca of the studios for sure. I’d love to see what The Class space actually looks like, but YES, it is totally extra. I actually LOVED how simple the moves were within the workout, which was not at all what I was expecting! 🙂 Happy Friday, lady!

  4. I flippin’ love that quote on The Assembly wall so much!

    Me and my husband are dogsitting this weekend, along with our 2 dogs…should be interesting.

    Good thing that happened this week….there was a vote on Prop A being instituted in Missouri and it did NOT go through, which is good because it would’ve made Missouri a “Right to Work” state and greatly decreased my husband’s pay. Thats all I know about it, and that’s all I need to know! LOL

    I’ve gone to lunch solo once, and it was before the smartphone era. Kinda awkward. I could do it today though, easily. I would just burying myself in your blog!

    I’m am literally craving a facial! Need to do one soon….

    Have a great weekend!

    1. Hi Kelly! Dogsitting!! Woohoo — I think my dog would love to have a little friend around for the weekend. So nice of you to do that, lady! 🙂

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