Friendsgiving, Les Mills Mini Q, maple Brussels sprouts recipe and my weekly workouts

Hello to you, on what is hopefully a short week. The fall weather is in full swing in my neck of the woods, and we had a (mostly) great weekend over here, but it went by way too fast. Not too much to report about Friday or Sunday, so all the happenings took place on Saturday …

Les Mills Mini Quarterly event

Remember in my Friday post when I said all I had on the agenda was teaching BODYPUMP and going to Friendsgiving? Well in the middle of the day on Friday, I found out that apparently we were hosting a small Les Mills “Mini Quarterly” event at my home gym, 24 Hour Fitness Walnut Creek Super Sport. I don’t possibly know how I had missed the memo, but knew I didn’t want to miss the event itself. Right away, I signed up for a spot in the BODYPUMP portion and paid my $20.

BODYPUMP set-up by A Lady Goes West

That did mean two doses of BODYPUMP in one day, which isn’t ideal. But I used my regular weight while teaching my class at 8 a.m. that day, and then did lighter weights during the workshop at noon. Here’s a shot of the whole BODYPUMP group, taken by a self timer, which came out a little blurry, but totally worth sharing. Guess I should have worn by REP shirt, huh?

Les Mills BODYPUMP participants at the Mini Q by A Lady Goes West

My group fitness manager, Melissa, was one of the Les Mills BODYPUMP presenters, and I knew the other presenter, Kimi, too, so it was fun to see them in action. We did the best of BODYPUMP tracks, with some of the bonus tracks from the much-anticipated Les Mills BODYPUMP 100 release, which will be debuted in the U.S. in early 2017. Let’s just say the bonus lunge track from 100 called for a sombrero …

Melissa Cox at Les Mills Mini Q by A Lady Goes West

After a masterclass, we switched gears to some small-group discussions and learning. The focus of the education session was teaching instructors how to perfect certain parts of their form to avoid injuries. Les Mills did a study, and the biggest injuries instructors across the world complain of are in the neck, so we did a few drills to ensure that we have the correct postural alignment. That means the center of your ear is always over the center of your shoulder, with your chin not tucked, nor protruding. It’s called a plumb line, and that’s how we should be carrying ourselves all day, in addition to our workouts.

Based on watching the presenters and listening to the education, I picked up a couple of nuggets of wisdom and loved seeing some of the BODYPUMP 100 bonus tracks before their launch next year. While I would have enjoyed staying for the CXWORX portion, which happened next, because I’m not currently teaching that class and I had to get home to cook food for Friendsgiving, I left right after BODYPUMP. By the way, I miss teaching CXWORX and really need to get a regular class. 

Friendsgiving fun with our dinner party group

On to the evening’s events … this was our first ever “Friendsgiving,” and it won’t be the last. Our friends, Nick and Clare, hosted, and Clare was excited to debut her brand new gorgeous dining table, which fit 10 people perfectly. She had done an excellent job setting the scene, preparing the meal and hosting our group of five couples. How cute are the Friendsgiving napkins?

Friendsgiving table by A Lady Goes West

We get together with these couples about every other month for a rotating dinner party, but this night was extra special with all of the festive flair. 

Because it was a holiday night, I took pictures of each couple, which I love to do. Dave and I attempted no less than 15 photos before we ended up with this one. It’s not my favorite, but at least Rudy was looking at the camera.

Ashley and Dave at Friendsgiving by A Lady Goes West

After photos, it was time for food. I contributed maple Brussels sprouts, and because I got a few questions about the recipe on my Instagram, I figured I would share it. I did some research and combined a few recipes to come up with my own. Look at these beauties …

Maple roasted Brussel sprouts recipe by A Lady Goes West

Maple-roasted Brussels sprouts recipe

I made a large batch, so you would probably want to cut this in half for a regular portion. And they were super yummy, so you may be able to convince non-Brussels eaters to eat them (I did). Prep time was about 15 minutes, with cooking time of 30 minutes. Serves MANY!


  • 2, 2-pound bags of whole Brussels sprouts (preferably organic)
  • 10 tablespoons of coconut oil, melted
  • 10 tablespoons of pure maple syrup (preferably room temperature)
  • 1 teaspoon of sea salt 


And it’s this easy to do …

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees
  2. Wash and cut the Brussels sprouts into halves
  3. Mix the melted coconut oil, syrup and salt into a bowl
  4. Put the Brussels in a large bowl and cover them with the mixture from above
  5. Lay the Brussels on a coated baking sheet (I used coconut oil spray), cut side down
  6. Cook for 30 minutes, flipping them over half-way through
  7. Pull them out, add some extra salt and enjoy!

Because of all of the sugar in the Maple syrup, these are not the healthiest of all Brussels recipes, but they are a crowd pleaser. They come out shiny, glazed, moist and totally delicious, and we ate them up!

Now back to Friendsgiving … the guys deep fried the turkey, which was fabulous and also fun to watch. They did it in the garage to be safe and nailed it on their first try (thank goodness). We had cheese and crackers and champagne while the Warriors were playing (they won), then we sat down to a delicious traditional meal and some seriously fancy red wine. Look at this spread …

Friendsgiving meal by A Lady Goes West

Pumpkin dessert at Friendsgiving by A Lady Goes West

After dinner, the guys went to the couch, and the girls went to the kitchen. Lots of laughing and fun continued until around 11 p.m., and sadly, Dave and I were the first to leave because he had an early soccer game on Sunday morning. (Rudy and I got to sleep in until 7:30 a.m. woohoo!)

But the night was not complete without a self-timered photo of the group. Funny thing is, I told everyone to do a “funny face” but only two of the 10 did something funny and the rest of us were still smiling like normal. Just look at Dave. 🙂 

Friendsgiving group by A Lady Goes West

Needless to say, this party was the highlight of the weekend for sure. Love our friends! Three cheers for Friendsgiving. If you haven’t been to one yet, mark your calendar to host your people next year. 

My weekly workout recap

From food and friends, let’s go to fitness and look at all of my recent exercise …

Weekly Workouts by A Lady Goes West

Weekly Workouts

  • Monday: Rest day
  • Tuesday: Taught a one-hour BODYPUMP class
  • Wednesday: Took a one-hour Vinyasa flow class at CorePower
  • Thursday: Taught a one-hour Bootybarre class
  • Friday: Took a one-hour Vinyasa flow class at CorePower
  • Saturday: Taught a one-hour BODYPUMP class, took a one-hour BODYPUMP class
  • Sunday: Rest day

Overview of the week

So happy to be back on the mat at CorePower Yoga Walnut Creek this week. In fact, I went not once, but two times. I usually take the CP-2 class, which is a heated fast Vinyasa class, and I come out of there so sweaty you’d think I had walked through a rainstorm. But I love the feeling! I really need to get some larger yoga towels though. Other than two sessions of yoga, my week included three BODYPUMPs and a Bootybarre class. For the first time in a LONG time, I didn’t fit in my solo weights session, and I missed it. I’ll definitely try to do it this week before the long holiday weekend. With two full rest days, this past week was a good one on the workout front, outside of missing my own weights session not done in the group fitness studio (which is pretty important to maintain some variety, so you’re not always doing the same resistance training moves).

That’s it from me! After a little bit of work, Dave, Rudy and I are off on a Thanksgiving road trip later this week, so check out my Insta to stay in touch. I’ll see you soon!

Friendsgiving fun, lots of #food #fitness and a #weeklyworkout report by @apstyle #Fitness #Workouts ... Click To Tweet

P.S. Thanks to Meghan for today’s “Week in Review” link-up. 

Questions of the day

What’s your favorite dish to bring to parties?

Do you have any plans for Thanksgiving?



  1. #thatplate omg. I want a bowl of those Brussels sprouts and everyone else to step away. And then I want all of the other things, because Thanksgiving is my FAVORITE! Have a great week and a happy holiday!

    1. Hahaha! It’s okay to be protective of good veggies. I sure am. I brought the leftovers home from the party hehehe. And I love Thanksgiving too!! Happy Monday, Susie!

  2. I’m so excited for the Body Pump 100 release! And your Friendsgiving looked like so much fun. We fried a turkey a few years ago and I was terrified the entire time, but no fire and it came out delicious. But I’ll just be roasting one this year. And I love brussels sprouts with maple syrup, such a delicious combo. Usually I alway like to bring a homemade dessert to gatherings like cookies or cupcakes. Have a great week and Happy Thanksgiving!

  3. Ohhh Love me some brussel sprouts. Growing up I hated them and now I’m obsessed. I usually end up always bringing a veggie tray to parties because there is never enough balance..I’m one for indulging but at least with a carrot stick or two I don’t feel as bad! Your thanksgiving looked amazing!

    1. hahah Heather, I get it … there are some classic items that I’m not a fan of (mashed potatoes!) Anyways, you should totally have Christmas for friends then. 🙂 heheheh small houses are COZY for parties!

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.