The best in fitness, food and life: January 2017 favorites and a healthy GIVEAWAY

Hi, friends! We’re nearly in the last week of the first month of the year, and we have a lot to catch up on. Because I haven’t been popping in with my weekly favorites, I wanted to show you all the good stuff from the month, and I have a GREAT giveaway for magical collagen peptides in this post too.

This past weekend, Dave and I laid low much of the time and went into the City for drinks with one set of friends, then a surprise party for another set. Good times in between the rain were had! Let’s do the favorites …

Hanging out with Shawn Stevenson in L.A.

I think I first mentioned Shawn Stevenson, the creator The Model Health Show podcast, around Thanksgiving time in 2015, which is when I first started listening to his show. Since that time, I’ve not only devoured a majority of the “masterclass” podcasts he’s done, but I’ve also read his book “Sleep Smarter” (and wrote a post on what I learned about sleep from it). 

Ashley and Shawn Stevenson on 24Life set by A Lady Goes West

Earlier this year, I was able to meet Shawn for an interview shoot for my job with 24 Hour Fitness, and we did a follow-up in L.A. just last week. Shawn is such a cool guy, and boy he is intelligent. I literally feel smarter just be being in the same room with him, as well as extra motivated to be in charge of my health. 

Ashley and Shawn Stevenson on set by A Lady Goes West

During our shoot, I got to ask Shawn questions and make sure we captured everything we needed for some future articles and TV pieces. If you haven’t yet, listen to his podcast. He will empower you! Thanks, Shawn! (And thanks Box 24 Studio for the cool behind-the-scenes photos.)

Getting my stretch on at CorePower Yoga

For the past three months, I’ve been popping in once a week to my local CorePower Yoga in downtown Walnut Creek. Originally, I was devoted to the CP2 power yoga flow class, which is heated. However, lately, I’ve been going to the CP1 yoga flow class, which is not heated and much slower — designed for a beginner to intermediate yogi. And you know what, I LOVE it. Going to a CP2 or Yoga Sculpt class at CorePower is a major work out, and I’ve been craving the more relaxed pace of CP1. It’s just what I need on an off-day from the gym and teaching classes. Namaste! (You can see my review of CorePower here.)

I had to give CorePower a big shout-out and thank the team there for hosting me for the past three months. And I wanted to let all my Bay Area friends know that CorePower is expanding. A studio opened in November in San Mateo, and the newest location is opening in February in Mission Bay in San Francisco. So go get your first week free to try it out! (And if you want to get an unlimited membership, you get a 25 percent off discount when you sign up before the official opening.)

Being inspired by the Food Entrepreneur Summit

I didn’t set any goals for 2017, but I do have some things in mind for this little corner of the Internet, and you guys are a big part of it. That being said, I was very excited to be able to invest in and virtually attend the Food Entrepreneur Summit 2017 in January. This event is done totally on your own time as a self-study, in which you watch video conversations of blogging, social media and marketing experts doing masterclasses with topics like Elements of an Effective Website, Email Marketing Best Practices, How to Find Your Voice, How to Sell an E-Book, Instagram, Pinterest, you name it — and not just for food bloggers, but healthy lifestyle bloggers like me! (Oh and please take a look at my new planner and amazing new DSLR camera, which Dave gave me for my birthday, and I’m slowly learning to use.)

Blogging tools for 2017 A Lady Goes West

The live part of the summit is complete, and I watched all 18 of the videos and learned SO much valuable information that I will be putting to use here on A Lady Goes West. For any of my friends out there who are aspiring social media influencers or bloggers, I would HIGHLY recommend that you buy this program and watch the videos.

While the summit is over, you can buy the videos at ANY time and benefit from them. It’s only $129 and you can register here (affiliate link!). I’m hoping what I learned will help me to give you guys more of what you want.

Feeling blinged out by Kendra Scott

A women-owned jewelry business that gives back to the local community is something I can get behind. Our local Kendra Scott store in Broadway Plaza of Walnut Creek had its soft opening in November, and the store is having its grand opening this week. For Bay Area people, you can head to the party on Wednesday, January 25 from 5 to 8 p.m. to get bubbly, snacks and all sorts of fun. And 20 percent of the proceeds from the night will be donated to Tumor Haters.

Kendra Scott opening by A Lady Goes West

In combination with the grand opening, Kendra Scott is also debuting a new Mediterranean-inspired line, which I got to sneak a peek at, and it’s beautiful! Love my Kendra Scott ladies and jewels. Shown above are some of the Danielle pieces I’ve been wearing lately.

Vital Proteins collagen GIVEAWAY!

I’ve been putting collagen-peptides in my morning green tea for months, and my hair is thick and long and my nails are in great condition. I attribute some of that to the beneficial nutrients of the collagen peptides. Vital Proteins is my brand of choice, and this grass-fed, pasture-raised, Paleo-friendly, gluten free, hormone free, sugar free stuff has no taste and dissolves directly into whatever you put it in. There are also 20 grams of protein in a couple of scoops too — another benefit!

Vital Proteins collagen giveaway by A Lady Goes West

After sharing my love for how I stay vital last month with Vital Proteins, I wanted a chance to let one of you win one 20-ounce tub of collagen-peptides to try out for yourself. Giveaway instructions are at the bottom of the post!

Great links from around the web

That’s about it! I’m doing the usual stuff this week, like working, teaching BODYPUMP, working, teaching Bootybarre and snuggling with Dave and Rudy. A creature of habit … 

Win some #collagen and read these #fitness and #food faves by @apstyle of #ALadyGoesWest #giveaway ... Click To Tweet

Win some collagen!!

This giveaway is open to the U.S. and Canada only. I will randomly select a winner from the comments on Sunday, January 29. To enter, please leave a comment on this blog post. To do so, click on the headline of the post, so that the comments portion appears. Put in your name and email and answer a question or let me know that you did any of the following things. Leave a comment for each thing. Multiple entries per person is allowed. Good luck! (This giveaway is not sponsored, but Vital Proteins is providing the product.)

Have a great week, friends! Share the giveaway with anyone who wants to try collagen!

Questions of the day

What’s the best thing from your month so far?

Do you want to win collagen?

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  1. One of the best things from this month so far was starting a new year. I love the feeling that comes with fresh starts, so I the start of 2017 (or a new month/year) always excites me! ?

  2. I have been dying to try collagen! Would love to win some πŸ™‚ the best part of my month so far has been getting to bootcamp every week-day morning!

  3. We have been having some really mild winter weather so I have been able to get out running much more then I thought I would!

    1. Hi Jennie! That’s great to hear. I don’t run outside, but Dave does, and it’s been too rainy to do that lately. Keep up the good work with the runs!

  4. That’s so cool that you got to interview Shawn! I checked out his podcast after you mentioned it on here before and I really enjoyed it.

    I wish we had a CorePower Yoga so bad. In fact, I sent a request that they open a studio here, lol. Not sure if it will work but it doesn’t hurt to try!

    I’ve been thinking about you a lot recently too because I started OrangeTheory a few weeks ago. I’ve been doing it 3x per week and while I kind of hate running on the treadmill, it’s been a great workout so far. I do miss BodyAttack though! They don’t offer any classes at the gyms here. :/

    I hope you have a great week! <3

    1. Hi Sarah! Ohhhh!! I’m so happy to hear you’re going to OTF. And yes, nothing is as fun as BODYATTACK. NOTHING! I hope CorePower listens up to your request lady. How’s everything else going there? Looks like you have a nice window for photography hahah! I need you here to help me with my camera, by the way.

  5. I am following Vital Proteins on Instagram.

    As I am getting older, I am always on the lookout for trusted reviews of products to help slow down some of the aging signs, wrinkles and thinning hair. It was great to see your personal experience with positive results from using collagen.

    This first month has been great as I have been able to stick to my new year’s resolutions. πŸ™‚

    1. Hi Gladys! Great work sticking to your resolutions so far. And I’ve heard a lot of success stories from collagen. Good luck to you! πŸ™‚

  6. The best thing about this month has been the start of a new year (I love fresh starts) and being on day 23 of my 2nd Whole30! I am feeling lighter, have more energy, and just generally feeling great πŸ™‚ I would love to try Collagen… I’ve been eyeing it for months now but haven’t bit the bullet yet!

    1. This product is Whole30 approved too! I’ve never done a Whole30 and would like to try it one day. Awesome work, Kerri! So cool you’re almost done with your second!

        1. How strange?? Hope she gets it figured out. You must have slipped through the cracks. Nicole is awesome, and I LOVE that she puts on the summit.

  7. I’d love some Vital Proteins! I love the purity of all their products. The best thing so far thins year: I’m moving to sunny Arizona!

  8. I LOVE CorePower and take classes at the original studio in Denver, CO. I have also been really enjoying C1 classes lately. I think the slower pace makes me actually work harder, at least I have been feeling more sore after then when I go to Sculpt or C2 and fly through the postures.

    1. I think that CP is headquartered there actually! I totally agree that the slow makes you get into the pose a little more. Keep up the good work, China!

  9. You know I already follow you everywhere! (stalker :D)
    Vital Proteins is my favorite protein powder. Bar. None. And I love all the other fun from this post! Corepower, interviewing other fitness and health nerds (plus, how cute is that picture!), and Kendra Scott? Sign me up!

  10. Best thing from this month has been potty training my twins! No really, I’m impressed with how well it has gone! πŸ™‚ Would love to top the month of with Vital Proteins!!

  11. Definitely interested in trying collagen, I’ve heard great things about what it can do, so I’m definitely curious!

  12. Yes! I started adding vital proteins to coffee last summer and love the change in my skin. I also wanted to give you a shout out for keeping up the blog even with the career change. I work as an attorney and it’s nice to get healthy living tips from someone who actually has implement them with a busy work schedule. I follow on IG as well. Love your blog!

    1. Hi Sara! That feels SO good to hear. I really appreciate that you read and have commented. It’s NOT easy to work so much and try to stay healthy and maintain fitness and a social life. I get it! We’re all working hard at it together. Please email me if you have any suggestions for topics you’d like me to cover on the blog!! πŸ™‚

  13. So this collagen has been in my cart on Amazon for a month, I need to take the plunge. Thanks for the giveaway πŸ™‚

  14. Best thing from my month so far: I decided this year that I was going to try this whole running thing again. And, just this month I have already shaved off 1:20 of my 1 mile time!
    I have heard a lot about Vital Proteins but haven’t tried them yet! I might need to do so!

  15. My favorite thing about this month so far is that I’ve been making an effort to make more meals at home and it’s actually starting to get easy. ??

  16. I would absolutely love to win some collagen peptides! They’re super versatile and make my hair all shiny and awesome! ?

  17. YAY!!! I’m so glad you got to do the Food Entrepeneur Summit. I didn’t do it this year, but I was so blessed by it last year. πŸ™‚ It looks like you’ve had some really fun opportunities so far; I love your smile and laugh Ashley; it’s contagious.

  18. First of all, I took a CP1 community class last night. All the yes in the world. It was AMAZING!

    Secondly, I’m still working on the FES videos. They’re amazing, but I have SO many action items. Here’s to kickin’ booty in the new year!

    Thirdly, count me in on the giveaway on all the follows. I need to try collagen with how much people are talking all about it!

    And last, but certainly not least, you are an all-star at responding to comments! High five from afar!

    XO, Jessica

  19. The best thing that’s happened for me this month is my work’s annual Christmas party (yes, in January!). We’re pretty busy during the holidays, so things finally calm down in January.
    I’d love to try collagen peptides to strengthen my hair!

      1. I have arthritis in one of my big toes and it was incredibly painful before I started taking collagen. Now it’s just a dull ache and I can run again!
        My hair grows faster now too.

  20. I just came back from a relaxing weekend vacation and spent Saturday at a spa where I got an amazing deep tissue massage. Highlight of January so far! This collagen would be a great supplement to my diet, thanks for the chance to win!

      1. I hear you, mine was LONG overdue. I get such bad knots in my back. The price you pay for teaching / taking classes daily haha

  21. The best thing of my month so far was getting to visit my best friend in San Francisco and travel to Napa! I also followed vital proteins on instagram πŸ™‚

  22. I would love to win collagen, I have been hearing all about the health benefits of it and would love to give it a try! This month so far the best thing has been relaxing after the holiday season. Sometimes December can be so busy you forget to take care of yourself!

  23. I just started following Vital Proteins on Instagram, can’t wait to see the fun ways they add collagen to recipes! @tgaries

  24. I am so excited about this giveaway! I have been wanting to try Vital Proteins for months. The best part of my month has been switching up my workouts and focusing more on weighted workouts. I am feeling so much stronger!

  25. Found you through BGB and also the Food Summit!! πŸ™‚ Would love to win Vital Proteins because I’ve never tried it but have heard great things!

  26. i’d really like to try the marine collagen (i’m a non-meat eater) i keep seeing it crop up on instagram and it sounds like there are some really fantastic benefits! within the last week i think i actually may have gotten a stress fracture in my foot…fingers crossed it isn’t, resting like crazy right now! anyway, i’m curious to see if this would help my bones repair faster:-)

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