Friday, June 30, 2017

Fit Friday - Refreshing Smoothies and Soothing Trails

Ruthie and I are so excited to share a White Peach, Cucumber, Mint Smoothie and a some tips to help you hit the trails on this Fit Friday!   White Peach, Cucumber, Mint Smoothie is a refreshing combination of flavors and ever so lovely!  White Peach, Cucumber, Mint Smoothie is a refreshing combination of flavors and ever so lovely! www.cookingwithruthie.com
 Let's talk health facts! This White Peach, Cucumber, Mint Smoothie is full of health benefits for your body! Cucumbers contain multiple B vitamins which help ease feelings of anxiety and buffer the damaging effects of stress. Cucumbers also aide in healthy digestion since they contain a lot of water and fiber.
  White Peach, Cucumber, Mint Smoothie is a refreshing combination of flavors and ever so lovely! www.cookingwithruthie.com
 The peach in this White Peach, Cucumber, Mint Smoothie, offers a plethora of minerals including: calcium, potassium, magnesium, iron, and zinc. Peaches are low in calories and a great source of dietary fiber! And just when you think the White Peach, Cucumber, Mint Smoothies health benefits can't get any better.. Mint promotes healthy digestion and can soothe the stomach in cases of indigestion and inflammation. If you love smoothies as much as we do you'll have to be sure to check out our other Smoothie Recipes !! White Peach, Cucumber, Mint Smoothie is a refreshing combination of flavors and ever so lovely! www.cookingwithruthie.com


White Peach, Cucumber, Mint Smoothie
Recipe Type: Breakfast
Author: Ruthie
Prep time:
Total time:
Serves: 2
Ingredients
  • 2 white peaches, skin on
  • 2 petite cucumbers, skin on
  • 1 tablespoon agave
  • 2 tablespoons fresh mint
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup fat free vanilla greek yogurt
  • 1 1/2 cups ice cubes
Instructions
  1. Combine all ingredients in blender.
  2. Blend until smooth.
  3. Enjoy!

We hope you enjoy this wonderful White Peach, Cucumber, Mint Smoothie because we know that your body will! The best part is, the taste is as incredible as all of those health benefits! 

  We are a couple of very lucky ladies to live in Utah, a state filled with gorgeous mountains. We are even more lucky to have them moments out the door. If you follow Ruthie

much you know she loves to hike. Today we are going to talk about one of my favorite ways to experience the mountains, trail running!

Trail running requires a different approach then running on the road. I am on the road way more than the trails, but that is because all the races I do are on road so I want to get the majority of my mileage and my specific workouts on the road. I made the mistake one year of getting most of my mileage on trail while training for a marathon, that race hurt!

So let's talk tips for enjoying those amazing trails:

1) Get the right shoes. Trail shoes are going to allow for the rough and tumble rocks of the trail. They are going to have better traction and allow for more stability.

2) You have to make sure you have water. Unless you are going on a short trail that you know really well be sure to take lots of water. I love my Nathan hydration vests. It has gone on anywhere from 5 mile runs to running Kings Peak (the highest point in Utah).

3) Look ahead. You want to keep on eye on the trail. Keep your eyes down and watchful of 10-15 feet ahead of you at all times. Too many times I have heard a noise and looked up into the trees just to land on my face.

4) Short strides. You want to stay as sure footed as possible.

5)  Don't stress about your time. You are not going to run the same type of times and paces as you do on the road. It just isn't going to happen. If you are stressed about the pace you aren't going to enjoy the trail. Instead go out for time or just focus on exertion level if you are training on trails. If you are new to trail running I would highly encourage you to just get out and enjoy. Have a trail in mind and a distance or time, but do not have paces in mind.

Getting out and enjoying the trails will bring a very different type of calmness and enjoyability to your soul. Don't miss out on those opportunities.

Happy Fit Friday! 
Much Love and Peace~ Nichole and Ruthie


Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Workout Wednesday - Kicker Countdown

Well, one month of summer done at my house. I have made it getting in half of my workouts. The weights have gone out the door unless I can do them from home, which is still hard. I have found that I can lift a the gym about once a week and sneak in weights at home once a week. I am short on time and would much rather run, so I do that whenever I can.

Because I am not getting in as many lifting sessions as I should I have found that full body workouts tend to be the best for me. So today we are sneaking in a full body workout that I can do from home.


The high numbers are challenge, for most people it is more of a mental challenge than a physical challenge. Break it up into doable chunks. Stay strong and focused!

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Racing and Goals

Yesterday I ran my first half marathon in a few years. I have been loving the full marathon lately and don't have a lot of time for races, plus they get expensive! But I had the amazing experience of Boston this year and decided to focus on shorter distances for a bit afterwards. A couple of thoughts about racing in general.

1) I need to be better about training for the race. It isn't that I need to run more, but I need to be better about training for the race. I get my mileage in each week, sometimes I don't get in as much as I would like but I still get in decent mileage.
Yesterday's race was a downhill race, but all of my training was on flat terrain. My running time is so limited that I get in what I can when I can. That means I don't really have time to drive up the canyon in order to train running down the canyon. That type of training requires a lot more time and more logistical thought than I have these days. So instead I lace up my shoes and head out the door, pushing through some my mileage close to home. Hurrying to get home to 4 kids and a husband that works 7 days a week (the joys of owning your own business).
I have acquaintances that don't get it and tell me I just need to make the time. I am polite to these people and give a simple reply about doing what I can. I don't explain that I am generally up between 4 and 4:30 in order to be running no later than 5 in order to get the running in that I do.

2) I didn't give myself adequate time to make yesterday's race an A race. Yesterday's half marathon was 2 months after Boston. That may seem like plenty of time to be ready to go hard. And it was plenty of time for me to push on my race, it wasn't plenty of time to allow for solid speed and tempo and training. I took it easy for a few weeks after Boston, which meant I only had about 4 weeks to get back to speed and tempo running, the hard training that is necessary for A races. I know plenty of people that pack their year with races, and that is fine. But if you do that you need to pick one or two races that are your A races. The races that you want to kill. The races that you are prepared to leave it all out on the course.


I approach every race with a few different times in my head. I have my ecstatic number, my happy time, my satisfied time, and my I"m going to the pissed all day time. I got to yesterday's start line (the start line was up gorgeous American Fork Canyon) with my times in my mind and ready to go. My ecstatic time was 1:30, my happy time was a PR (prior PR was 1:37), my satisfied time was under 1:40, and my leave me alone time was anything over that.




I had a solid race that I could walk away happy with. I finished in 1:34:40 and was happy. But I also know that if I would have trained for my race, if I would have gotten in some downhills and given more time for speed and tempo work I could have gotten that 1:30. So now I have a new goal, one that I will work for and earn.

That is the great part of running, there is always a new goal, a new number, whether it is in a finish time or a distance, you always have something to work for.

Friday, June 23, 2017

Fit Friday - Tacos and Yoga

Happy Fit Friday everyone! Another gorgeous summer day at my house. I am enjoying the quiet of the morning before the rest of the kids wake up and chaos ensues. Ruthie is here with a perfect summer night dinner recipe.

Chicken, Black Bean, Cilantro Street Tacos bring the southwest home in this quick and easy dinner!  Chicken, Black Bean, Cilantro Street Tacos bring the southwest home in this quick and easy dinner! www.cookingwithruthie.com
 Chicken, Black Bean, Cilantro Street Tacos are packed with flavor and super simple to make!  If you love tex-mex then these have got to make onto next weeks dinner menu!  If you want to make it even simpler then grab a rotisserie chicken at the store and you won't have to worry about preparing the protein and it'll be that much faster to make! 
 Chicken, Black Bean, Cilantro Street Tacos need some salsa to go with them... if you feel like making your own then try out our Pico de Gallo, Pineapple Salsa, or even some Blueberry Peach Salsa would be amazing with them too!   Chicken, Black Bean, Cilantro Street Tacos bring the southwest home in this quick and easy dinner! www.cookingwithruthie.com   Chicken, Black Bean, Cilantro Street Tacos bring the southwest home in this quick and easy dinner! www.cookingwithruthie.com
Chicken, Black Bean, Cilantro Street Tacos
Recipe Type: Main
Author: Ruthie
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 6
Ingredients
  • 2 chicken breasts, cooked and thinly sliced
  • 1 cup black beans
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced red onion
  • 1/4 cilantro leaves
  • 2 tablespoons cojita cheese
  • 12 mini white corn tortillas
  • lime wedges and salsa to serve
Instructions
  1. in a sauce pan combine black beans, lime juice, and chili powder; cook 4-5 minutes over medium heat to warm, stirring occasionally.
  2. Heat a skillet coated with cooking spray over medium high heat, warm and lightly toast corn tortillas; hold warm.
  3. To assemble street tacos layer; chicken, black beans, red onion, cilantro, and a sprinkle of cojita cheese inside 2 corn tortillas.
  4. Serve warm.
  5. Enjoy!

Chicken, Black Bean, Cilantro Street Tacos are delightfully simple and healthy dinner!


  This week was the summer solstice, for Workout Wednesday I did the Summer Solstice yoga sequence, Surya Namaskar.  it was so great to take time out for yoga, time out to connect with my mind and body on a very different level then normal. I wanted to continue on that train of thought for Fit Friday.

I know that Ruthie is an avid yogi, a trait that I admire in her. I am a believer in yoga, but not an avid doer. Instead I am more like a once or twice a year doer. I can always put something else first and yoga tends to fall to the wayside. I am a busy mom of four very active kids, two of which are not old enough to go to school yet. I also have 2 crazy dogs that are everywhere. And we have two businesses that my husband and I run. We have worked it out so that I can do all the office work from home. Yes, I am lucky to do that but it just adds to the busy. So at the beginning of each week I have to prioritize that I can fit in and yoga is always the first thing to go. I recognize that yoga should be one of those things that you can do at home....please refer back to four kids and two dogs, use some imagination and you can figure out why doing yoga at home is not an option.

Today I want to focus on why you (I) should make yoga a priority.

1) Reminds me to breath. I focus on my breathing; how I breathe, why I breathe, and when I breathe.
2) Makes me feel strong.
3) Helps me stay focused. Focused on life, my body, my soul, what is actually important.
4) Reconnects me to my body in a whole new way.
5) A great way to balance out my running and weights.

My challenge to you this week is to make some time to experience yoga. Whether it is the first time or something you do on a regular basis, take some time to reconnect with yoga and what it means to you.

Have a fabulous Fit Friday! 
Much Love and Peace~ Nichole and Ruthie

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Workout Wednesday - Summer Solstice

The first day of summer and we are supposed to hit 100 degrees, it is a toasty first day of summer at my house! It is also a taper week for me, half marathon on Saturday and I want to be ready to rock it! I have decided to welcome the first day of summer with the traditional yoga summer solstice workout. This will also be a great thing for my body during a taper week.

SolsticeIt is considered auspicious to practice Surya Namaskar at the time of summer solstice, to connect with and build upon the enlivening solar energies that are pulsating within us now. Get up at dawn, face east, and do 108 repetitions of Surya Namaskar sequence. If that seems a bit ambitious, or you’re feeling rushed (or just tuckered out), simply do one reverent bow to honor the sun.

I am adjusting this for me. 1) I didn't get up at dawn and get yoga done. Instead I got up at 5:30 to a dog that needed to go out. I rolled over and told my husband to take care of it. And then my 1 year old promptly woke up. 

I also am not going to do 108 repetitions. Instead I am going to aim for half of that (54), or whatever I can get done in 20 minutes, which is about all the peace I can hope for with 4 kids and 2 dogs. Happy summer days!


Friday, June 16, 2017

Fit Friday - Simple Artisan Bread and 10 Min Plyos

Another week, another fabulous Fit Friday.  Ruthie is here with another fantastic recipe to try out in the kitchen and after that we are talking 10 Min Plyos. Enjoy!

No-Knead Artisan Bread is so simple to make and tastes like it came straight from a bakery!  No-Knead Artisan Bread is so simple to make and tastes like it came from a bakery! www.cookingwithruthie.com
 Enjoy this No Knead Artisan Bread by itself for a quick snack or as a delightful side to go with almost any meal! You'll love that this bread is fluffy and soft on the inside with a perfectly crunchy crust on the outside. No-Knead Artisan Bread is so simple to make and tastes like it came from a bakery! www.cookingwithruthie.com
 The really cool thing is that there's NO oil in this bread... none!  You'd never believe it though because it's the most moist and fabulous crumb you've ever tasted!!  We also love to get creative with this recipe sometimes- check out our Parmesan Olive Artisan Loaf , Rosemary Parmesan Artisan Loaf, and  Sourdough Artisan Loaf! No-Knead Artisan Bread is so simple to make and tastes like it came from a bakery! www.cookingwithruthie.com
 At our house, we love to make a few loaves at a time! There is nothing easier and more satisfying than having a yummy loaf of bread waiting for you and your kids when you all get home from your daily activities. My family usually cuts a slice, adds butter, and then homemade Peach Raspberry Freezer Jam. It makes for a simple, delicious, and quick snack!  No-Knead Artisan Bread is so simple to make and tastes like it came from a bakery! www.cookingwithruthie.com



No-Knead Artisan Loaf
Author: Ruthie
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 1
Ingredients
  • 3 cups flour
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoons instant dry yeast
  • 1 1/2 cups hot water
Instructions
  1. Mix the dry ingredients in a large bowl, stirring by hand, add water and mix until moistened, cover entire bowl with saran wrap that has been generously coated with cooking spray.
  2. Let sit for at least 12 hours.
  3. Turn out dough onto a floured surface, pull the sides into the center, and flip the loaf over.
  4. Cover again with the same saran and let raise for 45 min or to double in size.
  5. Heat the oven to 500 degrees F with ceramic dutch oven inside.
  6. Carefully place dough in dutch oven, replace lid, and cook for 22 minutes or until golden brown.
  7. Cool on a wire rack.

No-Knead Artisan Bread is the easiest bread to make in the whole world!  Enjoy!! 

We all love quick workouts, but maybe for our own reasons. There are days that we only have a few minutes and need something quick to do in order to start our day off right. There are days that you are killing it and just want a little something more to add to the mix. And there are days that you are just bored and need a lot of different things going to keep that boredom at bay. Whatever the reason may be we are adding another great little workout to add to your file box.

10 minutes of plyos!

Why plyos (plyometerics)? Because I love them, especially for a solid and effective short workout. Here are a few other reason:

  • burn more fat
  • boost athletic performance
  • increase coordination
  • get more done in less time
  • get your heart rate up
So we have plenty of reasons. Now let's talk about the workout.


Have a wonderful Friday! 
Much Love and Peace~ Nichole and Ruthie

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Workout Wednesday - HIIT

It is a crazy day at my house today! My cute little 6 year old turns 7 and we are getting ready to party. I am not the crazy mom that makes perfect little party favors and spends hours and hours on a cake. In fact, I also have the girl's mom helping with some stuff.  I don't know how those other mom's function.
I say all this with the understanding that this workout will take place for me tomorrow, there is no way it is happening today. Some days are just like that and it is ok.

I love HIIT classes and workouts, and that is what we are doing today. Push your heart rate today folks. I have worked with a few people that aren't used to that feeling and are scared of it. Don't be scared! Instead embrace it and know that with that hard work comes great rewards.


Friday, June 9, 2017

Fit Friday - Avocado Kale Salad and Sweet Sweat Sesh

Fit Friday is here and the sun is shining. What a great day for a light refreshing salad a quick workout before hitting the pool.

Tropical Avocado Kale Salad tastes amazing and a great way to get your 5 a day!  Tropical Avocado Kale Salad tastes amazing and a great way to get your 5 a day! www.cookingwithruthie.com
 When the heat is on in the summertime I'm all about light and refreshing salads. They just seem to sit better in my tummy when it's 90 plus degrees outside!  I love the combination of fruit and vegetables plus with nuts and coconut flakes our Tropical Avocado Kale Salad will hit the spot for you too!  Tropical Avocado Kale Salad tastes amazing and a great way to get your 5 a day! www.cookingwithruthie.com
 I love to use my Sweet and Spicy Candied Pecans but honestly any kind of candies nut will work just fine!  You might also enjoy some of these other candied nut varieties...  Candied Walnuts, Sweet and Salty Cashews, and Bourbon Spiced PecansTropical Avocado Kale Salad tastes amazing and a great way to get your 5 a day! www.cookingwithruthie.com



Tropical Avocado Kale Salad
Recipe Type: Salad
Author: Ruthie
Prep time:
Total time:
Serves: 2
Ingredients
  • 4 cups baby kale leaves
  • 2 clementine oranges, peeled and segmented
  • 1 avocado, thinly sliced
  • 8 strawberries, sliced
  • 1/4 cup candied pecans
  • 1/4 cup toasted coconut flakes
  • lime wedges for serving
Instructions
  1. Divide kale between two serving plates.
  2. Divide remaining ingredients between serving plates.
  3. Serve with lime wedges.
  4. Enjoy!

Tropical Avocado Kale Salad is flavorful salad to enjoy this summer! 

  In the summer heat I am sneaking in our workouts where ever and whenever I can. The kids are home and we are going in all directions. This means I need something quick and easy. I end up using the summer to maintain, not to make any gains because that is all I can do.

This week is all about a quick and easy interval workout. You can adjust this however you need to for whatever time restraints you have. Whether you are just sneaking in something quick with 15 to 20 min or have a full hour this is a workout that you can use and enjoy.


Go all out and go for it!  You need to make the most out of any and every workout.

Have a wonderful Friday! 
Much Love and Peace~ Nichole and Ruthie

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Workout Wednesday - Pullups

I love pull ups. I know that is unusual, especially for a girl, but it's true...I love pull ups. I often get asked how to do pull ups. It is a common goal for a lot of the women I train. Why? Pull ups have become the ultimate show of strength for a lot of women. What is so great about pull ups and how do we get there?

Benefits of Pull Ups:
1) Foundation for upper body strength. Pull ups and push ups will help you get through any upper body strength program. One of the best comparisons I have heard is that pull ups are for the upper body like squats are fundamental for the lower body. 

2) Convenience. It is so easy to have a pull up bar in your home and at any gym. You don't need any additional weights or machines, just yourself and a bar. My little brother started doing pull ups when he was 5 years old on the pull up bar we kept hanging in on of the doorways at home.  The strength he gained from starting pull ups so young carried him through years of power lifting and football.

3) Awesome for your core! When I came back from having a baby pull ups were by far the hardest thing for me to do again and the one thing that absolutely killed my core was pull ups. When I could link pull ups together again I knew I was getting my strength back. 

How to get there:
1) Work on a strong core. Hollow rocks are awesome for this!
2) Negative pull ups. Jumping up to the top of a pull ups and controlling your way down.
3) Horizontal pull ups or ring rows
4) Chin Ups

Before you aim to get an awesome string of kipping pull ups going make sure that you can complete strict pull ups first. You want to assure that you are developing the necessary strength and correct muscle chain before you start focusing on kipping pull ups.

Remember; you can do a pull up! Work on it and celebrate it!

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Fit Friday - Summer BBQ and Staying Healthy

Summer is here on this gorgeous Fit Friday! Ruthie is here with a yummy recipe for skewers of chicken and tomatoes. We love tomatoes at our house! Unfortunately we can't eat chicken at our house, my husband is allergic to poultry, so we will be substituting with some yummy steak.

Sweet-n-Sour Chicken Skewers are simple to make and great for summer! www.cookingwithruthie.com
 Sweet-n-Sour Chicken Skewers are perfect for any summer outing and will make your BBQ that much better! Cherry tomatoes have always been a family favorite in our home.  If you don't have a garden but would like to start, now is your chance! Start off simple by buying a tomato plant at Home Depot, WalMart, or my personal favorite, Costco. Put it in your house by a window, water it regularly, and watch it come to life with juicy tomatoes that you will enjoy all summer long! Sweet-n-Sour Chicken Skewers are simple to make and great for summer! www.cookingwithruthie.com
 When that summer BBQ rolls around, grab some tomatoes off of your plant and make these delicious chicken skewers with them! Your guests will be in awe at how flavorful, tender, and satisfying they are.  Take advantage of the fresh in-season tomatoes you can find at any grocery store or from your own garden, if you have one! I'll never forget how my kids would run out to our garden when they were little and eat all the "baby tomatoes" that they could. Sweet-n-Sour Chicken Skewers are simple to make and great for summer! www.cookingwithruthie.com


Sweet-n-Sour Chicken Skewers
Recipe Type: Main
Author: Ruthie
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 12
Ingredients
  • 3-4 chicken breast, cut into 1 inch cubes
  • 1 red onion, quartered and cut into approx 1 inch pieces
  • 8 ounces grape tomatoes
  • 8 ounce button mushrooms
  • 1/2 cup ketchup
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon worchestershire sauce
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 12 wooden skewers
Instructions
  1. Soak wooden skewers in a bowl on water for 10 minutes before threading.
  2. Preheat grill to medium high heat.
  3. In a small bowl combine ketchup, honey, vinegar, worchestershire sauce, and water; stir to combine.
  4. Thread wooden skewer with a piece of red onion, chicken, mushroom, tomato, and repeat until full, bast with sauce, and set aside.
  5. Continue until all skewers are done.
  6. Grill for 2-3 minutes per side or until chicken temps at 160 degrees F, remove from heat and allow to rest 5 minutes.
  7. Serve and Enjoy!

Sweet-n-Sour Chicken Skewers are a great way to prepare some of your summer tomato bounty!

Memorial Day has come and gone, for most of us that is the official beginning of summer. With summer here and the fun just beginning I wanted to give some tips and reminders to make this a healthy summer.

1) Sunscreen: We all know this one, we have all heard it, and most of us have forgotten it at some point. I forget this one the most when I am running. I head out the door before the sun is really shining and sunscreen tends to slip my mind. My kids are constantly slathered in the stuff though. I am covered in freckles and have some very vivid memories of crazy sunburns as a child. A couple of years a go I had a chunk removed from my leg, I don't need that repeated.






2) Water: It is easy to get dehydrated out there folks. Keep water handy and drink it lots!







3) Fresh Produce: Gardens have been planted, farmers markets are opened, it is time to enjoy some fresh fruits and veggies. They are delicious and calling your name!




4) Get dirty: Research has shown that gardening and getting your hands into the soil is a good stress reliever and great anti-depressant.







5) Get outside to exercise: Summer is a great time to get out of the gym and try something new. It is also a great time to try and do something with the whole family. "A family that plays together stays together."




There you go, 5 tips to having a healthy summer. Sure, I could have added lots more things to remember and try out this summer, but these are five that I felt were important. Enjoy your summer!

Have a fabulous Fit Friday! 
Much Love and Peace~ Ruthie and Nichole