Tag Archives: healthy living

Spicy Chicken with Cucumber-Rhubarb Salsa

4 Jun

I’ve been trying to suck every last bit out of spring the last few weeks.  I’m not the biggest fan of summer – I don’t love when it’s extremely hot and humid outside.  I’m not looking forward to all the stickiness, the sweat, the sunburn, or the struggle of running in humidity.  I love spring.  Spring’s my thing.  Actually fall is my thing, but spring is a close second!  Anyway, the other day I realized that I haven’t actually had any rhubarb yet this season, so I thought I would find a fun, non-baked good kind of way.  By the way, this chicken would be excellent on the grill.  You know…if you had a grill.  Which I don’t.  Anyway, let me know what you think!


Spicy-Chicken-Cucumber-Rhubarb-Salsa

Spicy Chicken with Cucumber-Rhubarb Salsa (original recipe from Bon Appetit)

For the spice rub:  1/2 t. cumin, 1/4 t. smoked paprika, 1/4 t. coriander.  Mix together and rub onto 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts which have been washed and patted dry with paper towels.

For the sauce:

  • 1 habanero pepper, with seeds, stemmed
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 2 scallions, thinly sliced with white and green parts divided
  • 1 T. soy sauce
  • 1/4 c. olive oil

Preheat the oven to 450*F.  Combine first three ingredients in food process and pulse until finely chopped.  Then, add in soy sauce and olive oil and combine until a sauce forms.  Heat up 1 T. olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat.  After the rub is applied to the chicken, brown on both sides and then transfer to a greased baking pan.  Brush the spicy sauce onto both sides of the chicken evenly, then place in the oven until the internal temp reads 165*F (this will depend on the size of the chicken you are using!) – about 20-25 minutes.  When it is cooked, let it rest for 10 minutes.

Cucumber-Rhubarb-Salsa

For the salsa:

  • 1-1/2 c. rhubarb, cut into 1/4″ cubes
  • 1 c. 1/4″ cubes unpeeled seedless cucumbers
  • 1/2 c. chopped cilantro
  • 1 T. honey
  • 1 T. extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 t. fresh lime juice
  • salt & pepper to taste

While the chicken is cooking, combine all of the ingredients for the salsa PLUS the green parts from the scallions above and toss to coat evenly.  Let this salsa sit for at least 10 minutes before serving it over the chicken.

Advertisements

Game On, 2015.

29 Dec

Well, folks.  I warned you to follow me on Instagram – and you still should, duh! (@MichelleSFTS)

I guess when the universe decides you need to take a break, then you do what the universe wants.  I’m feeling kinda like the Fresh Prince of Bel-Aire when he got shipped from West P to Cali to be honest.  Good decision on both of our parts, the Fresh Prince and I.  I’m not going to get into too many details because….well….it’s none of yo’ business really but my life is VERY different than it was back in October.  More details may follow if I feel the need to share them, but the most relevant changes to this space include:  I’ve moved to another part of the city and I’m back to working in an office.

For me, these changes have posed many new obstacles.  I mean, who can make time for anything really – it’s not like Trivia Crack is going to play itself.  But, I digress…First, it’s been incredibly difficult for me to stay on track with clean eating while working in my new office!  Between all the wonderful treats they bring in for us at work and the holidays, I’m ashamed to admit that I think I’ve gained 10 15 lbs.  If I don’t meal prep responsibly, I find myself eating Chipotle, Panera, or Chic-fil-a for lunch.  NOT good.  Second, I’m struggling to settle into a fitness routine.  This one is sad because there really isn’t any reason why.  I mean, yes I have a slight commute now but my hours allow for plenty of time for fitness.  Laziness and the holiday chaos are really the only things I can attribute to my suddenly sedentary lifestyle.

But, you all know I love a challenge and I’m goal-oriented, so….

  • I joined a gym near my house.
  • I’m not only registered for the Pittsburgh Half Marathon in May, but I took it upon myself to register for ANOTHER half in September.
  • I’m made a base-building plan for the month of January.
  • I’m in the process of buying new running shoes (mine aren’t quite maxed out on the mileage and I’m still not sure which ones I want – open to suggestions though!)
  • I have a few new gym buddies.
  • I realistically meal plan and prep, usually creating around 3-4 healthy options for the week.  By eating leftovers for lunch, I don’t leave myself room for temptation.

Honestly, the only true solution is motivation, hard work, and self control.  We all know it.  But having a good plan makes it a hell of a lot easier, amiright??

So, what can you expect from SOLE For The Soul in 2015?

You can absolutely expect more healthy recipes being shared, along with tons of complaining about running!  Jk.  About the complaining, kind of.  Not really – I definitely will be complaining because half marathon training is probably way more difficult than I can even imagine right now!  Eeek!  I can’t wait!!  You can also expect tons of my usual antics.

Game on, 2015.

Friday Five: 5 Things To Do In Pittsburgh This Month!

15 Aug

This week’s Friday Five linkup (an awesome weekly event hosted by Courtney @ Eat Pray Run DC, Mar @ Mar On The Run, and Cynthia @ You Signed Up For What!) is themed:  Free Friday, which means we are all writing about whatever we want!  Open-ended topics are so difficult for me because I usually have about a thousand things on my mind minute to minute.  How am I supposed to narrow things down into 5 coherent tidbits?!!  After a lot of thought, I’ve decided to share 5 things I’m looking forward to throughout the rest of August.  This link-up is about to get link-heavy so get ready!!  🙂

Friday-Five-August-Events-Pittsburgh

1.  Yoga In The Square – Yoga has been extended through August!  Hooray!!!  This is seriously one of the coolest programs I’ve been involved in – free yoga offered in the heart of downtown Pittsburgh at Market Square.  I hope they find other interesting ways to offer free yoga (I know of another program in Highland Park on Sundays, but I’ve never been!) because I will support it every single week!  I love that there is a different instructor each week, because as a new practitioner it’s nice to see the different teaching styles.  I’ve all ready got a favorite and I will be searching her out at her home studio.

2.  Little Italy Days – August 21-23, 2014 – I don’t know if it’s the inner fat kid in me or the New Castle native, but I look forward to Little Italy Days all summer.  Give me all of the meatballs, all of the Italian flags, all of the cannolis, and bring your bocci balls while you’re at it!

3.  Savor Pittsburgh – August 21, 2014 – This elegant, end-of-summer fundraiser is worth the hefty price tag!  This exciting food competition and showcase, which will be held at Stage AE for the first time, includes an evening of bites, brews, and dancing shoes catered by Pittsburgh’s top chefs!  The event itself raises money for Magee Women’s’ Hospital, but it also gives prominent chefs the opportunity to bring their culinary A-game as they compete for “Dish Of The Year.”  You don’t want to miss it!

4.  DOG JOG!!!!  – Orientation August 31st, 2014 – I heard about this program through one of the current Animal Rescue League volunteers (my friend Cassie), and knew I had to get involved!  I’ve talked about the dog jog program before over here, but orientation is right around the corner.  I hope you are all looking forward to lots of pictures and stories because I am seriously bouncing up and down excited to spend time with those pups!

5.  Bikefest – August 8-24th, 2014 – The entire month of August is dedicated to biking events, thanks to Bike Pittsburgh.  I highly suggest checking out the schedule – there are so many cool free things coming up like group rides, educational tours, and speaker series on things like the future of downtown’s bike infrastructure.  Also, don’t forget to sign up for Pedal Pittsburgh on August 24th!

BONUS:  Sept. 1st – Doggy Dip @ The Dormont Pool!  I’m including this in August because the early-bird tickets end August 29th.  This is one of my favorite things about the end of summer!  Before they close the Dormont Pool, they host a giant dog pool party!  Tickets are $25 (early-bird) or $35 at the door. Make sure you check the schedule because there are different sessions depending on what you want (small dogs only, large dogs only, or open to all).  All proceeds benefit the Western PA Humane Society.

 


I hope you enjoyed this Friday Five linkup, I had fun writing it and I can’t wait to participate in more of them!!

Wordless Wednesday

23 Jul

Point-State-Park-Fountain-2014

Why You Should Try Something New

15 Jul

I did that thing again where I disappear for a few weeks, huh?  I’ve been taking the last week to recharge after 4th of July weekend.  Having an extra day off and a weekend full of festivities sure did feel like a momentum stopper.  The Monday after the holiday weekend, I started a 4 week challenge in a secret Facebook group.  It’s been really fun and honestly I’ve been seeing some really great progress.  Since we have to post in the group 2 pictures of food we’ve eaten during the day, 1 picture of us being sweaty (I don’t post very many of those!  #notphotogenic), and 1 picture of our protein shake.

The group has helped me in a few ways:

1.  It forces me to be accountable.  I would die of boredom if I was one of those bloggers who posted every day about every single thing they ate.  Snooze town, right?  The FB group setting has kind of a revolving door feeling where people just stop by and photo dump, then move on.  It’s a great place to get ideas, encourage others, and also BE encouraged by others in a way that feels like real-time.  It’s like a little positivity bubble!  I think that’s what has made me excited to reach my goals for each day, which are simply:  eat clean, hydrate, and be active.

2.  I’ve upped my water intake to a gallon of water a day.  Yeah.  The struggle is real.  The first week, I’m certain that I wasn’t getting my full water goal in.  I’m not denying that I was hydrated because HOOBOY was I hydrated, but why half ass it?  Based on a suggestion from one of the group members, I replicated her “Water Bomb.”

water-bomb-hydration-motivation

3.  I’ve been drinking protein-powder fruit smoothies every morning.  I’d never been all that consistent with protein powder.  If I remembered to drink a recovery shake after a workout, I remembered.  Usually not.  Since this challenge started, I’ve been drinking a fruit smoothie with protein powder every morning.  Having a full banana, a handful of strawberries, and at least 1 large handful of spinach (usually more!) has had DRAMATIC results for me.  I’m getting 2 full services of fruit and a serving of vegetables in 1 drink, not to mention all of the nutrients, calcium, and added protein.  My appetite is much more easy to manage during the day and I have had so much more energy.  Plus, I’m constantly wanting to try different variations based on the group member’s suggestions (tofu & avocado wouldn’t have occurred to me).

I lost 2 pounds the first week!  I can honestly say that I’m really glad I tried this – who knew that posting my pictures to some random strangers/ex-classmates would be what I needed to get through my weight loss plateau?!  It never hurts to try something new!  Don’t worry, I haven’t given up on my Monday Training Overview posts and I hope to be back on the bandwagon this week. 🙂

 

In other news, I dyed the underneath of my head peacock colors:

peacock-highlights-mermaid-hair

I’m kind of obsessed with it.

 

%d bloggers like this: