Sep 24

Smoothie Demo + Cherry-Ginger Smoothie

I admit it.  I enjoy being the center of attention.


I’m the oldest child.  I can’t help myself.

Surprisingly public speaking does NOT appeal to me.  It’s not the standing in front of people part that gets me.  It’s the opportunity to look like an idiot while standing in front of people.


Last weekend I did a “things you can make in a blender” demo for my gym.  Speaking AND making food in front of people.  Lots of room for error.  I was nervous.



My trainer’s daughter was nice enough to take some action shots.  I *think* this pic is the carrot cake batter smoothie.  Vitamix should hire me.


I’m relieved to report it went well!  Nothing exploded or tasted bad.  It wasn’t a large crowd, but people liked my food!

For my demo I made 3 smoothies and a lemon-rosemary bean dip.  You guys have seen 2 of the smoothies before:

Carrot Cake Batter Shake (click for recipe)


Oatmeal Cookie Dough Shake (click for recipe)


The new smoothie was the crowd favorite.  It is also my submission to Heather’s ginger-themed  Meatless Mondays from A-Z challenge this week.


I wanted to create a recovery smoothie for gym-goers that would help muscles bounce back fast after an intense workout.  (My gym is called “House of Payne” for good reason.)



The recovery drink I concocted is a Cherry-Ginger Smoothie. Cherries have been found to have unique anti-inflammatory properties; they may aid muscle recovery, reduce oxidative stress in athletes, and are good for pain relief.

Ginger also has anti-inflammatory properties, and is a powerful natural pain-killer. It has long been used to settle stomachs and relieves migraines. And ladies, it can be used for menstrual cramp relief. Wine works too… but you didn’t hear that here.


Of course you need a protein powder in this smoothie. Taking in 20g of protein within 30 mins of a workout is the key for muscle repair and building. To learn more on this topic, click here.


Aside from making a great recovery smoothie, the cherry-ginger combo tastes delicious too.  Sweet, dark cherries compliment the spice of the ginger.  I love how the flavors balance each other.  In this recipe I used vanilla protein powder. However, you can shake things up by using chocolate for a Cherry Bomb twist.

Recipe at bottom.


Workout Recap

I realized I’m always complaining about leg day in these recaps.  This week I’m praising leg day.  I have always complained about my “chicken legs.”  Even when I was 30 lbs heavier than I am now, I had chicken legs.



This weekend I saw some pics of myself in posing practice.  There was a lot I wasn’t happy with size-wise, but for the first time I realized my legs didn’t look terrible.  Also this week I PR’d on my dreaded hack squats.  And I lived to tell the story. :)  Hard work pays off. 


Workout Recap (9/17 – 9/23):

  • Monday - Back/Triceps, Calf raises, 2 mile walk
  • Tuesday – Shoulders/Butt, 1.5 mile walk
  • Wednesday – Chest/Biceps, Calf raises, 2 mile walk
  • Thursday - Legs (w/ trainer), 2 mile walk
  • Friday – Back/Triceps, Calf raises, 2 mile walk
  • Saturday - Shoulders/Butt, 2 mile walk, 50 push-ups
  • Sunday – Rest-ish… 3 mile sprints


Cherry-Ginger Smoothie

  • 1/2 C cherries (fresh or frozen) 
  • 1 scoop vanilla protein powder
  • 1 in piece of fresh ginger, grated
  • 1/4 tsp almond extract
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp Guar Gum (optional)
  • 1/4-1/2 C unsweetened almond milk
  • Ice, to taste
  • 1 C spinach (optional)


Place everything in a blender and blend until smooth.

Serves 1.


  • You can adjust the milk and ice to suit your preference. I like my smoothies super thick, so I use more ice and less milk.
  • Guar Gum is optional, but I recommend investing in some. It’s often used as a binder and volume-enhancer in ice creams and shakes, making them more creamy and thick.
  • I include a giant handful of spinach in nearly all of my protein smoothies. I swear you can’t taste it. This is a great way to sneak in another serving of greens and add a little more iron to your diet to promote muscle health and energy metabolism. Warning: Spinach will turn your pretty red smoothie a funky green color!


My second posing practice taught me I need more practice… more with the actual posing and general confidence than with the heels (surprise, surprise).

How do you recover after an especially hard workout?

Do you like public speaking?



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  1. Khushboo

    Well done on the smoothie demo! I am terrified of public speaking too…which is weird because in general I am quite an extrovert! I always end up stuttering and my face going bright red- not smooth at all haha! Along with post-workout fuel, I love treating myself to massages after hard workouts (ahem leg workouts)! Luckily in Mumbai they are like $5 for an hour so massages have become a weekly occurencee for me!

    1. Laura

      Ohhhh… I need a massage. I’m so jealous you can get one for $5!

  2. Brittany @ GOtheXtraMile

    I hate public speaking, it’s the worst! And leg day is my absolute faaaavorite. Probably because there is cardio and weight training all in one :)

    1. Laura

      You are right about the cardio! i want to wear a heart monitor one day.

  3. Tara @ Sweat like a Pig

    I hate public speaking! I have a big presentation I have to do next month in front of like 50 people that I’m completely dreading. Your legs look awesome! Congrats on progressing!

    1. Laura

      I’m sure you will rock it! That’s great you have such a big audience. :)

  4. Alexandra

    Public speaking doesn’t bother me toooooo much, but it’s just a beating! I have a big presentation this week for my ecology class that I’m loathing haha
    Great job with the demo girl, I would’ve loved to be in the audience to see that! :D
    PS– your legs are KILLA!! Quadzillaaaaaa :)

    1. Laura

      LOL! Thank you!

      Good luck on your presentation. :)

  5. lindsay

    you should have VLOGGED it! still waiting for that day. hehe

    1. Laura

      Ugh… :P

  6. Lindsay @ Lindsay's List

    when is the show? i want to see if I can come. Would that be weird?

    1. Laura

      It is the first weekend on Nov (maybe even closer to you than ATL?). I would LOVE to see your smilin’ face there. :)

  7. Lee

    I hate public speaking. I sometimes have to do training sessions for new people at work and when it’s more than one or two people, I get really nervous and I can hear my voice shake.

    You were 30 lbs heavier?

    1. Laura

      Oh yeah. It may have been 40 lbs, but I quit weighing. I was a muuuuch bigger girl in college.

  8. Danielle

    Love the cherry ginger combo! I’m totally with you too! Public speaking is not my area of forte! I hate it but sometimes have to suck it up and do it! It’s usually not as bad in the moment but its the anticipation that kills me!

  9. Sable@SquatLikeALady

    Toldja the heels aren’t the worst part! =) Make sure you practice, practice, practice posing every day – the #1 lesson from my show was that you can never practice enough!

    1. Laura

      For sure! I’m shocked at how hard posing correctly is!

  10. Kate @ Kate is eating

    That cherry ginger smoothie looks so good! Then again, all of your other smoothies always look delicious. If I knew you had a smoothie demo I would’ve skipped that football game!

    1. Laura

      Awwww… thank you! With the way that game ended, I’m not sorry I missed it. :(

  11. Jed Gray (sportsglutton)

    Always good to get positive feedback about your food and gone on the chicken legs. Well done.

  12. Katerina

    I am the oldest child, but I always hated public speaking. I feel so awkward! The smoothies look absolutely refreshing and tasty!

    1. Laura

      Same here! All those people staring at you… *shudder*

  13. Sarah @ The Smart Kitchen

    Oooh I wish I could have been at your demo! I LOVE doing my demos at Whole Foods, although usually I just spend 10 minutes ‘cooking’ (something in a food processor generally…as I’m sure you can imagine) and the rest just talking about myself. Hooray for being the center of attention. :)

    I LOVE cherries and ginger together…I’m going to have to try this…with some of my Plant Fusion and maybe some Cheribundi juice? [Product placement, what?]

    1. Laura

      I need to channel my inner Miss Smart for the next one… so nervous!!!

  14. Tiff

    Wait – you’re doing a figure competition and you like being the center of attention? No wayyyyyy. ;)

    Great job with the demo. I’m sure it was tasty!

  15. Alexis @ Hummusapien

    I love almond extract in smoothies! Looks divine :)

    1. Laura

      Thank you! I put almond in everything. :)

  16. Allie

    More excuses for cherries? Ohhh yeah. Loving your legs–and crazy fitness veins! Sweet. And loving that you rocked that demo. I’m convinced I need all three of those smoothies right now. And a Vitamix.

    1. Laura

      Thanks! That was right after a super hard leg day. Crazy, right?!

  17. Alex @ therunwithin

    You are a smoothie queen! glad you got to teach others. Man hard work does pay off, way to go!

  18. Rachel @ My Naturally Frugal Family

    I cringe everytime I am asked to teach a class at work…I have a very large amount of fear when it comes to public speaking (often resulting in my speaking too fast).

    Congrats on the gig though! Hopefully it will bring about more opportunities for you.

    As for the cherries I have been loving them lately and actually just put them in some double chocolate chip cookies (sorry that they aren’t diet approved for you).

    Well it is good that you like to be the center of attention because come November you’ll need to do all that you can to draw the judges to you. :)

    1. Laura

      I do the same thing with the fast-talking. My boss has to stand in the back and make motions for me to slooooow down.

  19. Christine @ Oatmeal Bowl

    Congrats on surviving! ;) I find that even though I hate public speaking its one of my best assets. BTW, I am going to the county fair this weekend. And I am going to pick me up a Vitamix (jump for joy. screech like a school girl).

    BTW, since you own one… you know you can be an affiliate. might be something you work into your blog…

    1. Laura

      Hooray for your Vitamix!!!! It’s the best large chunk of money I’ve ever spent. You have to let me know how you like it. :)

  20. Heather @ Better With Veggies

    I actually don’t mind public speaking, but that doesn’t mean I don’t get nervous sometimes. I’m so glad your demo went well, but of course everyone loved your recipes. :)

    And this smoothie looks fantastic – cherry + ginger sounds like a fantastic combination! I love this!!

    1. Laura

      I am not surprised – I bet you are a great presenter!

  21. Stacy @ Stacy Eats

    You look so professional in your demo pics. Vitamix really should hire you. Your arms might distract from the blender though…just sayin.

    1. Laura

      I should post some of the pics where I’m making terrible faces. LOL!

  22. Alysha @Shesontherun

    I’m actually pretty good at public speaking :) I loved forensics in school and I was really good at it. After a workout, I usually like a meal. Sometimes when I run I don’t have much of an appetite, so I’ll make a protein smoothie with spinach, bananas, etc.

  23. Heather @ girlyeverafter

    I’m not a huge fan of public speaking, but if it’s a topic I know a lot about I’m super calm and could talk forever! i’m sure you did great! I LOVE cherries, this smoothie looks delish!

  24. Lisa

    Great job on the public speaking smoothie demo!!! I bet you did fabulous!
    I am SO awful at public speaking. I used to get extreme panic attacks when I did them at school and would actually cry during them, it was awful ha ha. I’m a bit better now, but I try to avoid them at all costs.
    I’ve been LOVING leg days recently, I used to hate them. Not too sure what happened there but I’ll take it;)

    1. Laura

      Oh no! Thankfully I’ve never been that bad, but I do get really nervous.

  25. Meghan@CleanEatsFastFeets

    Of course they liked your smoothies. What’s not to like?! I’m going to have to try the new cherry ginger one because it looks freaking awesome. As soon as I finish my kale because I’ve making smoothies with it and blackberries.
    Legs are looking good (is it weird I just complimented your legs) and can’t wait to see them in your fun shoes.

    1. Laura

      Please let me know what you think! You could use kale here too. I just used spinach since it’s what I had on hand.

      Thank you for the compliment. :)

      1. Meghan@CleanEatsFastFeets

        I finally found some frozen cherries, and I’m sitting here sipping a cherry ginger smoothie, sans protein powder. It is really, really good. I love the almond extract! Sooo good; thanks for the recipe!

        1. Laura

          That makes me so happy1 I’m glad you’re enjoying it. It’s my go-to.

  26. Kristina

    this WOULD go well with my cherry ginger quinoa, you are right!! :) I love that ginger is a natural pain killer… although I do employ wine from time to time… ;)

    1. Laura

      Imagine the benefits of cherry wine… LOL!

  27. Lindsay @ The Lean Green Bean

    i don’t really love cherries but the combo with ginger is intriguing me!

  28. Brittany @ Delights and Delectables

    I NEED a vitamix!! Ginger in a smoothie sounds amazing! :) I’m sure you did great at the demo. I just wish I was there to taste test!!!!

    1. Laura

      Seriously – get a Vitamix. I have wasted a lot of money in my life, but that is one $500 I’ll never miss.

  29. Purely Twins

    hot legs!

  30. janet @ the taste space

    Congratz on a demo gone well! I am sure you were a natural! :)

  31. Mary Legare Whaley

    Nice legs! =) I have chicken legs. They’re hereditary. However, now I also have chicken wings, thighs, etc. Chicken parts are okay if you’re proportioned. Haha! It’s only an issue when you’re top-heavy (like most of my dad’s side of the family). I rarely have particularly strenuous workouts, but I do race. Last weekend I had a 5K, and I definitely pushed myself, not to my limits because it was a small race, but enough to fall less than a minute behind the winner. But my recovery usually involves a low impact cardio workout by day…and wine and carbs by night. If I had a trainer, he would hate my “recovery” routine. I don’t really enjoy public speaking, but I have a knack for it. If I’m talking about something I’m passionate about, to an interested or enthusiastic crowd, I’m good. But if it’s an odd topic (or if the crowd is made up of critical experts in the area of discussion), then it’s not so fun! I bet your smoothie demo was awesome!

    1. Laura

      They are hereditary! I blame my mom. ;)

      Way to go one the 5K! Wine is good for recovery….

  32. Laura @ LauraLivesLife

    I really enjoy public speaking – but I still get nervous, especially when I presenting to our executives.

    I’m sure you rocked it – nervous or not!

    1. Laura

      Oh yeah – the more important the audience, the more I want to pee myself. LOL!

  33. Choc Chip Uru

    Glad the demo went well my friend, though a smoothie explosion could have been fun ;)
    And chicken legs? I’m soooo jealous I’m a pear shape and boy, those pears… :P
    Keep up the delish smoothies I have made the oatmeal cookie dough one at least twice by now!

    Choc Chip Uru

    1. Laura

      I wish I had some pears… ;)

      SO glad you liked the oatmeal! And totally flattered you tried it. :)

  34. Nadiya

    Awww good job with the demo :) I’ve never done a cooking demo before but I can imagine it being hard. Well you certainly don’t have chicken legs any more :) Your legs are so muscular!!! and yes… Vitamix should hire you :P

    1. Laura

      Thank you!!!! Fro your lips to Vitamix’s ears… ha!

  35. Hannah

    You are looking AWESOME. Go lady! Go lady!

    Back when I was teaching at university, I’d feel sick with nerves before every tutorial, yet as soon as I walked in I loved being the centre of attention too. Good times, good times…

    1. Laura

      Hannah! You are so sweet. Thank you. :)

      It does get easier after I begin… but the build up is nerve wracking!

  36. Heather @ Kiss My Broccoli

    First off….holy crap! Where in the HELL did you put 30 pounds on your little frame?! Secondly…nice legs hot mama! Ow oww! Please don’t hurt me for cat-calling! ;)

    LOVE the combo of the cherry with the ginger! I was trying out a smoothie recipe this weekend with ginger so I could link to Heather’s MMAZ too, but sadly, it’s not quite perfected yet…and as of today, I’m out of the main ingredient. Sooooo I have to decide if I’m going back to the store, or if I’m just gonna scratch it and try something else. The thing is…sometimes I get really excited about a recipe and I don’t mind trying a couple (or more) times to get it “blog-worthy” but other times, it’s just so disappointing to have something that tastes subpar over and over…know what I mean? And since I’m trying to do better with listening to my cravings, I’m kinda torn. Ok, well, that little rant came out of nowhere, didn’t it? But a little side note…lately, every time I make a smoothie, I can’t help but think of you…wow, that sounded kinda creepy….But seriously, you are like my smoothie making idol! Lol

    Anywho!! Questions! Yes, there are questions to be answered…..

    I ALWAYS go for power smoothies after a seriously intense workout! I mean seriously, when you can randomly throw half the fridge in a blender and have something delicious AND protein packed in a matter of minutes, why would you waste time making anything else? I’d much rather sit my happy ass on the couch with my shake than stand in the kitchen (especially after a leg workout) making a meal!

    Oh and the thicker the smoothie, the better!! The one I made today was SO thick it was like eating ice cream! And that was from a CUISINART! Ha! Take THAT Vitamix!

    Public speaking? Yeah, we had this convo…we don’t mix so well…my accident prone ways are only enhanced as the number of people around me increases! Lol

    1. Laura

      I looked huge. And really, I think it was more than 30 at some points. i’d like to thank college, beer, and burgers for making it all possible.

      I’m so bad that I even pre-make my shake on legs days. I have to drink it before leaving the gym in order to even get home. LOL!

      P.S. I love your rants.

  37. Grubarazzi

    I just made a chocolate cherry smoothie this morning after my run. It was super good. I could imagine ginger making it even better. Your legs are f’n bad a$$.

    1. Laura

      Funny – a lot of the ladies at the demo said this one tasted like chocolate but I didn’t add any!

  38. Lauren @ Oatmeal after Spinning

    Being a teacher definitely wiped out any fears I ever had of speaking in public. The only time I get nervous is if I’m sharing something really personal and fear that I may get emotional (like this weekend at Fitbloggin!). But otherwise- yeah- I love it. So cool that you did that demo- and all of the smoothies look delicious!
    Your quads look HOT girl. I am a BIG fan of big, muscular legs on women- and think they should be celebrated!! And I ALWAYS notice people’s legs (probably because they’re my favorite part on my own body). Hot, hot, HOT!!

    1. Laura

      You do have HOT legs! :)

  1. 34 Healthy Smoothie Recipes |

    [...] Cherry Ginger Smoothie [...]

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