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carol@inkwellcoaching.com

Schererville, IN

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April 2, 2020

Mr. Non-Compliant: Where Have All the Flours Gone?

Each trip to the grocery store these days is a new adventure. It has become such a conscious, thought-out process. What time is best? Where am I most

April 2, 2020

Crock Pot Trail Mix

This slightly sweet recipe will give you energy on and off the trail. The nuts offer protein, fiber, and fat, along with some vitamins and minerals. A

March 26, 2020

Cauliflower is the New Kale

Cauliflower. You know it as my least favorite vegetable. I realized something was up when I came to breakfast one recent morning and there was a cauli

March 19, 2020

The Loss of Routine

First of all, I pray that you and your loved ones are safe and well. I also pray that you have whatever you need to get through today: patience, food,

March 12, 2020

The Scoop on the Sumo

In recent weeks, the Sumo orange has come into my life. If you are a fan of citrus, you’ll enjoy learning a bit about this juicy, seedless, ultra-sw

March 4, 2020

Can You Hear Me Now?

Recently, my church sponsored a health fair. Representatives from AccuQuest Hearing Centers were among the many vendors. Since I sometimes think that

February 27, 2020

Create More Time

When we think about time, it’s the one resource we will never get back. We can earn more money, buy more things, and make new friends. Time? It is f

February 20, 2020

Busting the Willpower Myth

If I only had a nickel for the number of times I’ve heard, “I don’t have any willpower.” Let that crazy belief go and let’s move on.  Eatin

February 13, 2020

In Celebration of the Birth Month

I love this time of year, because I get to celebrate my birth month. While some shy away from birthdays, let alone birth months, I embrace it. The age

February 6, 2020

Stop Trying

In the past week, I’ve heard about lots of folks trying to do lots of good things. “I’m going to try to get back to the gym tomorrow.” “I’

Good Snacks

As I mentioned last week, I had to put together some serious snacks to get me through a busy weekend. I was highly successful!

Here’s what I packed in my GIGANTIC snack bag to keep my energy high and my taste buds happy.

*Homemade trail mix: In a large baggie, I tossed together homemade fried almonds (sauté raw almonds in coconut oil for about 8 minutes, drain on paper towel and salt as desired), raw walnuts and pecans, dry roasted macadamia nuts, dried blueberries, chocolate chips (or cacao nibs to minimize sugar). This snack goes everywhere, except in extreme heat, due to the chocolate. It contains lots of omega-3 fatty acids, fiber, and nutrients.  

*Hard boiled eggs with smoked sea salt flakes

*Cut apples drizzled with fresh lemon juice

*Dark chocolate bars (85% cocoa)

*Tangerines (Cuties, because they peel easily and are seedless)

*Bananas

*Lots of water

*Greek yogurt, high in protein and low in sugar. I found individual servings of Siggi’s brand in berry and vanilla that were pretty good. I typically buy 5% Fage in a large container for economical reasons, and add fresh fruit and a bit of honey. For convenience sake, I went with individual servings.

*Apricot and almond patties, called Fit Fit Fruit and Nut Bites, made from sun-dried apricot paste and almond pieces. There’s no added sugar, however dried fruit is high in natural sugar. These offer quick energy and satisfy a sweet tooth.  

*The GFB Gluten Free Bites in dark chocolate coconut. These come in individual packages with two bites per package. Each package contains 4 grams of protein. The GFB also satisfy the sweet tooth and offer energy in convenient packages for life on the go.

*Leftover gluten free pancake sandwiches with peanut butter in between. Even cold, these were delicious and made my growly stomach simmer down.

When you have busy days, it helps to have snacks and water with you in case the hungry monster shows up. Being prepared is one of the best ways to keep your healthy eating habits in check.

Being healthy includes many aspects of your life, in addition to what you eat and how much you move. Figuring out the entire picture is what we accomplish together. If some component of your life is out of whack, let’s talk.

To your health,
Carol

 “I always pack a travel snack bag. You don’t want to get stuck without snacks no matter where you go!”– Busy Philipps

Cauliflower, Commitment, and Courage

As many of you know, I am not a cauliflower fan, even though I’m fond of most other vegetables.

I’ve been challenged by lots of you on various ways to try it, to the point where you’ve taken on a competitive nature. It’s rather entertaining. WHO will be the ONE to convince me that cauliflower is a good thing?

You cauliflower lovers have FINALLY WON me over. I recently tried a cauliflower crust vegetable pizza that was quite tasty. In fact, I secretly fed it to Mr. Non-Compliant (who is also anti-cauliflower) and he had no idea.

I didn’t make it from scratch. Check out the photo to see what brand I tried. I may invest the time and make my own at some point. Or not. 

Pizza with 12 grams of protein and 27 grams of carbohydrates per serving makes me a happy girl. I added a tossed salad of assorted greens, grape tomatoes, avocado, shredded carrots, hard boiled egg, and dressed it with olive oil, fresh lime juice, salt and pepper. It was the perfect Lenten Friday dinner.

Which leads me right into the next topic: commitment, courage, and our struggle with both.

There are those instances where we show up fully committed: to ourselves, a project, our work, family, friends; and our courage is unwavering.

And then…we have moments of, “WHAT AM I THINKING?” It’s in those moments of being pretty scared that commitment may (or may not) bring about courage. When it does, we call it a breakthrough—or, getting to the other side.

The cauliflower was a mini-win in that department. I kept giving it a try based on your encouragement, and I finally got to the other side: cauliflower crust pizza. I was committed to keep trying. It really wasn’t too scary.

For the next three days, I’m going off the grid for some heavy-duty coaching. The days will be intense, rollercoaster ride-like, exhausting, and energizing. This will also be the perfect opportunity to try out all the snack ideas I have. (I’ll let you know those that work out best.)  

I’m doing this because my coach did this, and she told me to go. In order to show up powerfully in all areas of my life, I’ve got to unload my personal junk. To be clear, we ALL have personal junk that holds us back from our greatness. I’m going for it. Why wait?

THIS TAKES COURAGE. It’s scary. I’m doing it anyway because I’m committed to serving all of you in the most powerful way possible. I’m committed to living life fully. The next three days will help me get to the other side.

Please keep me in your thoughts and prayers. I’ll think of all of you when I eat my snacks—and make my dinner selections. I promise to choose wisely.

Courageously yours,
Carol

“The quality of a person’s life is in direct proportion to their commitment to excellence, regardless of their chosen field of endeavor.” – Vince Lombardi

What Lights You Up?

In the course of your day, what makes you happy, brings up your energy, and makes you feel truly alive?

What lights you up?

Did a number of things come to mind? Or are you still trying to think of something?

If you’re like me, food plays a role in this—getting together with friends and family to enjoy a delicious meal is a great way to spend part of my day.

How about your work? Are you excited to do whatever it is you spend a good amount of time committed to?

Travel, hobbies, volunteering, music, exercise—are only a few thoughts on this topic. Life is full.

If you’re struggling to come up with ideas, it’s probably affecting your overall health.

There’s a workout I do every week that really lights me up. It’s a group fitness class and the room is typically packed. The instructor is tough. She has mastered the art of pushing us to a level that keeps us all coming back for more.

The energy in the room is always through the roof. We whoop, holler, move and groove to the music, can’t wait until it’s over, and hope we live another day. Each time I survive that hour, I feel as though I can take on the world.

It’s a love/hate relationship.

I think anything that pushes us into the unknown can affect us the same way. We have the desire to try something new, but…what if we fail? What if we succeed?

We learn from messing up, rising above the failure, and giving it another go. The alternative is to stay safe. The alternative is to risk missing out on a great deal of happiness, energy, and life.

The alternative contributes to less than optimal health.

So, if you’d like to make a new recipe, try a group fitness class, change careers, take up golf, or write that book, what’s stopping you?

Fitness begins with food, and encompasses so much more. If you could use some help getting started on some new habits, I’d love to help. It’s my gift to you. We’ll consider the possibilities and ask, “What if…”

Courageously yours,
Carol

“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.”—Winston Churchill

 

To Instant Pot…or Not

I recently took the plunge and bought The Instant Pot. I’m not what I would consider a gadget junkie, however when I learned the ease with which I could make (AND PEEL) hard boiled eggs, I decided it was worth the investment.

Peeling hard boiled eggs has been a challenge in my home for…decades. I’ve tried adding baking soda, salt (and whatever else has been suggested) to the water, cooking in a variety of ways, and plunging them in ice cold water. The only chance at “easy” peeling was making sure the eggs were not fresh.

I finally began buying the commercially cooked and peeled eggs, UNTIL NOW. In a mere twenty minutes I have my week’s supply of hard boiled eggs cooked, peeled and stored in the fridge—with zero frustration—even when they are fresh. Pure egg bliss, thanks to my Instant Pot.  

Before you take The IP plunge, here are a few considerations.

The Instant Pot is not always the quickest way to cook your food, even though it is a pressure cooker. Thanks to Mrs. Dornberg’s Culinary Experience class on this topic, I’m figuring out when it’s the best cooking option for what I’m making.

For example, if a piece of meat has to cook for an hour, time must be added on for the unit to reach the proper heat and pressure; add that hour of cooking time; then, depending on the instructions, add another 15-20 minutes to allow the steam to naturally release.

What appears to be an hour of cooking could be 90 minutes or more. This may or may not save you actual time from your current methods.

Another factor is storage. Where will your Instant Pot live? I kicked out a faulty bread machine that I will not replace, so mine has a home.

A new gadget always has the opportunity for accessorizing—kind of like the new outfit that requires the shoes, handbag, earrings. There’s always more!

Cleaning the stainless steel inner pot is pretty simple, however the lid has a few small parts that must be cleaned well after each use.

If you are one who enjoys tasting and adding a pinch of this or that, cooking with this will make you crazy. Unlike a crock or traditional pot, you can’t simply lift the lid and add an ingredient. If you do, the pot has to get up to pressure again—more time.

On the plus side, I’ve made some tasty soups, roasts, rice, and of course, my beloved eggs. My friend made a beautiful crustless quiche–next on my list of cooking experiments. 

Should you decide to invest, be sure to buy THE Instant Pot and not a knock-off brand. I’ve heard a few horror stories about imposters.

If you’re looking for additional support for your health journey, be sure to join my new Facebook community: The Fit Foodies We’ll address your challenges, successes, and have some fun too, since we all love good food!

To Your Health,
Carol

“I can cook really complicated recipes, but it takes a real talent to do the perfect egg.”—Chrissy Teigen