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carol@inkwellcoaching.com

Schererville, IN

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January 23, 2020

Keep it Simple

It’s that magical time of year. According to Runner’s World, most resolutions concerning health and fitness were over and done last Sunday, Januar

January 16, 2020

Success is Showing Up

How many times do you schedule your workouts for the week, and one day, you simply don’t want to show up? (Ok, that was me yesterday.) Your heart is

January 9, 2020

When the Body Breaks

Sometimes, in spite of our best efforts, our bodies don’t cooperate. I have friends with replaced hips, knees, and shoulders. Others have asthma, os

December 26, 2019

Getting (Back) into Your Routine

We’ve gotten past the Christmas cookies, candies, and cocktails. It’s now time to get back into your “normal” routine, or figure out what that

December 19, 2019

Unstuffed Pepper Soup

It’s soup weather. It’s almost Christmas. It’s crunch time. You need to eat nutritious food and you’ve get presents to buy, decorating to do,

December 12, 2019

The Buzz on Bone Broth

Lately I’ve been using more bone broth, whether it’s Carol-made or a store-bought variety. When comparing bone broth to basic broth or bouillon, b

December 5, 2019

The Peaceful Way to Christmas

The countdown to Christmas has begun. In fact, it started well before we ate the turkey. There are no Christmas decorations adorning our house, althou

November 28, 2019

Happy Thanksgiving

Today is a day my family looks forward to for weeks. We enjoy hanging out, relaxing, cooking, and of course, eating. We typically fry our turkey. This

November 21, 2019

Thanksgiving Tips, Tricks, and Least Liked Classics

One week away from the official start of what many Americans consider to be the holiday season. Since you may not read your emails next Thursday, my s

What’s for Breakfast?

I’ve been talking about breakfast quite a bit lately. Some of the BIG questions: When do I eat it? What is best to eat for breakfast? What if I’m not hungry in the morning? How in the world do I find the time?

Great questions! Here are a few answers for you:

  • Eat breakfast when you are hungry. For some, that’s first thing. For others, it’s later in the morning. The more important thing is WHAT you eat for your first meal of the day to break your fast.
  • It’s best to include some lean protein, and if you’re real ambitious, some vegetables. Good fats, such as avocado, nuts, olive oil, etc. are a good idea. So what does this look like in real food?
  • Omelets or scrambled eggs with vegetables sautéed in a bit of olive, avocado or coconut oil are ideal. Oh, and be sure to eat the entire egg. One egg gives you 6 grams of protein, along with a multitude of vitamins, minerals and healthy fat. The good stuff is in the yolk. The egg yolk is not the reason for high cholesterol in North Americans.

Of course, if you’re a body builder or Rocky Balboa, consuming a dozen eggs at once may be a bit over the top. In that case, have a couple eggs and supplement with the whites.

  • Plain Greek yogurt with added berries, nuts, and granola makes a quick and easy breakfast. Fage is my favorite brand because of the probiotics it provides, along with high protein and low sugar. If the taste is a bit too tart, add a drizzle of honey or 100% maple syrup until your taste buds come around.
  • Hard boiled eggs, whole grain toast or apple slices with nut butter, oatmeal with nuts, berries and a side of cottage cheese, leftovers from the night before, protein shake with added greens (you won’t taste them as long as you have a good blender).

I must admit that my toughest meal of the day to get in my vegetables is breakfast. I’m still practicing, so I’ll get better over time. Remember: do just a little bit better.

Drink plenty of water. In fact, start your day with a glass or two and you’re off to a good start with your hydration requirements.

On finding the time for breakfast:

  • Make a plan, then follow through with the plan. The painful fact is that if you’re too busy to eat a nutritious breakfast, you’re too busy to be lean and healthy. This means packing your food to eat when you’re ready, instead of leaving it to chance in the work break room or nearest drive-thru.
  • Don’t intentionally skip breakfast to drop body fat. In the long run, those who skip are up to 5 times more likely to be obese than those who make it a daily habit.

Click Here for my recipe for Peanut Butter Oatmeal Breakfast Bars, great to make ahead and freeze. They’ve gotten rave reviews, and may help you on those “grab and go” days.

“When you wake up in the morning, Pooh,” said Piglet at last, “what’s the first thing you say to yourself?” “What’s for breakfast?” said Pooh. “What do you say, Piglet?” “I say, I wonder what’s going to happen exciting today?” said Piglet. Pooh nodded thoughtfully. “It’s the same thing,” he said.”—A. A. Milne

 

 

 

 

 

Chocolate Protein Bars

  • 2 Cups (or 16oz. jar) Natural Peanut Butter
  • 1 1/2 to 1 3/4 Cups Organic Honey
  • 2 Cups Chocolate Vegan Protein Powder (I like Arbonne)
  • 3 Cups Rice Krispies

In a microwave-safe bowl, combine peanut butter and honey. Heat for about 90 seconds until it stirs easily. Add protein powder and Rice Krispies and mix thoroughly (The mixture will be thick). Press into a 9 x 13 inch pan. Refrigerate for about 1 hour, or until solid enough to cut into bars. Store in refrigerator or freezer. These keep well for weeks in the freezer.

Recipe Alternatives:

  • Almond Butter in place of Peanut Butter
  • Vanilla Protein in place of Chocolate Protein
  • Oats (gluten-free) or puffed rice or cocoa rice krispies in place of Rice Krispies
  • 100% Pure Maple Syrup in place of honey or use some of each
  • When using Vanilla Protein, add a teaspoonful or so of cinnamon

Note: You can obviously be as creative as you like with these. Have fun experimenting, as the options are numerous as to what you could add or substitute. I like Arbonne protein because it tastes great, is easily digestible, is gluten and dairy free (if either of those are an issue for you), and contains no artificial sweeteners, colors, or sweeteners. For more information on, or to acquire Arbonne products, send me an email.

Peanut Butter Oatmeal Breakfast Bars

These bars are good to have on hand in case you need to “grab and go,” or you need a pick-me-up snack during the day. Store them in the freezer so they stay fresh. This helps for portion control too. Protein from the peanut butter and protein powder, smart carbohydrate from the oats, and minimal sugar, make these a winner with me.

  • 1 cup natural peanut butter
  • 1 Tablespoon honey
  • 1 cup old fashioned rolled oats
  • ½ cup + 2 Tablespoons oat flour
  • ¼ cup powdered peanut butter
  • ¼ cup vanilla protein powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 egg yolk
  • ¾ cup unsweetened plain almond milk
  • 1/3 cup mini chocolate chips

Optional topping:

  • 2 ounces semisweet chocolate
  • 1 Tablespoon vanilla protein powder

Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease an 8×8 inch pan and set aside. Microwave the peanut butter and honey in a large glass bowl until smooth, about one minute. Stir well. Let cool a bit while you mix together your dry ingredients.

In a separate bowl, combine the oats, oat flour, powdered peanut butter, vanilla protein powder, salt, baking powder, baking soda, and cinnamon. Mix well.

Add the vanilla extract and egg yolk to the peanut butter and honey mixture and beat well with an electric mixer. Pour the peanut butter mixture, almond milk, and mini chocolate chips into the dry oatmeal mixture. Stir until the ingredients are well combined. The dough will be thick. Press into the pan and bake until the edges are slightly brown and the mixture is set, about 20 minutes.

For the topping, melt the chocolate. Stir in the vanilla protein powder until smooth, and drizzle over the bars. If the mixture is a bit too thick to drizzle, add a bit of melted coconut oil until you reach the desired consistency.

Let cool and cut into bars. Makes 12 bars, unless you’re like me and cut them smaller, since I’d rather eat 2 small bars than 1 large bar.

Notes: To make these gluten free, I use gluten free oats and gluten free oat flour by Bob’s Red Mill. I use a vegan protein powder (Arbonne), which can be easier to digest than whey, and preferable in the case of a dairy allergy or dairy intolerance. For more information on, or to acquire Arbonne products, shoot me an email and I’ll hook you up.

What’s Your Story?

Our lives are fascinating. Sit quietly for a moment and consider a story about your life that someone would find compelling.

And don’t tell me you don’t have one. Yes, you do.

Like the time you and your friend took a bus trip to the largest hosta farm in the Midwest for the weekend, and you don’t even like hostas. In fact, when asked about the variety you were seeking, your response was “green.”

Or how about the time you went out with your buddies, acted like college kids, and laughed so hard that your face hurt the next day.

Or how you got “lucky” and ended up with front row seats to see Kenny Chesney.

Stories hold our memories. Stories connect us.

Sometimes, we tell ourselves stories that do not serve us, and are not REALLY true.

Like:

–I used to be in shape. Those days are gone forever.

–With my schedule, I don’t have time to exercise/eat better/have fun.

–I can’t cook/take time for myself/give up my diet sodas.

These are the stories we can rewrite. We simply need to get to the place of being ready to get creative and try something new.

Ever try to do something you thought you could NEVER in a million years accomplish? Pretty scary. Then when you succeeded, well, talk about empowerment!

I felt that way when my PC crashed and I figured out how to write my blog posts, then upload them to my website, on a MAC. Oh. Yea.

I still feel that way when I try a “new-to-me” class at the gym, and walk away fairly unscathed when it’s over. Look out Wonder Woman.

So, today, what’s your story? Is it true? Is it REALLY true?

If you have an old story that you’re tired of playing over and over and over again, I’d like to hear it. Odds are good I’ll have some creative ways to rewrite it that are really pretty simple. Oh. Yea.

“Your life is your story. Write well. Edit often.”—Susan Statham