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carol@inkwellcoaching.com

1020 Woodhollow Drive, Schererville, IN

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December 6, 2018

Slow Down to Speed Up

This mantra seems counterintuitive, especially since there are only 19 days until Christmas. Yet, it hit me during a recent time of stillness. It also

November 29, 2018

Always Do Something

It’s time to embrace imperfection. Yes, you read that correctly. Today, we are going to consider doing some things imperfectly, rather than not

November 14, 2018

We Fry a Turkey

Yes, you read that correctly. The Slager family fries a turkey (or two) each year to celebrate Thanksgiving. I know. Fried food is not a healthy optio

November 1, 2018

A Fun Day of Celebrations

I find it quite curious that the day after many folks around the world celebrate Halloween, we find ourselves with more than we bargained for on Novem

October 25, 2018

Healthy Diet = Brighter Brain

The age-old question I hear is this, “What is the best diet for me?” Although some people have food sensitivities or allergies, there is a way of

October 18, 2018

Warm Up with a Frittata

It’s that time of year when it actually feels good to turn on the oven. The warmth in the kitchen helps take the bite out of the chilly morning air.

October 18, 2018

Fall Frittata

8 ounces organic uncured turkey bacon, diced (I like Applegate brand)      2 green onions, including much of the green, diced 1 bunch asparagus, ch

October 11, 2018

Embracing the Uncomfortable

Today’s topic hit me like a brick when I was doing just that–embracing the uncomfortable. Why would anyone do such a crazy thing? It hardly ma

October 4, 2018

Farewell, Flag Pants

“You’re getting a little wide in the beam, aren’t you kid?” Those words literally kicked me into the basement of reality and sadness, all

September 27, 2018

Share the Love

Today, give some positive encouragement to another human being. This person may be a workout buddy, neighbor, co-worker, friend, family member, strang

Let’s Do This!

Crazy isn’t it, that we are six months into the New Year? Here is my question: any of you make some type of resolution way back in January to–

  • Eat better                                                                        new-years-day-1111888_640
  • Work out a couple times a week
  • Use the gym you joined
  • Plan healthier meals

And so on? If the answer is “Yes,” have you stuck with it? If you have, congratulations! Go enjoy the 4th of July celebrations! If you haven’t, keep on reading.

Most people struggle with ANY type of resolution, and very few stick with it more than a few months. Why? Habits are tough to change, especially when we try to change more than one thing at a time.

So, if you fell out of the “I’m going to do better” wagon, you are not alone. You are normal. The question to ask now is, “What action can I take that will get me back IN the wagon?”pull-25799_640Good news! This is the perfect time to begin again. Summer offers beautiful weather, great produce from local farms, fun activities to do outdoors, vacations. Meals can be cooked over a charcoal or gas grill, so there is even less time spent in the kitchen—and fewer dishes!

Figure out what ONE thing you can do that would move you closer to your ideal of “better health.” Maybe you go to a local farmer’s market once a week and pick up more vegetables. Or you make a date with a friend to golf, bike or play a game of tennis. I love to garden, so I have been scheduling time in the evening to spend about 30 minutes weeding or planting. (I have LOTS of weeds that will keep me busy all summer.)

The key here is only making ONE change. You may be getting tired of hearing that from me. Oh well. It is what works. Get into one new habit and once you have it down, add a new one. This is why I present a healthy habit each month. If you master even two of them by the end of the year, you have done well. Change can be tough. Celebrate your victories, small as they may seem to you.

Here are a few things I have been celebrating with my clients:

  • Tried fresh beets and even LIKED them
  • Cut WAY down on diet soda
  • Taking two walks a day most days, even if they are only ten minutes
  • More planned and healthy meals for the family
  • Better prepared with snacks while traveling

These are all HUGE victories! We work on these goals together and we are a team.american-flag-825635_640

I encourage you to begin today. DO NOT wait until after the holiday weekend and all the picnics. Do what you can now and celebrate your victory on Tuesday when your co-workers will be starting that diet…AGAIN.

“Don’t look back you’re not going that way.”
–Unknown

If you are feeling overwhelmed with how to begin YOUR health and fitness program, send me an email and I will be glad to help you! contact me

June’s Healthy Lifestyle Habit

What a glorious time of year here in the Midwest! This is the perfect month to address another great habit: moving. No, not as in moving to another house or part of the country; moving YOU!

fitness-1208141_640 Now, please don’t do the eyeroll and start telling yourself a story like, “I don’t have time.” You haven’t read my blog yet, so hang with me here.

You can have success with moving even if you feel like you don’t have time (which is never true), don’t belong to a gym, hate to exercise, only do “a little something” a few times a week, don’t have the proper fitness attire, etc. How do I know? I have clients who are right there with you and they are successful with this part of my program!

Here’s how it works: think of activities you enjoy. I’ll help you: dancing, gardening, skating, golfing, volleyball, running, walking, yoga, swimming. Keep thinking of things until you have a list of two or three. You may even be one of those people who enjoys going to a gym to do an “official workout.” If you are, that is great too. Almost everything counts here.

Now, look at the week ahead, beginning today. That’s right, not Monday or next week, TODAY. Let’s say you like to walk. Maybe you even have a dog that likes to walk that you can take along. Decide when you can take a 5-minute walk today. That’s it—5 minutes.

woman-892309_640Tomorrow, do the same thing. Or pick something else you like to do and schedule the time to do that. Obviously if you like to golf, you will spend more than 5 minutes. Walk more than you ride in the cart.

What if it rains for 2 days in a row and you don’t have an indoor mall or other facility to take a walk in? Could you spend 5 to 10 minutes doing some stretches or make up your own Zumba moves to a couple favorite songs?

The idea of this habit is to stop looking at exercise with drudgery and telling yourself the story that you have to go to a gym for it to “count.” Make moving fun and do a little to begin with. It may even seem too easy and you think it won’t matter. That’s okay! It all matters! As you stick with your program, add a bit of intensity or change what you do to shake things up a bit. When my clients and I plan their fitness goals for the week ahead, we make it a goal that works with their life!

Another tip: it is more beneficial to do something for a short time on a consistent basis, than to do it for a long period of time only once a week. (This is the case for lots of activities, like reading, prayer, meditation, weeding, etc.) Walking 5 minutes a day is more beneficial than a 30-minute walk only once a week. Why? Five minutes a day will become a habit, like drinking a glass of water every morning when you first wake up. Taking a long walk once a week—too easy to let it go and skip it. Then you are back to not doing anything at all. And depending on the activity, you could find yourself in pain!thankful-1081614_640

In closing, when you get out of your routine because LIFE took over, simply begin again, and move TODAY.

Important Note: Do not begin a new exercise routine without first checking with your physician!

“Now, I just want a plan that keeps me lean, healthy, strong, and fit. One that’s not based on uncomfortable overeating followed by uncomfortable undereating. One I can just “do” – every day, as long as I want to do it.”–Dr. John Berardi

If you are feeling overwhelmed with how to begin YOUR health and fitness program, send me an email and I will be glad to help you! contact me

Quick and Easy Chocolate Chip Cookie Bites

  • 2 cups blanched almond flour*                                                        Chocolate Chip Cookie Bites
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • ½ tsp. baking soda
  • ¼ cup virgin coconut oil (melted)
  • 2 Tbsp. honey
  • 1 Tbsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Combine almond flour, salt and baking soda in a large bowl, using a pastry blender to break up any clumps of flour. Stir in melted coconut oil, honey and vanilla with a large spoon until dough forms. Stir in the chocolate chips. If the dough seems dry and crumbly, add more honey, a little at a time, until it is moist enough to stick together. (You may need an additional 1-2 Tbsp. depending on the humidity.)

Drop by teaspoonful or small cookie scoop onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Gently press the dough flat if you like. (I left them round and they were delicious!)

Bake at 350 degrees F for 6 to 8 minutes, until slightly brown. Be careful not to overbake. Leave them alone to set and cool for about 15 minutes so they don’t crumble and break. Makes about 24 cookie bites.

These are gluten-free, dairy free (if you use non-dairy chocolate chips) and vegan. I store them in the freezer to keep them fresh, and the texture resembles raw cookie dough! (They may even last a bit longer since they are “hiding” in the cold.) 🙂

*Benefits of using almond flour: lower in carbohydrates and higher in protein, fiber and healthy fat than some other flour options. With the combination of almond, coconut oil and chocolate, it reminds me of an Almond Joy– only healthier!

Another version of this recipe appeared in the February 2018 issue of Get Healthy

May’s Healthy Lifestyle Habit

Let’s Talk About Breakfast

People say it’s the most important meal of the day. In my humble opinion, they are ALL important! I do believe that breakfast is the most abused meal. By this I mean that we Americans make the poorest choices at that time of day. (Could it be because we don’t get enough sleep? Hmmmm?)

We probably eat more foods that give us the least amount of nutritional value for breakfast than any other time of day. Consider: bagels, donuts, coffee cake, toast with jelly, pancakes with syrup, orange juice (it’s loaded with sugar), Pop Tarts, cold cereal.donuts-844023_640Wow! No wonder so many folks “crash” and need a coffee fix around ten!

These aren’t necessarily “bad” foods. They simply result in not-so-healthy outcomes.

As we replace those typical options with:

  • Protein rich foods such as eggs, leftover meats from dinner, protein shakes
  • Whole grains such as oatmeal, quinoa, millet
  • REAL food that is unprocessed and low in sugar
  • Vegetables, fruit (instead of juice) and nuts 

We may gradually experience:

  • Increased energy
  • Balanced blood sugar
  • Less depression and better moods
  • Lower cholesterolfoodiesfeed.com_paleo-breakfast3
  • Less body fat
  • Improved muscle retention and strength
  • Healthier eating the remainder of the day

As I was saying, those typical options are not “bad,” if you don’t mind feeling rather grumpy and lethargic for half the day! 🙂  There are other reasons too—reverse the potential positives that occur with better eating, (i.e. poor energy, spiking blood sugar, depression, etc.), and meditate on those answers awhile. It’s not pretty.

May’s habit is to practice eating more nutrient rich foods for breakfast—especially protein.

Men need protein equivalent to about two palm-sized portions (30-40grams) each meal. Women need one palm-sized portion (20-30grams) each meal.

Many of you know that I enjoy pancakes. On those occasions when I eat them, I make sure I have eggs too. The eggs help fill me up so I eat fewer pancakes. I am less apt to “crash” later in the morning. Syrup is not necessary because I add blueberries or strawberries to them while they cook. This adds natural sweetness. By adding the eggs (protein), consuming fewer pancakes without syrup (lower carbs and sugars), I experience less of a sugar rush. See how this works? I have my pancakes and still keep my cheery, high-energy disposition!

Remember, this isn’t something that will happen naturally, if toast and coffee have been foodiesfeed.com_healthy-homemade-baguette2your “go to” for the last twenty years. Be patient. Start small. Set an achievable goal like adding an egg to your morning. Baby steps lead to lasting results!

“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

P.S. If you’re looking to shape up for summer, and have more energy to play outdoors, contact me today.  We can do this together!

(Resource: http://www.precisionnutrition.com/all-about-breakfast)