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carol@inkwellcoaching.com

1020 Woodhollow Drive, Schererville, IN

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April 19, 2019

Frittata in a Mug

Serves 1 ½ cup packed fresh baby spinach leaves 2 Tablespoons water 2 large eggs 2 Tablespoons cottage cheese ¼ cup grated cheese 4 grape or cherry

April 18, 2019

Celebrate New Life

About two decades or so ago, a construction worker appeared at my pharmacy consultation window looking for advice. He needed help falling asleep, and

April 11, 2019

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

April 4, 2019

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 wa

March 28, 2019

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 com

March 21, 2019

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 c

March 7, 2019

The Power of Food

Is there a particular food(s) that has power over you? For some people, if there is a bag of chips, cookies, chocolate—you get the idea—in the hou

February 28, 2019

What Are You Grateful For?

I walked past a couple people recently and overheard a comment that went something like this: “There’s got to be more to life than getting old and

February 21, 2019

What Are You Committed To?

Commitment: the trait of sincere and steadfast fixity of purpose. Today, I’d like you to consider what you are committed to that is all about you.

August’s Healthy Lifestyle Habit

I love this month’s habit because local produce is abundant and everything looks and tastes so fresh. What better month than August to add one more vegetable to your day?2016-08-05 09.29.09

Most of us, author of this blog included, do not eat enough vegetables in the course of a week. It takes practice to even consider grabbing celery with hummus instead of chips. The idea of eating 8-12 servings of vegetables and fruits each day is a bit of a stretch. How to improve on this? One day at a time.

This month, practice eating one more vegetable each day than you typically would. Maybe you like eggs for breakfast and you eat them plain. Try stir-frying some chopped sweet peppers or mushrooms in your coconut oil for about 5 minutes, and then add your eggs. Whether you scramble them or make an omelet, you have snuck in that vegetable.

Other ideas: have a mixed green, spinach or kale salad for a snack; add celery sticks with nut butter to your lunch; have an avocado or salsa with your egg; add greens or avocado to your protein smoothie; make “spaghetti” from summer squash; tomatoes are easy to slice, in season, and add great color to any plate.chicken-825232_640

What does one serving look like? One serving equals ½ cup raw/cooked vegetables or 1 cup of raw leafy vegetables. (For reference, one serving of fruit is one medium-sized fruit or ½ cup raw fruit.)

If you are interested in fat loss, eat about five vegetables for every one fruit. If you are interested in muscle gain and/or performance enhancement, the ratio of vegetables to fruit can be more like three vegetables for every one fruit. *                woman-36446_640

This process will get easier and feel more natural over time. Honest—I eat more vegetables than I used to simply because I have the awareness of this practice. When it is EASY to eat one more vegetable a day, go for two more a day. Before you know it, you will be addicted to vegetables!

When you come up with new and exciting ways to eat your vegetables, let my Inkwell Healthy Lifestyles Facebook community know. We are all in this together, so let’s have some FUN!

“The easiest diet is, you know, eat vegetables, eat fresh food. Just a really sensible healthy diet like you read about all the time.”  ~Drew Carey

As a health coach, I work with women who have lost themselves and neglected their health in order to raise their families. I help them find their inner compass and live healthier, more balanced lives.

Is this you? If so, I would love to hear from you.  Send me an email today! 

*Reference: The Essentials of Sport and Exercise Nutrition 2nd Edition, by Dr. John Berardi and Ryan Andrews

July’s Healthy Lifestyle Habit

Here’s a great habit that has nothing to do with food or eating. So, what’s it got to do with living a healthier lifestyle? EVERYTHING!

This month’s habit is to remember to BREATHE. Yes, I know you are breathing now or you wouldn’t be reading this. The breaths I am referring to are those long, slow, intentional breaths that you control. These take some practice and I will give you some tips on how and when to incorporate them into your day.evening-sun-694425_640

As many of you have figured out, it is pretty easy to do something for 5 minutes. The practice of deep breathing for even 5 minutes may be a great addition to your morning or bedtime ritual. Some refer to this as meditation. Or, you could simply incorporate deep breaths into your day when you catch yourself feeling anxious or uneasy about something.

practice-615644_640One method of conscious deep breathing is to sit in a comfortable position and close your eyes. Take a slow, deep breath—really deep, into your belly. Hold it for a few seconds,then slowly exhale as much of the air as you can. Repeat. I like to count to four as I inhale; hold to a count of four; exhale to the count of eight. You don’t have to count at all; the counting helps me focus on my breath when I begin.

This is a great exercise to try when you are feeling agitated about something, like being stuck in traffic when you are already late for work; or dealing with a challenging situation and you are on the verge of exploding. When we get nervous or excited, our breaths typically become very shallow and rapid. By taking a moment to focus on our breathing, we allow ourselves to emotionally step back from a volatile or uneasy situation.

Any time you are thinking into the future and feeling nervous, this breathing exercise will ground you firmly into the present moment and empower you to take the next action step with confidence and conviction. (There may be times when it is not a good idea to close your eyes or even sit down. You can still practice deep breathing on the move.)

So, relax and take a deep breath. Now take another, and another. Excellent! You’ve got this!

“One way to break up any kind of tension is good deep breathing.” ~Byron Nelson

As a health coach, I work with women who have lost themselves and neglected their health in order to raise their families. I help them find their inner compass and live healthier, more balanced lives.

Is this you? If so, I would love to hear from you.  Send me an email today! 

 

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