The Broke Chick Moved!

Hi there! I’m glad you found The Broke Chick!

When I started this blog, I had three children and a few pounds to lose.

Then I had THREE MORE CHILDREN. And I still have a few pounds to lose. It’s funny how life throws curve-balls at our curves.

I’d love for you to visit us at www.coersfamily.com to see how we’re managing our six children and our goals for a healthier lifestyle.

2

February 1, 2013. Uncategorized. Leave a comment.

What does it take to lose a pound?

When planning your personal fitness and diet plan, it’s important to understand what it takes to lose a pound of body fat. One pound of body fat contains approximately 3,500 calories. Usually a calorie deficit of 500 calories a day will help you lose one pound a week. In order to create that calorie deficit, it is important to cut calories from your daily diet and also exercise.

Of course, different factors will affect your individual weight loss. Men and women burn calories and lose weight differently. Find a system that works for you. Generally a lower-calorie diet and moderate exercise three times a week is a great way to kick-start your weight loss. There are some wonderful websites available to help you tailor your individual plan. It’s a great idea to first assess what your caloric needs are for your age, gender, current weight and level of activity.

A great site to first visit is: http://www.freedieting.com/tools/calorie_calculator.htm

The daily caloric intake calculator listed on that site will give you a result that is tailored for you as an individual. Once you’ve learned what your caloric needs are, you can begin to take a good look at your eating habits. Keeping a food journal is an outstanding way to really examine what you’ve been eating. It may seem tedious at first, but the rewards are worth the small effort!

The Kaiser Permanente Center for Health Research conducted a study with the help of 1,500 overweight and obese participants. The individuals who kept a food journal often lost twice as much weight as other participants who did not keep tabs on their food intake. Whether you jot down your meals in a small spiral notebook or enter the data online, this small step can really help you take charge of your weight loss.

The following websites offer free online food journals and wonderful weight loss tips and strategies:

 http://www.fitday.com/

http://www.sparkpeople.com/

http://www.my-calorie-counter.com/

http://www.nutridiary.com/

After keeping a food journal and cutting calories in a safe and healthy way through better food choices, you can also begin to enjoy moderate exercise. Walking is a great way to ease into a fitness routine. A fun way to get started with a regular walking regimen is to wear a pedometer. It is encouraging to see how many steps you’ve taken and challenge yourself to add to that amount each day.

To start out, go for a ten-minute walk at least three times a week. It couldn’t be more simple. Once you feel comfortable with an easy ten-minute walk around your neighborhood or favorite local park, add an extra five minutes to your daily walk. Your ultimate goal should be to walk for 45 to 60 minutes at a brisk pace to blast away those extra pounds.

You’ll be able to slim down and improve your overall well-being with a few simple – inexpensive – and easy changes to your daily lifestyle and eating habits.

UPDATE:

When I started this blog in 2010, I had three children and a few pounds to lose.

Then I had THREE MORE CHILDREN. And I still have a few pounds to lose. It’s funny how life throws curve-balls at our curves.

I’d love for you to visit us at www.coersfamily.com to see how we’re managing our six children and our goals for a healthier lifestyle.

2

April 24, 2010. Tags: , , , , , , , . News Stories and Links, Tips. Leave a comment.

Being Healthy vs. Being Skinny

Recently I came across a very inspiring video online. The video addressed positive and negative body images and how this impacts women. I realize body image issues affect men as well, but women in general struggle daily with feelings about their appearance. Our culture places such a strong emphasis on how we look. We often neglect our overall health in favor of losing a few pounds in a dangerous way.

Included with the body image video was a wonderful article full of ways to improve your self image and positively assess your attributes. If you’d like to read the article and watch this inspirational video, you can use this link:

Enough with the Body Hatred

When I write blog posts and articles dealing with dieting, my goal is to provide recipes and tips for healthy meals with less calories as part of an overall better health program that includes a well-balanced diet and exercise. It’s important to be healthy, not simply skinny. I focus on writing about low-calorie meals because we often consume far too many calories during our busy days filled with work, school and family.

Healthy diet tips on ediets.com

 

It is also equally important to include exercise and quality relaxation and stretching in your overall well-being plan. To start adding a little exercise to your day, consider the following options:

• Park further away from your destination – every step counts!

• Go for a stroll after dinner

• Try a few simple yoga stretches in the morning

• If you have steps that lead to your home, double up on them. Make a rule for yourself, such as “I can’t go up to the front door unless I’ve done 10 steps” and increase it each month as you feel more comfortable.

• Take your dog for a long walk – your puppy will love you for it.

• Avoid the elevator, use the stairs.

• Try to get 30 minutes of playtime with your children outside.

When you begin to think of ways to include exercise into your daily routine, you’ll be pleasantly surprised at how easy it can be healthier and more active. Cutting calories only takes you so far. It’s important to be focused on your overall health and not just your waistline.

UPDATE:

When I started this blog in 2010, I had three children and a few pounds to lose.

Then I had THREE MORE CHILDREN. And I still have a few pounds to lose. It’s funny how life throws curve-balls at our curves.

I’d love for you to visit us at www.coersfamily.com to see how we’re managing our six children and our goals for a healthier lifestyle.

2

April 20, 2010. Tags: , , , , , , . News Stories and Links, Tips. Leave a comment.

Save money and cut calories with a grocery list and menu

As a stay-at-home mom with three children that are homeschooled, it is important that we streamline our day-to-day activities such as chores, school and meals. The easiest way for our family to operate is to plan a two-week menu, based on my husband’s pay schedule and plan our grocery list accordingly. This saves us a lot of money because our purchases are planned and we rarely go out to eat or buy convenience foods because our meals are planned ahead of time. This helps me to keep my calorie intake low because I make most of our meals and I can control my portion sizes and the ingredients I use.

There are plenty of websites that offer valuable tips and advice for menu planning as well as some great print-outs to help you get started organizing your meals and saving you money! Some of my favorite sites include:

Darla Shine’s Happy Housewives Club

http://happyhousewivesclub.com/printables/

Darla’s site offers wonderful printables. Check out the Weekly Menu sheet as well as the Grocery List. You can use them as is – or you can use their wonderful example to tailor your own lists. Be sure to stop by their individual pages and get recipe ideas from the cooking section and terrific organization and housekeeping tips from the homemaking section.

Donna Young

http://www.donnayoung.org/household/fullsize/kitchen-planner.htm

There are some fantastic grocery shopping lists here as well! Donna Young is a perfect example of an organized woman! And the lists and tips she offers on her site are invaluable. I really recommend you grab a cup of coffee, or tea, and cruise her site for a while – you won’t be sorry!

Now, for our home, I do not have the meals assigned to a particular day. I simply have a master list of 14 to 15 dinner menu options. This allows me some freedom to switch to an easier meal on busy days, or to have something nice to serve when company comes over on short notice.

By planning our grocery list, it’s easier for me to provide healthy meals for our family and low-calorie options for myself all while saving a bundle of money by skipping the take-out and fast food meals.

UPDATE:

When I started this blog in 2010, I had three children and a few pounds to lose.

Then I had THREE MORE CHILDREN. And I still have a few pounds to lose. It’s funny how life throws curve-balls at our curves.

I’d love for you to visit us at www.coersfamily.com to see how we’re managing our six children and our goals for a healthier lifestyle.

2

March 10, 2010. Tags: , , , , , , , . Breakfast, Dinner, Lunch, Tips. 1 comment.

Chicken Taco Soup

Nothing is more soothing, delicious and classic than chicken soup. Chicken is a wonderfully versatile meat and is great paired with a variety of flavors. Try this lighter, healthier variation of the classic Taco Soup recipe.

Our very own homemade Chicken Taco Soup

We use chicken quarters in our soup. I can usually buy a 10-pound bag of chicken quarters (that’s the leg and thigh still attached to each other) for less than $10 in our local grocery store. I then seperate that bag into two or three large, gallon-sized, zip-lock bags and put those in the freezer. I use chicken quarters for all sorts of chicken dishes, like this wonderful soup.

Chicken Taco Soup

Ingredients:

  • 5 lbs chicken quarters
  • 1 small can green chilies
  • 1 small yellow onion
  • 2 cans stewed tomatoes
  • 1 can Mexican-style stewed tomatoes
  • 2 cans black beans
  • 2 cans yellow hominy
  • 1 packet of taco seasoning
  • 1 packet ranch dressing mix
  • Garlic powder
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Olive oil

* Optional toppings: fat free sour cream, black olives

Directions:

In a large pot, boil the chicken quarters in water with salt, pepper and garlic powder until cooked through. Remove the chicken from the broth and debone, discard bones and skin. Pour broth through a mesh strainer into a large bowl and set aside. Allowing the broth to cool completely will bring the fat to the top of the liquid. Gently scrape the fat from the top of the bowl and discard. This simple step keeps the soup light and lower in fat and calories.

Dice the onion and place in a large pot with a few tablespoons of olive oil and the green chilies. Allow onion to brown slightly. Add shredded chicken to the pot along with taco season and ranch dressing mix. Stir and then add the chicken broth back to the pot.

Open two cans of black beans and drain and rinse before adding to the pot. Open the hominy, drain and add to the pot. In a blender, combine the stewed tomatoes, blend well and add this to your soup.

Stir well to mix all the wonderful flavors. Cover and allow to simmer over low heat for 30 minutes. This soup is perfect topped with fat free sour cream (25 calories per serving: 2 tablespoons) and black olives. To make it a complete meal, you may want to pair it with a salad.

Calorie estimates:

First we’ll need to total up the calories for all the ingredients of the soup and then estimate how many servings are available per large pot of soup to find the calorie content for one bowl.

  • Chicken – one cup cooked dark meat: 269. Five pounds boiled down, deboned and shredded usually gives me three cups of chicken meat, so we’ll do 269 x 3 = 807
  • Chicken broth – one cup is around 40 calories. I’m fairly certain I had 10 cups of broth, so that’s 400 calories
  • The stewed tomatoes generally have 70 calories per can = 210 calories
  • Hominy: 115 per cup, and we’ll say there’s three in this pot of soup = 345 calories
  • Two cans of black beans will give us about three cups which is 210 calories
  • And finally, two tablespoons of olive oil = 240 calories

That’s a grand total of 2,212 calories. I like to round up, just in case I’m off somewhere – so we’ll say 2,500 calories per gigantic pot of soup. Our large pot usually gives us about 12 servings (almost two cups) of soup. Each serving is about 210 calories.

UPDATE:

When I started this blog in 2010, I had three children and a few pounds to lose.

Then I had THREE MORE CHILDREN. And I still have a few pounds to lose. It’s funny how life throws curve-balls at our curves.

I’d love for you to visit us at www.coersfamily.com to see how we’re managing our six children and our goals for a healthier lifestyle.

2

March 2, 2010. Tags: , , , , , , . Dinner, Recipes. 4 comments.

Fight that snack attack!

It’s 3 o’clock in the afternoon. Lunch was ages ago. Dinner is light years away. Your body is weak and your stomach sounds like a rumbling volcano. But you’re counting calories! You’re trying not to spend all your money on snack foods! What can you do?

The best option for snacking while on a diet is fresh fruit or vegetables. A tall glass of water also helps to curb rumbling tummies. But every once in a while you just want something salty, crunchy and well, just plain “snacky.”

Reach for some Goldfish crackers, my friend.

Pepperidge Farm introduced the dieter’s best weapon against snack attacks in the 1960’s. A serving of Goldfish crackers ranges from 130 to 150 calories for around 60 crackers, depending on the particular flavor chosen. The varieties are abundant, such as Original (a light, buttery cracker with a savory taste), Cheddar, Pretzel, Parmesan, Pizza and more. Recently Pepperidge Farm introduced Garden Cheddar. These crackers have the added benefit of a third of a serving of vegetables included.

To save money, consider purchasing the large carton of Goldfish. When you’re packing your lunch, measure out a portion of Goldfish crackers and keep them fresh in a resealable sandwich baggie.  The large carton has a top that opens much like a carton of milk, making it easy to pour.

The large “carton” of Goldfish is easy to pour, and the best buy

A serving size is generally 60 Goldfish. I don’t know about you, but I don’t have the time to count out 60 little crackers. A good estimated portion size is about half a cup.

Because they’re baked, Goldfish crackers are a great substitute for potato or corn chips. Consider using them in place of croutons on your salads. You can also jazz up a cup of your favorite low-calorie, broth-based soup.

Don’t let snack attacks destroy your diet! Take some time in the morning to “arm” yourself with healthy choices and cut your calories without starving.

UPDATE:

When I started this blog in 2010, I had three children and a few pounds to lose.

Then I had THREE MORE CHILDREN. And I still have a few pounds to lose. It’s funny how life throws curve-balls at our curves.

I’d love for you to visit us at www.coersfamily.com to see how we’re managing our six children and our goals for a healthier lifestyle.

2

March 1, 2010. Tags: , , , , , , , , . Products, Snacks. 2 comments.

It’s okay to be a little chicken

Are you ready to rethink your lunch? The statistics for a typical fast-food lunch are horrifying both for the calorie-conscious and the budget-savvy. A standard cheeseburger costs $2.00 and packs a whopping 600 calories. Next to order: the ever-popular French fries for $1.00 and 300 calories. To finish this meal, you’ll want a soda which will cost around $1.50 and add an additional 200 calories.

You’ve just spent over four dollars on 1100 calories.

With a little preparation over the weekend, you can pack a low-calorie, nutritious and tasty lunch for a fraction of the cost of that greasy monstrosity of a meal.

Your first thought may be to pack a sandwich. You’ll definitely be saving money, but you may be sacrificing taste and nutrition. The humble sandwich can often carry approximately 360 calories when made with two slices of bread (140 calories), one slice of cheese (80 calories), one serving of deli-sliced lunch meat (90 calories), one tablespoon of mayonnaise (50 calories). This option is indeed low-calorie, but it can often leave you feeling hungry.

For a more filling low-calorie lunch, consider skipping the tradition lunch meat and trying a more healthy option: real chicken. The price of a 12-ounce pack of deli-sliced lunch meat can cost $3.49. One whole chicken typically costs less than one dollar per pound. The savings are already adding up.

Cooking a whole chicken at home can cause some kitchen anxiety to novice cooks. Nothing could be easier, however. To cook a whole (thawed) chicken, simply remove the chicken from its packaging, remove the gizzards and any other tidbits that may have been stored in the body cavity along with the neck and rinse the chicken. Place the chicken in a 9 x 13 inch pan and sprinkle a little salt and pepper over the body along with a tablespoon of olive oil. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes per pound of chicken. Add an additional 15 minutes to the total cook time for browning.

Once the chicken is completely cooked and cooled slightly, remove the breast meat. The rest of the chicken can be used for numerous dishes. Save any leftover bones and chicken meat to make homemade broth.

Be sure to remove the skin from the breast meat. Divide the breast meat into portion sizes and store in the refrigerator. One ounce of chicken is a piece about the size of your thumb and generally has 50 calories, provides protein and doesn’t load you down with sodium like many packaged lunch meats.

Try this low-calorie and healthy option in your sandwiches, wraps and salads. The taste is amazing and you’ll have the satisfaction of cutting calories and saving money.

Lunch Idea: Chicken Wrap

Ingredients:

  • Joseph’s Lavash Bread
  • Two ounces chicken breast meat, shredded
  • One tablespoon Kraft reduced-fat olive oil mayonnaise
  • One leaf romaine lettuce
  • One carrot
  • One tablespoon dill pickle relish

Directions:

Cut one large rectangle of Joseph’s Lavash Bread in half, store the other half. Spread one tablespoon of Kraft reduced-fat olive oil mayonnaise on the Lavash. Place one large leaf of romaine lettuce on the Lavash. Using a potato-peeler, shave one medium carrot over the lettuce leaf. Top this with shredded chicken breast and finish with one tablespoon of dill relish. Roll the Lavash carefully making sure you don’t tear the soft bread.

This tasty lunch option has approximately 200 calories.

UPDATE:

When I started this blog in 2010, I had three children and a few pounds to lose.

Then I had THREE MORE CHILDREN. And I still have a few pounds to lose. It’s funny how life throws curve-balls at our curves.

I’d love for you to visit us at www.coersfamily.com to see how we’re managing our six children and our goals for a healthier lifestyle.

2

March 1, 2010. Tags: , , , , , , , . Lunch, Recipes. Leave a comment.

Let’s talk about spuds, bay-bee!

Potatoes are NOT the diet enemy. Especially when you’re broke, like me. Potatoes are our friends. One medium-sized potato holds around 160 calories and includes 28% of your daily vitamin C, 27% of your daily vitamin B6 and 26% of your daily Potassium. That’s more than the celebrated banana.

You can get your bikini body and enjoy potatoes at the same time!

One hot spud

Get the nutritional skinny on the lovely potato here: Potato Nutritional Analysis

Now that we’ve put aside some of your potato fears, you may be wondering, “Well just how am I supposed to eat the potato?” Obviously french fries are not your best choice. Duh. But if you’re like me – a regular human being who craves french fries – go out and buy a big brand of the store-brand frozen french fries and throw those puppies in the oven. Stick to the recommended portion size (15 fries) and you can have your fries for about 120 calories.

Mash potatoes are king in our house. My children and handsome husband just love when I whip up a nice big bowl of fluffy, whipped potatoes. I love mashed potatoes, too… but they don’t do much for my figure. When I’m serving mashed potatoes I’ll usually set one medium-sized potatoe aside for myself and steam it in the microwave. It’s my lazy way of having a baked potato.

To steam your potato you’ll need:

  • A potato (crazy how that works, right?)
  • A sandwich baggie
  • Two paper towels
  • Water
  • Microwave

First, scrub that spud. You don’t want to bite into a dirt-coated potato, it can ruin your taste for potatoes for life. Give it a nice scrub and then CAREFULLY poke several holes into the potato using a knife or fork. Carefully means not talking to your kids about picking up their shoes while you’re stabbing a potato. The potato is wet, you’re stabbing away and getting a little annoyed with your children… your odds for stabbing yourself are doubling  every second.

After you’ve CAREFULLY poked several holes in your potato, wrap the potato in two paper towels and soak it under the water faucet. Now place the soaked spud into the sandwich baggie and add a little more water, a few tablespoons. Now zip it up and place it into the microwave. Cook for about five minutes.

Please note, this potato will be hotter than any substance known to man. Be extremely careful when removing the potato from the microwave. In fact, give it a minute or two to cool down before you reach in there. Carefully remove the sandwich baggie and paper towels, set the potato on your plate and slice in half. Give it a nice sprinkle of salt and pepper. From here you can add margarine and sour cream and all that jazz… but keep in mind we’re trying to cut calories here. I like mine with a tablespoon of margarine (60 calories).

UPDATE:

When I started this blog in 2010, I had three children and a few pounds to lose.

Then I had THREE MORE CHILDREN. And I still have a few pounds to lose. It’s funny how life throws curve-balls at our curves.

I’d love for you to visit us at www.coersfamily.com to see how we’re managing our six children and our goals for a healthier lifestyle.

2

February 20, 2010. Tags: , , , , , , , , . Dinner, Lunch. Leave a comment.

Quick breakfast solutions

In our house, my husband and I usually get up at 6 a.m. Notice I say “usually” … there are plenty of times when we don’t do this. But, we strive to get up at 6 a.m. and exercise. Right now we’re grooving out to “The Biggest Loser Workout: Cardio Max” and it’s kicking our bottoms. Literally.

After our workout, my husband goes to shower and get ready for work and I – being the sweet wifey that I sometimes can be – make our breakfast. His breakfast looks different from mine. But we’re not here to talk about his breakfast. Otherwise this blog would be called something like “Dude with a job who can eat pretty much anything and lose weight” – and who wants to read that? No, we’re talking about my breakfast solutions.

First off, let’s talk about some standard foods that need to be in your kitchen in order for you to whip up a quick, low-cal, healthy and inexpensive breakfast.

With these items readily available you’re able to fix yourself a nice little breakfast. Let’s talk about my favorite: Laughing Cow cheese on an english muffin. One wedge of the “light” version of Laughing Cow has only 35 calories! When paired with a toasted english muffin, the taste is fabulous and the overall pairing is under 200 calories. I like to have an english muffin, smeared with light Laughing Cow and a glass of V-8 fruit fushion. With this little meal I’m getting veggies, fruit, protein and carbs for around 300 calories. Every once in a while I’ll have a boiled or even a fried egg.

Christy Jordan’s Breakfast Sandwich

When I fix that for myself, I’ll usually fix an english muffin sandwich for my husband. He has this with an orange and some V-8 juice and it works for him. If you follow the link posted in the above sentence, you’ll come across miss Christy Jordan’s wonderfully easy recipe for this yummy breakfast. I love Christy Jordan. She rocks.

When I crave something sweet in the morning, I like to whip up a nice bowl of oatmeal – nothing fancy, no brand names, just oatmeal people – and have some sliced banana on it with a tablespoon of Country Crock and sweetened with store-brand Splenda. This fantastic meal tastes like banana bread! And it’s around 250 calories. Plus, it fills me up until lunchtime.

For an easy breakfast to take with you on the road, try a serving of Joseph’s Lavash Bread with one scrambled egg and a half serving of deli-sliced ham.

Breakfast can be quick and easy! Ditch the donuts and treat yourself right.

UPDATE:

When I started this blog in 2010, I had three children and a few pounds to lose.

Then I had THREE MORE CHILDREN. And I still have a few pounds to lose. It’s funny how life throws curve-balls at our curves.

I’d love for you to visit us at www.coersfamily.com to see how we’re managing our six children and our goals for a healthier lifestyle.

2

February 18, 2010. Tags: , , , , , , . Breakfast, Products, Recipes. Leave a comment.

The cost of being thin

I came across this article this morning and it just blew me away! It’s crazy to see how much people are willing to spend on pre-made foods designed to cut calories.

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/35332772/ns/health-diet_and_nutrition/

Personally, I’m a fan of the “do-it-your-darn-self” method. You’ll save money and have food you actually want to eat. And it’s easy, really. I’m not a classically-trained chef by any stretch of the imagination and I can whip up a few yummy dishes in the kitchen in no time flat. I know people are busy, y’all have jobs and stuffed schedules. But it only takes a few moments to prepare something that isn’t going to explode your calorie intake and destroy your wallet.

You do not have to be rich to lose weight! You can be totally broke. Like me!

UPDATE:

When I started this blog in 2010, I had three children and a few pounds to lose.

Then I had THREE MORE CHILDREN. And I still have a few pounds to lose. It’s funny how life throws curve-balls at our curves.

I’d love for you to visit us at www.coersfamily.com to see how we’re managing our six children and our goals for a healthier lifestyle.

2

February 18, 2010. Tags: , , , , , , , , . News Stories and Links. Leave a comment.

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