Saturday, October 16, 2010


Apart from my screaming knees and stiff joints, I am feeling pretty good about myself. I've achieved a couple of important goals.

Cindy and Lara

This morning, I ran my first 5k race. I have been training for about a month by running around the Idaho Falls Greenbelt. However, the greenbelt is only 2.4 miles and a 5k is about 3.1 miles. I was nervous about the extra distance. I was nervous about a lot of things: a cold, semi-rainy morning, a new route I hadn't ran before, and the idea of competiting in something I am not good at nor really passionate about. I ran with my sister-in-law Cindy. It was her first race too. I got a side ache (too much breakfast?) and had to slow down for quite awhile. But we both did really good, I think. I kept a slow and steady jog pace most of the time and never got painfully winded.

taking off!

Right at the end, I found the strength to sprint. I wasn't planning on it. It just happened. It made me think that a lot of things in life are like that. We do what we can to endure to the end, but when we finally see the finish line, a reservoir of unknown strength is somehow summoned forth, allowing us to cross that finish line with glory.
moments after crossing the finish line. Cindy is crossing in the background on the right.

While I didn't really set a time goal for myself - I was just hoping to finish in general - I secretly hoped to get under 45 minutes. My official recorded time was 41:48. I was happy with that. Will I do it again? Maybe it definitely gave me a new motivation to exercise. It took the exercising focus away from weight goals or because "I'm supposed to" and put it on something much more concrete, which was cool. Maybe I'll do it again if my sister comes up for Thanksgiving and enrolls in the Turkey Trot with me!

And yesterday marked the deadline for our Total Money Makeover Baby Step 1. And we made it. We actually  had all the money a week ago, but we didn't put it into the bank until yesterday, making it official.

we reached the goal!

And now on to Baby Step Two, which consists of paying down all consumer debt. It's a much longer process. I think I will actually break the baby steps down into smaller steps to make the goals a little more immediate. So for us, Baby Step Two will be paying off our credit card with the smallest balance. We will give our budget a little leniency for Christmas. So my goal is to have this card paid off by the end of the year.

Making this financial goal is really rewarding. We've been focused on needs vs.wants. I know we can do better in this department. One way I gauge my discipline is to always take a thing or two out of the shopping cart before I check out. Even if I think everything is a "need," I still find something to leave behind. Even if it means getting it next time I'm at the store, it just helps me practice patience and get out of the immediate gratification mode I've been living in for so long.

Here are some other things I've been doing (trying to do anyway):
  • Limiting how many times I eat out (it's hard to say no to work friends, but I did!)
  • Put off shopping trips for even just a day
  • Pay attention to sales!
  • Go generic for more things than I usually do
  • Better about eating leftovers and not wasting food
  • Borrowed my brother's camera when mine broke. I am still waiting on an estimate on repairing ours.
  • Deciding not to host our annual Halloween party. *Sniff, sniff* (We didn't host it last year, either. I guess maybe it's not annual anymore)
  • And again, Justin's been doing on-call work with Child Protection Services
  • All my profit sharing and bonus money is not being treated as a "bonus" but goes straight to the Baby Step
  • We put a goal thermometer on the door to our garage so we can see our progress every time we head out
  • Oh, and I just enabled AdSense on this blog. Call me a sell-out, but maybe I'll make a dollar or two a month. So feel free to click on the ads! 

I'm feeling good about it all!


Mom on the Go said...

Wow congrats on everything! It sounds like you are growing a lot as a person. I am doing the same thing concerning my shopping habits. We live in an instant gratification world, and breaking that habit is hard. The good thing is I'm also working with the kids to break their habit at the same time. I need to set the example and hopefully they will follow.

Haylee said...

Way to go!!! I ran that race today too. I saw you, but I'm so awkward, I never know what to say to someone I haven't seen in person for least 10 years? So, sorry for not saying 'hi'. Hopefully you were busy enough you didn't mind! Oh, and if I've never told you, I love reading your blog. I love that you post your life, not just all the really exciting things, but the emotions, sometimes mundane, and just everyday wonderful.

UK Yankee said...

Awesome!! You are doing so well, that's so fantastic!!

Liz Smith said...

congrats on the race! i knew you could do it. :) and way to go on your budget goals too!

Amy said...

You are doing awesome with your goals!! I think it's great that you are trying to do things that are difficult and that you might not be the best at. I need to do that too!

Shellie said...

Cute pics! Did you get a runners high?

Love the new background to :) tres chic.

Not a sell out at all... I once had sponsors... basically I just contacted companies and asked if they'd want some adspace for $10 a month on my blog. I got like 3 companies. Not a lot but that was $30 for 6 months....


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