Saturday, March 29, 2014

March Fitness is Coming to a Close-How Did I Do You Ask

I started on a journey and just a short 40 days ago and along the way I have been making weekly goals.  I have reached some and failed on a couple others.  The end goal is weight loss and better health and fitness, here's a summary.

My end of March goals look like this.  While I have a couple days left, not much is happening in these 2 days to make or break me.  Let's go through them.

Goal #1 Biggest Loser Competition.   I have lost exactly 0 pounds, so this is major failure on my end, I have maintained along the way.  Along the way I have tried a couple things including extra walking and push-ups.  I have tried a week of skipping breakfast with intermittent fasting and recently going back to my bacon and eggs in the morning.  All in all, I have ate well, but more like a 70/30 Paleo lifestyle, with some epic failures on St. Patrick's Day.

End of March Goals
  • Lose 8 lbs which should put me right around 215 lbs
  • Walk a total of 60 miles(keep track on Nike app) this is Mon-Fri after work and all day Sat-Sun, morning walks will not count since it's 5:30 am and I'm lucky to know I'm wearing clothes to go outside
  • Add in 2 sets of (push ups, sit ups, body squats)

Photo Courtesy of

Goal #2 And I Would Walk 100 hundred Miles and I would Walk 100 More(that's a song kids).  I did it!  I reached my goal, actually I have been doing great on my goal.  I am currently at 62.73 miles and climbing, that's with forgetting to use my Nike running app.  If walking were the only way to weight loss I would have lost 50 pounds.  I am the old man on the right in the picture if anyone is curious.

Photo courtesy of
Goal #3 Do as many push-ups and squats to look like Arnold Schwarzenegger. I had my ups and downs but I have done an estimated 550 push-ups and squats throughout the month, which breaks down to about 20 push-ups/sits each day.  I cannot say this is the 2 sets of exercise daily, but I can say I am closer to look like this handsome young Arnold on the right.

So what now?  Should I just give up because I haven't lost weight, can I get a he-double hockey sticks NO!  I used to weigh 265 pounds, honestly it could have been more who knows, I wasn't exactly jumping to get on the scale.  The things that worked best for me was cutting out as much sugar as possible, living in Miami where I sweated out 2 pounds a day by just breathing, and riding by bike everywhere and working out more.  Well I'm not ready yet for biking everywhere especially right now, but I am keeping track of my sugar intake and looking to reduce any added sugars and even keep the natural sugars as low as possible.  I'm not that familiar with what regular sugar intake should be, but over the last 3 days I'm averaging 60-70g a day.  According to an article here, it says to get your sugar intake to below 40g total, which seems very reasonable for what I have been doing since a nutty bar and gelato were included in the last 3 days.  For this week I am also weighing myself every morning trying to make weight loss a conscious effort.  I am going to keep this going for 2 weeks, so here's to losing a few pounds and being proud to share it with everyone.

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Sometimes Fitness Friday Falls on a Saturday


So a week of struggle followed by a St. Paddy's Weekend that I did not fair to well.   The goals for day 15-22 went well, even lost 1.5 pounds, short of my 3 pound goal, but I was walking more and eating right so I felt great.  Then came the goals for days 22-29!  I went with intermittent fasting and skipping breakfast(coffee only), adding some more pushups, and drinking gluten free beer on St Paddy's Day weekend.  Success!(actually a fail), Fail, and Fail is how that all went.

While I did follow the no breakfast for the 7 days, I noticed that I was still on the up side of my weekly weight( I measured Friday morning), so it caused me to overeat and add in nightly snacks that I wasn't eating as much before.  Then add on my Saturday of a few Gluten filled beers, burgers, and pizza and this week was on the wrong side.  Sunday I ate whatever I felt like and despite playing basketball for fitness, I still ate poorly, I was better on Monday as far as the items I ate, but still overate the healthy items.  So with all of that great stuff going on in my body, I'm sure you guessed it, I gained weight, from the scales perspective, I went back to the 228 mark, so an overall 4 pound gain from the previous Tuesday.

So I made 3 goals to get back to when I felt best the previous week.  1 goal was to eat Breakfast each morning.  I put down bacon and eggs, but any paleo filled breakfast should do the trick.  I also wanted to include my 25 pushups again, since I'm not doing any weight work, I need to have some push and pull exercise besides my dog pulling my arm off while we "walk".  Lastly, I decided that I was getting to dependent on coffee, so a 7 day hiatus was the ticket.  I started Tuesday expecting to be tired and have a headache, well only 1 happened and I was in bed immediately after I ate my dinner.  So I am changing my coffee plans to at least mix it up this week, maybe some tea, a fruit and veggie smoothie, just not the same thing every morning before work.  

Here's to reaching goals and getting back on track, because like finance, fitness is all about behaviors, and here's to improving mine!

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Post 101-What Rich and Poor People Do With Tax Returns

Good Morning to the Millions and Millions of Readers out there, I always like to laugh in the morning!

I first want to congratulate myself for sticking with this and getting to my 101st post.  It was almost 3 years to the day since I started my first post.  I was not as consistent as I could have been, skipping 2011 entirely and a 6 month stretch in 2012-2013, but life and priorities happen, but I'm certainly glad I'm here today.  I just want to thank those who read or comment, I hope it has helped or made you think about finance and fitness along the way.

I think the post below is the question that everyone asks as I did in my first post, well the journey continues.

                      What do I need to do to get fit and wealthy?


TAXES-The Rich and the Poor

Let me first start by saying I don't know what the Rich or Poor do with the money they receive from a refund from there tax returns.  Here's a few things from friends and family that I have seen along the way(no judging....yet)

  • I'm buying a new big screen TV(I have seen more empty big screen boxes on my daily walks now than I have seen during black Friday/Christmas time)
  • Buying a new/different car(Chances are your refund isn't big enough for a new car, so they are putting some money down and financing the rest)
  • I'm not sure what I'm going to do, probably just save it(doesn't seem like a bad idea at all)
  • I'm paying down my debt(I'm sick of paying the regular payment for what feels like the rest of my life.)
I look at the first 2 and think a couple things.  One is you know what I paid the government this whole year and I deserve this money, I have been saving the whole year I deserve something nice.  Another part of me thinks that's got to be the stupidest thing you can do with your money right now!  You have been paying the government extra all year long not earning any interest or paying down any extra debt and what did you do with the money, you couldn't get it out of your hands fast enough.  It's called delayed gratification.  I'm sure you want a new phone, new TV, new computer, new car, trip to Vegas.

As you can see by the length of each rant, I'm not a huge fan of the first 2 bullet points.  What do I think about the last 2 bullet points?

One is that this person must be making the right choices they are getting a return and saving the money or at least trying to eliminate some of there debt.  This person must be rich or know about how to handle there money and will be rich one day.  Another part of me says this person only thinks they know what is going on, why are they getting a refund, they decided it was a good idea for the government to hold on to there money while they had credit card debt at 19%, a car loan of $500 month, and eating ramen noodles so they didn't go over there grocery budget, they might be as blind as the person buying the new car!  

While this rant was similar to the above, I think they are making "weatlhy" decisions in the end.  While in theory I do think that it is a poor decision to loan the government money at 0% return, I believe that most Americans including myself find it a struggle to save money, so even though we are giving the money to the government to hold on to, we know they are pretty reliable and will give us what we have saved and feel pretty good about ourselves.

So in the end if you are waiting on your tax refund or already spent it on a big screen TV, keep this post in mind on your decision today and for the future.  If you think I'm crazy here's a post over at Get Rich Slowly that has a couple ideas as well.  

Friday, March 7, 2014

Fitness Friday-Go Eat a Steak

So I promised myself and all the millions and millions of readers out there, that I would start a Fitness Friday post, well time flies and guess what it's FRIDAY, so throw out the diets, gym time you put in and make sure you are eating out at work today, grazing on the cupcakes and cookies and chocolate your co-worker brought in.  Well if we did all that I personally would have to change my plan to Fat Friday and I've already been on the 265 side, I like this side better.

So an update so far for the week on my Fitness Goals for the week.
  • Lose 3 lbs
  • Walk a total of 15 miles
  • Cook a Paleo/Gluten Free Dessert
  • Eat Paleo Dinner when going out March 8th
I usually don't like to include weight loss as one of my goals for the week, but I wanted to get a head start on my March goals and this is the head start i needed and I don't weigh myself daily so this is a tbd, this coming Tuesday.

I am on a good pace to walk 15 miles for the week, I'm currently standing at 9.29 miles on my after work walks and my usually long walks are on Saturday and Sunday.  

Cook a Paleo/Gluten Free Dessert.  My wife has requested the Coconut Cream Pie I did last time, but I want to mix it up.  I just bought Almond Flour(the most expensive thing in the world) so I want to try and include that in the mix, but I'm planning on probably doing this on Sunday with my extra time from not having a basketball game this week.

Eat Paleo when we go out for my wife's birthday on March 8th, time will tell.  Which should be fine,  I'm sticking to meat and veggies and my drinks will be wine, water, or tea.  My breakdown might be "helping the wife" with dessert.

Just a quick recap for the week so far, I happy to be working towards the Fitness Friday Goal.

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Fitness Goals-100 Days at a Time

A friend from high school which I used to play basketball with, commented recently that I don't talk about Fitness very much and mostly talk about Finance......truer words have never been spoken.  So here we go, Fitness Real Talk. 

Let me start out by saying I stopped(canceled membership) going to the gym June 2013, so 8 or 9 months ago, I then took the $54 I was paying in gym fees and put that toward buying Nike stock, the irony on this is simply priceless.  I stopped going to the gym for a number of reasons. 

  • I wasn't seeing results.  I was lifting heavier weights, but I'm not entering any Strongman competitions anytime soon, I want to be lean and fit circa 2000, just so I'm at least in this century at least.
  • Because of the results, I showed up less and less.  The gym was in my building and sure it was nice to go before work or during lunch, it was a process.
  • Summer was coming and I knew I wasn't going to be hitting the gym, I was going to be running and biking more than anything.
  • Angel, my dog.  I walk my dog every day, 2x a day, a quick 15-20 min walk in the morning and a 30-60 min walk when I get home.  So I was already getting my walking exercise and I could see results just from walking daily.
Good news as of October 2013 I was lightest(227lbs) I've been since probably when I graduated college.  This was all without working out during this time, just walking the dog and eating right, throw in a Sunday basketball game and call it a week.  

In October my parents came and I told myself I was going to ease up a little because I wanted to have a beer and whatever my parents were going to cook during this time, I was also easing back in butter and cheese(gluten free or grass-fed only, usually Kerrygold)  I was doing my best to stick with this and try to add items that were at least gluten free.  Since October-February I have been a roller coaster of eating, going completely rogue and eating what I wanted to strict Paleo for a week or gluten free additions.  I have included intermediate fasting to balance some of the heavy eating days. 

The fact remained I was all over the place with weight, going up a little more than I was going down, just happy to be under the 230 mark was a success.  I am able to walk daily usually 1-2 miles with my dog, so that has been the Winter Workout in a nutshell, throw in some Sunday basketball aka the only day I sweat throughout the week.  So thanks Angelita(my Siberian Husky).
If you live in the Midwest.......
I am a believer in Paleo and over the last 2 weeks have been working to get back to my Paleo ways, not as strict  as my 30 day Paleo challenge, but working my way back to that point.  I have started a 100 day transformation. Over this time period I am working on getting my diet and my fitness level at a constant level and where I feel like I need to be. 

As many have you have seen, taking a large time frame and attempting to be successful is one of the most difficult things in the world for many and definitely for myself.  So along the way I am creating goals along the way in 7 day increments.  For example Days 8-15 were adding a set of push ups each day to the week, making sure I reached my month long goal of reaching 42 miles walking for the month, and bringing my lunch every day to work.  I also created 2 items, 1 is my Duke notebook where I am open and honest of what I ate, what went well and what I didn't do so well.  The other is a calendar of those 100 days, only putting positive comments on each day, if I did the push ups, ate Paleo, walked extra, it's the Positive Only Calendar.  

As I'm putting words to computer I'm realizing my short term goals are great and I'm doing well with following and living up to those goals, doing my best to be held accountable.  What I failed to do was create an end goal and goals along the way to show my progress, if you want to reach a goal you have to have measuring points.  So I'm going to start listing out my goals below.  I'm also going to be dedicated to posting 1 Fitness blog a week to show my progress and what I've been working on throughout the week, It will be Fitness Friday post.  

End of March Goals
  • Lose 8 lbs which should put me right around 215 lbs
  • Walk a total of 60 miles(keep track on Nike app) this is Mon-Fri after work and all day Sat-Sun, morning walks will not count since it's 5:30 am and I'm lucky to know I'm wearing clothes to go outside
  • Add in 2 sets of (push ups, sit ups, body squats)
End of April Goals
  • Lose 8 lbs which should put me right around 207 lbs
  • Add in 2 weekly runs in place of the walks, still keeping a total of 60 miles for the month
  • An additional day of a sport per week( this could be an additional day of basketball, volleyball, flag football, anything to keep active)
100 Day Goals
  • Hit 199 lbs
  • Create a summer workout at the park/beach 2-3 days a week
  • Have a 80/20 Paleo program, which will include a list of items I tolerate(IE grass fed butter) with my Paleo standards
  • Complete 12 Fitness Friday Blog Posts

Around this time I was right around the 240 mark, plus or minus 2 pounds.  I had definitely dropped from being my 265 when I was in Florida and switched to cutting out the evil sugar from my diet, but gained a solid 10 lbs since being in Chicago and eating hot-dog's and drinking beers. I took the summer off to walking daily and occasionally running and biking and playing basketball on Sunday, results were not there.  Although neither was my focus, I think in my head I thought if I do these things the pounds will come off.  My eating was "normal", I wasn't eating fast food every day, but I also wasn't shying away from eating how I wanted either. 

Fast forward to September.  I read and listen to alot of informational items, mostly about money and health and fitness.  After listening to Robb Wolf and his podcasts, Fat Burning Man, I finally got off my arse and did a 30 day Paleo Challenge.  To my surprise it was easy and I really liked the principals behind it.  Eat meat, veggies, and fruit, I was able to lose 10-15lbs and my Achilles pain that I was waking up with every morning(I was walking around like I was 60) went away.  Pretty great intro to eating Paleo and feeling great, I had thoughts and hopes of getting down to 185-190, about what I was in high school during basketball season.  Of course this was when I'd eat Burger King before a late basketball practice and just run it off during practice.  That doesn't exactly happen, It's 9-5 and cook and clean and walk the dog and watch some TV to finish up the night.

So I have issued a challenge to myself and to anyone who reads this, tell me what you are doing to avoid that winter weight, what do you do when your work out?  

I want to get a kettle bell to add some weights into my workout, have any thoughts on this?  What's your goals, does weight or fitness matter? 

Are you the same as you were in high school or college or whenever you were your fittest?

Sunday, February 23, 2014

You Can't be Financially Independent in Debt

So I was thinking the other day how fast I would be able to pay off my debt . I knew that the only way I'd be able to be financially independent is that I paid off each and every loan it's not something I'm proud of but I am in debt and the only way that I'm coming out of it is by hard work and making each and every payment till they're gone.

I have a student loan that's with Discover(bought from Citibank aka the Satan of banks) and this loan is keeping me from being $250 closer to financial independence . The loan is $250 a month that means that every single f****** month, I have to pay the bill they charge me interest,they even send me a statement and I open it and read over the numbers and usually it's depressing.

As previously mentioned this is my old Citibank student loan, I used this for extra money to go to the university of Syracuse, because I wanted to study abroad. This is my pain for living in small mansion in London, getting on a plane to go see how many countries, spring break in Spain, this is a private tuition to Syracuse this is even get in including a $5000 scholarship that barely even put a dent in it. But it's not a that I didn't have a great experience or meet some great people, this is the extra holding me back of getting rid of debt, I am to $250 month closer to never having to pay a single payment ever again to Discover/Citibank, what a powerful statement, what a great feeling. Who knew that paying off debt or the anticipation of paying off debt would be so exciting, must be because I am that closer to financial independence.

I think about my money all time whether it's my job salary, investments, paying off loans, credit cards, cash, I really do think about it all the time. I think you have to, I believe if you want to excel at something you have to obsess over it, always be working towards your goal. If you have read the blog over time you have seen that consistency is one of the things I struggle with and my strategy of defeating this is not making this a marathon, but making each part of my life a sprint and then relax. During that sprint, I'm intense I have a goal, I have a destination that I am climbing towards. You have to want it, simple as that. I go through phases with music and listening to different items, well a while back I couldn't' get enough of motivation videos, they are great for when you are pursuing something and you want a boost.

I think that's where I'm at, I really think that I'm come to the point where I I'll do whatever it takes to get rid of debt and get closer to financial independence, closer to Warren Buffett and that's why I write about this stuff Finance Fitness and Dreams.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Why I hate Mr Money Mustache Part II Cable and Internet Edition

Here's the latest Why I hate Mr Money Mustache Series.  Disclaimer I don't hate anyone, I'm jealous in a couple ways, but I also am not a Mustachian.......Here you Go 

I always read Financial Bloggers alike and many people for that matter scream to the heavens, STOP WATCHING TV, cut your cable cord and save money.    They will then go on to talk about how they stopped spending so much money and in Mr Money Mustache's case "Cut your Cash-Leaking Umbilical Cord". 

Well Guess What?  I want to watch TV!  I want to watch sports, NFL, College Basketball, and any other show that I want to see right this minute!  There I said it, I think the reasoning is completely logic.  Here's goes: 

For example let's say you spend $50 month on the Internet for example, maybe $9/month for Netflix and another $9 for HuluPlus, i don't know, humor me for one second.  So there you are spending $68 for "Cutting the Cord"  Congratulations to ummm saving money? 

Don't get me wrong if you are able to get rid of TV and Wait for It......The Internet then good work, you are Frugal beyond your years and can put that $68 in a monthly account and make 10K in 20 years(no calculations actually done).  But every time I read an article about saving money on Cable TV it still involves the Internet.  So I skoff(not spell checking this word).   

I do think there are many out there spending too much for cable and Internet.  If you are spending $200/month and you are not getting paid to be Movie critic on the Internet, I think you have a cable and Internet problem. However if you are paying the small amounts of $40 or $60 month to have the luxury of watching the Green Bay Packers on Monday Night Football then this seems reasonable.   



The goal like with Cell Phones and my favorite Republic Wireless and for many across the board is to save as much money while still getting the highest quality product possible.  So I skoff(yep one more time for good measure) at the idea of cutting Cable TV, because most of the time it's not really true anyway and you are using the Internet to stream TV.  Like every purchase, it's important to do the research and get the most for your money.  $480/year is a lot of money to many people and don't get suckered into that $70/month $840 year after the 12 months are up, look for a deal with other providers, reach out to the customer service and get that bill lowered.  Just Remember It's OK to have Cable and the Internet which most seem to lull over. 


We made a decision to cancel our DirecTV service and go with the above mentioned Internet Plus option through Comcast, we are fairly new into the conversion, so I want to do a separate blog post explaining the cost breakdowns and if it actually works for us.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

I'm a Credit Card Hypocrite

Credit Card Hypocrite

The other day my wife and I were shopping for a new laptop, she changed jobs and were without a computer for the house, unless you include "my computer" which my wife purchased around 2006, it has no battery so it must be plugged in at all times, cannot download pretty much anything because of a certain error message about running a program that from a drive, and heavens forbid you X out of something, it could be another 15 minutes before you are able to get back on, and did I mention you also cannot restart the computer or shut it off without unplugging it.  Oh yeah it's a Peach!  But I digress........ 

We did our research on computers before hand and had maximum budget before taxes, she knew pretty much what she wanted between 1 or 2 computers, it really came down to the size of the screen, which was a difference of $200.  Because my wife and I keep our separate accounts and one joint account for items we equally contribute for ie mortgage, food, utilities, etc  this purchase was all her, I can deal with the Peach listed above.  I like any loving husband gave my wife advice on the purchase as we were doing the research together.  I said and I quote "I would put the purchase on a credit card you might as well get the miles/cash bonus for a purchase you plan to make anyway"  HYPOCRITE!  Now I haven't used a credit card for I believe about 2 years ago to make a large purchase of Airline tickets.  I am credit card debt free and I have been the anti-credit card guy since then.  So why am I giving advice to use a credit card? 

It all starts with what I can control and what I cannot control.  My wife is smarter than I am and I can't make her not use a credit card, I can do my best to influence her and provide her as much information on why you shouldn't use a credit card.  Dave Ramsey for example mentions a study that says credit card use at McDonald's found that people spend 47% more when using credit cards instead of cash (  Now I believe the difference is we are not making a random purchase, this is a planned purchase with an expected amount that we have in cash available for this purchase.  So my turning point would be I believe if you are making a large planned purchase, cash available in your checking account, it is not against the rules(Finance and Fitness Dreams Rules).  If you are able to get an extra $10(1% of $1000) for this purchase.  This makes the assumptions that you will pay the bill in full and on time, which definitely factors into the decision.  There is many factors that need to be considered, but as I have mentioned previously I am not going to use a credit card to make purchases, now or in the future, I have loan debt to pay off and I do not feel comfortable putting any amount of money on my own personal credit card. 

My advice for my wife is slowly progressing to putting ALL purchases on the debit/checking, but like any habit, one of the hardest things to do is stop doing it "cold turkey" so we are working on a process of gradual reduction.  My wife has been in the habit of grabbing whatever card is in her wallet, debit or credit and making a purchase.  We have slowly progressed to using 1 credit card only to make purchases, then using that 1 credit card to make only business expenses.  She has since changed jobs and no longer needs to make purchases on the credit card for business expenses.  After January 2014 is over in theory there should be zero purchases on the credit card and only debit purchases.  Because we tend to travel a credit card purchase will be in the mix in the form of airline tickets, car rental, hotel, etc and I think it is in our best interest.  I will pay cash directly to my wife when these purchases are made.  It's not a credit card free life, but it is certainly still heading in that direction while we work our way to Financial Independence, 

6 years 4 months and counting..................... 

Monday, January 20, 2014

Finance=Fitness Lose Weight=Savings, etc

The name of the blog much like most of my posts here are Finance and Fitness Dreams, I think there are so many different correlations to each other, that it deserved a special post to compare a little.  I will be the first to tell you I struggle with both Finance and Fitness, I'm not 600 lbs or filing bankruptcy, but I struggle to not eat an entire bag of chocolate covered pretzels or rack up credit card debt and I think these are highly correlated.

Let's start with a couple things that always pop up when talking about Fitness or Finance.  He's born with great genetics, that's why he has a 6 pack or the finance equivalent they were born into that money, these are the same thing just different worlds.  The real question is ok that's true you don't have great genetics, your family didn't hand you a trust fund on your 18th birthday, so WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO DO ABOUT IT?

There are so many cases of people getting in better shape and increasing there net worth, so I believe these go hand in hand, here's a couple that Finance and Fitness terms that do that:

Money/Job=Healthy Food You Eat
Credit Cards=Junk Food or Carbs
Good Debt=100 Calorie Snack Packs
Retiring Early=Crossfit or Explosive Movement Exercise
Side Income=Going for that Extra Gym Session Saturday Morning
Investing in Index Funds=Walking

I'm sure there is 100's more, this was my brainstorm of Finance=Fitness, maybe you can come up with your own and we can get a huge list going or at least bigger list!

So many things have gone the other direction for Finance and Fitness in America and even all over the world, being in debt and overweight is the new "normal"  What are you doing to break out from this, I mean what am I doing?  I'm on a budget, I walk every day, I stay away from Credit Cards, I keep to a Paleo or Paleo Lite eating pattern, I practice what I preach.  Do I fail?  Every day, but if you move on from that daily failure, you can make the next day a success.  I ate chocolate covered pretzels yesterday(a lot of them), does that mean I'm ditching my Paleo Lite(90% Paleo, 10% Organic/Gluten Free), h-e-l-l no(said with attitude, neck cocked, possible finger wave), it means I'm going to do my best possible to eat right today and just as important as that is what went wrong yesterday so I can fix  this.  Because you know the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and expecting different results.  I know that yesterday my breakfast was very light, so I had a snack early, which left my lunch very small.  That means today a couple things are changing, I went with a heavier lunch, of more meats and vegetables, not just the small sandwich I ate yesterday.  I will not be going to CVS/Walgreen's to pick up some more junk snacks.  Is there other solutions, h-e-l-l YES(just shouting this time), I could have not waited till my 3rd alarm and then slept 20 extra minutes and ate a real breakfast, eggs and bacon.  Today was not that day, so we moved to another option, I was prepared in some way.

Be prepared. if it's one thing that's important about Finance and Fitness it's being prepared, if you are not prepared to make a major purchase you might resort to using a credit card or not have a good lunch and your eating chocolate pretzels and looking like this guy.

I mean if you really think about Jared could be the spokes model, yeah Jared's a model for Finance and Fitness.  What this guy do he got in shape, ate right to lose weight, does some exercise and boom has a net worth of 15mm(here's an article that says so  I of course prefer David Beckham and Warren Buffett(Mark Cuban rejected my offer, just kidding sorda).

I am also a big believer in "Laser Focus"  If you want to do anything to the best of your ability, you need to dedicate 100% of your energy if not you will not get the best possible results.  A simple way to think about this is try eating a healthy snack while doing a bench press, pretty tough to lift those 200lbs when you have an apple in your mouth.  I know that sounds a little ridiculous, but so is expecting the best results without dedicating yourself.  In previous posts I have mentioned that I Sprint and Relax, because otherwise I end up cheating a little on both.  For me I have 2 focuses currently and that's why I believe I ate a bag of chocolate pretzels yesterday, I wasn't laser focus on my fitness goals.  I have went from my Paleo challenge all the way down to Paleo Lite, I still have the ultimate goal of losing 14.8 lbs(down 2.2 lbs), but I'm not going to get there unless I change my habits Now.  I listen to a Dave Ramsey podcast every morning, as a friend from work says, he reminds you to save every day and I let him know yep I need that reminder.  It's the same for Paleo and Fitness, apparently I need an every day reminder.

Yes Finance does equal Fitness, neither one is easy, neither one is difficult on a numbers level spend less than you earn and eat less than you burn, seems simple enough.  It's not otherwise everyone would be wearing one of these shirts(abs in cutoff shirt and sweater tied over your shirt equals rich in my crazy mind).  So I guess what I'm saying is when I've made it to where I want to be I'll be wearing a cutoff belly shirt with a sweater tied over my shoulders............I can dream, Finance and Fitness Dreams.

Sunday, January 5, 2014

How We Are Cutting Costs on Our Cell Phone and You Can To......Republic Wireless Review

So it finally happened, I got fed up with paying over $200 to have a cell phone.  Sounds crazy but so many people out there are doing the same thing whether it's with Verizon, At&t, T-mobile, or US Cellular. 

One sunny day I was looking at my bills and realized there wasn't a huge amount I could change, my mortgage payment's staying the same, my student loan payment is fixed, what really can I cut?  Then it hit me, I am personally paying $80 every month to be able call a few people, send a boatload of texts, and search the Internet on my train ride home.  $80, that's $960 year, that's almost a $1000, that's crazy.  Doing some calculations on  if you would invest $80 monthly into the stock market and received a 8% return, you would have 119K!!!  You can't buy a Rolls Royce Phantom with this money but at least a huge down payment!  Who am I kidding we wouldn't buy this car, but you see what i'm talking about now.  I didn't want to give up my cellphone, so I needed a solution.

I decided to check out some personal finance blogs(tons of great info out there) and came across a really interesting concept with phones which made a lot of sense to me.  The idea is to use Wi-Fi as much as possible when making phone calls, sending text messages, and checking the Internet.  If for any reason you are unable to connect to those it goes through the Sprint network.  I liked the concept and I liked the price even better.  Here's a Republic Wireless Price Plans below:
                                 Republic Wireless

For me there was a ton of Pros and a few Cons.


  • New Moto X Phone for $300, less than retail price
  • Monthly Plan similar to mine, except $50 less month
  • No 2 year Contract
  • Quality of Service
  • Initial Expense of phone and only 1 phone option

I did the math and came to the conclusion that after 6 months I would break even and save $300 in the first year alone and as much as $465 if I went to the $10 Cell and Talk plan. I'm not even taking into account that if I stayed with Verizon I would have bought a new Iphone 5S which starts at $199.99, if you take that into account I would be ahead after 3 months and saving money, like I'm sort of rich rapper guy throwing dollars everywhere. Here's the breakdown:

MonthVerizon WirelessRepublic Wireless $25 PlanSavingsRepublic Wireless $10 PlanSavings

I bought the phone and took the plunge. Here's my review over the past 2 months of owning the new Moto X and joining Republic Wireless.(P.S. this link saves you even more if you join)

I purchased the phone online and used a promo code, similar to the link above and received the phone less than a week later in a Republic Wireless box with a shiny new Moto X inside.  Starting service could not have been easier, a few clicks and an email address here and there(Moto X is a Google Phone so having a Gmail account makes everything go smoothly).  I wanted to test it out since you have 30 days to return the phone, so I kept my Iphone and Verizon during this time, also because RW assigns you a phone number(you can change to your old number with a couple clicks as well) based on your area.  I had a couple small issues and huge pros alike, check out what I went through shown below:

Small Issues

  • I couldn't receive text messages from Iphone users because my imessages was still turned and my phone number was still registered as an Iphone user so all messages were trying to go to my new Moto X phone and would reject.  I actually blame this on Apple more than RW but it was an issue for about a week until this was eventually fixed
  • Sending picture messages in the first week or two was either extremely delayed like a day or two or the user did not receive them at all.
  • Overall voice/service quality is lower than my original Verizon phone.  My wife probably notices it more than I do, I would say if Verizon is a 10 for service, RW has been an 8 for me.
Huge Pros

  • Moto X phone is amazing!  I have been so impressed with the apps being just as good and in some cases better than Apple.  The Google Voice recognition(similar to Siri) is great, I couldn't be happier. The screen size, resolution, and camera are better in every aspect.
  • My bill since I have started has amounted to a total of $22.05, with a $12.25 bill coming.  I started with the 3G plan and it worked well, I switched about 2 weeks ago to the $10 Cell and Text plan and haven't missed a beat along the way.
  • Everything being connected to Google has been great, from Google Hangouts, Play Store, Gmail, the previously mentioned Google Voice, just great, much more friendly than every Apple product and Cloud system I have ever used.

Overall I have really enjoyed owning my new Moto X and being apart of Republic Wireless, it is a great way to save money and not to sign a contract for 2 years and pay $100 month to own a phone.  I highly recommend Republic Wireless, I have gone through the first 2 months of RW releasing the Moto X and it has been great.

 If you want to cut your cell phone bill and make the switch make sure to use this link to save an additional $19 by using this referral link or clicking on this Republic Wireless hyperlink.  Any questions or concerns, let me know and I can tell you first hand!