Friday, February 1, 2013

January goals review

Yikes.  Where did January go?   Time to do a progress check on my 2013 goals.  Here's how it's all going down so far:

Save $65,000
I'm a little behind on this one, $200 so far.  I pulled a little money out of savings to add to my regular investment money in order to max out my traditional IRA, so I did that and then converted it to a Roth the following day.  I'm shoring up my savings again, but so far I'm $200 behind.

Why am I behind?  Well, I spent money that I didn't need to spend, and I had a great time doing it.  My s.o. (let's call him A) and I have thoroughly enjoyed Restaurant Week in New York and went to a few places we've been wanting to try.  In addition, I lost weight and bought new clothes, but some will need to be returned (being short and finding jeans that don't drag on the floor, aren't mom jeans, and don't create horrific buttcrack is a real problem!) so I might recoup the $200 before too long.

I should add that the increase in payroll tax has reduced my net income by close to $200, which is slightly offset by the increase in pretax withholding for commuting expenses.  I really don't like the idea of reducing my goal to accommodate this change, since I know I have plenty of discretionary spending that I could cut.  I'll keep the savings target as it is for now, but perhaps revisit it in a few months.

Create a revocable living trust
I got this rolling, so it's in progress.  At the moment, I need my co-op attorney to detail out the building's requirements for the trust, and then my estate attorney will put it together.  The co-op attorney is on vacation for another week, so hopefully I'll get the document finalized by the end of February.  It'll probably take the rest of the year to move all my assets into it, especially since I need a new proprietary lease issued by the co-op board in the name of the trust.

Save for periodic expenses in advance
Uh. . . . haven't done this yet (see the part about going shopping!).  This is where my tax refund will be going, though.

Don't buy any work dresses
Technically I've succeeded on this one so far because I haven't bought any work dresses, but I think that's because the goal itself is too narrow.  I missed this month's savings goal because I bought jeans, pants, and workout clothes. . . lots and lots of workout clothes.  I might redefine this goal next month to expand it beyond work dresses because even though I'm following the letter of the goal, I'm absolutely finding ways around it.

Lose eight pounds in January, and four thereafter
Revised this goal from twelve pounds to lose to seventeen (sob).  It was worse than I thought!  That said, I've dropped thirteen pounds so far.  I'm sure at least three to five were water weight, so I'm not concerned about how fast I've done it.  Four left to go, and I am feeling better in every way.

A new sub-goal to come out of this is the revival of the Sugar Challenge.  A little background:  I have a serious sugar jones and no ability to exercise any sort of self-control or moderation with it.  A few years ago, I went a full year without eating any sweets and almost no processed sugar.  After an excruciating six weeks of withdrawl symptoms, I started feeling better and  it made a huge difference in my energy level, blood sugar stability, ability to maintain my weight, and overall well-being.  After a little over a year, I tried a cookie to see if I'd finally kicked my sugar demon, and it was like the whole prior year had never taken place:  I quickly spiraled out of control and couldn't regain it.

For some reason, in the first week of January this year, I managed to go through a few days without processed sugar without any cravings.  I decided to try a few more days, and then a few more . . . and now it's been just under a month and I still don't have any cravings.  It seems to make sense to keep going, at least for the remainder of the year.

Work from home twice weekly
I'm doing pretty well on this one:  I'm holding to two days per week at home, and most nights I'm actually getting to bed by 10 or 10:30.  Along with the weight loss, the extra sleep is making me feel much, much better.

Run three marathons
The first one (Boston) comes up in 10 1/2 weeks, and the second is three weeks later.  I've put in my first twenty-mile run of the season, and although I still have lingering injury pain (which can last up to two years with this type of injury), I'm running strong and getting faster.  I'm taking a speed class once a week, and that's motivating me to really push myself.

All in all, it's not a bad start.  How are your goals going?

By the way, I received a request from a longtime reader to remove the captcha feature on comments because it's creating difficulty for her in commenting.  I did and immediately got spam-bombed, so I've put it back on.  I'll look at alternative commenting systems when I get a chance (I know intensedebate is a popular one), but I appreciate your patience in the meantime!


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