Seeing as it’s about 3 months into my NY resolution of getting rid of my debt, I did what most resolutioners do and resort back to their old ways… almost.  I am not even going to lie when I say that I’ve been having some “petulant child” moments that are pretty embarrassing to admit, but I will since 1) this blog is still quasi-anonymous, 2) I’m fairly honest, and 3) I embarrass myself on a daily basis so I’m just meeting today’s quota.

One example is reading on more than one occasion to be sure to celebrate little milestones when trying to reach your goals.  Seeing as I got rid of 30% of my debt, my justification habits went on overdrive and thought, “I should sign up for a half-marathon!”, convincing myself it was “only” $100 (actually $125, seriously, how do these organizers sleep at night?!), it was good for my health, I can be part of the cool kid club with my runner group, etc.

Another example is I took cantaloupe’s advice and posted all of my stuff on Ebay or donated them all at once, instead of letting them go bit by bit.  I do admit, it felt kind of awesome to let it go in the sense that it’s out there ready for the taking.  But then, people started inquiring about this thing and that thing, and I got a bit panicky, initially thinking “I should take the bid back, I could use it this summer” or “I’ll just apologize and say I posted it in error.”

So what did I do?  I thought to myself WWPFBD (What Would Personal Finance Bloggers Do?) and resolved to stick to the straight and narrow by foregoing the race sign-up and answering potential buyer’s questions (with clenched teeth… er, clenched fingers?… but answered them nonetheless).  And pretty much told my inner petulant child to STFU (um, just Google if you don’t know that acronym).

I know this sounds fairly childish considering my age, but it really was (is) a bit challenging to extract the emotion out of the rationality of getting rid of debt and things.  Mostly because I’m a marketer’s dream since I’m such a sucker for ads and pretty things – I mean, I’m the type that goes into Nordstrom’s and Willy Wonka’s “Pure Imagination” plays in my head. 😉  But, I’m slowly learning to detach myself from things and possessions, as well as accumulating them.  Rationally, I know that they’re just quick fixes, and getting out of debt and building wealth will be more gratifying in the long run.

And, besides, it’s been less than 3 months.  I don’t want to be like those resolutioners who give up going to the gym… I’d much rather be on the side of the habitual gym goers who are there almost every day, and have the results to prove it.  So, I’ve picked the side I’d like to be on.


28 thoughts on “WWPFBD?

  1. If you have all the gear and it will really only be about $125, I say go for it. You have paid off 30% which is great! You have to celebrate sometimes. It sounds like you are doing the right thing….cutting things out that you don’t love and spending money on what you do. And there are MUCH worse things you can spend $125 on than a half marathon!

    • Ooh, you temptress, you 😉 I do agree with celebrating, but I know me, it could be a slippery slope where I celebrate the littlest things and don’t pay down my debt as aggressively as I’d like. If by Fall I’m done with my debt, then I’ll celebrate with a race – it could be more satisfying that way, anyway 🙂

      • yeah, if you think you can’t stop there and it’s not just something to celebrate for all your hard work, then wait. There will be more races and think of what interest you will save. I do agree with Johnny Moneyseed, that it is a lot of money to spend on ‘running’. But, I also have friends who are runners and something about the race offers them a lot of happiness! Celebrate small and as you pay off more debt, celebrate big! I’m really wanting to go out for a treat right now– so to prevent that from happening, I just dropped a little more on my debt! It is such a slippery slope, paying off debt and knowing when to treat yourself.

      • That’s awesome about paying down more debt – congrats!! Yeah, races are so addicting – the energy is pretty cool on race day! But, there will be plenty more, so I just gotta keep that urge in check.

  2. I disagree with the above commenter, $125 is a lot of money that could instead go towards your debt. I agree with rewarding yourself but maybe you can find a cheaper way to do that. Good job on your new “WWPFBD mindset.”

    • Like… a Nothing Bundt Cake?? 😉 The $125 is the second tier pricing since I missed early registration… that’s what I used to pay for a full race! It’s crazy what they charge now.

  3. Anna, thanks for getting yet another song stuck in my head.. 🙂

    $125 is a ridiculous price to “go running”. You could just go run on your own for free? I understand the importance of the actual road races though, even if you know you’re not going to win.

    Ask people to contribute. And donate any excess money to a charity. People eat that stuff up!

    • Haha, that song plays all the time in my head at the bakery… malls… shoe stores… just everywhere. 🙂 I agree $125 is ridiculous – that’s almost $10/mile, and it’s a crowded race at that. I really like the actual race day energy, but think I’ll appreciate it better once I know it won’t detract me from my debt goal. That’s a great idea about people contributing!

    • I have to agree, lol. My sister in law (love her) pays ridiculous prices to be a part of various races and runs. I don’t get it. Just go running by yourself. Aside from the cost of running shoes, running should be free!

      • Haha, I agree – I think I like the energy of it… it’s like a concert where everyone is excited, has crazy energy, and there for the same reason. Plus, I’ll admit, I like the street cred of it (amongst my running nerd friends at least :))

  4. It’s good that you stuck to your original plan, but I don’t think the half marathon thing is that bad. Like you said it’s good for your health and it’s your passion. I’ve been telling myself to do a half marathon for the last 3 years and I didn’t even run a single mile. That’s worse~

    • I know, once I get into the “at least it’s a good habit’ mentality, then I wane a bit. But, there’s plenty of races, a few months/this year of not doing it is not going to kill me. Maybe you can start with a 5k? They can get pretty addicting 🙂

      • My excuse for not running is that I’m not in California where the weather is gorgeous all the time~^^ But I do need to start working out. My body aches all the time!

  5. Does the fee for the race go to some charity? Because if it does, then that’s not so bad and if it doesn’t then WGAF because running makes you happy 🙂
    I don’t know if that’s a real acronym, but I wanted to be a polite lady and not type out the whole sentence lol

    • Lol I had to Google what that meant – ya crazy kids and your slang 😉 It does go to a charity, but not one I’m particularly fond of since they’ve had some bad press. I think I’ll resist the urge for now, but hopefully by Fall I’ll be done and can sign up with more peace of mind.

  6. I also fell off the resolution bandwagon this month (year long shopping ban). But, like you, have decided to pick myself up, dust myself off, and keep on truckin (enough cliches in there? lol). Little slips shouldn’t mean we give up, just gotta try harder 🙂 Good luck!

  7. It really takes resolve to not sign up for a race that your friends are signing up for. My super in debt coworker just organized a group to do Tough Mudder. I’ve done it before, and it was a good time, but it’s $145!!! Why is my in debt friend even doing it? But I feel like I have to sign up because the whole team is doing it. Also, I’m in better shape than the rest of the team, so my ego wants me to show them up, haha.

    • Oh Fun – I’ve ran Camp Pendleton Mud Run a couple of times in a group and absolutely loved it. Tough Mudder looks way harder and it seems to be the same price, but both are for such a good cause. Haha, do us PF’ers proud and rock it at the race! 🙂

  8. LOL, I’ve often passed on a purchase because I’ve thought that same thing, WWPFBD. Most of the time it wins, but sometimes it doesn’t. I don’t know how much 1/2 marathons usually cost, but I know something like a 10k is a lot cheaper. Perhaps split the difference? I’m in the middle ground as far as spending versus saving. I really think about purchases a lot more now, but I’m not going to forgo every single thing in life just to save save save. Life is too short.

    • That’s funny, that’s one thing I am “frugal” in – it’s hard for me to justify spending money on a 5k or 10k, unless it’s for a cause or something. I agree life is too short and there’s no way I’m giving up races, just for a year or at least until Fall. Maybe by then you’ll heal and we can do the same one! 🙂

  9. LOL, that song probably plays in my head when I walk into Barnes and Noble or Target 🙂 Bad for the pocketbook!

    I like your acronym of WWPFBD. I kinda think along those lines when an impulse purchase wants to make it’s way into my hands. Sometimes, it’s easy to put the item back. Other times, it’s a bit more difficult.

    • I feel totally the same way about Target – I go in there for a bottle of detergent and come out with $50 worth of stuff! Haha, maybe I’ll make one of those plastic wristbands with WWPFBD on it to remind me people are watching. 🙂

  10. I’d probably skip the race for now and save up for another race to celebrate more debt paydown, but I sometimes give in to myself as a “treat”, so choose what makes the most sense to you. I really need to set an excessive goal. “Eating better” alone isn’t going to work for me at this point.

    • I agree with you – I think by Fall I should be debt-free, so I’ll just go for a race then. I hear ya about eating better – I think for me metrics work (i.e., two sweets a week, 3 veggies a day, etc.)… well, and that summer is just around the corner. 🙂

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