Challenge Mash-Up Results

Well, two out of three ain’t bad. I had three challenges for the month of February and I met two of them. I didn’t meet my goal of eating on only $30 for the month. My total for the month is probably about $60. I still believe that one can eat reasonably well on $30 for a month but I don’t have the necessary self discipline to do it right now.

On the positive side I did meet the goals of tracking all my expenses and exercising regularly. Tracking all my expenses wasn’t really difficult because I usually do that anyway. Exercising regularly is not a normal habit for me so I felt like it was an accomplishment to stick to my exercise schedule for the month.

Where do I go from here? I will continue to keep track of all my expenses. BFL is a twelve week program and I’m counting February as the first 4 weeks. For the rest of the BFL program I will follow the BFL eating program as well. Despite eating lots of junk food I still managed to lose 5 pounds for the month. Now that the weather is getting nicer I plan to increase my running. With the increased exercise and better eating I should be able to improve my results. I’ll make occassional posts updating my progress. I will post the details of my spending tomorrow.

Challenge Preparations

I went shopping yesterday and bought the following items as part of plan to eat on only $30 for the month of February. The price by each item is an approximate price, the total price is the actual money spent.

  • 5 packages Oatmeal (18 oz.) $2.00
  • 1 loaf white bread $0.65
  • 1 jar peanut butter (18 oz.) $1.29
  • 1 jar grape jelly $1.00
  • 12 cans of corn $4.00
  • 8 bananas $0.80
  • 1 box pancake mix $1.00
  • 1 bottle syrup $1.00
  • 1 package margarine $0.50
  • 1 package mac & cheese $0.30
  • 10 packages ramen $1.00

My actual total amount spent is $14.34. I got a really good deal on the oatmeal. They were on sale for $1.00 each and I had coupon for $3.00 off any 5 Quaker products. This gives me a month of breakfasts for just over $2.00.

I’ve already spent over half my budget but I think I have more than a half month’s of food. The ramen and white bread are not the healthiest choices but they are cheap. I won’t be buying any more ramen. I might buy wheat bread next time but it is about double the price if you get actual whole wheat bread. I’ll be posting my meals daily if you want to see what my meals are.

One Month Challenge Mash-Up

I have been lazy and lacking self-discipline lately and I have decided that it is time to change. I have set several goals or challenges for myself to accomplish in February. The resulting challenge takes some of Steve Pavlina’s 30 days to success, The Simple Dollar’s One Month Challenge, Maggie Wang’s Cheapass Challenge, and the idea of Hungry For a Month and mashes them up.

For the Simple Dollar‘s One Month Challenge I need to keep track of everything I spend in February and ask myself whether it was neccessary or not. This shouldn’t be a problem for me because I already keep track of all my expenses. To make it more challenging I am going to try to keep my expense total as small as possible.

The idea of Hungry For a Month is to spend only $30 on food for an entire month. I have already purchased some items but they will be coming off my $30 total. Ketchup, mustard, salt, etc. will not count against the total because they are freely available to most persons. There is an opportunity to get free pizza or other meals at my school fairly often but I won’t be eating them because I don’t think the average person has these free meals available.

From Maggie Wang‘s Cheapass Challenge I will be doing the exercises from Body-For-Life. I can’t incorporate the food portion of the challenge due to my $30 limit. I am going to try to eat as healthy as possible within that limit. There will be at least one serving each of fruit and vegetables in my daily diet. That might not sound like much but it is better than I eat now.

The idea of Steve Pavlina’s 30 days to success is that you can establish a new habit in 30 days. While I don’t want to make eating on $30 a month a habit I can make eating less a habit. Exercising regularly is another habit I want to establish.

That is the basics of my one month challenge mash-up. I’d like to hear any ideas people have on how to meet this challenge. Any ideas on how to eat healthy and cheap would be especially appreciated.