Monday, 6 November 2017

#71 Fitness. Week 45 - 2017

Here is my plan for this week, starting today 06-Nov.


MonTuesWedThurFriSatSun
Go to workWorking at homeGo to workWorking at homeWorking at homeAt homeAt home
small exercisebigsmall exercisebigsmall exercisebigsmall exercise
3 x 3 mins on the bag3 mins on the bag3 x 3 mins on the bag3 mins on the bag3 x 3 mins on the bag3 mins on the bag
1,2
1,2, RH / LH
1,2 RB, LB
30s jumping
in between
1,21,2
1,2, RH / LH
1,2 RB, LB
30s jumping
in between
1,21,2
1,2, RH / LH
1,2 RB, LB
30s jumping
in between
1,2
50s straight
arm hang.
50s straight
arm hang.
50s straight
arm hang.
50s straight
arm hang.
50s straight
arm hang.
50s straight
arm hang.
50s straight
arm hang.
0.5 mile run.bodyweight franBarbarahalf-murph

I will update on Sunday evening. 

#70 October Fitness Update

What goals did I hope to achieve this month and did I achieve them?

  1. Do 9 unbroken chin ups. Achieved.
  2. Hang straight arm on chin-up bar for 3 sets of 45s. Achieved. Changed to only 1 set.
  3. Set at least two times each week in October. Failed.
  4. Set a 1 mile post exercise benchmark. Achieved
  5. Do over 10 sets in Cindy. Failed.

Any lessons / thoughts?

I actually had a really strong start to the month but then fell off worse than before. I set a few PBs - see table below - but then for the final couple of weeks barely lifted a finger.

My expectation is that I'm saving up for big work-outs and doing nothing on the other days. This is needed and positive to have 'rest' days to allow muscles to fix and repair. But 1) I don't think I am necessarily pushing myself hard enough to require this and 2) it's making it hard to motivate myself back into it.

So... I am going to


  1. set a plan for myself to do at least something little each day and attempt to plan and stick to plans for each week.
  2. I am also going to try to think of a few interesting alternative exercises I could do, perhaps not in my garage?
  3. And I am planning on setting min-targets for these sessions. 
This will probably take up more time in planning - but hopefully that will give me the kick to actually see it through.


PBs.

Work-out
What is it?
PB
When PB Set
Max chin-ups without break
 10
*New* Oct 2017
Bodyweight Fran time
this is 21 then 15 then 9 set of both chin ups and burpees.
 11m 33s
Aug 2017
21,15,9 press-ups and burpees: 
this is 21 then 15 then 9 set of both press ups and burpees.
 4m 04s 
Sept 2017
Half Angie: 
this is 50 chin ups, 50 press ups, 50 sit ups and 50 squats
 13m 07s 
*New* Oct 2017
Post exercise 0.5 mile run 


3m 55s 
*New* Oct 2017
Half Murph

for time, 0.5 mile run, 50 pull ups, 100 press ups, 150 squats, 0.5 mile run
31m 26s
*New* Oct 2017
Cindy

As many sets in 20 mins; 5 pull ups, 10 push ups, 15 squats
10
*New* Oct 2017
Chin-up, straight arm hang


45s
*New* Oct 2017
Post exercise 1 mile run. 


9m 01s
*NE* Oct 2017

What are my goals for next month?

  1. Do something every day which is tracked.
  2. Create a plan for each week. 
  3. And stick to it.
  4. Move to weekly fitness updates rather than monthly to keep my engaged.
  5. Do a 1 mile run sub 9 minutes.
  6. Increase seconds I can hang for by 5 seconds per week.
  7. Find a new repeatable work-out I can do not in my garage.
  8. Find a new exercise I can add to my 'portfolio'.

Photo to hold me accountable.


June 6th 2017 vs Nov 1st 2017              

  


Wednesday, 1 November 2017

#69 October Finance Summary

THE BIG ONE IS HERE... we finally have more saved (excluding mortgages and pensions) than we owe!!!!! From being £25k down this feels great.

So, did we stick to the budget?

After last months brilliant achievement of sticking to the budget I was expecting a repeat this month.

However, we finally managed to book a weekend away with our group of friends for next April - which cost us just under £400 which in turn took us over our budget.

If no, why not?

Family weekend away booked with friends for next year.

Did we earn more than we spent?

Yes we certainly did. £661.18 - even with the holiday, largely because I had £500 in childcare vouchers which I managed to convert into cash.

Any positives / milestones?

  1. Would have been under budget if it wasn't for then holiday.
  2. Earnt more than we spent for the 6th consecutive month.
  3. and the biggest milestone so far having more liquid savings then debt.
  4. Our everyday credit card dropped to below £1k
  5. Our debt excluding mortgage dropped below £4k
  6. The amount we have invested in Worldwide Index Trackers increased past £1k
  7. Our net worth increased past £155k
Lessons / thoughts?

Lots of positive notes this month.

Not including this weekend away - or any holiday spending at all - in our budget is silly though so will need to update budget to cater for this as it is expected spending.

Effect on overall debt?

Student loan remains paid off :)
House loan remains paid off :)
Every day card balance is £939
0% Carpet loan balance is £1,584.68
HMRC debt - due 31/1/18 is £1,080.68
  
   
Total Debt  Exc Mortgage = £3,604.36








~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Wealth Accumulation

Summary:

Asset
Value
Increase
Pension Value
£20,298.50
0
XO Shares Account 
£65.12
-23p
Company Sharesave.
£1200
£100
Fidelity Global Index Tracker
£1,045.22
£130.63
Cash (Matched Betting Liquidity)Betfair
£1,541.47
£1,396.14
Cash (Emergency Savings)
£0
-£500
Cash (Annual Bills)
£116.01
£110



Total
£24,266.32
£1,236.54









~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Net Worth

£156,209.63

An increase of £2,243.85 since last month.




















Monday, 30 October 2017

#68 Check-in on 2017 Goals with 2 months of the year remaining

With two months to go until the end of the year I thought I'd review what my aims were for 2017 and check-in on progress and where I could do with a big push.

The goals were:

Financial:
  1. Pay off the remaining £7,628 of debt. 
    • This would be nearly complete now but we've added in a loan for new carpet for our new house and a HMRC underpayment. Currently outstanding debt is £4,011. We won't clean this off entirely but if we can remove the Credit Card debt and only have these two new entrants in it could be argued this is a success.
  2. Increase wealth excluding Pension to £3000
    • This should be achieved.
  3. Overpay on the mortgage by £600. Equivalent to £50 per month.
    • So far £0 has been added. I've prioritized #1 and #2 above in it's place. 
To do:
  1. Get a will for the family.
    • Complete.
  2. Complete one item from my bucket list
    • Completed. Currently own a house with an office, have over £1k in shares invested and was voted player of the season for my local football team.. all of which were on my bucket list.
Physical:
  1. Get weight to below 14st
    • I don't even own some scales. I have been doing my cross-fit though. Perhaps should check-in on this.
  2. Run 13.1k without stopping (half marathon distance)
    • Have been doing cross-fit. Have not got anywhere near this distance yet.

Friday, 27 October 2017

#67 Cars with three car seats

Different options.

SUV. Looks better. More expensive.

  1. Audi Q7. 2007, 60k miles, £14k
  2. Kia Sorento. 2014, 60k miles, £12k
  3. XC90. 2013. 60k miles. £18k

MPV. Cheaper. Far more sensible option.

  1. Citroen C4 Picasso. 5 seats. 2011, 60k miles, £5k
  2. Citroen C4 Grand Picasso. 7 seats. 2009, 60k miles £5k
  3. Ford S-Max. 5 seats. Can get 2009, 60k miles, for £7k
  4. Ford Galaxy. 7 seats. Can get 2008, 60k miles, for £7.5k

Dream car. 

  1. Tesla Model S. 2016. 15k miles. £40k.

If money was really no option I'd buy a Tesla. Love so much about them, but the electric cars are the future and driving around knowing it's barely costing a thing would be awesome. But money is a significant consideration so that is out.

If looks were more important than money I'd choose an SUV. But right now they are simply not and I would prefer to have additional funds in the bank.

So from the models I've been able to find out that comfortably offer 3 child seat spaces in the middle/2nd row it's down to Citroen or Ford.

We've currently got a Ford Focus, have had it for about 5 years and 60k miles upto the current 100k miles and it's been brilliant so would happily keep with Ford. Citroen's do come highly recommended by online reviews and appear - after a 10 minute check - to be slightly cheaper too :)

So how much do I think we can afford?

Or should that be - "how much will it cost and how will we pay for it?"...

From my research this afternoon I'm hoping to be able to buy a car for £5-7k at some point in Q1 2018 prior to the birth.

Options to pay for this are in order of preference

  1. Get paid a bonus by work and use that to buy the car with cash.
  2. No bonus from work, have saved up a medium amount and take out a car loan.
  3. No bonus from work, haven't saved up a penny and need to take out a significant loan.

Priority is to first have enough money to pay off my HMRC loan - which we pretty much do now - will confirm on the 1st November with finance review. But then having some money put aside for emergency savings and starting to build a car fund seem to be of similar importance!

Let's hope for a bonus which can be put into the car and prevent me having to take on any additional debt!!!



Thursday, 26 October 2017

#66 Job Role Opportunity

Following on from the swift news of our impending (well in seven months) family addition I've been tentatively offered a new role within my company.

The good news first.


  • Although it's a move into another department it's effectively a promotion diagonally.
    • I'd be line manager for a number of very good people - exact number to be confirmed
    • Would be the focal point for a large proportion of my company
    • Would be accountable for the Product rather than just responsible for managing Projects
  • I know my manager pretty well and I know the team I'd be working with


I think in 12 months I'd learn an absolute heap of skills and experience.

The interesting / bad news.


  • It would be based out of our software development centre in Porto, Portugal. I'd be effectively commuting to Porto instead of the London.
    • I currently do this 2/3 times a week already. I would be WFH on Monday, travelling Tuesday early morning, travelling back Thursday night and WFH on Friday.


How do I feel about this?

I have come to the conclusion that


  1. For the last 12 months I have almost been doing this much travel already without being (additionally) compensated for it.
  2. For the right improved compensation I think this is a fantastic career opportunity, which the wife and I believe we could make work if we felt it was also serving us well financially.
So what did I ask for?

  1. To have my annual base salary increased from £71k to £80k. The 20% performance related bonus stays the same.
  2. To receive a 20% bonus in stocks after 12 months in the role. Called MTIPs (Medium Term Incentive Plan).
  3. To have a permanent 2 bedroom house/flat within the city.
The request has been sent in to the man looking to hire me, initial feedback was positive now I have to wait and see.

What happens next?

It's unlikely anything will be confirmed until after my current project is completed which is due to run until January. Potentially I may, I hope to, have an agreement before then but would not start the new role.

How could this help my family financially?

  1. The additional base pay I really, really, really want to make use off. I DO NOT want us to just absorb any additional pay as we have done in the past. So, following a brief conversation with the wife, I fully intend to pay the additional £450~ net per month direct onto the mortgage.
  2. MTIPs. I'm not fully sure on how these work at present, whether they are similar to share options ie with a fixed price so a profit could be made or simply a bonus paid in shares to the equivilant of 20% my salary. Either way it should be around £7k net if the shares are sold immediately. A good decision to be made there.

 It truly feels like a once in a lifetime opportunity - imagining the family coming out for extended stays etc - but will come at a price, family time. I'm currently telling myself that that isn't any different from my long commute to and from London! Anyway, as you can probably tell I'm a bit anxious, excited and am now waiting to see what happens next.

#65 Family Expansion

One life-changing notification; my wife is expecting our third child. We've had an initial scan, all looks good, and we're very excited. Already having one boy and one girl means we're completely relaxed about the sex and just going to relax and be happy either way!

The wife is struggling physically already though predominantly with sickness. I guess she shares that with Princess Middleton!

Kids are pretty excited, though they tend to forget most of the time.

So how will this affect us financially?

I suspect the wife will want a couple of items - our pushchair has been through 2 kids and 5 years and probably needs to be replaced but other than that there is only one real thing which will affect our finances I think...

... a CAR with enough seats to fit. We're probably looking for a 7 seater to give us the required space, a 5 seater would be cramped with shopping, push-chairs etc etc

Going to have to start planning for this, but for now we've got 7 months to plan and we're just happy to be planning for our new little arrival.

Sunday, 1 October 2017

#64 September Finance Summary

So, did we stick to the budget?

YESSS we did. We had a discussion at the start of the month and followed it through and it's great to sit here and say for only the second time - since I started collating our financial data in July 2015 - have we stuck to our budget.

We did it once in February this year but that was just because of a deferred mortgage payment when moving house. This time it's real and feels great.

If no, why not?

n/a :)

Did we earn more than we spent?

Yes we certainly did. For the 5th month in a row.

£591 earnt more than we spent.

Any positives / milestones?

  1. under budget!
  2. 5th month in a row spend less than earnt
  3. Savings including pension increased to above £23k
Lessons / thoughts?

Did well to keep an eye on this throughout the month and hold back any spending.

Will continue to do this in October.

We've now got a £500 cushion of 'emergency savings'. We have until January 2018 to ensure we've got £1,100 saved up to cover the HMRC re-payment due. So better get Matched Betting.

Next month, couple of aims;

1. Again be below budget!
2. Savings excluding pension to be above £3k.

Effect on overall debt?

Student loan remains paid off :)
House loan remains paid off :)
Every day card balance is £1,246.69
0% Carpet loan balance is £1,683.73
HMRC debt - due 31/1/18 is £1,080.68
  
   
Total Debt  Exc Mortgage = £4,011.10





~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Wealth Accumulation

Summary:

Asset
Value
Increase
Pension Value
£20,298.50
-£190.68
XO Shares Account 
£65.35
£1.86
Company Sharesave.
£1100
£100
Fidelity Global Index Tracker
£914.59
£95
Cash (Matched Betting Liquidity)Betfair
£145.33
£260.03
Cash (Emergency Savings)
£500
NE
Cash (Annual Bills)
£6.01
NE



Total
£23,029.78
£252.16







~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Net Worth

£153,965.78

An increase of £1,552.66 since last month.





















#63 September Fitness Summary

What goals did I hope to achieve this month and did I achieve them?

  1. Do 8 unbroken chin ups. Achieved.
  2. Set new PB for half-angie. Achieved.
  3. At least one night per work trip do a workout, every trip. Failed entirely.
  4. Add in one new excercise to 'portfolio'. Achieved.

Any lessons / thoughts?

Struggled again for consistency starting the month strong but ending not that motivated. Working abroad during the week half the time and coming home for 730pm is giving me too many excuses.

In week one wiped nearly 8 minutes or 13% off my previous PB for the Half Murph. Was absolutely dead at the end of that!

Week two was a stonker setting new PBs in Half Angie and 21,15,9 PU/Burpees,  and in the process I finally did 8 unbroken chin-ups for the first time!

Week 3 and 4 were fairly poor only two tracked excercises - though did enjoy a good run on the heavy bag, need to pick up the motivation and momentum going into October.

PBs.

Work-out
What is it?
PB
When PB Set
Max chin-ups without break
 8
*New* Sept 2017
Bodyweight Fran time
this is 21 then 15 then 9 set of both chin ups and burpees.
 11m 33s
Aug 2017
21,15,9 press-ups and burpees: 
this is 21 then 15 then 9 set of both press ups and burpees.
 4m 04s 
*New* Sept 2017
Half Angie: 
this is 50 chin ups, 50 press ups, 50 sit ups and 50 squats
 14m 43s 
*New* Sept 2017
Post exercise 0.5 mile run 


3m 58s 
Aug 2017
Half Murph

for time, 0.5 mile run, 50 pull ups, 100 press ups, 150 squats, 0.5 mile run
33m 19s
*New* Sept 2017
Cindy

As many sets in 20 mins; 5 pull ups, 10 push ups, 15 squats
9
*NE* Sept 2017

What are my goals for next month?

  1. Do 9 unbroken chin ups.
  2. Hang straight arm on chin-up bar for 3 sets of 45s. 
  3. Set at least two times each week in October. 
  4. Set a 1 mile post exercise benchmark.
  5. Do over 10 sets in Cindy.

Photo to hold me accountable.


June 6th 2017 vs October 1st 2017              

 

Saturday, 2 September 2017

#61 August 2017 Financial Summary

So, did we stick to the budget?

No. We spent £43.29 over budget.

If no, why not?

Main out-goings were a £200 new dining table the wife bought - not very frugal but she's been waiting years and it's worth alot more.

£50 for kids school milk for the next school year.

£101 accidentally paid for whole family dinner - mix up with the granddad :)

Did we earn more than we spent?

Yes. We earnt £283.09 more than we spent.

Any positives / milestones?

  1. 4th month in a row we have earnt more than spent.
  2. Spend over budget was less than £50.
  3. Pension savings topped £20k
  4. Sharesave value reached £1k
  5. Total savings excluding pension topped £2k
  6. Net worth increased by over £1k
Lessons / thoughts?

So close this month to being on budget. Making a concerted effort for September with the wife.

Priority is paying down the everyday credit card which will soon run out of 0% interest.

Using the Betfair Matched Betting value as our emergency fund blanket currently.

Effect on overall debt?

Student loan remains paid off :)
House loan remains paid off :)
Every day card balance is £1,465.21
0% Carpet loan balance is £1,782.78
HMRC debt - due 31/1/18 is £1,080.68
  
   
Total Debt  Exc Mortgage = £4,328.67







~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Wealth Accumulation

Summary:


Asset
Value
Increase
Pension Value
£20,489.18
£252.81
XO Shares Account 
£63.49
£0
Company Sharesave.
£1000
£100
Fidelity Global Index Tracker
£819.59
£104.89
Cash (Matched Betting Liquidity)Betfair
£405.36
NE

Total
£22,372.26
£1,444.47








~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Net Worth

£152,413.12

An increase of £1,148.89 since last month.