30 Day Challenge – Gym – Day 16

July 28, 2011 Leave a comment
Day 16

Day 16

I skipped out on an office lunch to Brio’s Tuscan Grill today to go to the gym. Today was national lasagna day or something like that and the local Italian place had half off lasagna. Instead, I ate some leftovers and chilled at home.

I can’t believe how quickly I am getting used to the harder workout that I started a few days ago. It is amazing how quickly the body adapts to things like that!

We’re past the halfway point folks!

Categories: Lifestyle, TD Challenge

30 Day Challenge – Gym – Day 15

July 27, 2011 Leave a comment
Day 15

Day 15

After a horrible day in the markets, I worked out twice as hard at the gym. Days like this are hard to swallow and I’m glad I had a lot to do at work to keep my attention away from the falling markets.

I’ve broken the two week barrier.

I can do this.

Categories: Lifestyle, TD Challenge

30 Day Challenge – Gym – Day 14

July 26, 2011 Leave a comment
Day 14

Day 14

I wouldn’t recommended drinking a Crown and Diet before working out. I actually ended up scarfing down some food, waiting an hour or so, and then going to the gym. Usually I will go at lunch if I want to drink after work, but I didn’t today.

We invited the new engineer out for a drink to welcome him into the group. I had missed the engineer’s lunch yesterday so I figured this made up for it. He seems like a good guy.

Two entire weeks of working out are behind me. This is pretty neat stuff!

Categories: Lifestyle, TD Challenge

Liquid and Bump Certificate of Deposits

July 25, 2011 Leave a comment
Liquid and Bump Certificate of Deposits

"Splash Blue" by Idea go on freedigitalphotos.net

I have been wracking my brain for ideas on what to do now that I am nearing my Rewards Checking limit and won’t be earning much interest on any amount over that limit. I looked into savings accounts, but the interest is so low I just don’t want to go there! I’ve thought about moving money into riskier investments, but I would be increasing the risk profile of my finances as a whole and I don’t want to do that. I asked myself a few questions to narrow down what type of options I should be looking for.

Questions

Will I need this money in the near future?

Yes, actually. I will be needing this money for an engagement ring. I know banks have payment plans, but I don’t like being in debt. I’ve even learned that being in 0% APR debt has its impact on my credit score!

Can I take on more risk at this time?

Now that I have started investing in LendingClub notes in addition to my stock market investments, I have taken on all the risk I can digest. The recent economic worries pressuring the stock markets have not been fun to observe!

Liquid Certificate of Deposit

This instrument provides a low yield in exchange for a higher level of liquidity. The level of liquidity is depending on the bankin institution so one must read up carefully before purchasing. Some institutions allow multiple withdrawals and some only allow one. Some institutions have limits on their withdrawals and some have time constraints.

This would be a good option for me if the interest rates that I’ve seen weren’t so low! The rates are comparable to higher interest savings online savings accounts and I would rather put my money in one of those instead of having to deal with all the fine print.

Bump Certificate of Deposit

This instrument provides a chance to bump up the yield once or multiple times depending on the institution and the length of the CD to maturity. I have seen some decent rates and it makes a lot of sense to invest in a 4 year CD if you are able to bump the rate up a few times. If interest rates rise in those 4 years then you can bump as you go. If they fall, then you have locked in a higher rate. This is only an option if you can lock up that money for a long period of time.

This isn’t a good option for me, espeically since buying a house is on the horizon post-engagement. I just can’t tie up much of my savings right now, which is a bummer. I’m not one to take a penalty for early withdrawal. I don’t plan on looking into the math involved and the literature reads as if the penalty could leech into my principal. I’m just not going to deal with that.

Keep on Looking

It looks like I have to keep looking. I’ll definitely make use of these instuments in the future when I don’t have so many large purchases staring me in the face.

Categories: Banking

30 Day Challenge – Gym – Day 13

July 25, 2011 Leave a comment
Day 13

Day 13

Blurry! Gotta love phone cameras…

Part of it could have been the fact that I was concerned about my rice cooker being on at the apartment. I never leave it on because I don’t trust it.

I kicked the workout up a notch, but cut the workout time to 20 minutes because of said rice cooker.

I am happy to report that there were no fires and the food was yummy.

Categories: Lifestyle, TD Challenge

Debt Ceiling

July 24, 2011 Leave a comment
Debt Ceiling

"3d Person and Debt" by renjith krishnan on freedigitalphotos.net

It is Sunday night and I am looking at the United States stock market futures. The outlook is gloomy and I fully expect us to gap down on the open in all indexes. The fact that there wasn’t a deal done to raise the debt ceiling is spooking all investors. If you are to invest in the stock market then you have to be wary of the mass perception. It doesn’t really matter if you believe the non-deal is really a big deal to the United States economy at this point. If enough people panic, the market will go down. If you know for a fact there’s no fire, but people stampede for the exits, then you’re still trampled.

I suspect gaps down will be bought by those who don’t believe that this is a big issue for the United States economy. I can’t say either way because I don’t know the effects. I am willing to bet that the majority of people who are in the stock market don’t understand what a non-deal really means either. Keep a close eye on your television because I know people are going to come on and try to explain things that they don’t fully understand.

My hope is that some sort of deal is made and the debt ceiling is raised. If the debt ceiling isn’t raised, then I guess the government can’t borrow anymore and certain programs are going to have to shut down. There goes that Social Security that people talk about. I am not relying on that program and I hope everyone else in my generation has taken the warnings seriously. Start your own IRA’s if you don’t have a retirement plan at work or even to supplement as a secondary retirement account.

I worry about my father who is nearing retirement age. Maybe Social Security payments will be halted, Medicare and Medicaid policies slashed, and FHA loans stopped. I just talked myself into forming an opinion now. There has to be a deal. No one wants to be part of the Congress that made it so critical government programs were halted, slashed, and stopped. It is human nature to kick the can down the road, as far down the road as possible.

The real deadline is something like August 2nd. There is approximately one more week for action.

Categories: Investing

30 Day Challenge – Gym – Day 12

July 24, 2011 Leave a comment
Day 12

Day 12

You can barely read the date on this shot, but it is day 12 and I feel like I need to start kicking it up a notch at the gym. I’m still sweating, but everything just seems so easy now.

It’s probably time to throw in some classes too. This gym offers some really fantastic group classes that I used to go to.

To my health.

Categories: Lifestyle, TD Challenge