Author Topic: Making the best of a horribly non-mustachian commute.  (Read 5232 times)

TheRealMFC

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Making the best of a horribly non-mustachian commute.
« on: January 16, 2014, 09:23:43 AM »

I have an extremely non mustachian commute. 60 miles each way (I know, I know, I deserve a Mike-Tyson-in-his-prime facepunch for this). To make it worse, it is a commute that I have been doing for many years and it also costs me $300 in tolls per year. I used to accept the commute as something that was necessary and something that could not, and would not change - until I started reading through the entire MMM blog this past summer. Suddenly I realized how much time and $ I was wasting. I HAD to find a way to change.

The problem was that leaving my current job and/or moving from my current home are not options - at least not any time in the foreseeable future. (Just trust me on this one for now).

Here's what I've done to mitigate the problem.

     1. Found a shorter route to work that doesn't include toll roads. This new route cuts 9 miles (each way) off of the drive. The "downside" is that I have to get up earlier or else traffic is bad with this alternate route. It turns out that this isn't actually a downside, however. I now get up earlier and hit the at-work gym before starting my workday - something that I've wanted to do for a very long time. Another side benefit is that I now shower at work, which saves money on hot water and electricity (well pump) at home. Since I get to work early, I can also leave work early and miss the afternoon rush hour - allowing me to take the shorter, non-toll route home as well. It's your classic win/win/win/win situation.

    2. I found a rail trail (walking and bike path) that covers the final 9.5 miles of my commute. So I can cut an additional 9.5 miles off by parking at the head of the trail and biking the rest of the way. The bike ride is the warm-up to my workout once I get to work. So now, the 60 miles of driving has been cut down to 41.5 miles using step 1 and 2.

    3. This is the biggest one. I negotiated working from home 2 days per week. I honestly didn't think this was possible, but as of yesterday - it is a reality. I had an honest discussion with my boss and I told him that at the end of 2014 I was going to seek other work options closer to home because I could no longer deal with the long commute. He didn't want to lose me, so he gladly offered the two days from home.

    I realize that I still drive too much. BUT - I was driving a total of 600 miles per week. I've managed to whittle that down to 249 miles per week - a 59% reduction. Add in the $300 savings in tolls (I will not go through a single toll again. That was pure laziness), the savings of showering at work and the benefits of working out early in the morning and this is HUGE for me.

golfer44

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Re: Making the best of a horribly non-mustachian commute.
« Reply #1 on: January 16, 2014, 09:25:13 AM »
Wow, that's badass! Way to go.

nyxst

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Re: Making the best of a horribly non-mustachian commute.
« Reply #2 on: January 16, 2014, 09:29:48 AM »
I am impressed :) Yes, you still have a crappy commute, but you have done a major work-around to make it the least complainy-pants long commute I have read here so far!

tat96

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Re: Making the best of a horribly non-mustachian commute.
« Reply #3 on: January 16, 2014, 10:53:24 AM »
Congratulations!! That is an awesome accomplishment.  It never ceases to amaze me how many people bitch about their work situation yet never even attempt to find a work around or address it with their boss.  You certainly proved it can be done.  Oh, and since I am an accountant.......

600 x 0.51 (current GSA rate for vehicle mileage) = 306
249 x 0.51 = 126.99

Savings of: 306-127 = $179/week in gas, wear and tear!!! 

Plus, the $300 in annual tolls!!  This is a huge chunk of savings!! Like $9-$10K a year!  More if you have a serious repair!

Eric

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Re: Making the best of a horribly non-mustachian commute.
« Reply #4 on: January 16, 2014, 11:00:01 AM »
Very inspirational!  Great job!

Rollin

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Re: Making the best of a horribly non-mustachian commute.
« Reply #5 on: January 16, 2014, 11:25:17 AM »
Very good on the approach.  Great to see multiple angles of attack.  Most people go for one punch or nothing.  You solved many problems in the process.

TheRealMFC

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Re: Making the best of a horribly non-mustachian commute.
« Reply #6 on: January 16, 2014, 11:36:38 AM »

Savings of: 306-127 = $179/week in gas, wear and tear!!! 


Wow. Thanks. I hadn't even done the calculations for those savings. I'm feeling even better about this now :)

Along these lines... I'm embarrassed to say that I used to use the gas station closest to work to fill up my tank. I would never to pay attention to gas prices. I would just blindly fill up and walk into the dunkin donuts to get a large coffee and a donut/breakfast sandwich while I was at it. The problem is that gas averages about 22 cents more per gallon outside of Boston (where I work) than near my home in rural New Hampshire.

I've also cut out the dunkin donuts habit. I bring my coffee from home now and eat a healthy breakfast before leaving the house.

This is exactly how the MMM mentality snowballs into a big ball of cash.

FrugalZony

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Re: Making the best of a horribly non-mustachian commute.
« Reply #7 on: January 16, 2014, 11:43:52 AM »
Truly inspirational!!
There's always something you can do and you found great ways to make the best of it!!
Cool beans!

Cinder

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Re: Making the best of a horribly non-mustachian commute.
« Reply #8 on: January 16, 2014, 02:47:11 PM »
Love it!  Between adding in the biking and ditching the donuts, you're probably going to lose 20-30 lbs over the next year as well.  Way to optimize....

+1

TheRealMFC

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Re: Making the best of a horribly non-mustachian commute.
« Reply #9 on: January 16, 2014, 09:30:49 PM »
Love it!  Between adding in the biking and ditching the donuts, you're probably going to lose 20-30 lbs over the next year as well.  Way to optimize....

I need to lose 25 lbs. How'd you guess :) Working on that too. I'm on day 16 of P90X.

AlmostIndependent

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Re: Making the best of a horribly non-mustachian commute.
« Reply #10 on: January 16, 2014, 09:41:09 PM »
I'm on day 16 of P90X.

I really think they need to relabel the workouts by "Parts of Your Body You Won't Be Able to Use Tomorrow."

Also congrats on the commute slashing. That is pretty awesome.

IronHelix

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Re: Making the best of a horribly non-mustachian commute.
« Reply #11 on: January 17, 2014, 01:24:30 PM »
I'd like to compare notes as I to commute from Rural NH to downtown Boston. I strictly take the commuter rail but always open to other thoughts

CheckEngineLight

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Re: Making the best of a horribly non-mustachian commute.
« Reply #12 on: January 17, 2014, 02:05:58 PM »
Very good on the approach.  Great to see multiple angles of attack.  Most people go for one punch or nothing.  You solved many problems in the process.

My thoughts exactly, OP you are a bada$$.  Congrats on the accomplishments, very impressed.

AlmostIndependent

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Re: Making the best of a horribly non-mustachian commute.
« Reply #13 on: January 17, 2014, 02:16:32 PM »
He didn't want to lose me, so he gladly offered the two days from home.

If you're productive from home you might be able to leverage this into more days at home...

Megatron

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Re: Making the best of a horribly non-mustachian commute.
« Reply #14 on: January 17, 2014, 02:49:53 PM »
Just curious, about how long was the commute each way when driving the full 60 miles. ~1.5 hours?

Thegoblinchief

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Re: Making the best of a horribly non-mustachian commute.
« Reply #15 on: January 17, 2014, 05:26:32 PM »
Awesome!

TheRealMFC

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Re: Making the best of a horribly non-mustachian commute.
« Reply #16 on: January 19, 2014, 11:48:56 AM »
Just curious, about how long was the commute each way when driving the full 60 miles. ~1.5 hours?

It averaged about 1:15. My old route was almost all highway.

TheRealMFC

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Re: Making the best of a horribly non-mustachian commute.
« Reply #17 on: January 19, 2014, 11:50:40 AM »
I'd like to compare notes as I to commute from Rural NH to downtown Boston. I strictly take the commuter rail but always open to other thoughts

The commuter rail isn't an option for me. I work on the outskirts along 495.