Guest Interview on Financially Alert

Guest Interview on Financially Alert

Michael Quan started his blog, Financially Alert, right about the same time as I started Route to Retire (early 2015). The big difference is that Michael was already financially independent when his blog came out.  He crushed it and retired from the corporate world at 36 in 2012… how cool is that?! I think we’ve followed each others’ journeys since our sites came out.  We finally had an opportunity to meet at the FinCon personal finance conference a couple of years ago.  Good news – he’s just as nice in person as he comes off on the Financially Alert blog! Last spring, Michael asked if I would be interested in being part of his “Finding FI” interview series.  Unfortunately, we were

Would You REALLY Work Out Once You’re Retired?

Would You REALLY Work Out Once You’re Retired?

I hate to work out. When talking to gym-addicts, they love to tell me things, “oh, you’ll learn to enjoy it over time.”  I chuckle. I don’t think so.  I hate knowing that it’s time to go work out and I hate the actual workout. “Yeah, but you feel so much better once you’re done, right?” Um, no.  I’m glad it’s over, but no, I don’t feel better or refreshed at all. Look, I’m just keeping it real.  I do it because it’s healthy and something I should be doing and that’s about it. And honestly, it was the first thing I’d always cut out of my day when in a time crunch… which happened a lot.  It’s all about

Make Your Money Work for You Instead of Vice Versa

Make Your Money Work for You Instead of Vice Versa

I think I first heard the mantra of “make your money work for you” when I was a kid.  I’d also guess that it was my grandfather who preached it.  He was able to retire in his mid-40’s before the term FIRE (financial independence / retire early) was even coined. But it took me years to really understand what that meant.  And even once I thought I got it, I still assumed it was just some pipe dream that only the rich could appreciate. Over the years though, I started to dig myself out of the credit card debt I was in.  Then I started saving.  And then I started saving even more and more. Eventually, I began to make

Somehow I Got Asked Back on “What’s Up Next?”

Somehow I Got Asked Back on “What’s Up Next?”

Somehow I was able to get invited back on the “What’s Up Next?” podcast… who’da thunk it?! You’d think after Doc G and Paul Thompson had me on their “What’s Up Next?” show the first time around, they would’ve learned their lesson.  Not so much! To top it off, they invited my better half to be a part of it – maybe they were thinking that through the law of averages, Lisa could help bring me up a little more. Well, here’s the good news – I think it went well.  It was Lisa’s first podcast appearance and it’s awesome that you get to hear her perspective on the changes in our lives as well. Similar to the other episodes

5 Life Lessons from Our First Year of Early Retirement

5 Life Lessons from Our First Year of Early Retirement

It’s time to share some life lessons I’ve gone through in my first year of early retirement. Exactly one year ago today, I was at the office on the last day I would ever work in my career again.  It was New Year’s Eve, 2018 and it was the day before my retirement officially began at the sweet age of 43. My career in IT started back in 1999 and lasted almost 20 years.  I started as an unexperienced Systems Engineer, but with training and experience, I became a confident engineer over the first handful of years.  Then in 2005, I was promoted to be the manager of the engineers, which I did for the remainder of my career. It’s

Our Return Trip to Panama – How We Saved Thousands

Our Return Trip to Panama – How We Saved Thousands

This return trip to Panama is well overdue.  We had a blast, but we’re whupped and ready to get back home (we’re finally starting to get comfortable calling Panama “home”). We spent over a month in the U.S. enjoying time with friends and family.  Then we took a roundtrip Caribbean cruise out of Miami. Who’da thunk that we’d be ready to go home after so much fun?!  But we really are – it’s time to enjoy the holidays together and get back into our normal routine. Today, I’m going to tell you a little bit about what the trip was all about and how we managed to save thousands of dollars coming back.   Why we left A lot of