# No Gas in June Challenge: Success or Failure?

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In case you missed it, on May 3oth I challenged myself to go through the entire month of June without buying any gas for my 2001 Honda Civic. Thanks to my new bicycle purchase in April, I was able to limit my gas consumption by riding to work 11 times (which saved me 176 miles). There were, however, quite a few longer trips that may have done too much damage to my gas tank. So what do you think? Was I able to go the whole month without spending any money at the pump?

My Trips in June

Since I was only able to ride my bike to work 11 times (out of 21), there were still plenty of miles that I had to drive with my car. Here is a quick summary of my trips:

• 10 trips to work = 160 miles
• 1 trip to Grand Rapids for a 5k run = 85 miles
• 1 trip to my parents’ cottage (combined with GR trip) = 30 miles
• 2 trips to the beach = 30 miles
• 1 trip to the girlfriend’s family = 86 miles
• Total Car Miles = 391 miles

Here are the trips I took on my bike:

• 11 trips to work = 176 miles
• 1 trip to parents’ cottage = 50 miles
• 2 trips for exercise = 44 miles
• 1 trip to the beach = 16 miles
• Random store trips = 20 miles
• Total Bike Miles = 306 miles

Doh! I didn’t quite bike as many miles as I drove, but I guess that wasn’t really the challenge was it? đ It would have been pretty cool though.

Do I Still Have Gas in My Tank?

As I am writing this, it is June 30th at 8:37PM and I have no more trips planned for the night. I have driven 391 careful miles on my car and have NOT had to fill up my tank yet. And, I didn’t even cheat by using that 5 gallons of gas that’s sitting in the garage (although the thought did cross my mind). I have officially completed the challenge and will not need to gas up until tomorrow (or maybe even the next day). For proof, take a look at my gauges:

What I Learned by the Close of June

I didn’t necessarily think that I would learn anything throughout the month of June, but I definitely did! I haven’t ridden a bicycle this often since I was probably 14 years old. And, at that point I definitely did not think about the benefits of bicycling. After the month of June, I realized two things: (1) I was getting some great exercise with all of this bicycling, and (2) I was enjoying life much more from the seat of my bicycle than from the seat of my car. When you’re in your car, you tend to get in, race off to your destination, and forget to look around at the wonderful world around you. On a bike though, things tend to slow down and a natural smile will come to your face. Riding a bicycle gives you some time to look around, to think, and to remember the important aspects of life. Consider it free therapy.

Not only did I succeed with my “no gas in June” challenge, but I also learned how enjoyable riding a bike can be. I look forward to riding more often in July, August, and September.

Did you think I would succeed? Or did you think that this challenge was impossible?

Money

#### AUTHOR Derek

My name is Derek, and I have my Bachelors Degree in Finance from Grand Valley State University. After graduation, I was not able to find a job that fully utilized my degree, but I still had a passion for Finance! So, I decided to focus my passion in the stock market. I studied Cash Flows, Balance Sheets, and Income Statements, put some money into the market and saw a good return on my investment. As satisfying as this was, I still felt that something was missing. I have a passion for Finance, but I also have a passion for people. If you have a willingness to learn, I will continue to teach.

1. I knew you could do it, brother! You are an inspiration to everyone that wants to save a few bucks and live a better life. Thanks for the great posts, keep them coming!

• Thanks CDG! I always love your comments and your congratulations when I hit my goal! Hopefully there will be more reason for congrats in the future as well. đ

2. Congrats!

I typically gas up about once a month, or less, thanks to my buying a much more fuel efficient used car, and switching jobs to a much closer location. If I were more eco-conscious I’d start biking to work, but given the way people drive around here, I’m not keen on risking my life to save a few dollars.

But I do admit, it’s nice when fueling up the car becomes an infrequent surprise rather than a weekly ritual.

• It is very nice to gas up only once in a while. I suddenly don’t really care what gas prices are doing these days – unfortunately, this makes me even more unrelatable at work (due to my non-TV watching and extreme exercise regiment.

3. Nice! Well done! It’s challenges like these that help us get inventive.

I did a food / grocery challenge earlier in the year, which pretty much cleaned out my cabinets and my fridge, and they have never been the same. I don’t cook like I used to (meat every night) and I rarely throw out any food.

• It’s amazing how a simple challenge can change our lives permanently isn’t it? I can’t wait to get on my bike tomorrow and ride to work now. I will be sad when the summer is over.

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