My Journey out of Debt

Featured customers currently enrolled in a CareOne Debt Relief Plan, share journey to become debt-free; hear how they juggle family, finances, and more.

Halfway Home!

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In 2007 I ran the Twin Cities marathon. It was my second marathon, and I was looking to improve my finishing time. As I prepared to start the race, an announcer read the current weather stats over the PA system. At 7:50AM, it was 70 degrees, the dew point was in the high 60s, and the humidity sat at 95%.

Halfway Home!He went on to remind us to drink plenty of fluids as temperatures were expected to rise into the 90s in the next few hours, and conditions may become dangerous for participants. 

The starting gun popped, and the slow procession of people began. It was hot, uncomfortable, and hard to breathe. As I reached the midway point, I saw the time clock displaying a time of just over two hours. I was hoping for 1:50, but I was satisfied, given the conditions. 

As I slowed to a walk after grabbing an energy drink, I came to the realization that while I had reached the midway point relatively close to my goal, it had taken every ounce of energy I had to do so.

I didn't know whether I had it in me to make it another 13.1 miles.

This month I will make the 30th of 60 estimated payments to my debt management plan. I have reached the halfway point, and in some ways I feel much like I did on that October day in 2007. Sometimes I feel like it's taken every ounce of strength in me to make it this far.

Do I have it in me to make it another 30 months? 

As I made my way through the second half of that marathon, I found out exactly what I was made of. I heard paramedics say that they had never seen weather conditions like this for a marathon, nor had they seen so many people drop out.   

I trudged on. 

I heard someone say that they had shut down the Chicago marathon, which was being held on the same day, because someone had suffered severe heat stroke and passed away.  

I kept moving forward. 

At times I couldn't tell if the wetness on my face was sweat or tears. My body never hurt so much. I never wanted to quit so badly in my life. But at the same time, I never wanted to finish something so badly either. Strangers in the crowd along the sides of the road were constantly offering words of encouragement.

My feet kept moving. 

At mile 19, I found my family along the side of the route. They sprayed me down with super soakers, and the cool water refreshed me.

My spirits lifted, I regained my focus.

I crossed the finish line that day in 4 hours and 57 minutes. I didn't care what the time was. All that mattered was that I had overcome adverse conditions, with the support of my family and countless people in the crowd that offered positive words along the way.

I was victorious! 

Standing at the halfway point of my DMP, I know that the second half is going to be tough. 

  • There will be adverse conditions. 
  • I will want to give up.

But, with the support of my family, and positive reinforcement from the crowd (YOU), I will continue on. 

I know I can make it. I know I have it in me. 

At the conclusion of my debt management plan in June 2014, I will feel much like I did when I crossed that finish line back in 2007. 


Related Links:

Running the DMP Marathon 

Reflection on a year in the Debt Management Plan

How I Managed to Get Through Three Years on a DMP

Travis Pizel My Journey Out of Debt Blogger, CareOne Services, Inc. CustomerTravis Pizel

Travis is a contributing writer for the My Journey out of Debt blog and is a very active member of the CareOne community forums. Travis is currently enrolled in a CareOne Debt Management Plan (DMP). Travis very candidly shares his personal journey to pay off his debt and the tips he's learned along the way. As a father and husband he provides a unique perspective on balancing debt, finances, and family. You can also follow along with Travis on his personal blog, Our Journey to Zero. Compensated Blogger for CareOne Debt Relief Services.

Follow Travis on Twitter @DebtChronicles

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  • Dude this is one of the most inspirational posts I've ever read!! You DO have it in you man, keep running brother!!! The finish line is closer than it's ever been and once you cross it you'll be glad you did!

  • Dude, if you can run a marathon then you SO have the fortitude to pay off your debt.  It's always hard to see how you can finish what's in front of you, but when you look back you realize there's more possible inside of you than you ever thought.  Keep pushing on!

  • Travis!!  You rock!!  I will think of this story again and again.  There is not a doubt in my mind you will cross your debt finish line.  In fact, I would be surprised if it took you 30 months.  And after that... look out world!!

  • I finishing paying all my debts in 2010.

    I had to remind myself everyday : Just put one foot in front of the step at a time. It took a little longer of what expected, but I finished and that´s what counts.

  • Wow Brad, that's quite a compliment...thank you!  I appreciate the encouragement...Vonnie and I look forward to sharing the rest of our journey with you!

  • Definitely pushing on, Glen!  Looking back and seeing how far we've come is great motivation to keep moving forward!

  • LOL, Ashley, thanks for the vote of would be simply awesome if it took Vonnie and I less than 30 months to eliminate our debt!

  • Congratulations on paying off your debt in 2010, Isela!  I can't wait to  be able to say that too!

  • ((((CLAPPING MY HANDS)))) This is great, very motivating!

  • Thanks for being one of those positive people in the crowd pushing me forward, 1baburnett!

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