A Week Spent in NYC

A couple of weeks back, I stumbled on a Refinery29 article where young women in different cities spend their money over the course of one week.  While I’m not sharing any of my income or bills, I thought the daily doings was interesting.  I bet this wasn’t what you anticipated when you read the blog title 🙂

Hulu: $7.99 (One Netflix purchased by parents and another by the roommates)
Internet: ~$20
Electric/Heat: Fluctuates by month (around $77 aka more expensive right now thanks to cold weather…)
Groceries: Bought between Friday and Sunday the previous week.  Sometimes I load up on items like nut butter or cold brew concentrate but they don’t usually last more than 2 weeks.
Subway: Rides are $2.75 (inching towards $3/ride) or $116.50 per month.  I usually fill up by the month but lost my card in the snow while running to catch the bus, so it’s ad hoc refills when necessary.  And no, the bus didn’t stop for me.

Day 1 (Monday)

5:50 – wake up and grab the week’s groceries before heading uptown for a workout class.  Sometimes I bike but because I was carrying so much, I took the subway. Pre-paid metro card so check!

7 – Power through my favorite class – Whipped.  Managed to shower and change in a decent amount of time before taking the subway again uptown to work.

9 – Overnight oats + a dollop of nut butter/ banana and iced coffee from home.  I purchased a jug of Starbucks prepared iced coffee at Target and while I wasn’t a fan at first, it has grown on me and the price is right.

12:30 – Take a break to mail a few S’well bottles that I purchased a Sample Sale.  $13 for the box and shipping by my friend is paying me back.

1:30 – Packed lunch from home (salmon, sweet potato, Brussels sprouts, beets, and carrots).  I ended up working through lunch, which is a problem because I mindlessly munch and end up eating more than I need to.

3 – Snack of apple + rice cake + almond butter all purchased last week while bored at Whole Foods…that’s a dangerous place and I’m glad I didn’t come out with much more.

5:30 – Head home for the day.  Added $15 more to my subway card to hopefully get me through the week.  I sometimes bike to work, so that cuts my transport bill in half but today’s rain called for subway/bus duo.

7:30 – Whipped up some spaghetti squash + tomato soup for dinner while watching Harry Potter and then Greek Yogurt, granola, and dark chocolate while watching the Bachelor.

9:30 – All packed and ready for bed. The Bachelor couldn’t hold my attention so it’s lights out.

Daily Total: $28 ($13 paid back by friend)

Day 2 (Tuesday)

5:50 – Wake up debating if I want to run in the rain or on a treadmill.  After texting a few friends, we decide to run to the track and it ends up being better than anticipated.  Running with friends is ALWAYS better than solo, especially on a dreadmill.

8:15 – Showered and dressed for the day, I manage to catch the bus around the corner and a seat.

9 – Overnight oats + iced coffee + too many scoops of almond butter.  My jar is low but I have to wean myself off of nut butter…such an expensive habit.  All while checking email and listening to the Today Show.

1:45 – The nut butter really held me over.  Same lunch as yesterday with the addition of a few fun size candy bars.

5:30 – Home via subway/bus.  Today was not a day to bike or walk home because of the rain.

6:30 – I’m planning ways to spend my evenings other than at home and on my phone but for now, catching up on NBC shows will do.  I pack for Wednesday’s November Project workout (which I plan to run to).

7:30 – Similar take on Monday’s dinner, this time while watching Quantico.

9:30 – I’ve picked up the habit of watching an episode of Seinfeld before bed and have to say, it’s hiiiilarious.  Then it’s lights out.

Daily Total: $0

Day 3 (Wednesday)

5:20 – I haven’t had a rough time sleeping but last night was a toss and turn type of night – up from 3:30 onward (not sure if it was due to the candy I ate, extra chai tea, or work worries).  Grabbed half a PickyBar and ran up to November Project at the 102nd Street Bridge.  It’s been awhile since I ran with a pack and a lot tougher than I recalled.

6:30-7:15 – Bridge Workout

8:45 – Oats, banana, nut butter while checking emails and listening to the Today Show

9:45 – My floor is participating in the “Biggest Loser” and to be honest, it’s driving me up the wall.  I do need to work on portion control but despise the constant chatter about dropping pounds.  After running 6+ miles in the morning, I was feeling snackish and rebellious with people’s diet conversations so I bought a morning snack (strawberries/pineapple/sprinkling of Nature Valley bar) for $1.20.

12:50 – Time for lunch, same spread from home in front of my computer.

2:30 – A few mini chocolate candy bars, half an apple, and leftover iced coffee.  I really should just be tracking my sugar intake rather than my spending.

3:30 – Our team took off from work early to have a bowling “happy hour”.  Works for me!

7:15 – Spin class to fill the time post bowling and post snack hangover.  I didn’t drink but when free food is offered…thank goodness for Equinox having endless classes.

8:45 – Jump into bed with tea and an episode of “This is Us”.  I was sad to hear about Mary Tyler Moore’s death and made a mental note to start watching her shows.

9:30 – Lights out.

Daily Total: $1.20

Day 4 (Thursday)

5:30 – Up to run over the Manhattan Bridge to meet some friends for a stair workout in Brooklyn.  Wow, just wow those steps are no joke.

Did you know it’s illegal to ride a bike without a license??  I did NOT know that and luckily haven’t had an issues (yes, will be carrying form of ID from now on) but saw an older man getting a ticket by the police on my jog home.  Yikes!!

9:30 – Same breakfast different day.  This time no Today Show.

12:30 –  Free burrito while listening to one of the monthly (or so) Executive Chats.  These are great seminars to hear how people reached the role they are in (I’m finding it often is serendipitous and takes some bouncing around…) and usually means free food!

3:50 – Carrots, half an apple and walnut pieces from home.

6:15 – Walked to Bed, Bath & Beyond for some home essentials. Was able to use a Christmas gift card (+ coupon) so winning!  Treated myself to a Magnolia’s Banana Pudding (peanut butter special edition only available for 5 days!) $3.75

7:30 – Dinner of spaghetti squash and healthy take on “seven-layer dip” (avocado, black beans, and salsa) while watching Timeless.  A bit of reading, an episode of Seinfeld and lights out by 10.

Daily Total: $3.75

Day 5 (Friday)

6:15 – Woohoo sleeping in!  Definitely could have used a bit more but I wanted to work out before sitting at my desk all day.  Biked to Equinox and took a Whipped class.

9 – Ah Bagel and Muffin Friday.  No control here, oops. I did pick up some eggs/frittata from the cafeteria for some protein ($3.44) and paired it with other sugary carbs.

10 – After talking with friends, I decided to sign up for the Harlem One Mile race because it had epic shirts and supports a good cause. Yes, it’s $32 for the race but it’s an amazing cause and I have race FOMO.   Funny how I can be so risk-averse to some things and in terms of running, BUY ALL THE CLOTHES AND RACES.

12:20 – Lunch with an old coworker/friend in midtown.  Opted for a lesser expensive sandwich but with the purchase of lemonade, up to $13.

2 – Picked up a free refill of iced coffee (perks of being a Gold Star Member) and that makes my two coffees of the day only $1.70!  All on the pre-paid Starbucks app, so essentially Monopoly money.

3:30 – Picking at another half of a bagel just because it’s there.

5:30 – Everyone was ready to peace out of work and so home we went.

7:30 – Dinner at home because I looked ahead to next week and already agreed to three meals out, one being a part of restaurant week, which is averaged at $42.

9:30 – Lights out! Raging Friday night my friends.

Daily Total: $48.44

Now weekends are where I let loose.  Last weekend was a doozy with $40 at Jacob’s Pickles and ~$30 on Sunday’s brunch + pistachio bread and since I’m in the full mindset of exploring as much of New York as possible.  There’s only so long that I’ll be able to live this way, so carpe diem.

Day 6 (Saturday)

8:00 – Up and prepped for today’s long run.  Met up with friends on the west side of Central Park around 9, logged around 5 miles and then met up with another friend who is a guide for Achilles International.   One loop with Achilles totaled 11 miles for the day.

12 – Showered and ready to meet my friend Annelise for an afternoon of adventure.  We stopped by the Lululemon “We Made Too Much” sale and between a gift card and discount, I only came out with $40 damage for two shirts.

1:30 – Arrival in Chinatown for Chinese New Year!!  We spent the next couple of hours picking up sweet and savory buns, boba, and a confetti firecracker – all for less than $20!

5 – Running is fun but making sure that I don’t get injured is essential.  Cue yoga with my favorite teacher and my body is very thankful.

7:30 – Basic dinner of greens at home to balance the carbo-loading that occurred earlier that day in Chinatown.

9:30 – After a few episodes of “Say Yes to the Dress” it was time for bed.

Daily Total: $40

Day 7 (Sunday)

9:30 – I met up with my friend Maura for a long run on the west side.  I was craving some sort of fun breakfast and picked up a croissant breakfast sandwich $6.80 and Joe iced latte $5.75.

11 – Grocery shopping in the chaotic Trader Joes.  $70 and three almost broken bags later I made it home.  Boy do I miss grocery shopping in the suburbs.

5:15 – After an afternoon of cleaning and meal prep I met a few friends in Brooklyn for dinner at Emmy Squared.  I made sure no slice was left behind (#cleanplateclub guilty) but we still only came out with a $18 (with tip) per person bill!  Helps when no one is drinking.

8 – Lindsay and I went out with her friend to a bar where their other friend was working and so definitely not my typical Sunday night.  We each had two drinks and split Brussels sprouts but I think the friend working comped part of our check, so with tip it was about $20.

Daily Total: $120.55

Grand Total: $241.94


How do you save money?  Do you have a budget that you like to follow?

2 thoughts on “A Week Spent in NYC

  1. I don’t have a spending budget, but I usually set savings goals for the year…except for this year. I lost my credit card so I’ve been living on just cash at the moment, and its a struggle! Hopefully in march I get some more savings in to my account! (i’ve already given up on february since i go on vacation next week).

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