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Your most pleasant surprise after retirement?
Old 11-09-2014, 11:48 AM   #1
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Your most pleasant surprise after retirement?

As I woke up today at 8, it dawned on me that since our retirement that my wife and I have adjusted to sleeping in quite easily!

We both used to get up at 4:15am for most of our adult lives. And we have talked to several other people who had retired before us, and to a fault they all said they woke up at their usual waking time after retirement. So it was with some trepidation that we wondered if we would be able to adjust that after our retirement.

But to our pleasant shock and pleasure we have had no issues at all. The added bonus is that we can now also stay up later into the evening, etc.

What little pleasant surprise have you had in your retirement?
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Old 11-09-2014, 12:24 PM   #2
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Old 11-09-2014, 12:31 PM   #3
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Waking up at 3:00 am to realize a car crashed into the yard across the street. And that we can stay up for a few hours rubbernecking because we don't have to worry about throwing off sleep patterns or waking up early the next morning to take care of business. (DW is still working but burning up her accrued vacation time with plans to quit soon, so she's not going back to work until next week some time).

Realizing I probably won't have to scrape frost off my car in the wee hours of the morning.

Walks through the park at 1:00 in the afternoon just because the sun feels good on a fall day.
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Old 11-09-2014, 12:50 PM   #4
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I swear there was already a thread going concerning this topic. Oh well...

Despite it being #1 (of about 30 things), on my Post-ER "To-Do" Manifesto, the intensity in which I have attacked improving my fitness level has really surprised me. Removal of work related stress has basically eliminated my desire for booze and fast food, which were obviously my ill conceived coping mechanisms. Add to this an ever increasing enjoyment of actual EXERCISE. With improving fitness, the workouts get less torturous and now are getting almost, dare I say it, ENJOYABLE? I am now able to workout longer and longer... it's almost becoming like a self perpetuating fitness machine. And because I am working out like a fiend, there is now a natural avoidance of unhealthy foods that would neutralize the benefits of the hard work. DW doesn't know what to make of it - except that she is enjoying the results in hubby's transformation. That is what losing 45lbs will do I guess.

And I'm not even two months into ER... barely even scratched the surface of my "new life". Euphoric doesn't remotely describe how good I feel these days.

I'm looking forward to other ER "surprises" as I move along.
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Old 11-09-2014, 12:59 PM   #5
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One (extremely) little surprise in retirement is that I like to go outside in the mornings briefly, to check on the weather. Usually I take the trash out with me so that does not even count as a chore any more.

Before retirement, I was always racing to get to work by 6 AM, and didn't have time for a personal weather check in the mornings.
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Old 11-09-2014, 01:48 PM   #6
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That is what losing 45lbs will do I guess.

And I'm not even two months into ER...
45 lbs in two months?! If that's all fat you are burning off 2500 kcal per day.

I am struggling to remove just a few lbs. My respects to you sir!
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Old 11-09-2014, 02:37 PM   #7
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I think it's for me it's how much I enjoy NOT racing from point A to point B *in traffic*.

I still have a lot on my plate since I have kids - but I can now run those errands, schedule appointments, etc during non-rush hour times... and I find I'm a lot more pleasant when I'm trying to cram too much to do in too little time.

Traffic was a huge part of what pushed me into retirement.
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Old 11-09-2014, 03:31 PM   #8
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I used to crawl out of bed at about 5:30 a.m. every morning when I was still working, with or without an alarm clock. My first day of retirement, I slept until 8:00 a.m. with no problem. 7 years & 7 months later, it's still usually 8:00 a.m., although once in a while I wake up quite early at 7:30 a.m.
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Old 11-09-2014, 03:42 PM   #9
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45 lbs in two months?! If that's all fat you are burning off 2500 kcal per day.

I am struggling to remove just a few lbs. My respects to you sir!
Going by his posts he's spending a LOT of time on that sea kayak. That'll do it!

Most pleasant to me was not having to deal with heavy traffic (we moved away from it) sleeping in, spending more time with DW, and generally not having a fixed schedule.
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Old 11-09-2014, 03:47 PM   #10
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I am pleasantly surprised that I don't miss having a fixed daily routine and also that I do not miss daily contact with the handful of co-workers who are my long-time close friends. I am content to see them occasionally for lunch and we also text and email and keep in touch. I also like sleeping in a bit in the mornings and not setting an alarm clock.
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Old 11-09-2014, 04:16 PM   #11
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That the extra money wasn't worth having very little time freedom. I am also kind of surprised at home much less it takes to live with more time for price shopping, cooking from scratch and DIY.
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Old 11-09-2014, 04:33 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by Totoro View Post
45 lbs in two months?! If that's all fat you are burning off 2500 kcal per day.

I am struggling to remove just a few lbs. My respects to you sir!
Well, I lost 10 of the 45lbs during my last month of work, mostly by dietary improvements... so let's say 45lbs over 3 months. Still not too shabby (or flabby).
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Old 11-09-2014, 04:39 PM   #13
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It wasn't a surprise, but the thing I enjoy most about not w*rking is the cessation of the constant judgment by my "superiors". The yearly performance reviews were just a summary of daily spoken and unspoken judgments. Did I take too many days off for a bad cold? Should I take all my vacation days? It's 6 PM and I'm done with my work, but the boss is still here - should I leave anyway? The boss is telling political jokes that I don't agree with - did he see me not laughing? I have 5 weeks vacation - will it look bad if I take 3 weeks at a time to go overseas?

So, yea, retirement is good but I felt like 100 pounds had been taken off my back that I didn't even know were there.
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Old 11-09-2014, 06:58 PM   #14
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No surprise, but my phone doesn't ring at 3:00AM. I don't get hundreds of texts every night either. Actually Megacorp was very concerned about their ability to turn off all the texts, but I've never received 1, I am surprised by that.

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Your most pleasant surprise after retirement?
Old 11-12-2014, 11:38 AM   #15
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Your most pleasant surprise after retirement?

My biggest surprise is that I sleep better at night now that I am fire'd. The amount of stress in my life has decreased dramatically which helps me sleep peacefully through the night. No more waking up worrying about w*rk!




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Old 11-12-2014, 01:33 PM   #16
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I shouldn't post in this thread, or even read it, because I'm not RE yet (next May if things work out).

But you all are KILLING me with your great news! I am so envious

_B
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Old 11-12-2014, 03:15 PM   #17
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I still wake up around 5 and get up at 5:30 go into the LR, feed the cat and relax. I stay off email until 7. Used to upset my employees when they got a slew of emails first thing so I still stay on the internet until 10:30.
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Old 11-12-2014, 03:43 PM   #18
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I shouldn't post in this thread, or even read it, because I'm not RE yet (next May if things work out).

But you all are KILLING me with your great news! I am so envious

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I am lurking here so that I won't be surprised when I RE.
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Old 11-12-2014, 04:22 PM   #19
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Before I ER'ed, I came into this area of the forum to stay motivated. I was insanely envious of the posters. I hope I can serve the same purpose for aspiring early retiree's.

And yes, the quality of a nights sleep has improved a thousandfold!
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Old 11-12-2014, 04:50 PM   #20
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The other plus is that I now eat breakfast later, which then has me eating lunch later and dinner later---in essence I have dropped any evening snacking. The end result is I have lost about 10 pounds.

The downside is that I used to get up at 4:15 and was at the gym by 5 and done by 6. Now I wake up at 7 or 8 and my mindset is such that I think, damn I could be done with the gym by now but I still have to go! That will pass I think as I adjust to the new time but I have to admit it does cross my brain.
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