I expended all my energies eking out a bare living.
Advanced English Dictionary
+verb [VN] ~ sth (in / on sb) ~ sth (in / on / doing sth) (formal) to use or spend a lot of time, money, energy, etc: She expended all her efforts on the care of home and children. + Smith had expended large sums in pursuing his claim through the court. + Most animals expend a lot of energy searching for food.
Random quote: The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.: Eleanor Roosevelt