6 Months and 10 Pounds Later…

goal

It’s time to get back into the swing of things with eating healthy and being good to my body through activity. It has been a long cold winter that’s been a big setback especially since I am signed up for the Spring Lake 5 miler in 32 days. Eeek!

No worries though because a goal without a plan is just a wish and I have a plan! My plan is to keep those amazing Boston Marathoners from yesterday in my mind. There were survivors of the attacks that crossed the finish line, others in their 60’s – 80’s, and who can leave out “Rudy” Sean Astin?

How can I possibly say I can’t do a 5 miler when these amazing, inspiring and strong-minded individuals who have more reason than me to not finish, have completed a marathon?!

My other plan is to be prepared! This morning I put out my clothes for later today despite my dog’s unhappiness that he’ll lose me for an hour.

 running clothes

Wish me luck!

Change of Scenery

change of scenery

I have a friend at work who I confide in about my work and life challenges.  Every few weeks she tells me that I need a change of scenery.  It seems like a simple suggestion but then my brain goes into overdrive…

A change of scenery could mean two things: changing jobs or moving away.  The moving away part seems to cross my mind more often lately but that’s a major change that I don’t know I’m willing to make.  I have my family and friends in the tri-state area that I couldn’t live without.

Sure, I make friends everywhere I go, but moving states away?  Is a big move like that worth leaving those important people behind?  The thought of that brings on anxiety and fear but could it be worth it in the long run?

I need to hear from people who have made big changes like this.  Was it worth it?  Were you so terrified of that change but laughed at it later on?  Was it a huge mistake?  I need your help because this girl needs a change!

 

Spring Lake 5

Spring Lake 5

It’s Sunday morning and a few minutes past 5am.  I remember that Spring Lake 5 registration had just started so I jump on my computer to sign up.  How exciting would it be to have a low bib number?  Isn’t that all runner’s goal when registering or maybe it’s just me!

Registration was a breeze but yet I’m still awake.  I have to admit, it kind of feels like Christmas morning.  The memories of last year’s race floods my mind.  The experience was incredible: locals cheering us on at each step; banners waving in the crowds; running down streets that bring back childhood memories.  These thoughts make me feel happy!

spring lake 5 crowd spring lake 5 cheerleaders spring lake 5 finish line

What seems to be a little race registration task is helping me get my running motivation back.  Thank God!  The last few months I haven’t wanted to do anything which is out of the norm for me. People tell me it’s the weather but I think I’ve been in a funk!

I have a plan brewing of what I’m going to do to change this funk so stay tuned!  Now I’m off to plan on Spring Lake 5 outfit!!

Validation: Are We Better Without It?

validation quote

According to dictionary.com validation means to give approval or confirmation.  To me it means seeking approval from others around me which is super self-destructive not to mention completely exhausting!

Throughout my life I can pinpoint times when I wanted validation from family, friends, teachers, bosses and co-workers.  I was the kid who second guessed herself with EVERYTHING whether it be homework, play auditions, softball, basketball, tennis. I was the girlfriend who wanted to be cool and prove how smart, funny and easy-going I am.  I was the employee that went above and beyond to prove myself to superiors to get recognized while others passed me by.  I am a self-sabotager!

I have sabotaged myself in so many situations by second guessing if I was good enough.  I am here to say I am reformed!  Maybe not completely but it is a work in progress.

I have decided to stop putting energy into proving myself, second guessing myself and generally caring what others think.  As the quote says above: The only permission, the only validation, and the only opinion that matters in our quest for greatness is our own.  

As long as we do the right thing by being good people, isn’t that enough?  And if it’s not enough for a friendship, relationship or a job, it’s probably not going to have a future.

I’m curious to know other people’s thoughts on this topic.  Do you think it’s a girl thing?  Is it a Liz thing or do you feel the same?  Your feedback is welcome!

 

 

2015 Improvements

New Year 2015

I don’t know about you but I hate setting a New Year’s Resolution!  I have always felt that we don’t need the end of the year to reflect on the past and make changes in the future because it can be done everyday.  However, I will indulge you with my thoughts on how I want to improve in 2015….

Saying Yes

Saying yes to things outside of your comfort zone can be scary and rewarding.  I’m going to take more chances in hopes for larger rewards.

Saying No

Saying no to things you don’t want to do just makes you unhappy.  Don’t get me wrong, there are obligations we don’t want to do but they are the right thing.  I’m going to say no to things and be ok with my decision.

Taking Care of my Body

Being a healthier person is important for our overall happiness.  I’m not perfect and put on a couple of pounds this Holiday Season but as long I am conscious of what I need to feel good that is ok for me.

Slowing Down and Being More Thoughtful

A few times this year I have been faced with many work challenges and changes.  In an effort to prove that I can handle it all, I had compromised my responsiblity to be strategic.  This year I will be slowing down, thinking clearly about the down stream effects and best solutions.

Cooking More

I am a good cook and rarely do it because it’s easier to just pick up food for one!  I am going to make a bigger effort to cook new things at a reasonable price and in a healthy way.

So, in my last post of the year, I encourage you to look back on the last year.  Applaud yourself fo your accomplishments, recognize your failures, pick yourself up and move into the new year in a positive way.  Who knows, changing ourselves could yield bigger changes around us.

Happy New Year to you!

Spasiba 2014!

In honor of #tbt I took a look back on 2014 and laughed and smiled at all the things I have done.  I have met new friends, strengthened others and completed some goals!  Here are just some of my main squeezes…

friends

2014 started out pretty amazing as I celebrated my 35th birthday with important friends and family.  For those of you who closed down the bar with us, the party didn’t stop there (Neptune ballet)…  Who knew I would meet a new friend there and would have many memories throughout the year (ahem, Bar A in AC, Irish car bombs, etc etc)

liz knipper friends

The Spring brought on awesome outings with new said friends as well as a great trips with my Mom.  The first was up to the city to visit my bro on St. Patrick’s Day.  My first time at the parade and at The Tonight Show.  If you have an opportunity to do these things – do it!  You won’t regret it!

st patricks day

We also traveled to Miami to visit my family.  I had an awesome visit with my cousin who gave me a tour of the upper Keys via boat bar hopping – the best method!

keys

Memorial Day Weekend was also a start to a big goal of mine; to complete the Jersey Shore Golden Grand Prix (running five specific races over the summer).  During this time I completed two 5-milers and three 5Ks.  My favorite was the Spring Lake 5.  The crowd was awesome and the weather was perfect.

spring lake 5 finish line

As the summer came to a close my family and I were off to the beautiful state of Colorado to celebrate my cousin’s wedding at 11k+ feet on Keystone Mountain.  It was one of the most beautiful places I have ever seen and to celebrate two people who make each other very happy was the icing on the cake.  The Rocky Mountains were crazy cool – GO!

pat staceyrocky mountains 2014
The cold weather started to close in which meant it was time to get out of Jersey.  My travel buddy and I took an amazing trip to Punta Cana where we had the time of our lives.  We met great new friends from Latvia, Newark and Pittsburgh!  I wonder what we’ll do next year!

saona island 1pc 1

 

Lastly, and most importantly, we celebrated my Grandmother’s 94th birthday.  How lucky are we that my Grandmother is not only still with us to celebrate the holidays but she’s sharp, funny and is still able to live on her own.  We had a great day with all the grandkids to celebrate how much we love her!  Nine grandkids and four greats – amazing!

gma 94

 

Looking back on all of these amazing memories makes me wonder if 2015 will top it.  Who knows what goals I will create but as long as I have these good people around me I say YES!  Wishing you all the best in 2015 – hope to see you out there! Nostrovia!

Another Year Without You Here

    spring lake park

Another year has passed without Sean.  19 years ago today, the age he was when he passed.  It seems like a long time ago but time has passed too quickly.  Some days I think of him a lot and others I feel guilt for not thinking of him more.  Wishing he were here to celebrate the good times, the holidays and to help me get through those tough moments.  In the last year he has missed birthdays, getting to meet my brother’s girlfriend, an amazing family trip to our cousin’s wedding in Colorado, Connor’s first birthday, grandma’s 94th surprise brunch and countless other family events.

To be honest, this is the most difficult blog of the year.  Usually it takes me maybe 30 minutes to write a blog but with this I started it last Thursday, revisited it Sunday and finally finished today.  In the last few years I have found great comfort and a sense of purpose by working with the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.  Participating in their local walks to raise awareness and support has proven to me that I’m not alone.

Keeping in touch with Sean’s friends is also cathartic.  The messages I receive with their memories of him make me laugh because he was funny and make me cry because I miss him.  If I can help raise money to bring awareness and support so no one else has to experience this makes me happy.  Please consider donating to this great organization by clicking here.

beach kevin

christmas familybradley beach

christmas gma mary