Happy New Year! It is finally 2014! I have been looking forward to the beginning of a new year for quite some time, and now that it’s here…what do I do?? We spent the last few hours of the year at a house party with friends, lots of tasty snacks and adult beverages.
I’ve really enjoyed reading so many other bloggers’ recaps of 2013 and their resolutions for 2014. I’ve already written my recap of 2013, and I’ve shared my general running goals moving forward, but what are my New Year’s Resolutions?
Honestly, I’m still terrified that I will get injured again. I’ve been through so much between my knees and feet and I don’t think I can take anymore setbacks. But there are a lot of things I’d like to do with regards to running that I can definitely achieve in 2014:
- Keep going to Boot Camp and Core and More Classes. Boot Camp has always been great for strength training, and this is key for injury prevention.
- Increase frequency of hip strengthening and balance exercises. I have been slacking a bit with the hip work. I’ve noticed my balance since leaving PT has declined, so I need to find exercises to get back on track.
- Continue using the Nike Training Club App. It’s awesome! I don’t have all of the equipment required but it’s really easy to use and works great.
- Get more involved with Black Girls Run. I have gone to a few of their events in 2013 and they’ve all been great! I just need to break out of my shell and start joining them for runs in my neighborhood.
- Volunteer at a race. I’ve participated in a lot of races, and I see how much work it involves to get everything together. I love the running community and I think it would be great to volunteer at a race. Which race? I don’t know yet!
- Complete the ALA Fight for Air Century Climb in 25 minutes. I have done this 50 flight stair climbing race 4 times. My best time was in 2012 with 10:12. But last year, I had that pesky boot so I volunteered instead. To redeem myself this year and add a challenge, I’m doing 100 floors. Time to start training!
- Complete a 5K, 10K and a half marathon by the end of the year. I know I can run a 5K at any time, but I need to figure out when the latter races will take place. I seem to be cursed by the 10K, since both times that I signed up for one I had to bail because of injury. I hope the curse breaks this year! I am also considering doing the Rock and Roll Philadelphia Half Marathon in September, since it was my best race ever. But we’ll see.
- Work out more with my boyfriend and complete a race together. I think a lot of time, support starts at home. We run together sometimes, but I think we’d be more productive with our goals if we worked as a team.
- Get started with a coach by February. I’ve mentioned that I’m on the hunt for a running coach. I found a couple of resources but I haven’t contacted anyone yet. I’d really like to get started as soon as possible so I can have some structure moving forward. While I’d like to run 3 times a week, I work best with a true training plan. We’ll see how it goes!
I am so happy with the progress that I’ve made in the past year. I’ve learned a lot about nutrition and I’ve erased a lot of bad habits like getting fast food for breakfast or lunch and not eating a balanced diet. I have a few resolutions for this year.
- Continue working with Danielle, my dietitian. She has been key to keeping me on track and I continue to learn more good things. We’ve got our next appointment at the end of the month!
- Go to Reading Terminal Market for high-quality meat, cheese and produce. We went a couple of times last year and really loved it. And the prices are very reasonable. We need to go more often!
- Start prepping meals for the week. It has to be done. The day-to-day argument at dinnertime of who’s cooking and what is getting old. We should at least figure out a menu for the week. This will also help me avoid temptation since I’ll be eating good food every day!
- Follow more food blogs. I love the way they make recipes seem less intimidating! It’s a great resource and very inspiring! I’m tired of saying “I wish” I could make that, I’m going to just do it!
So I don’t think I’ve ever mentioned what I do for a living. I’m a chemical and environmental engineer and I work in a natural gas plant. I work within operations, and I’m also involved with waste management and monitoring environmental compliance within the Plant. I just got my Master’s in Water Resources and Environmental Engineering from Villanova this year, so I want to continue to step things up in the right direction with big career goals!
- Obtain my Professional Engineering (PE) license. This is the biggest goal of the year. I will take the Principles and Practice of Engineering Exam on October 24. I have to start preparing the application soon so that I can register for the exam, and then I will be studying for several months! The Environmental exam currently has a 63% pass rate, so my goal is simply to pass the first time. When I get the PE, so many doors will open for me!
- Broaden my professional networks, especially with women and Penn. Last year I read The Stiletto Network and it opened my eyes that I need to connect with more women! As an engineer, I’m used to being in the “man’s world”, so it’s refreshing to get together and share experiences with other women, in addition to spark new ideas. I really want to step it up this year. Additionally, I’m an alum of the University of Pennsylvania. I have an amazing network at my fingertips and I really want to get more involved with the community and get to know more people.
- Find a mentor in my field. I have been fortunate to have a lot of mentors at my company, including a few VP’s and directors. But I still don’t have a go-to person in the environmental industry. I really need to find someone this year, that can guide me on this winding path that I’ve been riding these past few years!
- Get back to playing the clarinet. I first started playing when I was 9, and it is my absolute heart. I was a band nerd and have played to some extent in every school that I’ve attended, even grad school. I’m thinking about joining the Philadelphia Freedom Band…and I can always pick up and play with the Penn Band at a basketball game as an “old alum”.
- Develop and implement a mentor program. I am currently the Student Outreach Chair for the Philadelphia Professionals Chapter of the National Society of Black Engineers. I have had a great time connecting with the college students, and I want to initiate a mentor program between junior and senior students and engineering professionals.
- Spend more time with my family. Last year, I think we became a lot closer. I want to be a better daughter, sister, and auntie. I want us to have even more fun-filled memories this year.
- Entertain and host more gatherings at home. Now that I’m not in a one bedroom apartment, I love throwing parties! We had a housewarming, a birthday party, football marathon, and Thanksgiving. Let’s keep them coming!
- Get a kitty! I just really want one!
- Don’t worry about what others think of me. This is always a struggle. I guess it’s a matter of knowing what I can and cannot control. I can only control how I react to things. There have been too many things and people in my life that I have allowed to give me anxiety. If someone says something to me that I don’t like, I get upset…and I can’t let it go. And usually it’s just complete nonsense and a waste of my time and energy. I know that I am a good person and I just try to do the right thing. And all I can be is me, Janelle! That’s what matters!
Run With No Regrets
Starting RWNR has really been a blessing for me. I love writing and I love learning and growing through this outlet! I have several goals for the blog this year. This has started as a hobby, but now it’s more of a healthy addiction. I’d really love to take things to the next level!
- Post more frequently! I started RWNR in July and I believe this will be my 31st post. Since there are 365 days in a year, and I’d like to blog at least 3 days a week, I’ll set a goal for 150 posts in 2014. I am more about quality over quantity, but this guideline will help!
- Participate in more link ups. Link ups have been instrumental in gaining an audience at RWNR. Thank you for all the comment love! The link ups will also help me to organize my content and get to know other bloggers!
- Write product reviews. I really want to write reviews for items that I enjoy using. I will definitely write about the Nike Plus GPS watch that I got for Christmas, and I’ve got an upcoming order of Bulu Box that I can’t wait to get my hands on! Hopefully these reviews will be helpful for you!
- Become more active on Twitter. I love Twitter, but it can be really hard to follow. I need to improve my communications with it. I share a lot of links, but I want to have more quality conversations. I’ve gained a lot of great followers and I want to get to know them better! (Hit me up @Janelle_RWNR)
New Year’s Resolutions are a little corny, but I like them because they help me to strategize for the year ahead. The New Year is a chance for me to reset, to turn a new leaf, and the continue being thankful for all I have. Having the blog is great, because I can always look back and see what I said I would do!
What are your New Year’s Resolutions, and how long do you think they will stick?