You’re so vain, you probably think this song is about you…
You’re so vain, I’ll bet you think this song is about you,
Don’t you? Don’t You? – Carly Simon

About a week ago I posted this picture on my personal Facebook page. I ran my second 5K and was proud about not only finishing, but running it faster then I did in my first 5K at the end of 2012.

I got a ton of “likes” and many positive comments…friends saying they were proud of me, that it was a pretty cool picture (I mean it is, really – it looks like I’m flying, come on?!!!) a couple of funny comments about the tall guy behind me (or was he just normal size because you know – I AM very short!) some sweet notes about how I look so much better and a couple comments from people that said I was an inspiration.

An inspiration.

I am always SO grateful for the nice comments that I get from folks…they literally fuel me and keep me going..working towards keeping my health and fitness a forever focus, not just a passing fancy. But an inspiration? No way. I mean, how could I possibly inspire someone else when I STILL struggle myself so much? While exercise has become part of my life…I know that I have to keep setting goals to keep me in the game.

And eating right. Sigh.

It’s a daily challenge.

Someone recently told me that they thought posting photos on Facebook was really vain. They weren’t talking about me specifically, but just the practice of putting up cute photos of your kids, your fabulous vacations, yourself having fun…that it was all so self-serving.

I can understand that perspective (although if it weren’t for Facebook the last photo of me and the kids my grandmother in New York probably would have seen would have been from 5 years ago!) but I thought about the folks that told me recently that my photo was inspiring.

And then I thought about all the people on Facebook that have inspired me. Most don’t have a clue, but there are many people that have given me inspiration on my journey through their own posts.

  • Friends who have recently lost weight, have run marathons to raise money for those who are battling cancer or who have made fitness a part of their life for years.
  • People who share healthy recipes or ideas about exercise programs that have worked for them.
  • Folks whose status updates include new jobs or promotions where they are teaching fitness classes or leading workshops that help others feel good about themselves.
  • And yes, even photos of people on vacation, hiking or riding bikes with their kids, playing in the ocean…camping. They inspire me because they are out there doing what they love, being active and having fun.

(It was you, wasn’t it?! Thank you!)

So, yeah. I’m kinda proud that I have come a long way since last year. That my hard work has paid off and that I was able to run a 5K and look stronger than I have in a long time. Because a year ago I wouldn’t have been able to even think about running down the street much less three miles. And I would have laughed at the craziness of what my short-term goals are today….running a 10K next month, doing a sprint triathlon in August and running a half-marathon next year.

But if posting my photo helps others get out there and work towards their goal…to make their health a priority and to trust that they have the power and strength to overcome challenges (YOU can, you know!) – then I’m kinda ok if some people think I’m vain.

Because just like I was inspired by others….someone else was inspired by ME!

And that is just about the coolest thing ever.



  1. 1
    Michelle C says:

    I love that picture of you! Thank you for being an inspiration to me and glad I could return the favor too. 🙂 I’m running a half in November and it is amazing that running a 5k now doesn’t even sound like a big deal. What a difference a year makes for both of us, huh?

  2. 2
    tess says:

    that picture is so awesome! you are wonderful! i gotta ask you- b/c i am trying to lose weight and im just starting my journey- well actually one that i want to stick with this time…what kind of action plan did you follow for eating-while trying to lose weight? i need help as to which plan to follow..any help would be appreciated….tcogbill at live dot com

    i still miss Sea World!

    • 2.1
      Jennifer Patrick says:

      Tess, I’m going to email you directly but for the benefit of all readers wanted to say that I followed the Weight Watchers plan and was very successful in achieving my goals. There are many plans out there and different ones work for different people. I personally have tried many and WW seems to be the best fit because I don’t like to eliminate any one food group completely from my diet. Congratulations on your decision to start and stick with a plan. That’s half the battle and I KNOW YOU CAN DO IT!

      Regarding SeaWorld – I know, I miss it too! But I’ve been selected as an ambassador again this year and will be blogging about what’s new and exciting. And I hope to have other goodies to share! 🙂 Hugs to you!!

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