In one of our last posts, we talked heavily of the Offseason Mentality and how to avoid it. One of the major themes was to set your goals, track your progress, and to get others on board. Now I want to talk about the importance of looking back and actually giving a grade to your offseason.
It is ever so important- not only as athletes but as individuals to give an honest report to yourself to see how you did. By approaching each season of your life this way you will find added motivation. Whether you did poorly or you exceeded expectations the motivation from analyzing past performance will help you continue to push yourself.
Why is it Important to Train in the Offseason?
The famed Canadian comedian Jim Carrey once said, “If you’ve got talent, protect it”. All athletes aspiring to be great will have many different opponents to face. Time will always be your biggest battle. Your body will only allow so much “Time” on the court, your schedule will only allow you so much “time” to train. You and your body may even ask for “time” to rest.
What you will not have is more time. Keep in mind that if you are not constantly progressing as an athlete you are automatically regressing. To truly protect your talent, you must use it. Put your talent to the test, the more you do the better you will be.
“If you’ve got talent, protect it” -Jim Carrey
Coach, Does It Really Matter?
You might say “Coach I’m not tall enough to play Volleyball in college, why does it matter if I work out in the offseason.” Then I will emphatically tell you that it absolutely matters. Your ability to work hard in the offseason will be a testament to your character and ability to do hard things.
“Act as if what you do makes a difference. It Does” – William Jones
Successful athletes know that it does matter. What we spend our time and effort into in this life should be important. If not…then why do it in the first place? Put your best effort in now and see where it takes you.
The infamous Karch Kiraly was not the typical build as an Outside Hitter for the US Men’s National team, but his coach Doug Beal couldn’t cut him because of his effect on the court. In all their small group and large group practice games, Karch would always seem to find a way to win. It was his work ethic and contagious competitive drive that not only willed him onto the team but also brought home the 1984 Olympic Gold Medal for the USA.
“I attribute my success to this –I never gave or took any excuse.” –Florence Nightingale
Many of our athletes are young teenagers. Starting out your life with excuse after excuse will cripple your chance at future success. Learn how to avoid excuses now and become the person you REALLY want to be.
Understand the only thing stopping you is you? Do your very best and you’ll have no regrets. How can you? If you’ve spent every last drop of energy into your offseason and lose the State Championship game by 2 points in the final set…will you really be disappointed in your effort? Our RUSH Athletes are asked to put the work upfront. We want them to do their very best and let the score take care of itself. If they’ve put in the effort in beforehand they will be setting themselves up for success.
Take Time for a Personal Inventory
Now that we’ve explained How it is important to train in the offseason and to not make excuses for yourself we need to talk about how to really grade your offseason.
Step 1: Schedule out 15-20 minutes where you can be by yourself.
Step 2: Pull out your notebook of your offseason goals.
Step 3: Analyze your goals.
Ask yourself: What goals did I achieve? Which goals did I forget?
Step 4: Give a grade to each goal.
Whether is an A+/F scale, or a percentage based scale, make sure to thoughtfully and honestly give a grade to each of your goals.
Step 5: Transfer the OffSeason into new Preseason Goals.
Step 6: Create small simple steps to accomplish new Preseason Goals.
Step 7: Tell a friend
Understand that there will be times in your life when you don’t achieve a goal that you have set out to accomplish. That is okay, but let’s make sure we still get the goal done. “When it is obvious that the goals cannot be reached, don’t adjust the goals, adjust the action steps” –Confucius.
It’s not Failure, its Priorities.
For young athletes who are unable to achieve a goal may feel like they have failed. Failure Mentality is poisonous to athletes. Understand that failing to reach a goal is not an actual failure. You did not fail if you did not put any effort into the goal. It is more of an issue with your priorities than with you as a person or with the difficulty of your goal.
Rethink your goals and find a series of new steps that you can accomplish your goal. Add dates and times to check on your progress. You can even set a phone alert to remind yourself about your goal! –talk about tech savvy!
As athletes, we must understand that there are no shortcuts to success! Being an Athlete is tough. Deal with it! It’s okay for things to be difficult in life! If everyone just had to show up to the National Championship to receive the trophy, then it wouldn’t be something we strive for! Find joy in the journey and make it yours!