As athletes we learn plenty of lessons. We learn how to play the games we love, but the game also ends up teaching us plenty of life lessons during the process. Coaches will always teach us the basics of our game (running, jumping, throwing, etc.) However there are some rules that I wish my coach would have taught me that would have carried me much further within my sport and matured me for life itself.
1. The road less traveled reaps the reward
Don’t get me wrong every so often you need to go out meet up with people you care about and enjoy a night out. However through high school, college and even the “young adult” years the status quo is to work hard and play even harder. If my coach could have shown me the outcome of that extra training session, those extra reps, and skipping the party scene some nights to rest and become a better athlete, I could have had been further along with my athletics.
2. Sell yourself don’t sit back
In life you have to sell yourself. Sell yourself as a business person, sell yourself as an athlete, or just sell yourself as a person. It is never a bad idea to put your image on the radar of a potential coach, employee, or person of interest within your life. Yes, if you’re a great enough athlete in school, professional teams will find you; however if you put yourself on their radar early then they have the ability to see you even sooner and speeding up the process of your goals.
3. Fuel yourself physically and mentally
Dieting and working out are very important to an athlete, that pretty much goes without saying. However you need to be prepared mentally for everything in life. You must, “Know Your Why”. Without having a reason in life for everything you’re working on your goals become hollow. Hollow goals end up as incomplete goals because you’re not properly motivated. Find “your why” even if others don’t agree with “your why” because at the end of the day, it’s what is needed to properly fuel you mentally.
4. Pain is temporary
As an athlete we have all felt that pain on trying to do one more squat, kick out one more bench press, and even ran on emptying sprinting down a field. The thing is that pain is TEMPORARY and the end goal of one more rep, one more time is of the utmost importance. At any point when you stop training, there’s someone out there training for the same goal and getting ready to surpass you if needed. So put everything you have into that last sprint, last bench press repetition and make sure to keep your competitors far behind you.
5. Life hits hard at the worst times but always stand back up
Life is hard. There is no way around that, and it always seems like when it rains it pours. Well, those moments build character, those are the moments that help form you into a mature man/woman. And they always seem come in the darkest of moments because that’s when your true character is tested. So don’t give up, instead power through that dark moment and come out the victory and a stronger person.
6. All workout programs should involve the big four
As an athlete I would read every magazine, go to every fitness blog, and even take the fitness advice of the really ripped guy in my gym to find unique ways to get a leg up on my competition. Here is my advice to you, you don’t need those crazy movements! Base your program off the big four (Squat, Deadlift, Bench Press, Shoulder Press) and reap the fitness rewards. You can always add in extra work but the programs that are rooted in these four movements will always be the most successful.
7. Create the ripple effect
This is a life lesson on and off the field. Create a ripple effect within life, this means be a good person. In fact don’t be a good person be a GREAT person. Become the athlete who leads by example on and off the field. People will notice and they will respect you. They will also start to follow you and you can create a movement, or ripple effect that has a positive change in the world.At the end of the day our jobs as athletes only take up so much of our day, however we are human beings every hour of every day. Let’s create a positive vibe in our world so that others can create a positive vibe in their world.