It's no surprise that around here, we love athletes.  ALL athletes.  From beginners to experts, each one holds a special place in our hearts.


But, with Coach Mike's background, high school athletes are in a very unique and special time in their lives.  Ready to take on their next challenge, high school is the time to grow and nurture the craft that is their sport.  To inspire to go to the next level, to train harder than ever before and to have the world at their fingertips.


And, with the goal of moving to the next level, comes hard work.  Dedication and commitment.  Blood, sweat and tears.  Literally.


Moving forward in your sport after high school doesn't come by luck or happenstance.


It comes by laser focus and training.
It comes by sacrifices and celebrations.
It comes by working hard when you're tired.


It comes when you believe in your soul, mind, and spirit that you are destined to up-level and continue on your path of greatness by showing the world what you're made of.


So, what happens when season starts?  You spent the entire pre-season training and working your tail off.  You went in to the start of the season with a plan to be the best of the best.  But, in the midst of a new schedule and practices and games to work around, it's easy to let your pre-season training slowly drift into the background.


Today, Coach Mike is giving you three reasons why it is so important to keep your personal training going even when you are in the midst of season schedule craziness.  

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1.  Prevent injuries.

With the specialty programs we use at DAP, injury prevention is our number one goal.  So many athletes focus on maxing out reps and weights, in an effort to gain strength and bulk up, without correcting their form in the process.  If you spend the entire season using wrong movements or body positioning, you're setting yourself up for automatic failure.  Yes, it may be tiring to add extra training to your already packed-out schedule, but what's more important?  Being tired and correcting your form or incorrectly using your body throughout the entire season and spending your off-season correcting your form when you could be focusing on amping up your speed and strength preparing for next year?


Make the necessary corrections now before it's too late and you're benched because of an injury you had the ability to prevent.


2.  Maintain strength.


During the season, you're breaking your body down with the effort and strength you're using to compete.  Because of this, it's essential to your growth to continue lifting weights to maintain the weight you worked so hard to earn during the off-season.


It's really easy to say "I'm tired, I don't want to lift weights."  And, while you're legitimately worn out at the end of the week, continuously putting off your training will leave you with where you started at the beginning of your previous off-season training.  In other words, your goal should be to maintain the strength you worked for in the off-season to accommodate for the strength you utilize during the season's sport schedule.  If you put training on the back-burner, your body is using all of the strength up and leaving you starting over at the end of the season.


3.  Active recovery.


Beating your body down during the competition and practices happens naturally.  And, ultimately, lactic acid can build-up in your body when you're not dedicated to the recovery process, which leads to you not performing at your ultimate peak.  Focusing on the competition of your sport doesn't give your body time to heal properly, which is unfortunately, a primary culprit when dealing with unnecessary injuries.  


With an active recovery plan in place, you have the ability to maintain your flexibility and mobility throughout your season.  If you don't allow your body to recover from the work it puts in during the week, you are hindering your flexibility from doing it's best and therefore, putting yourself at more of a risk for injuries.


Here's the thing, adding additional training to your already booked-out schedule is a strength, not a weakness.  You can be tired and you can be worn out.  That's a natural part of the season's process.


But, if you can imagine yourself in the playoff game.  Both teams are driving for the win, both teams are tired, both teams are ready to complete their game of competition.  But, here's where the difference comes in.  They're ready to be done.  They've put in more effort than ever before.  And, all you can think about is how great you feel considering the amount of dedication and strength you just put in.


Your last work-out was two days ago.
Their last work-out was two months ago during the off-season.


You are able to embrace the mindset that you are strong.  Knowing that your body was prepared for this and ready for any challenge set forth in its path.  You are here for a reason and you are ready to become a champion.


While this isn't an everyday situation, it is a mentality shift that training gives you the confidence to achieve.


Anyone can step up to a championship game.
Anyone can show up to bring their team to victory.


But, can everyone feel good in the process?


The simple answer is "no."  That's where true athletes lie.  The ones who want to go to the next level.  To bring about a career that their heart desires.


It starts with commitment and it starts with a level of focus that goes above and beyond the average training schedule.  To look back and see where you were able to outshine others will not only encourage your motivation to get to the next level, it will remind of you of where you've been and where you're going.


It's what sets you apart from "average" and truly makes you a champion.

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