The 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi will begin in 189 days. Athletes have been training for years and are now entering the final stretch. For winter athletes, summer is not as much vacation time as it is hard-core training time; just because there is no snow or ice, doesn’t mean there is no work to be done! They say that Summer Olympics medals are won or lost in January – and so it is that Winter Olympic medals are being won and lost right now. Many winter athletes are about to start the transition from their summer season of planning, conditioning and high volume training to a season of travelling, on-snow/ice training and competition. Olympic years feel like very long years for those involved.
For all of us – regardless of the task or level; in sport, business, education, arts, etc. – transitioning from a preparation phase to a test phase can be …’dangerous’. The routine of preparation for a big specific goal is usually methodical and includes many checks and balances; proper task assessment, warm ups and cool downs. Similarly, competition and test phases have their own routine packed with preparation, imagery, rehearsal and assessment. It is the in-between time, which allows for recovery and regeneration – a breath!-, when our relaxed level of focus can lead to sloppy errors, mistakes or injuries. This month – I wrote a little reminder to those preparing for the Sochi Olympics that while they go through their transition – that now is not the time for a set back – they may want to bubble wrap themselves for a bit.
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This month I’m re-purposing a popular message that I wrote for the athletes prep’ing for the London Olympics. It has to do with living your life – but not being reckless – your Olympics are just around the corner, so continue to be smart.
To be sure – one thing I have learned being a mentor to both summer and winter athletes is that most winter athletes go a lot faster, deal with way higher acute risk factors and as such – have a much different take on adrenaline. That said, everyone has dreams, performance-stress and … from time to time, a natural instinct to want to blow off a bit of steam… when you do – Continue reading