I wanted to write today

I found myself wanting to write today. This is something that hasn’t happened in a while. The catalyst was I happened to be washing dishes and my mind started wandering. This is something I picked up from my father. He would wash, I would dry back when we lived together. I may or may not have stuck myself a bit with a knife, which reminded me of a story for another day about washing dishes with my dad. But I digress.

The past two days I had 9 freshmen move in and the 9 returners will be arriving soon. They come from all over the country and world. They come to WV to be part of the legacy we are building with our squad.

I got an email from a recruit last night that had been weighing on my mind. I get ones like this all the time, but the player asked me if I would be interested in recruiting them but understood if not because some coach/person/friend/family member at some point told them they couldn’t play at the next level because of their (insert nonprototypical trait here).

When I am asked about coaching influences, I usually don’t list my dad, but he is as deserving if not more deserving than any coach in my life.

Before we moved from small town Bloomsburg to the regular sized town of Mechanicsburg PA, my dad coached me in soccer. A sport that he really knew nothing about. When we moved, it was too late for him to be a rec league coach so in 3rd grade I found myself playing for the first coach not to be my dad. It was a bad enough experience that I almost gave up the sport permanently.

Going into 4th grade, my dad took up his coaching ways again. Later in life I would go with him to what I will refer to as ‘the draft’. It was where all the rec league coaches came together. Each coach was allowed a number of keepers from their previous roster and then all remaining players were given a skill level out of 10. The coaches then drafted their teams for the upcoming year. My father hated this process, and wanted me to see it so I could understand. Kids reduced to a number. Something I now see all the time in recruiting.

But stepping back to that 4th grade soccer season. My dad drafted a team that was almost exclusively the neighborhood I lived in so we could have the experience of playing with our friends. If he would have had a draft card score on that, it would probably have been an F-.

Some of us would later become solid athletes, but at that time none of us were anything above average. If memory serves only two of those players went on to even play at the high school level, and none at the college level.

We went undefeated that year. Which isn’t the part I care about 20ish years later. I can still look back and see my dad yelling out Greek Machine when my defender made a good stop. Or Elmer as our other goalie brought down a shot. Placing a season clinching penalty kick into the feet of one of the few nonneighborhood kids on the team. My father showed me the power of positive motivation as a coach. By truly investing and believing in each athlete on the field he was able to make us into something no one would have believed we could have been: A championship team.

So today’s lesson from my father is What can you do today to help someone else become their best?

It’s 3am and I wanna go to beeeeeeed

Sadly no woman running through my head(OAR reference if you don’t get it)

Also a little past 3:00am but that is when I woke up, but after two hours of trying to get back to sleep it is game over.

So last night I returned from the Naval Academy where I finished up my last weekend of assistant coaching for Salem International University for this school year. In 3ish hours I will teach my Multicultural Literature class. Between those two things I ran 13.1 miles last night(why I can’t sleep, body is unhappy).

Between the 5 or so hours in a van, the 2 hours watching myself run in a window, and the last few hours of being awake I have had more time to think on my life than is usually good for me.

Many times when I start focusing on my life I can end up in a tail spin. I’m nearly 30 and most of the things I thought I would have completed five years ago I am still likely five years away from.

The past day though, this hasn’t been the case.

Things are good. Could they be better, yes, but they are good. And for me, that is pretty damn great.

I am coaching the two sports I love, getting to teach English, and have time to write. Things are good.

I have lost 20ish pounds since January.

I’m nearing the end of the first draft on my third book.

I am healthier than I have been in a long time.

I am making enough money that I don’t worry about money.

I am getting to travel.

Short of missing my dog every day I don’t have much to complain about these days.

I have enough and that is all I can ever ask for.

Now that I got the fingers warmed up, I’ve got some writing to do.

Those of you headed off to your 9-5s cheers to that cup of coffee, to those of you getting of your night shifts, bottoms up to that beer. To you other insomniacs, don’t forget to hydrate.

#237 Pain vs Brain

Survival Tip #237

Pain vs Brain

Besides being a writer, and poker fan, I also coach water polo and swimming. This is an observation I have made over the years of many athletes. The moment they start feeling pain their brain tells them they are working hard. Sadly, this is usually just the beginning of working, and it is far from hard.

Most people take that first sign of pain and feel like that should be their target excretion level, but we as human beings can push so far beyond that. I’m not advocating that while training for the Primal Age you should push yourself to injury, but you should test your limits. By testing your limits you will slowly push them farther and farther. Before you know it you might actually be working hard.

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