I’m all about bringing light to certain topics that just aren’t discussed all that much. Today being the importance of having an actual plan with what you want to accomplish. Look, it’s easy for any individual to say that they want to be a Major League Baseball Player or and astronaut for that matter. But it’s the “how” are you going to get there is what I want to talk about today. I have plenty of people who tell me they want to be where I am one day, that they want to be a professional baseball player and the first thing I say is obviously that’s awesome. First thing you gotta dream big and you have to believe that you can achieve that dream. Secondly is you have to develop a plan that will give you the best chance at seeing that dream come to fruition. After I acknowledge that I love the persons ability to dream I will ask, “how are you going to do that?” Then comes the questioning.. the long pauses.. and the unsure. Anyone can have the dream. Successful people will have a dream AND the blueprint to that dream! Lets dive in..
When it comes to creating a plan you first have to understand that this plan will come with a lot of trial and error. It’s like writing a rough draft for an essay.. it sure as heck ain’t going to come out A+ material.. unless you’re a Stanford or Harvard dude then you probably just breathe excellence everyday. Anyways, besides the point. Any good plan has to be well thought out and experimented with. First we take the dream.. we understand the end goal right? We all want to compete at the highest level and we want to succeed at the highest level. Now it’s the stuff in the middle that we will need to endure to get there. Start to get a feel for certain things that you respond to positively. For example if you develop a plan that involves a ton of heavy lifting during the baseball season and you just can’t seem to feel energized at 7 pm when the game starts then you might want to reconsider this plan of yours. Developing a plan is tailored to best fit YOU! The reason I just yelled that is because everyone is going to be different. Athletes will respond differently to certain things. A personal example of this is one particular off season I switched up my plan.. I decided that in order for me to be successful I was going to have to cut out my long toss throwing program, focus more on flat ground/bullpens, run very little, lift very heavy, and crush as many protein shakes as possible. This ended up being the very worst thing for me personally. I didn’t feel good on the mound, lost velocity, couldn’t repeat mechanics and led to my release with Pittsburgh. But it also gave me the realization that I need to do things that suit my needs and allow me to feel athletic and able to repeat my mechanics.
You are probably wondering, “Well where do I even start?” Good question haha. I like to start with a typical blueprint that includes training all aspects of the game.. and not just showing up at 7 and hoping for the best.. and not just practicing for the 2 hour window our coach has for us. If you want to be great.. you will have to train greatly. Plan out your days. It starts in the morning. What can you do in the morning to get your day going in the right direction? How can you use your time to better yourself whether it be physical or mental?
I like to spend a few minutes to myself in the morning being grateful… clear the mind.. understand what you have to do to better yourself in that particular day. Practice clearing the mind.. practice visualization of you competing at the highest level and see yourself succeeding!
Move then to the physical side of things. What is the workout today? What mobility exercises should I focus on to get the most out of myself on the field? What is the goal for the current season? Hammer the training exercises in the weight room.. be in good shape.. it’s a product of what you see on the field! It all goes into it. Find things your body responds to positively and hammer those. If you really don’t have a clue then find me on one of my social media platforms and I will try to personally help you out!
Then move to the ball field. What certain things can you work on that particular day? Remember, don’t overwhelm yourself with a million things to work on in one day. You will find that you won’t get anything accomplished if you are trying to hammer 1000 different things at once. Pick certain things out. Maybe take a few extra backhand ground balls, track some balls in the outfield, spend a few extra minutes on your flat ground focusing on 0-0 breaking balls, work on holding the ball for 3 seconds then delivering a throw to your catch partner. Do these things with game intensity in mind. Remember that dream you have? Stick to that.. remember that dream when it’s 100 degrees out and your on a turf field with your feet literally on fire because it’s all part of it my dudes.
Not done yet. We just went through a lot right? Maybe a little physically exhausted and mentally drained? Oh yea, that’s part of it too. Remember your dream consist of a grueling 162 game season plus spring training and postseason! So lets recover from the day to prepare for the next day! Find some recovery tools that work for you. Again, this is all suppose to be tailored to YOU! Some low intensity walking or cardio machine. Light movement patterns/corrective exercises. Even go so far to mentally recover. Take a few minutes to go over the day and find things that you wish you would of done a little better or spent a little more time on. Don’t dwell too heavy on the negatives of the day. Realize that they WILL happen! Understand why they happened and better yourself from having gone through them. At the end of the night take a shower.. wash it all off.. insert the corny rinse and repeat phrase. Make the necessary adjustments to your plan if need be. Don’t get too high or too low. If you can keep your baseball career a real lousy roller coaster then you’re doing something good. (If you understood that analogy please let me know!) Remember the definition of insanity is doing something over and over again expecting different results. Remember that when it comes to your plan making.
Just before you pass off into dream land remember that dream once more. You have the dream.. you are establishing a plan to make the dream a reality.. what can stop you now? The answer is nothing.. get to work young buck, you got dreams to chase.