Surviving the Grind – Part II

By Jonathan Massey –

 

What a whirlwind month it has been. So far in past 30 days we’ve had three Elite Pitcher’s Boot Camps, one Alumni Boot Camp and five weeks of Summer Program.  All in all the TBR Staff has worked for 32 straight days.

Yes, you read that correctly.  The TBR Staff has been at it for 32 straight days.

Most people who hear that are like “Woah, how are earth do you do that?” And typically I would respond with a joke about not having any decision making power on the schedule.

But after finally having a day off, I had a chance to really think about how I was able to grind out the last month. The more I thought about it the more I realize there was valuable insight here because no matter what, at some point in your baseball career the process is going to feel like a grind.

1st Lesson learned– You have to have a lot of passion for what you are doing.  I get to wake up every morning and work with kids who want to get better.  For me, it doesn’t get much better than that. If I didn’t truly love what I did every day then there would be no chance that I would be able to work for 32 straight days.

That being said, if you want to become the best player you have to love the grind.  Your passion and love for the being the best will get through the tough times.

2nd Lesson learned-Break things down.  During the past 32 days it wasn’t uncommon for me to get behind in my every day office work.  And without the opportunity to use the weekend to catch up, I quite often felt overwhelmed.  To overcome this feeling I would sit down and write down each task I needed to accomplish. T hen I would set out to finish each task one at time.

Now how does this apply to pitchers?  Well when I transferred back home to train full time, I was a 79-81 mph pitcher, who threw 50 percent strikes on a good day, and non-existent 3rd pitch.  Obviously staring up at that mountain I had to climb could have left me paralyzed.  What I did was make a chart of how much a needed to improve to reach my goal.  When I broke it down over the course of a year I believe my numbers came out to be very manageable this turned a mountain into just a series of hills.  

So for those of you out there staring up at mountain, whether it be velocity, command, or mechanical efficiency, break it down into small tasks and go out accomplish each task.  

3rd Lesson learned-Fake it till you become it.  During those 32 days, there were some days where for whatever reason I did not feel good; usually had to do with not getting enough sleep the night before.  But if I coached the way I felt then wouldn’t be a very good coach.  I had to act differently than the way I felt.  And what I found out was then when I faked it for long enough, I actually felt better.

Often I see guys walk in and I can immediately tell they aren’t at 100 percent and then they let that affect their workouts.  Which often led them to getting very little out of their training.  If you are going to become the best you can be then you can not afford to waste days.  So  on days you don’t feel good, fake like you do, and I promise you’ll be surprised about quickly your day can turn around. 

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