Courtney Thompson #17 of the United States sets the ball as Prisilla Altagracia Rivera Brens #14 of the Dominican Republic watches during Women's Volleyball quarterfinals on Day 11 of the London 2012 Olympic Games at Earls Court on August 7, 2012 in London, England.
(Elsa/Getty Images Europe)
Most of us respond to fatigue by getting frustrated and feeling bad for ourselves. We let our fatigue take us out of our game and into a mindset that isn’t helpful to us or our team.
Luckily, I have a few tips you can use to help get out of that destructive thought pattern and back to focusing on becoming the best athlete you can be. It may sound harsh, but here are
8 REASONS NO ONE CARES YOU’RE TIRED
#1: IT’S NOT ABOUT YOU, SO GET OVER IT.
The fact of the matter is you play a team game, even if it’s an individual sport, and as a teammate one of your jobs is to serve your team, to do whatever it takes to make the teambetter. Doing so requires selflessness and a commitment every single day you show up.
If you’re tired, if you’re sore, if you’re sick, you have to choose to not let that stop you and move past it. In that moment, it doesn’t matter how you ‘feel’ because it’s not about you; it’s about making the team the best it can be. In order to do that you have to show up every day with the intention of giving it everything you have.
Put the team ahead of your ‘feelings’ and get it done!
#2: ALL CHAMPIONS EXPERIENCE FATIGUE WHEN PUSHING THEIR LIMITS. SO FEEL IT AND EMBRACE IT… FATIGUE MEANS YOU’RE ON YOUR WAY!
As athletes, we’re in a perpetual state of becoming. There is no finish line; even if you win the championship one year, your training for the next year will quickly follow. The only way to truly improve, learn, and take your game to the next level is to push the limits.
Pushing the limits can be physically, mentally, and/or emotionally tough, but that’s the beauty of sports! Pushing those limits on a daily basis is necessary to become the best version of you. It’s inevitable that in pursuit of your best YOU, you’re going to get tired, so change your attitude towards fatigue. When you feel tired and want to stay in bed—or just want to get through practice without giving it your all—remember that this is what you work for, this is what all champions feel when they’re trying to reach their full potential.
In short: embrace your fatigue. No one said success would be easy.
#3: YOUR MIND IS INCREDIBLY POWERFUL. USE IT TO HELP YOU!
You train the brain to perform just like you train your muscles. We’ve all had days where you feel more tired than usual and in that moment you have a choice: you can marinate in those negative thoughts (‘It’s too hard’, ‘There’s no way I can do this’, ‘I didn’t sleep at all’, ‘I’m not feeling my best’, et cetera) OR you can take a long, deep breath, reconnect with yourself, and start thinking right. You can choose to put your energy and your thoughts on something that will help you rather than something that will distract you.
You’re an athlete. Being tired is a part of that, so accept it and move on. Choose to think about what you need to do to help the team in that moment.
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