The past few months have been very busy at Moore, thus the lack of posting here. A few of my athletes have been featured recently with some very cool documentaries. Most recently, Troy and his brother Evan. Happy Holidays and enjoy the video!
Dear MLB Draft Class of 2013,
Congratulations! The countless hours of hard work playing a game you love are about to pay off on draft day. Less than 0.5% of high school baseball players ever get the opportunity to play professionally, so enjoy this moment!
Having worked with many professional ballplayers at many levels in leagues all across the country, I have compiled some tips to help you maximize your career in the pros.
Treat Your Body Well
You are only given one body and your healthy body is your livelihood in this occupation. You must be your own biggest advocate.Find the best network of strength coaches, position coaches, chiros, PTs, Ophthalmologist, Primary Care Physicians, and Orthopedists. Problems will arise during your career, so have a team of advocates for you in multiple disciplines.
Don’t Eat Like Shit
Long days and little sleep, coupled with the lack of funds and options for quality food can really wreak havoc on your body. It is well known that the US is in the midst of an obesity epidemic; this was not caused by lack of food, but by a lack of nutritious food.Learn what healthy is and learn how to cook. These changes alone can prolong your career and help you recover more efficiently.
When it comes to alcohol consumption for my college and pro guys, I advise them to minimize intake and limit it to one day a week. You are now a professional, you get paid to prepare well and perform like one. Act the part.
Become a Student of the Game
As in many other professions, you will be left behind if you don’t take the time to learn about your craft.Read about differences in how the game is played from different coaches. Ask questions of people who are smarter than you or have more experience. Watch video to help refine your mechanics. Keep records of outings and see how you can make improvements.
Many of you will be lucky to have very knowledgeable teammates and coaches — use them. Find mentors who have experience and perspective, and apply what you learn to elevate your game.
Find Other Passions
Immersing yourself in your career is a necessity if you want to reach the highest levels, but it can also lead to burn out very quickly.I have worked with athletes who have found alternative passions in art, investing, law, meditation, music, web design, and writing.
Find a constructive way to decompress between the long hours that pro ball requires.
Someone is Always Watching
Like it or not, someone is always watching. Learn to embrace it.On the field, screaming at umpires on every questionable call or being rude to fans after you have a tough day is not needed. Off the field, people love to pick out athletes doing things they should not be doing. You will make headlines and that is the last thing your organization wants.
You could be Matt Kemp.
Or you could be Arod.
Go viral, but for positive reasons.
Monitor Your Finances
I am no accountant, but I have seen many professional players drown in financial issues.Do yourself a favor:
-Watch the ESPN 30 for 30 special “Broke”
-Sign up for www.mint.com to monitor your spending
I hope this post reaches many of this year and future draft picks. If you have a suggestion for new professional athletes please comment below.
This is in no way the last time I will be speaking of motivation, but this topic really gets me fired up. (I apologize for the lack of better wording that may follow)
Motivation breaks down into simple psychology, it’s either intrinsic or extrinsic.
Extrinsic motivation is great— fame, fortune, girls, cars, a ring, and swagger… it’s all great.
But intrinsic is a totally different animal. Having the will to do something to the best of your abilities and far beyond your wildest dreams is something that can’t be taught. In my opinion, intrinsic motivation is ingrained as a child through family, friends, life choices, obstacles, and much more. Plain and simple.
I don’t care what facet of life we are talking about from business to family to sports, if you have a will, you will find a way.
Being a Red Sox fan I will open with some motivation from Dustin Pedroia. As most of you know, In his first 2 Major League baseball seasons Pedroia was voted Rookie of the Year and MVP of the America League. Not to shabby for someone whose generously listed at 5’ 9” 180 lbs, and been told from little league to the majors he just was too small, too slow, had a horrible mechanics batting, and loads of other reasons.
This quote was taken from his recent biography from a fellow major leaguer “Dustin Pedroia wakes up every morning of his life gets out of bed and looks for someone’s ass to kick. He’s got a chip on his shoulder and rightfully so.” He has it ingrained deep in his heart and soul.
Now I’m going to turn the tables and highlight one of my favorite athletes of all time, Derek Jeter. Yep, I said it, I’m a Jeter fan. God knows I hate the Yankees’ as much as any true sox fan, but Jeter is truely amazing. Throw personal and team stats out the window. This guy carries himself with more class than just about any person I could name. He is the epitome of an amazing teammate; I might even say the best teammate of all time. And his work ethic is something that most people couldn’t dream about. That and a couple of billion dollars is the reason he has so many rings, and (hopefully not) a few more to come.
“Jeter knew early on that if he wanted to play in the Little League all-star games or go to a baseball camp, he had better come home with good grades and keep his behavior in check. Each August, he sat down with his parents and wrote a contract for the upcoming school year. They agreed to terms on grades, sports, extracurricular activities and curfews. And, there were consequences for breaking the contract. Driven by his passion to play ball, Jeter successfully maintained a 3.83 grade-point average in high school, never cursed, drank or used drugs.”
He knew what he wanted and he got after it each and every day. That’s intrinsic people.
The last piece I will leave with all of you is an e-mail I got this summer from a new ball player to the program. This e-mail was unsolicited and came out of no where. (I cut out some of the personal info the keep this person anonymous)
“Name and personal info
Accomplishments in high school… blah blah blah… To be honest, I have tasted success and victory and I’m addicted. I will do anything to have it again.
My life revolves completely around baseball and getting better at it. I play with the ————- (a travel team) in the summer and I work out at ———– during the summer and the off season. For the past two years, I’ve worked out with three younger teammates and friends consistently. I tried my best to put together a lifting program that was sport specific and keyed on making us better athletes, not necessarily on getting us big biceps and chiseled chests. Obviously though, I am not, nor is anyone else nearly as qualified as you are in this field.
I am going to implement the workout you sent right away. I’d like to take you up on that offer of getting together though. I have some questions for you and I’d really like to get your input on some things that I could do specifically to make me a better player. I want to make the hard work I put in at the gym really translate into something I can use next season.
I’m hungry Josh, and you don’t have to believe that, I plan on showing you.”
Not only have I seen the effort, it’s been constant, non-stop every day. From diet to playing to school, the kid wants it.
Can I promise he will make an impact at the college level? Nope.
Can I make a promise that someday he will make it to the highest ranks of professional baseball? No way in hell.
Do I think he will if he stays on the path he’s on right now? You bet your ass I do.
Doing things right one day doesn’t mean shit. Making perfection and hard work a habit, now that will elicit greatness.
Strength and conditioning has a historical hard-nosed attitude towards training and change. Most strength coaches of the past have been football coaches whom have been relatively strong in the gym and thus found themselves coaching in the gym for better or worse for their athletes.
The past 4 months I was lucky enough to have an internship with Brijesh Patel, the Head Strength and Conditioning Coach at Quinnipiac University. The first day I walked in and went through one of his warm-ups and did not like how he set up one of the stretches. After speaking with B for a moment about why I did not like the execution of the stretch he tried it himself. To my surprise he agreed that my way seemed to get a better stretch than the way he used, and on the fly changed it that day while coaching his athletes. I immediately knew that internship was going to be nothing that I had expected.
B’s strength and conditioning program is more of a culture than a strength program. Every athlete is taught to be accountable for his or her actions in and out of the weight room. It is not uncommon to hear teammates yelling “watch your tempo” during the middle of lifts to ensure everyone is on pace. Trust and teambuilding is incorporated into every workout from simple things as individual warm-ups pre-workout to making sure everyone makes a given time during conditioning drills. These qualities not only build camaraderie in the weight room, but also transfer well to the playing field, where teammates must be able to rely on one another when shit hits the fan.
Demanding perfection out of every set, rep, and exercise is a prerequisite at QU. Maximal intensity is always required during ever aspect of training from cheering on teammates to post workout stretching; everything is done with a purpose. Some may think from reading this article that Brijesh is some crazy man whom expects an absurd amount from his athlete’s. Well he does, it’s expected, and excuses don’t make champions and that is his job, to develop champions. He also takes it upon himself to educate his athlete’s that this is a lifestyle, to expect the most out of themselves in all facets of life. Educating every individual on the reasoning behind why they are lifting a certain way, doing specific exercises, and why they need to fuel their bodies a specific way to get the most out of it. These are life skills that each person can take away and apply to all aspects of life.
Constant improvement is expected from B from his athlete’s and himself. If there is a way to develop stronger, faster, healthier athlete’s I can promise you it will find it’s way into a QU program. I have learned so much more over the past 4 months working with such an amazing coach, but the biggest lessons I have learned have more to do with people than anything to do with training. B is truly an innovator in the industry and just as much a life coach as a strength coach.
If I had to sum up what I’ve learned I would say “Demand hard work, strive for perfection, intensity and passion can overcome anything, and you have to have some fun”. Strength and conditioning is an essential part of every athlete’s development, but I can assure you, it’s not just about the weights.
Michael Jordan may be the best basketball player I will have had the opportunity to watch in my lifetime. How do you think he got so good?
As many of you know, I am currently interning at Quinnipiac University with their head strength and conditioning coach Brijesh Patel.
Coach B preaches daily “give more of yourself to someone else” while pushing his athletes through grueling workouts. It always stuck with me as an amazing concept to dig deeper in pursuit of a much greater goal, a bigger goal that could only be achieved as a team.
One day during a conditioning workout for the Men’s basketball team I was fortunate enough to see this come to life. The team was running a conditioning test that needed to be completed in a predetermined time or the whole team must re-run the missed sprint.
Now, normally when approaching the tougher bouts the more conditioned players sprint along side the players whom might not make the time to give moral and verbal support. Today was no different in that manner, except instead of just being there for the less conditioned player, the stronger player grabbed his slower counterpart and finished the second half of the sprint pulling on his shirt crossing the finish line with seconds to spare.
Physically leading his teammate whom didn’t think he could make it through that workout speaks volumes of the great leadership and commitment each player has towards one another. Seeing that with my own two eyes was moving to say the least.
Today one of my best friends from college is taking this to a whole new level.
To make a long story short, a girl whom previously attended Sacred Heart University is in dyer need of a new liver. I am proud to say that my friend is becoming a living donor for Alison today. Talk about giving more of yourself to someone else, my friend has never met or seen Alison before, but was so moved by an e-mail that her family sent out to the university that he took her life into his own hands and is trying to give her a second chance at life.
Please take a moment today to pray and think of both Alison and my friend as they both go through major, potentially life changing surgery and wish them the best.
If anyone is willing to donate to her cause please visit this link.
Goal setting is one of the most over looked aspects of life. People are not critical enough of themselves, afraid to be held accountable for their actions, and choose poor goals.
How to set GOOD Goals:
1.) Define your goal, broad goals are fine. (e.g. gain muscle)
2.) Redefine your goal. (gain 15 lbs of muscle)
3.) Analyze your limiting factors. (not eating enough calories, post-workout nutrition, not enough fat in your diet)
4.) Choose a date you want to goal achieved by.
5.) Create a plan of action, be precise. (prepare 6 meals the day before so you don’t miss a meal, eat 500 more calories a day, have a shake sitting in my car for after the gym ready to drink)
6.) Make yourself accountable: post a sign on your fridge or on a wall, tell your friends, do anything that will remind you that goal is important enough to make it a daily priority.
7.) Start Now, Not tomorrow.
8.) Surround yourself with positive people, who are willing to help you with your goals.
9.) Re-assess the plan every week or two.
When dealing with body composition, try to keep perspective that your body can only lose or gain so much weight in a given time (most experts agree anywhere between 0.25-1 lb a week). So when setting a date, make sure it is physiologically possible to achieve that goal, do not set yourself up for failure.
Gains may come sporadically, but do not allow a slip in your progress. If you have set a goal of 1 lb every 2 weeks of muscle, 6 weeks from your start date 2 lbs of an increase would not be acceptable, thus needing to reassess your plan of action.
Finding people who will be supportive in your quest to achieve lofty goals can make or break your success. Don’t allow negativity to distract you from what you believe is attainable… what kind of friend puts down their friends anyways?
Just about anything is possible as long as you have a plan and work hard enough at it. If you are failing on your own, find an expert or a friend with more experience and knowledge in the area your trying to improve upon. Asking for help is not a weakness, as long as you adhere to the advice given.
This system can be applied to all aspects of life; don’t limit it to training and nutrition.