If you are a competitive swimmer or tri-athlete you probably have been racing this summer. We have been to many meets and watched maybe close to 1,000 swims in which our swimmers have raced.
One of the things we have observed is that each and every single swim is an opportunity to learn something. It always is; never fails.
This is true regardless of the time posted or the place achieved.
If you are interested in becoming more proficient at what you do you need to realize this as a given. The trick of course is to then determine what you are going to do with the information.
To be able to get at the information – and we mean really access the information – you must get past the emotion of the race. Emotions are part of the mix; always will be. You are perhaps elated or disappointed or embarrassed. It makes no difference and that is OK.
You can use the emotion to fuel your desire to learn. If you raced well and are super pumped, use that excitement to your advantage. If you underperformed then likewise use that to get energized about fixing some “stuff”.
What we are driving at today is that unless you use the information that is always available you have wasted another opportunity to learn about your craft.
Those who improve do so because they use what they learn and get smarter at figuring out how to perform their best when it counts the most.
The process of learning and then using the knowledge is absolutely what fires our engines as coaches. It really is pretty darn simple, not always easy, but worth every single early morning wake up call!