was successfully added to your cart.

Cart

Monthly Archives

August 2017

Enjoy The Journey

By | All articles, Sport Psychology | No Comments

While writing this article, I have my own personal struggle with inconsistent training, unavoidable obstacles along the way, and other things in my life that are more important in the long term than cycling, which lead to lack of motivation, and the question that keeps arising of: what is this all about, and am I still enjoying this?

One thing I’ve noticed a lot in sport, is too many people pursuing their goals without actually enjoying the process, and even the end result of achieving them!

I’ve heard these quotes from Mohammed Ali and the like about absolutely hating their daily training.  Although they’re professionals being payed huge sums of money, as well as their efforts helping and inspiring others all over the world, for most of the general sportsperson, I don’t think it’s the right, or a heathy way of approaching training, or goals.

by Robert Ward

Now training and competing is by no means supposed to be easy and always enjoyable, it’s supposed to be hard, but you’re supposed to enjoy it. If you hate it, then something isn’t right. The commonly accepted definition of a champion is someone who can push through this hard training and the pressures of competition more than anyone else; but here’s the conundrum, if it’s horrible and you hate it, there’s little to no reward at the end of the day, and you’re not a professional being payed to do this – what’s the point?

Sure, you might say personal pride, the joy and thrill of competition, pushing past your limits, and the list goes on. And you’ll be 100% right!

Migle Marozaite by Jaoa Fonseca

You’re probably thinking, contradiction right? Well I think the point I’m trying to make is that training and competition vs the enjoyment of it and the quality of life that results from it, is largely a balancing act. Pursuing a goal is a lifestyle, and we must embrace that lifestyle we have chosen and enjoy each moment of it; each moment of the process is precious.  We shouldn’t waste it by hating what we’re doing.

These little moments of up’s and downs add up; the hard days and the good days make the big picture.  We shouldn’t lose sight of what it’s all really about.

It’s not so much about the end result or outcome, but the journey and process, and who we grow into while pursuing our goals.  Whether we get there or not, I think this is the most important thing.

Now I’m not saying stop training, competing or stop pushing your limits, that’s after all what sport is all about.  Focus on the bigger picture and don’t let the negative moments take control of you. Don’t do something you don’t enjoy, and especially don’t feel pressure from anyone or anything other than yourself, and If you don’t like something, whether that’s training, competition, the pressure, or anything else, take a look at it and change it. And you’ll know what that change needs to be.

This is supposed to be something we enjoy to do, and we should try maximize that enjoyment. That’s a personal thing, and you’ll find out what you enjoy most as you go along. But every now and then, ask yourself the question, and don’t be afraid to be critical, and don’t be surprised about what you answer.

by Robert ward

Achieved goals, medals or records don’t mean much if you hated achieving them, they won’t bring back fond memories, and other than others looking up to you, you won’t get much pride out of them. But if you enjoy the journey and embrace all the little moments along the way to becoming a better person, you’ll remember it forever, and you might even inspire someone out there to do the same, and as an athlete, there’s nothing better than that!

Always remember, in between goals, there is something called life, your life – live it! I think at the end of the day, it’s about setting these goals, and working as hard as you can to achieve them. Regardless of the outcome; focus on the little daily moments of enjoyment on this journey of pursuing your goals. If you aren’t enjoying it, find out why and change it!

 

Matthew de Freitas

The true meaning of outcome

By | All articles, Sport Psychology | 2 Comments

“What if you did your best but it just wasn’t good enough”

This is often the question that athletes are faced with after a competition that didn’t go according to plan, or the outcome just wasn’t what they wanted. They did their best, everything went well, except the end result – the outcome of winning or losing.

People often only look at this outcome as the measure of success, without looking into the details and factors of the race that lead to that result, the opposition, etc. And they are quick to label an athlete a failure when they lose on the line, or have a puncture in the final km. This is unrealistic and quite unfair towards not only the athlete, but the coaching staff and supporters.

by Joao Fonseca

The problem with outcome goals as a measure of success or failure, is that they don’t tell the whole story, rather they only focus on a fragment of it, and use it as the pinnacle to sum up an athlete. I think we need to look at success or failure as the result of our process goals, i.e.: have we improved, did we ride at our absolute best, was our preparation the best it could be, was our mind set in the right place, and was everything in place the way it should be. These are all controllable factors and in our control to almost 100%. The other factors like the opposition, the referee, the weather, equipment failure, etc. are out of our control, and cannot be used as a measure of success. We need to differentiate between these factors if we have any plans of analysing performance, otherwise we will in fact be analysing outcome, and although related, they are worlds apart.

If we look at it in terms of all the above mentioned controllable factors being covered, it can be looked at as success, if not, regardless of the outcome, it should be looked at as failure. It’s against the grain thinking, and unconventional in terms of how the public and amateur athlete thinks, but in terms of high performance, it’s the only way. This is the attitude of the best athletes in the world who have had the longest and most enjoyable careers, notice the “enjoyable”, as many athletes have had long and successful careers but hated every moment of it, and if you look at them years later, have no part in that sport anymore, which is sad.

By Jean Marc Wiesner

Now I’m not saying we should not celebrate a win, and mourn a loss. That’s after all the beauty and thrill of sport. But what I’m saying is that single factor shouldn’t be the one to define you as an athlete. A win is still what we aim for, and what we will celebrate, but not what we should define our self-worth and character on.

Do you see the actual definition of success and failure, and that even if you win it could be a failure in terms of personal performance; and even if you lose it could be a win in terms of personal performance, improvement, and the process?

At the end of it all, if you can enjoy the sport and the competitive aspect of it, if you can push your limits, if you can do our absolute best, and if you can improve; then you are successful. If you look at yourself and your character and can be proud of the person you are, then you are successful. Whether you won or lost is not in that equation and never should be.

by Robert Ward

If the above is not the case, then learn from it and aim to be that person, and not simply the winner. The glory of the victory fades away, but your character and the thrill, enjoyment and emotion that sport gives will live on forever and make you a champion not only in sport, but in life.

 

Matthew de Freitas

Newsletter Sign Up