Congratulations! Your plan to complete college. You have achieved your childhood dream. Making the transition from high school to college can be challenging.
As an athlete you might have wondered; what are the things I should do to prepare myself before going to college?
If a typical student takes five courses, I recommend taking four classes. Why? Your first semester can set the tone for your success in college. I did not do this and regret it.
I was the scholar-athlete of my high school. My major was Chemical Engineering with a biology minor. In addition, I played basketball and worked 8 hrs a week on campus.
My first semester GPA was terrible, and my scholarship was in jeopardy. I struggled academically because I was underprepared. High School was easy.
My study skills were not as strong as they needed to be, and I underestimated the demands of my academics. I finally figured it out. There is a better way to transition to college.
Lighten your load to allow you to get used to living away from home, the demands of college, and sports. It’s better to have a strong first semester than a poor one.
At the high school level, you were good. You excelled. You were recognized and earned the right to compete at the next level.
At the next level - everyone is good. Everyone earned their way to the team. Often what separates good athletes from great athletes is their mental game.
Elite and professional athletes work with mental performance coaches to help them perform at their highest level.
Mental performance skills are coping skills. We need to introduce athletes to "coping skills" early in their career so that they can learn:
Mental performance skills can help an athlete navigate the stresses of athletics and academics more effectively.
You are an accomplished athlete. You are among the small percentage of athletes who have the opportunity to compete in college. You have a mature adult body. Proper strength and condition training can help minimize your injuries in the future.
Often the strength and conditioning programs in college are more intense and rigorous.
You can prepare now by consistently working with a certified trainer or strength and conditioning coach.
The work you do now in the weight room will help you transition later.
In the Hershey, Pa area (my local market) Mary Driscoll, owner of Mary's Health and Fitness, does a great job helping athletes train for the current season and prepare for the next level.
The food you eat impacts your performance.
Food is fuel. Your body performs best when your body is adequately fueled.
Good food equals good fuel to your body's engine.
Lousy food and a poor diet over time will adversely impact your performance.
There is an opportunity for athletes to learn how to fuel their bodies properly. Invest now to educate yourself on how to eat correctly. Engage a certified sports nutritionist to discuss your sport, your training routines, and the best way to fuel your body for success.
In the Hershey, Pa area, Angie Dye, the owner of CarpeDiem Nutrition, is a fabulous resource. She works 1:1 with athletes and can conduct virtual visits.
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