Jul 11 2012

What do I do after my sport’s career is over?

Recently I asked people for topics they would be interested in learning more about.  In fact, that’s the reason why I started my site.  To share my experiences, thoughts, and ideas with you.  I’m here to help.

One of the ideas I received made complete sense to me because it is what I deal with at work everyday.  An ex-college athlete asked a very important – she wanted know – what do you do once you’re not a collegiate athlete anymore? What do I do next?

Year after year, senior student-athletes finish their last seasons. For most this will mark the end their career in the sport they have played probably all 4 years as a college student.  Maybe even since they were a kid.  Then all of a sudden, the day comes and it’s done.  No longer do you have any practices, competitions, strength training sessions, conditioning, game preps, and you aren’t able to eat more food than the average person without gaining any weight.

At first it may be a relief, you can finally live a normal life.  You get to see the younger ones go through tough workouts and you don’t.  They have to show up at mandatory meetings during early mornings and you get to sleep in.

But at some point, you start to think to yourself – What do I do with myself now?

This is tough.

It could be anywhere from 4-8 years or more of being in a consistent routine. Your active life took a drop to a sedentary life.  You are no longer an athlete you are now an employee at a 9-5 job where you will probably be sitting on your ass at a desk for 8 hours day.

So what’s next?

Some ex-athletes let themselves go.  I did.  We’ll get to that later.  They go from having an athletic physique to looking like they didn’t play a sport their whole life.

I believe that once an athlete, always an athlete.

That’s one of the main reason why my passion is strength and fitness.  I strongly think that if you are successful in achieving your goals in strength and fitness, you can apply those lessons learned to be successful in any aspect of life.  For example; career, relationships, and finances.

As athletes, we are competitive by nature.  But now that you are done with your sport, it’s time to focus on your main opponent.

Yourself.

Become an Athlete of Life

Ok enough crying that you aren’t a collegiate athlete anymore.

Do what you do best.  Prepare yourself for success.

Just because you no longer play a sport, it doesn’t mean you have to stop being just as active.  Yes, now you have a real job and you don’t know when you will be able to workout.  Make time.

If your fitness and health is important to you, you will have no problem finding time for physical activity. Next, think of a fitness goal(s) you want to achieve and make that your “sport”.  Once we have a goal, us athletes at heart don’t want failure.  That’s not even an option.

Last year I missed having competition, or a bigger purpose to train. That’s when I decided to compete in a natural bodybuilding competition.  I scheduled my workouts, planned my meals and nutrition, shared my goal with family and friends, and constantly kept my eyes on success. I ended up finishing 4th place in my first competition out of 18 competitors in my class.

Talk about Fat 2 Fit. 2010-2011

Looks pretty similar to what you would have been doing if you were still a student-athlete.  Now I’m not saying that you should compete in a bodybuilding competition.  If you want to, let me know and I’ll be more than happy to give a few pointers.

Today, my competition is with myself.  My goal is to get in the best shape of my life while still enjoying a healthy lifestyle;  living lean and mean (I’m not really mean, probably too much of a nice guy).

There are many things out there you can strive to achieve; marathons, one of those many obstacle runs (Spartan Race, Tough Mudder – which I still want to do), powerlifting, bodybuilding,  triathlons.  Hell, I’ll even put in Crossfit.  I bash on Crossfit, mainly because I don’t think it’s for athletes who are participating in a sport.  If you are looking for something with motivated people that are constantly competing, then frickin’ go for it.

Once you have that goal in mind, everything falls into place; planning, training, nutrition, and preparing for success towards achieving your goals.  You’ll be surprised that when you have so much focus on achieving a goal, it becomes contagious to everyone around you and everything you do.

People will notice your motivation and feed off your fire.  When you first started playing a sport, you wanted to learn as much as you could to get better.  The same idea goes for your new goal.  Learn as much as you can, ask around, read book, research, and apply it to your life.

Final Words

Hopefully this gave you some perspective on how to move on after your sporting days are over.  You now have a much bigger game ahead of you.  Life.

Nutrition and training is all about the individual.  Once you have a goal you want to achieve, all of these things will fall into place and you will know what to do from there.

If you want to achieve a goal, and don’t know where to start; leave a comment and I’ll be more than happy to point you in the right direction.

Until then…Stay Healthy and Stay Active, Aloha,

Aipa

One Response to “There is Life After Sports”

  1. I also found that I needed to be on a team striving for a goal and in an organization that recognized the importance of healthy teams. I knew I wanted a team enviroment while looking for jobs after college and I definately found one!

Leave a Reply