Thursday, May 3, 2012

Planning Considerations

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I know before I ever start that the way I feel right now and the way I will feel at the end of this plan will not resemble each other.  Any time I take on the planning and execution of big meet prep, I'm always surprised how I feel at the first, the middle and the end.  When I start I can picture myself on the field on the day of the big meet no matter what component I am working on.  During the middle as I continue to grind, I feel stronger but lose more focus of what that day will look and feel like.  Near the end you become very lethargic and kind of scared that you might fail.  All of these are a natural progression and you just have to work through them.

Planning is hugely important.  I have always said that impatience is a sign of no confidence in your plan, so plan well and be willing to make adjustments.  I don't think I have ever been more certain of a plan that I am this one.  I know and have known since 1997 that in 2013 I will be the youngest vaulter in the M60 group.  In 1997 I was the oldest in Worlds at South Africa so I started calculating ahead to when my best shot would be - 2013. It's here and I will be ready.  The calendar is relentless and will continue to move forward whether I do my work or not.  Everyone trains hard for these but I was shocked at just how good of condition many of the athletes were at Sacramento last year.  The bar has been raised figuratively and literally.  I MUST be ready.  No more Mr. Nice Guy tinkering with training "ideas".  Message to self - GET YOUR ASS TO WORK!!! -

Here's another BIG thing; you have to be willing to do every single thing needed to succeed instead of saying you "need to do something".  Big difference between DOING and SAYING and it is time to DO.  This is why I'm taking this two week break.  Mentally I want to know the difference between my one year experiment I just finished, to a completely refined plan.  I don't want a continuation of what I was doing; I want a focused plan of what MUST be done to succeed.  For example, in 1997, for the 10 months leading up to South Africa I did not allow myself, beer, wine, sugar, bread, etc..  I don't drink alcohol anyway for many years but I will crack down on weight management for consistency.  Go time soon for 14 months of prep!!  BTW - Wolfgang Ritte certainly be there and will also be 60 (he in January and me at the end of June).  He is Europe's version of Gary Hunter, virtually unbeatable!  Also like Gary, a super great guy!  I have never placed ahead of either in a meet.

I'm going to take you through every training component of what I have slated to do and why.  But first I need to leave you with this; the facility and conditions on the day of the big meet will NEVER be what you expect.  In 1997 we had a MASSIVE head wind and they wouldn't turn the pit around.  I got the 3rd and the bronze medal because I was mentally prepared, even though I was easy the oldest in the group.  In 2011 at Worlds in Sacramento we were expecting 100 degrees and got 52 degrees, drizzle and a HUGE crosswind.  I got 4th and was the oldest guy in the top 10.  Even at Sydney in 2009 when I won the World Masters Games, the wind was all over the place and so loud that you had to yell to hear each other.  So that dream you have of the perfect beautiful day and conditions for a big championship meet is a mirage. It won't happen.  Something will be very wrong.  In 2007 my lifelong friend Don Curry jumped in Italy in what looked like great conditions; UNTIL I saw he was wearing a hat and sunglasses because the sun was going down in the vaulters eyes.  It's ALWAYS something and it's usually not good.  You can't control that so you had better have a ton of control over everything else that IS within your power.

Tomorrow I will talk about my vaulting plan, then later my technical goals, then a new set of poles to meet these goals, etc.  Thank you for caring and staying tuned with me.  Bubba

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