25 May 2010
Remember that being a successful athlete, not matter which arena you compare yourself in (peers, amateur, professional) by definition means doing what other people wouldn’t.
Lots of people model their technique, training and tactics on what their peers are doing. But if you want to get better than them, they are exactly the wrong people to look at.
The modelling can be conscious and deliberate, but most of the time you actually do it subconsciously. So wake up! The greatest success you can hope for by doing what everyone else (in YOUR world of peers) does is to assimilate the same level of mediocrity they have. More about all this in my book.
While we’re on the subject of role models, an important point about them. Yes they are useful, even essential to help you get more out of yourself, so long as you chose the right role models. But keep in mind it’s the approach they have that you’re copying, not the exact actions. Their life, physiology, schedule, resources etc can never fit with yours. So don’t try. So the question is “What would they do if they had this (my) circumstance right now?”.
And one other thing… Good role models in sport are ones you can actually find some details about - someone you can feel you know through seeing them, reading about them or even better, being coached by them! If it’s someone who never speaks, blogs, writes coaches, it’s pretty hard to ask the question above and get near a useful answer.
You have two choices, pick a better role model, or ask them to keep in touch more. Interview them for your blog or your favourite website and ask them all the questions you want in one go. Just an idea.