Life is Like Interval Training

So there I was, thinking about soccer… Well, more specifically coaching soccer.  And I got to thinking about how I condition the players.  I’m a firm believer that interval training works, if done properly.  Change of speeds and distance covered.  I think interval training is one of the most successful types of conditioning for soccer players.  That’s why I have my players do it a lot.  They probably hate me.  But they’ll thank me later!  (I had a senior who graduated in 2013 text me and say thank you for making her condition so much during soccer because she went running one day and someone asked if she ever did cross country.)  It was after she graduated but hey, I still got a thank you.

Back to interval training.  My two favorite types to make the girls do are 15-30-45’s and 120’s.  For those of you who don’t know, during a 15-30-45, they sprint for 15 seconds, then jog for 15.  Sprint for 30.  Jog for 30.  And finally sprint for 45 seconds, and then jog for 45 seconds.  No walking.  No resting.  And then… we go back down.  Sprint for 45 again, jog for 45.  Sprint for 30, jog for 30.  Sprint for 15, jog for 15.  And that’s just one set.

The other one I mentioned is called a 120.  The girls have 20 seconds to sprint the length of the field (120 yards, hence why they’re called “120’s”).  And then 40 seconds to get back.  So they basically have one minute to get down and back, but the first leg is a sprint, the way back is a jog.  And they have to do it in the allotted time.  They do five of these.  It’s pretty rough.  For them anyway.  I mean the only rough part for me is yelling how much time is left and blah blah blah.  Strenuous on the vocal chords.

But with interval training there’s an important part.  A key component.

To let your heart rate come down a little bit so you can prepare for the next round.  My girls love the rest part.  Obviously.  Actually they love the part when it’s over.  They get a one minute rest between sets.

But I was thinking about it today, and I realized that life is like interval training. We go all out sometimes, a full sprint ahead, then maybe we find a steady pace, but if we’re not careful we’re going to burn out.  If we don’t have that much needed rest.

I’m the type of person, I’m always on the go, especially when school starts back up (like it did this past week) and then again when basketball season and soccer season start.  I know myself well enough to know that if I don’t take a little rest, I won’t be at my best.  My friends won’t get my best.  My family won’t get my best.  My students and athletes won’t get my best.  My job won’t get my best.  And God won’t get my best.

And that’s unacceptable to me.  Sometimes, all we need is a little rest and we will find ourselves motivated and rejuvenated; ready to go and give it our all.  I’m thankful for a God who loves me the same when I’m at my best and at my worst.  But He definitely deserves my best.

So Until Next Time…

P.S. There’s a difference between rest and just being pure lazy and a sluggard.

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