I heard a quote attributed to Chris Hoy, GB’s triple gold medal winning cyclist the other day. He was talking about preparation for the Olympics and said something to the effect that when he started his Olympic campaign he knew he couldn’t be better prepared. He talked about not missing one single training session and that he knew that at every training session he had given 100%. The reason for this being that (and don’t forget this is sprint cycling) if he lost a race by one tenth of a second he didn’t want to be able to blame missing even one training session.
Hoy’s desire to win and dedication to ensuring that he was as well prepared as possible proved well worth it as he became the first Briton to win three medals at one Olympic Games.
So what does any of this have to do with those of us living in the slightly less rarefied world of non league football?
Well it seems to me that how you prepare, your professionalism and your will to win are as important at our level of the game as any other. How fit do players keep themselves, how well do they eat, do they ever miss training, do they always get to games/ meet points on time, do they have all their kit with them at all times and in good condition and so on and so on.
Our players perform pretty well I think generally in these areas and we’ve tried to help them, with the new kit, the assistance of a nutritionist and promise of support from Fitness First to name just three areas.
Chris Hoy knew that the difference between success and failure in his sport is measured in fractions of a second so he could not afford to leave anything to chance. Finding that extra 1% from somewhere might make the crucial difference in a football match. We will continue to search for ways to find it – but if anyone has other ideas they should let us know.
“I just like to get to the start line knowing there was nothing else I could have done, that there wasn’t a single session I didn’t give 100 per cent.