Coach Tip Tuesday: The FOURTH Anniversary of Coach Tip Tuesday!
For the 208th Tuesday in a row, it is Coach Tip Tuesday! That’s right; Coach Tip Tuesday turns FOUR this week!
Coach Tip Tuesday started four years ago with a post I wrote out of sadness. I was feeling the sudden loss of a great friend and mentor, and writing seemed to help me navigate those feelings at the time. Over the years, Coach Tip Tuesday evolved from something that had its roots in sadness to a chance for me to talk about anything and everything related to endurance sports with you all on a weekly basis.
In the tradition of past Coach Tip Tuesday anniversary posts, I am sharing a “Brendan-ism” - something that Coach Brendan taught me when he was alive.
So, in that spirit: This week, I want to tell you all to write a letter to yourself.
I bet a bunch of you are sitting there scratching your heads. And that is okay! I know, I know. This sounds awkward and probably feels even more awkward. But seriously. I want you to write a letter to yourself with an actual sheet of paper and an actual pen.
In that letter, I want you to write to yourself about what you’re doing and the reasons why you are doing it. I am specifically talking about any sports or athletic-related goals you’ve set for yourself, but feel free to include any other big life things you might be targeting as well. Whatever you include, be sure to specifically state what it is you’re doing (or aiming to do) and why you are doing it (or aiming to do it).
Then, once you’ve written this letter to yourself, I want you to keep it somewhere VERY accessible. Why? Because you’re going to be accessing it frequently; I want you to read this letter every two days (and preferably, I’d like you to read it aloud).
Okay, now I know you think I’ve gone off the deep end. But, I solemnly swear that I haven’t. When you write down your intentions and articulate (speak) them, you are much more likely to maintain the habits that will help you reach your goals over the long haul.
We can’t just say we’re going to do something and then hope or think that motivation and drive will follow. We are a product of the things we do frequently and consistently. Motivation and drive are not immune to that. So, we need to devise a system that frequently and consistently reminds us of not only what we’re doing, but why we are doing it.
Brendan always asked me and the athletes he worked with WHY we were doing something. And he was a massively big fan (as I am) of doing the things that bring you joy. So, in this world where it is increasingly easy to fall into the trap of negative thoughts, let’s set ourselves up for success. Let’s define our “why”. Let’s not get caught circling the drain and remind ourselves regularly why we’re doing what we’re doing. Let’s give ourselves the best chance possible at reaching any and all goals that we set for ourselves.
This way, when the days feel hard and we start to feel discouraged, we know that we will have this reminder from the best person possible (ourselves) exactly why we’re doing what we’re doing and what it means to us.
So, write yourself a letter. Your future self will thank you.
Coach Laura Henry
Laura Henry is a Syracuse, NY-based coach who is a USA Triathlon Level II Long Course and Level II Paratriathlon Certified Coach, USA Cycling Level 2 Certified Coach, VFS Certified Bike Fitter, and has successfully completed NASM's Certified Personal Trainer course. Coach Laura is passionate about helping athletes of all ability levels reach their goals and has coached many athletes to success.