I'm sure most who read this won't be aware, but my season closed out in a pretty painful way. I went into the last weekend of qualifying for USATF Outdoor Nationals sitting 19th on the submitted entries list, with 18 men competing in the eventual field. My teammate, Ryan Njegovan, and I had one last meet on our schedule to try to qualify. We traveled to Hightstown, NJ, feeling good technically and coming off of a good week of practice. Personally, I felt like I was set up very well to get the PR I needed to move myself into a definitive qualifying spot (I was 42cm out based on marks).
First, I think it’s ridiculous that USATF would screw over coaches and athletes by having a staggered start for two of the biggest throws competitions at USA’s. For those who aren’t aware, USATF decided to have women’s shot and men’s discus basically at the same time and at different locations at outdoor USA’s. I know several coaches (myself included) whose ability to coach their athletes was dampened by this issue. When problems like this arise, it really comes off that USATF doesn’t care about their throwing athletes. This was just a big example of poor planning. They could have easily held the women’s shot at the rings near the men’s discus, which would have created an amazing competitive environment for both sets of throwers.
I think almost every athlete has been in this situation before: creeping closer to a major competition, beginning your peak, and yet things just feel slightly off. Your legs aren’t moving as fast as you thought they would, and you aren’t throwing as far or lifting as much as you thought you would. Here, I’m going to explain why this is perfectly fine--and even expected.
Many people see elite athletes training with a lot of frequency. Nine, ten, eleven times per week sometimes. I want to address some of my thoughts on training frequency, and some of the important considerations when a coach or athlete is deciding how much frequency is enough.
We’ve all been there before. The season is a few meets old, you feel like everything is moving pretty well, and then suddenly it feels like you have no idea what you’re doing in the circle. This sort of midseason technical slump can really impact an athlete’s season, so I wanted to address why it happens and what you can do to combat it.
Well, that did not go as planned. After starting the season well and heading to the Lehigh Games feeling confident, I just did not execute the way I had imagined. I had not performed that well the prior week at Princeton, but that can just be a tough place to throw discus due to the sector. I didn't have as much of an all-around great training week leading up to Lehigh as I did before Penn and Bucknell, where I PR'd, but I threw well enough the two days before that I figured I could take advantage of the favorable sector at Lehigh and go get a Nationals qualifying mark. But I think we all know meets often don't go as we want.
IAAF World Championships London 2017 - Part 2: Qualifying Competition Discus
Alex was set to compete in the qualifying round on Friday, August 4th. One concern we had was how late his qualifying round was starting (8:40PM). Fortunately, we had planned for this and the previous two nights Alex went to bed after 1:30AM and we continued this trend into Friday morning, going to sleep around 2:00AM Friday morning.