Achieve success as an athlete by being willing to make the sacrifices pay the intense attention to detail that distinguishes the greats from everyone else.
- TIP: Butterflies and fear are good. Controlling and using your anxiety and temper to raise your performance level may define your edge.
- Step 1: Develop and practice a consistent work ethic, but make time for rest and recovery. The successful athlete allows periodic breaks as part of their day to preserve their energy for the battle.
- FACT: Jim Thorpe, named "America's Athlete of the Century," is the only man ever to play 3 professional sports: baseball, football, and basketball.
- Step 2: Persevere with physical and mental toughness. Confronted with cheating or taunting opponents, be disciplined enough not to retaliate or lose focus.
- Step 3: Arrive early for practice and perform a preparation routine religiously, setting the standard for others.
- Step 4: Follow a healthy lifestyle. Eat right, condition consistently, and maintain a positive attitude. A sense of who you are and a personal mission motivates an athlete to make brutal sacrifices.
- Step 5: Use mental imagery. Concentrate and focus to ignore discouragement. But don't forget that mental strength without action will accomplish nothing.
- TIP: It helps to have physical characteristics that suit your sport, like having an exceptional lung capacity for running or being tall for volleyball and basketball.
- Step 6: Establish realistic goals based on previous performance. Project what you plan to achieve and determine what steps to take each time you raise the bar.