Today’s post comes from Chuck Lukanen. Chuck is a professional baseball player pursuing his playing career in the independent Frontier League. He has played with the Rockford Riverhawks and Southern Illinois Miners and is looking to break into affiliated ball next season. In his free time he writes about his training progress and also offers advice for aspiring players looking to excel either in sport or fitness. You can find more information at his website, http://powerfitpitching.com.
The off-season can be stressful for any professional baseball player. We all dread going back home at the end of a season because that means we have to hit the workforce. Finding a job, especially in this economy, can be a very stressful time. I was lucky to find a job right after the season working in a restaurant bartending and serving. I know that with a four-year degree I don’t plan on making this my career. It is a temporary job until I have to go back to ball in the spring and not many careers allow you to take a leave of absence for 6+ months. So whatever career path I choose after baseball is on the back burner for now. Baseball is something I want to continue and with that come the consequences. When baseball is over I will be behind everyone else I graduated with and out of continuous employment and that disqualifies me for certain careers I may want to pursue. You only get one shot at playing baseball professionally so I take it very seriously and want to take my baseball dreams as far as possible. If I give up now I will be filled with regret because I’ll know deep inside that I gave up and didn’t give it a shot.
As of now I’m training with an excellent strength and conditioning specialist in North Minneapolis. I train 4-5 days a week at the gym and right now I’m throwing 3-4 days a week at a buddy’s academy close to home. I’m always on the road driving somewhere, whether it is to the gym that is 25 minutes away or to my job. I’m easily putting 300+ miles a week on my car. It’s something that I have to do because if I want to succeed and pitch at the highest level I have to make sacrifices. Achieving a dream comes with sacrifice. There will be ups and downs, highs and lows. All you have to do is put in some hard work and dedication, follow a plan, and you’ll be on your way. The satisfaction that I’m going to feel when I step on the hill next season will be ultimate. Every day I take the field I will always think back to the hard work and time that I’ve put in which will give me the utmost confidence in myself because I am prepared.
Create a plan, dedicate yourself to it, and execute.
Not only can you apply this to baseball but in any aspect of your life.