Going to college and playing the sport you love is one thing, excelling and keeping up with the fast phased life on and off the field is another thing. I am not trying to scare you but rather make you aware of the expectations and help you prepare in advanced. I am sure you want to be prepared so you can save more time, energy and get you better results. So, I’ve created a list for you to keep in mind while in college. Your college years will be very busy, lots of work, pressure to do well in class and on the field but this may be be the most fun you’ll ever have. Remember one important thing: school is always first.
Time management for most student-athletes becomes second to none because of their busy schedules. Prioritizing and knowing what to do and when can only help you do more in less time. Here is a list that helped me and others while in college.
- Create a routine and revise your schedule so you know what you have to do for the next day.
- Wake up early but make sure you get at least 7-8 hours of sleep.
- Go to the GYM, go for a run, mediate or anything else that will get you started and prepare for your busy day.
- Don’t ever skip breakfast since you need to fuel your body and push it to the limits. (Oatmeal, cereal with low sugars, fruits, eggs, peanut butter, smoothie or anything healthy. Easy on the beacon please :).
- All your analytical work should be done in the morning. Science has shown that your peak performance happens 2-4 hours after you wake up.
- Don’t waste your time. If you feel like you got nothing to do on your agenda, then be ready to fall behind. Trust me, there is always something to do.
- Try to know your major early so you can graduate on time.
- Take all your classes in the AM. Why? So after lunch you can focus on homework, rest or go to practice.
- Do your homework after classes or after practice. While you do your homework take 5 min breaks every half an hour. Put your phone away so you get more done.
- Build your memory so you can do better in class. Write things down, have a journal
- Always work to improve your time management by doing the hardest things of the day first (besides going to class or practice).
- Never be late to class, practice or games. Early is on time and people don’t like excuses.
- Don’t drink alcohol during your season.
- Don’t fall behind with your classes.
- Ask teachers if you can do any extra credit.
- Don’t skip classes. Part of your final grade will be your attendance.
- Nothing will be given to you for free. You have to earn everything.
- Help your teammates whenever they need you for something.
- Ask questions, get feedback, engage in social events and be part of the community.
- Rest and recovery are important so stretch accordingly, take ice baths, sleep at least 7-8 hours and be ready to start over again.
- Study hall is very important. Don’t skip it. There you can do your homework, ask for help or simply get ahead with your assignments.
- Don’t watch TV unless if a game or something really important.
- Take 20-30 min power naps if you feel tiered. I used to go the the library, read a book and quickly fall asleep.
- In your Junior year ask your adviser and teachers, about a job or an upcoming internship. Your coach can also help you. The goal is to have a job ready right after college.
- Educate yourself on the finances such as, interest loans, compound interest, mortgages, salaries, 401K plans, etc.
- Remember why you go to college. To get an EDUCATION.
Once you’ll get into an everyday routine, everything will fall into place. Your time as a student-athlete is your most valuable asset so make it a priority to get all your work done.
College is hard and it’s not for everyone. The most important thing is to get a degree, play the sport you love and create wonderful memories for yourself. Time will fly by.