Well its been amazing to have the time to sit and talk with many athletes starting out on what will be a huge four year campaign. Many of the current athletes are new scholarship holders with some older ones being involved too.
For some its been easy to have the type of discussion about the future and for others its been a challenge. A lot can happen in four years but its important as a rowing program these athletes are asked about what Rio as one possible outcome would mean to them.
For many years now as an athlete I have mapped out my vision and then proceeded to plan and prepare with it in mind. Finding challenges which create learning and enable progress are critical. Taking action and learning how to better measure this progress is essential. Much happens in a four year build up and we are at the very start of it all right now. Each year things tend to gain more focus and it is easier to see importance in being prepared. My learning over the years is you have to start sooner with planning and how you engage with those around to realise your vision.
An essential part of this process with these athletes is to engage better with those around them and in particular key people who will hep them be the best athlete they can be. On this occasion we have asked athletes to frame their vision around Rio and then asked them to think about what will be involved for them to get there. From here we are working with them to bring it to life by making it visual and to get them to share their map with others. Then chunking it down into month actions and reviews will be key and finding personal measures will help them keep momentum. Obviously these measure can be subjective and also objective with a need to fulfil any National requirements.