What does it mean to be consistent?
I first had to learn that in Switzerland "every day" can mean something different than one could actually deduct from the context of the words alone. I quickly learned to translate "I train every day" as: Monday to Friday, weekends off. And as it is with learning, that soon became a fact for me too. Training every day meant doing sports five times a week, which was far above the average.
But then came Michael Phelps, who put everything into a different perspective. This young man had spent every day in the water from 2003 until his outstanding performance at the Olympic Games in Beijing in 2008. Ah, so five days too, I thought...
No. Every day. EVERY. DAY. Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday, Easter, Christmas, including his own birthday. For five years he had done at least one, usually two, training sessions in a 50m pool every day. Every. Day.
From then on, Michael Phelps became a symbol of consistency for me. He wanted to achieve something and did everything to make it happen. This is also where I took the following wonderful sentence with me: Good athletes do what they can. Winners do what is necessary.
I myself try to be as consistent as Mr. Phelps was. I don't always manage and what follows when I collapse are usually days of self-doubt, questioning, pain. But in the end, it always comes down to the same three "golden questions of coaching": What do you want? What can you do? What are you ready to do to achieve it?
These three questions are important, go deep and are far too extensive to be dealt with today and only quickly, but their quintessence is always the same: If you want something, then do something about it. And nothing in this world that is really worth having will ever be easily attainable....
I'll leave you with this,