Finding the right words…

Today marks the third 5K race in 8 days for the Haymaker Varsity Cross Country team. We are into the “tough” part of the season where fitness is critical and mental determination creates success. As a coach, I sometimes find myself struggling to find the right words to help the athletes believe in themselves and continuously engage in the running journey.

Words are powerful.

When chosen carefully and delivered effectively:

  • They inspire.
  • They create.
  • They bring beauty to our lives.

In order for words to bring about positive change, they must be heard and they must be meaningful. The bottom line for us is that, as a team, we must celebrate our differences as we build team unity. A culture of hard work and excellence plays a critical role. And, it extends beyond the physical to include our ability to be good teammates.

What are the top 5 qualities of a good teammate?

Heart: Packing your FAITH to trust in both yourself and your teammates creates a team with heart. Building a positive culture inspires a unity dedicated to greatness.

Work Ethic: The road to excellence is never comfortable. Expect to work tirelessly under conditions that will be uncomfortable. Success is often found in the midst of challenge and surrounded by hard work.

Integrity: Truth in thoughts, words and actions creates a team worth fighting for. Love yourself enough to be true to your uniqueness – Love your teammates enough to embrace diversity – Love your sport enough to give it your all.

Leadership: Supporting and mentoring others inspires greatness. The team is bigger than any one individual or race. What you build together is infinitely greater than anything that you can build alone. Life is a journey – one that contains a vastness of joy that can only be tapped through community.

Passion: Race with passion. Give it your all, recognizing that you bring honor to your God, your team, and your sport when you dig deep to compete with perseverance.

Go Haymakers!



Filed under Coaching / Personal Growth, Family, General, Rural Communities

3 responses to “Finding the right words…

  1. Roger Hunt

    Well said, beautiful, Anne!! Those words are so timely and can be applied to all our ” teams” (family, church, community, sports and nation….)!! Keep up the good work “Coach” Love to you and yours ☺

    • Roger Hunt

      Ok, I’ve read your post again, as I usually do. ☺As I said above, great words. One of the things I admire about you is that you lead by example. A question that I have though, in order for life to be sustainable there has to be joy/fun in there too. How do you incorporate that element into your process? It would seem critical when dealing with different personalities and motivations. Could you share how you address the issue of “fun” in one of your posts. ☺ Thanks Anne, for always giving me something to think about.

      • So, my kids would probably tell you that I’m not the best at “fun”. But you are incredibly accurate that it is an important part of inspiring and coaching. It is something that I am working on as I try for “self-improvement”. I love to work hard — to challenge myself — and generally find that to be fun. Not everyone views the world that way…

        Since I know that this is a weakness of mine, I try to let the kids lead the “fun part”. Especially with older (high school) athletes, they will find a way to create fun if given the opportunity to lead. As for myself, I find joy doing things with family and working with animals.

        I’ll think on your request for a blog post and hopefully get one written that fulfills your request! Thank you for always reading and sending me a note 🙂


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