Coaches Column: Coach Tangen
By Coach Mason Tangen (TheLorian)
“So while y’all at it right now take care of y’all bodies, you know what I mean? Take care of y’all chicken [money], you feel me? Take care of y’all mentals, ‘cause look, we ain’t lasting that long” –Marshawn Lynch.
After coming to the realization mid-April that there was nothing that I could do about being quarantined at home, I started to think of different things to do to pass the time. This is where the above quote came into play. While I was stuck at home, and even now, I have put more of my time into my “mentals,” as Marshawn puts it. I’ve begun to carve out time for myself every day to do what I want to do. As a busy adult, it seems weird to say that, because most students think that when you graduate you can do whatever you want whenever you want. But it’s simply not true. You get busy, wrapped up in a workweek that can seemingly put you in a very monotonous cycle, and before you know it, you become complacent. The life of a college track and field coach is this: when we aren’t practicing, we’re recruiting. There’s downtime, not time off. So when I found myself in quarantine, I realized that I needed more time to myself. I started to play more with my dog, researched new ways to coach and teach technique, and I went back to what I loved to do when I was younger: play video games. I carved out an hour a day to have “me time.” I started to get out of the funk that was quarantine and I keep my personal time going strong every day.
Another part of Marshawn’s quote was to take care of “y’alls bodies.” During quarantine, and even now, I still make it a point to work out. I started doing some at-home body-weight challenges with some of my athletes to keep both them and me motivated. It was a great way to stay in touch with them and stay in shape. I preached to the athletes, warning them that “I better not come back in more shape than you.” At the end of these challenges, the athletes and I would talk about how awful the workout was but how much progress we saw from each other. Now, my challenge is to stay either more in-shape or as in-shape as my athletes, so that when we have our body weight/plyo/core days, I can do it with them and share in the agony. So even during this odd, weird, and sometimes depressing state that we’re in, my advice would be to “take care of y’alls bodies and take care of y’alls mentals”