Six months ago the life I knew as an IRT Pro changed dramatically. I began working full time at Racquetball Warehouse and my days of playing almost forty yearly tournaments around the world came to a screeching halt. Although I knew going in I would be able to play the majority of the Tier 1 Pro-stops, I faced a real challenge of keeping in shape and competing in major events while putting in a full “9 to 5” workday. And so the balancing act began…
I’ve been playing racquetball since I was twelve years old and since then I have dedicated a lot of my time to becoming a professional racquetball player. Obviously this includes a lot of time training both on and off the court. I’ve always felt most energetic and productive in the morning and usually my productivity level drops throughout the day. Needless to say I would get my training done shortly after waking up and be done by early afternoon. My daily training would generally consist of roughly two hours of practicing on court and two hours of various off court training.
Once I started working I knew my training routine would become my second priority and I was nervous about having to train after work. I began to wonder if playing the tour at a high level was even a possibility anymore; especially with how sharp I was able to stay in the previous years between training and the excess of tournament matches. It took me a few weeks to adapt, but I have struck a new balance and found my training can be equally effective in less frequent doses.
After a few months of working at RbW and competing on the IRT-Tour I began to realize the combination of working, not training as much, and not playing nearly as many tournaments was beneficial to me. I streamlined my training techniques by hiring a personal trainer to get the most out of my fitness workouts, focused more on a healthy diet, and spent the on court time with a direct and drawn out plan every time I step on the court. I knew that my time has to be well spent or my game would begin to diminish.
Outside of the court, the life of a professional racquetball albeit fun, is oftentimes very stressful. The travel, the competitiveness of the rankings, the constant abuse of your body, and ultimately the pressure of winning to secure a solid paycheck makes it tough on all of the racquetball pro’s. To have the opportunity to work for a racquetball company with all of its benefits along with playing the tier 1 tournaments has brought me back to a place where I thoroughly enjoy the game. Needless to say, playing racquetball has become more fun and not as much of a job!
Since beginning at Racquetball Warehouse my level of appreciation for racquetball has risen to an all-time high. Where I feel my game and training have dipped, my desire to play and compete along with my overall health has elevated. I’ve come to a point in my career where I’m completely happy with the way things have lined up for me. Maybe I should’ve started working years ago! J Over the past few months (and especially the past few weeks) I’ve learned an important life lesson that if you really want to succeed you will find a way to do it no matter what stands in your way.