4 Ways to Handle the End of Your Season

Carmel H.S.-
Photo Courtesy: Peter H. Bick

By Molly Lloyd, Swimming World College Intern

It’s conference season, which means that – for those of us who aren’t headed to Nationals – our seasons are soon coming to a close. This realization can be stressful for a lot of us. We’ve spent the last five months with our teammates – we practice with them, eat the majority of our meals with them, do homework with them, and spend most of our free time with them as well.

Even though we’ll probably continue to see them outside of the pool, it’ll be weird to not have those mandatory two to three hours of scheduled hangout (read: practice) time to spend with them everyday. When the season ends, we suddenly have more hours of free time to do only god knows what, and our activity level drops from very high to pretty low. With the end of the season in sights, I thought I’d give you all a couple of tips on how to navigate the end of your season.

1. Use your free time wisely…

Beach Studying

Photo Courtesy: Dan Worden

Having free time is liberating. Depending on your practice and dry land schedule, there’s a chance that you’ll suddenly have between 10 and 20 hours a week to use however you’d like. Personally, having a rigid practice schedule during the season makes me use my time more wisely and when the off season rolls around, my time management goes out the window. It’ll be easier to spend your free time messing around on the internet or hanging out with friends, but remember, too much of a good thing can sometimes turn out to be a bad thing, so don’t let your influx of free time get the best of you.

2. …but that doesn’t mean you can’t still see your team.

That being said about spending your free time wisely, there are still ways you can spend time with your team even though you’re no longer practicing 3+ hours a day together! It’s important to keep your teammates in your life, especially when you’re close friends with them. Meals are the perfect time to socialize with your teammates. What’s better than eating good food and hanging out with your friends? You can even combine productivity and socializing by doing homework with your teammates.

3. Rest!


Photo Courtesy: Wikipedia

It’s weird to not be working out all of the time anymore, but remember, you deserve this time off! After five months of daily practices (sometimes twice daily), five months of intense lifts and core sessions, five months of early wake-ups and five months of long meets eating up your Saturdays, you deserve this time off. So sleep in a little more than you used to, take a few more naps, and give yourself a break.

4. Stick to your post-season routine.

Finally, even though it’s good to give yourself the rest time you deserve, it’s also important to stick to whatever post-season schedule or routine you might have. Lifting, swimming, and diving during the off season are good things to do. It’s completely okay to take it down a couple of notches – you shouldn’t be doing in the off season what you were doing in the peak of your season – but keeping in shape is a good idea. Get in the pool with a couple of teammates or head to the gym for a much needed lift. Staying in shape will have you feeling better than if you weren’t in shape at all.

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