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Lovie Jung: Softball

“Success happens when preparation meets opportunity.”  Zig Ziglar

I first heard this quote from Coach Candrea.  He lived by it and never underestimated the importance of being prepared.  

Now, I grew up thinking that if I worked hard enough, I would be successful.  This is only part of the puzzle.  Many people have a dream, but once they realize the amount of work and dedication it takes, the dream easily fades away.  The road to the Olympics was not easy and I failed numerous times.  Those failures helped me become who I am today as an athlete, a firefighter and a mom.  One characteristic I was born with was my determination.  Many of the other characteristics that helped me along the way, I learned from my parents, coaches and  teammates.  One example I remember vividly was watching Lisa Fernandez.  I was just a young pup still in college and now I am playing with the best player in the world!!!!  She was by far a perfectionist when it came to everything on the field.  Pitching, hitting, throwing, and fielding.  Deep down I had a difficult time wrapping my head around a throw that wasn’t good enough because it was 2” off, what I would call “Lisa standards.”  But years later, I did not settle for less when I threw to my target.  At the time I did not realize what was being imbedded into my thought process.  But because of the opportunity to learn from some of the best softball players in the world, I learned what it took to be apart of the Olympic Team.     

“Failure is a Stepping Stone to Success.”  Arianna Huffington

I failed more times than I can count.  But one thing I did not do was give up.  Softball is a game of failure and if I didn’t embrace it when I was an athlete, I would have succumbed to the negativity that came with it.  I can immediately recall two instances that changed me forever as an athlete. 

I played mostly outfield growing up.  I wanted to learn how to play middle infield.  I asked my coach if I could practice and learn the position.  He looked at me and told me I did not have what it takes to play in the infield and I would NEVER be a middle infielder.  I was determined to prove him wrong.  And I did!!!  

There was a time that I did not make a roster for the National Softball Team after being on the team for a couple of summer.  Every morning I woke up thinking I had to work harder than anyone else.  This is where I really learned that nothing comes easy and I had to put the hours in to make the Olympic Team.  I stayed in Arizona during Thanksgiving and Christmas break working with my strength coach and taking the extra ground balls and batting practice on the field.  Nothing came easy, and I would not be where I am today if I did not fall flat on my face during my journey.

“Patience is a Virtue.” Unknown

I would not be who I am today without the failures that happened along the way.  Despite my failures, I stayed focused and prepared.  When the time was right and the opportunity arose, I was prepared to accomplish my goals. 

KEEP IT MOVIN’ and KEEP GRINDING!!  

One last quote: “Nothing Worth Having Comes Easy”