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”