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Archive for April, 2011

How Geoffrey Mutai won the Marathon

Geoffrey Mutai used more than his legs to smash the world marathon record yesterday in Boston. He used his eyes. And his imagination. Having never seen the course in person, Mutai employed a big-time mental technique to attack it. He scouted the route in a car upon his arrival nearly a week ago. Then he […]

Life Is a Marathon

You’re running a marathon today. Maybe it’s not the Boston Marathon, but it’s a marathon just the same. Life is a marathon, not a sprint. Acquiring skill is a marathon, not a sprint. Staying in shape is a marathon, not a sprint. So for sure you are in a marathon. In the following quote, you […]

Jackie Robinson’s Powerful Message

This weekend big-league baseball is marking the anniversary of Jackie Robinson’s debut. All players are wearing Robinson’s No. 42 to honor the man who broke the color line on April 15, 1947, for the Brooklyn Dodgers. Robinson helped change the world back then. But as a coach I wonder what he can change today. What […]

The Power of Reframing

Peak performance coach Dave Cross taught me about reframing. It’s a mental technique in which you simply look at a familiar landscape in a different way — a way that’s better for you. Cross told the story of bringing his team into a hostile gym for a crucial game. The fans were making lots of […]

When Risk Is Essential

Someone once said, “Don’t refuse to go on an occasional wild goose chase — that’s what wild geese are for.” Those words come to mind after an episode in our gym the other night. One of our teams was flat. No emotion, no energy, no purpose. I asked the coaches what they could do to […]

What Titanic Means to Your Team

Today marks 99 years since Titanic hit the iceberg. Much has changed in the world, including things that could have prevented the disaster: improved communications and satellite images, not to mention the Weather Channel. But two things will never change, not today, not next year on the 100th anniversary, not ever. One, people will always […]

How to Change a Team Culture

If you’re looking for insight into leadership, check out the recent Sports Illustrated profile of Baltimore Orioles Manager Buck Showalter by writer Tom Verducci. Showalter is trying to turn around a franchise that has not had a winning season since 1997. So he is talking to his players about the approach to success. In one […]

How Competition Put a Man on the Moon

Fifty years ago today, Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin became the first man to orbit the earth. Back then, a Cold War raged and a great propaganda coup awaited the first nation to land safely on the moon. The United States won that race, motivated in part by Gagarin’s journey. “I would say here today that […]

Einstein’s Lesson for Everyone

Today marks 106 years since Albert Einstein published his special theory of relativity. It reminds me, believe it or not, of a recent ESPN.com article on San Francisco Giants relief pitcher Brian Wilson. What possible connection could there be between the man who changed physics and a man who throws baseballs for a living? Simple. […]

Predicting Success in the NFL (And Elsewhere)

Consider the challenge that NFL teams face on draft day. They get only a few shots to select just the right player. They must wait their turn as other clubs snap up talent. And then, having made their picks, teams must shell out lots of cash to sign them. Under these circumstances, no one wants […]