So how will this rise come into fruition? There must be a plan. And I do have a plan. An aside: I make a lot of plans and I probably should just take action more. Ready. Fire. Aim. Excessive planning can hold you back from taking the necessary action to advance your cause. A well detailed and thought-out plan has significant value, but taking action always is the most critical part of it 🙂 Okay, now, back to the dream. I still have a month of no throwing left to go. During this time I continue to care for my arm with preventative and rehabilitative exercises for my shoulder/elbow. If I had a dollar for every repetition I’ve done with an exercise band or 1lb dumbbell, then I wouldn’t have any more college loan debt haha. Anyway, at the end of January I have an appointment with the physical therapist I’ve been seeing here and we’ll formulate a throwing program to ramp my arm up to 100% by the start of April. Just like in previous years, when we’d have our first practice of the season the day after my birthday, I get a wonderful birthday present. I get to throw again on February 1st ♥.
The real fun begins on February 1st and it’ll just keep getting better and better. An 8 week program will get me ready to throw off a mound again. Once that is completed, I will have a video analysis done on my pitching mechanics at the sports rehabilitation throwers clinic here in town. That will be exciting because I hope it will demonstrate that my arm is fully healthy and that I don’t have any signs of danger going forward. I will be sending this video to teams abroad to prove I’m healthy. I really want to have the analysis done on April 1st. It would be so fitting. To have it be a year from the day my elbow blew out. The universe fooled me, but I didn’t become a fool. Pitching pain free will be the ultimate reward for the year of adversity I faced, a year where I was unable to do what I love.
In the meantime, I’m going to reach out to teams in Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa in mid-February. Last winter I reached out to tons of European teams to express interest in playing abroad and I will use the same type of communication to get the ball rolling this time around. The baseball season in the southern hemisphere ends around February and I want to get my name out to teams at the start of their off-season. That will be a process I will definitely talk about in more detail in future posts. It will be fun marketing myself, especially because this is how I will be able to get signed by a foreign team and continue my baseball career. I’m hungry to show teams that I will be a valuable asset for them as a pitcher, player, leader, coach, and as an ambassador for baseball overall. It’s an exciting process and I will bring an unbridled enthusiasm to it. An aside: I learned yesterday that the word enthusiasm is derived from the Greek – en theos, which means ‘a god or spirit within’. I learned this from a random book I picked out of the shelf at my apartment. One of my roommates was given it a while back and it caught my eye on the shelf. It’s called Even Eagles Need A Push by David McNally. At the heart, it’s a book about confidence, and I plan to read it in the coming weeks. I also must find a team to play on this summer in town. The adult recreational leagues will be the perfect place to test my arm out and get back into the game.
I have a couple other key events in mind that will serve as milestones for my return. In late April or early May I will return to my college campus to get clocked on a radar gun. I hope to hit at least 85mph on the gun that day. That will be a great benchmark, something that would look good in the eyes of teams abroad, and more importantly, a number that will reassure me of my power on the mound. In late May or early June, I am going fly down to Texas and participate in a 3 day pitching bootcamp at the Baseball Ranch. This will be a pilgrimage of sorts, something deeply spiritual in relation to my journey as a pitcher. I hope to gain a better understanding of pitching and of what I must do to get myself to the next level. Ron Wolforth has a highly acclaimed reputation as a maverick in pitching instruction. It will be a blessing to have some moments down there and learn from the best.
Though these checkpoints will be important times on my journey, the most paramount step is always the one I’m currently taking. Whether that means the squat I’m doing, the stretch I’m holding, or a visualization exercise, all of them must be done with my entire focus for me to get the maximum benefit from them. That means right now as I’m writing this, feeling my breath, being here as the words flow onto the screen. Presence has always been, always will be, and always is, the key. Now I will end with the only result based resolution I have this year: ending 2016 in the southern hemisphere playing baseball 🙂 May we all achieve what we dream to do in 2016. -Luke32