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Coaches Corner

“You Don’t Deserve a D….”

The Naval Academy is a an engineering institution disguised as a liberal arts school.

Every student there will take up to calculus III, two semesters of physics, chemistry and electrical engineering (referred to as “Double E) in addition to other courses like Thermodynamics..

If you’ve read even one of these you clearly know none of these fall in my wheelhouse.  I wouldn’t consider myself a “quant” kind of guy.

Just to be clear about how subpar I was as an academic I regularly “borrowed” answers from my good buddyin Spanish Class….

 My last name is Fernandez, both my parents speak fluent spanish and my buddy is from Jersey….

I got a C in spanish and for a while this was one of my better grades.

Thermodynamics, more affectionately referred to as “Thermo”, was the furthest outside of my intellectual capacity of any course I’ve ever taken.

I refer to it as the study of finding equations and tables to solve other equations and tables.

For each test you needed a book of equations just to solve the problems.  It wasn’t uncommon to have a test that was only 1-3 questions.

In my defense I tried harder to pass that course than any other course.  Sometimes you are just out of your league.

I spent a lot of time in “EI”, or extra instruction, with my teacher.

I was so bad at thermo that even sitting next to a very “generous” and brilliant guy, who would later become a SEAL, I still could barely muster a D.

One afternoon while in EI I could see my instructor’s frustration with the depth of my stupidity.

He was a Naval Officer there probably just trying to have a easy tour who hadn’t signed up to teach thermo to a kid with the scientific aptitude of a rock.

He finally just said the quiet part out loud.

“Listen, there is no scenario in which you deserve to pass this course, but you’ve given every effort possible and repeating this course during summer school isn’t going to help anyone.  I’m going to give you a D”

Now most people might have been hurt by this.

I ran out of that office like I had won the lottery!!!!

Sometimes we just have to understand where our strengths and weaknesses are.

     Why beat ourselves up about doing poorly at things that we just aren’t built for??

     Why spend time trying to be the best at something we will never be the best at??

     Why worry about our inadequacies when we have so many things we can excel at??

Maybe we don’t need to be the best as weighing and measuring our food when simply not eating like crap will suffice.

Maybe just being adequate at something like the snatch is actually PRETTY DAMN AWESOME!

Just maybe, being 18-20% body fat is significantly better than where we were and we should just be proud of that.

“The victory is in the battle”

Winning or excelling all the time isn’t realistic.  Sometimes just surviving the fight is the value.

Struggle is ok, struggle has value, struggle creates perspective.

Everyone struggles at something, so don’t put too much emphasis on it.

Learn from it and move on.

Those struggles are what make us who we are and what make us unique.

Embrace them!