As players prepare to head into training camp, fans shouldn’t think that their favorite players have been loafing around all off-season. For a professional athlete, keeping your body in shape is a year-round job, and while many players are used to the heavily regimented in-season schedule that they are given, they are able to create their own sort of program for the off-season. The work-outs may come first, but there is also time for social aspects, as the off-season is the time for players to re-charge their batteries.
Today, we’ll be looking at the schedule posted by Jaguars DE Austen Lane last week. Note: This schedule is obviously posted in fun, and Lane is one of the funnier players in the NFL, but we’ll be breaking the serious aspects of his daily schedule as well.
8:00 a.m. – Wake up: Aven would probably be waking up earlier in-season, but now is the time he gets to sleep in; must be a nice feeling for a player to get the extra hours in and sleep is an important factor in recovering from workouts and getting stronger in the off season.
9:00 a.m. – Tweeting inspirational quotes: Sometimes we all need something to get us moving in the day. For me the end speech to a movie like Braveheart might do the trick, but apparently what helps Lane are the ubiquitous Rise and Grind messages on Twitter.
10:00-12:30 – Working out various body parts including abs, arms, and upper-body… and taking some Instagram pics of what he’s working out to show off to Twitter fans. Lane seems to be a fan of the infamous mirror pics that many young people take nowadays, particularly athletes showing off the results of their workouts. Regardless of his photo habits, Lane shows that he puts some time in to do his work in the off-season… and isn’t shy about keeping his fans updated on his progress.
3:15- Tweet that he’s eating: Another common athlete Twitter update – that they are eating, and what they are eating, whether it’s a steak or a McGriddle sandwich.
4:15- Play Call of Duty: Video games are one of the most popular recreational activities for NFL players, almost to the point of cliché. The popular first-person shooter surely draws on that warrior mentality that Lane certainly taps into on the football field. Whether it is chasing down Nazi zombies or quarterbacks, Lane will be drawing on his instincts and competitiveness to succeed in the games.
While Lane posted this schedule as a joke to poke fun at some of the stereotypes of NFL players and Twitter, it probably isn’t too much of an exaggeration of how many NFL players spend their off-season days. The balance of professionalism and relaxation helps players get prepared for the upcoming season, while giving them free time to catch up on things they do miss in their playing days.
I’m sure the P.R. staff for the Jaguars doesn’t mind that Lane is as social media-savvy as he is, in the off-season anyway. While certain teams may discourage the practice, there are many teams that encourage tweeting and other forms of social media as long as it doesn’t factor into on-the-field performance. Considering the lack of recognizable figures on the Jaguars, social media would help players get the team brand out there.
By Eric Gustafsson