This is a saying that has been used as a quote on various training programs for over a year now. However, the meaning of the quote took on a whole new magnitude this summer when it was put on the 2019 summer shirts and has been used fairly frequent at TNL. It was also the catchphrase for the movie, “Avengers: Endgame” where the plot revolved around the Avengers doing whatever it took to reverse ‘The Snap’ done by Thanos in Infinity War. An underdog story can usually be summarized by this phrase since they usually have to do a ton more work than others…One athlete in particular - The mayor of TNL aka, the most seasoned TNL OG, aka Blitz Nation aka, Daniella Blitz is an athlete that embodies this saying…and not just because she is a huge Marvel fan.
Let’s rewind the clock to January of 2017 when Blitz was a sophomore in HS with zero training experience and she came in for her initial evaluation with me. One of the questions I asked (that I do with every athlete) was, “Do you want to play college soccer?”. The reply was something that I didn’t exactly anticipate, and I am paraphrasing, “I haven’t really thought about it too much, but if it happens then I’d like to play in college”. At the time, Blitz had suffered from a couple of concussions, which was concerning to me since soccer is considered a contact sport and headers are used frequently. For the next four months, she built a solid physical foundation from training, but then suffered a high ankle sprain in a soccer game that sidelined her for 6 weeks. Blitz returned to training at the end of May and that is when the pieces started to come together. Over the next 3 months, she made a ton of progress followed up by an even fall training block. Once the school year hit she was hitting PR’s left and right: becoming a member of the 200 lb deadlift club and then front squatting over her body weight for the first time
Due to an unfortunate circumstance (out of both of our control) in November of 2017, we had to stop working with each other for a month…potentially derailing all of that momentum that was built. However, TNL opened in the following month and Blitzer was one of the first athletes to sign up for training. Over the next 13 months, she made some of the most impressive progress that I have seen as a coach. Blitz was willing to do whatever it took to get her training sessions every week. Outside of taking a week off after a long soccer tournament in March 2018, she did not miss a session for the following 10 months. When the soccer season picked back up last fall, a trend started to appear - she was getting recruited by a handful of colleges for soccer going on several visits to schools in the process. As we transitioned from 2018 to 2019, Blitz committed to continuing her academic and athletic career at Goucher College in Baltimore, Maryland!
Coming full circle here. When you’re willing to do whatever it takes as an athlete, good things will happen. Blitz has embodied being committed, putting forth her best effort, staying consistent, having the self-awareness to gain an edge and remaining patient with the process. The 2019 Goucher Women’s Soccer season is now underway and on opening night, last Friday (8/30), there was a familiar name in the starting lineup - DANIELLA BLITZ. Blitz went from an extremely green athlete, unsure of her athletic future after high school two and a half years ago to starting her first career college soccer game! If you are looking to become the next underdog story like Blitz, sign up for the Fall Athlete Training block starting TOMORROW!