Painful experiences

The pain and benefits of training

The pain and benefits of training - Credit: Phil Mingo/PPAUK

Sport is littered with painful loses and setbacks, as opposed to the extreme highs and kudos that comes with the job. 
I can’t imagine how those young England football players will be feeling, the hype and drama of penalties is such a cruel end to a fantastic tournament. 
In rugby, the inevitable pain of injury stopping players short on tour in South Africa, added to that the challenges of trying to operate in a bubble with Covid interrupting the schedule has made it tough to focus for the Lions. 
With the number of cases coming out of the South Africa camp currently at 20, it makes me wonder how safe the trip is. Even if both sides are to stay relatively Covid-free for the rest of the tour, I still have the feeling that the Boks will be undercooked, only having played a single test match since their World Cup triumph. 
Preparation is obviously key at this level and I hope, for the sake of seeing a proper Lions vs South Africa series, both camps can prepare to put on a top-quality show, giving our very own Devon based Lions the best opportunity to grab the starting spots and become living legends. 
Meanwhile, our first week of preparations is complete, seeing some familiar faces turn out for Sidmouth training. Plenty of numbers involved and just as important, plenty of hard graft put in.  
One thing that goes a long way to get a successful team is the ability to work hard for each other, and pre-season is a great way to show one another that you are there and ready to work for the person next to you.  
Some of the toughest and most painful conditioning sessions I have ever had the pleasure of doing include those on Exmouth beach. With Dune running (when they did exist), partner drags, wrestling in the sea and what can only be described as a gladiator style gauntlet, often with a small crowd wondering what madness is this?  
We are hoping to put together a few Chiefs inspired sessions for the Sidmouth Boys, and I hope they will enjoy them as much as I did. Without pain there is no glory! 

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