In the Life of a Fish: Mark Cabrera
August 27, 2008
With the regular season opener drawing near, Palm Beach Atlantic men's soccer player Mark Cabrera took some time out of his schedule to fill us in on what's been going on in his life, on and off the field. Mark is one of a number of student-athletes who have taken time out to share their "blog" on PBASailfish.com.
August 12th: I wake up with an overwhelming sense of nervous energy; each breath is thick with excitement. Within an hour, my phone is quickly running out of battery from sending and receiving texts from guys on the team who would like to meet up one last time before we start training the next morning.
August 13th: (First day of preseason): I wake up with the same nervous energy, this time much earlier. It has officially begun, preseason. After advancing to the national championship game last year and losing a minimal amount of graduating players, I arrive at training camp ready to engage in a season as successful if not more rewarding than they past year. Then, reality hits in the form of the “cooper test”, a timed two-mile run with the GOAL of completion in under twelve minutes. MORE than twelve minutes later I stride into the finish and the time of introspection begins. I quickly realize that eating at the Cheesecake Factory several times a week during the summer may not have been the most physically rewarding of my dining options.
August 14th: At 6 A.M. my alarm goes off and I pray that the Lord takes me home to be with Him. Unfortunately for my tired legs, it was not quite my time. (He works in mysterious ways.)
Enough of the play by play, in reality I am just excited about the chance to actually play this year. My first two years ended abruptly due more or less to season ending injuries. As a freshman I tore my quad in the 4th game of the year and by the time I had recovered fully from my surgery it was already preseason of my sophomore year. After two weeks of training I felt fit to play. Twelve minutes into our first match, my ankle quickly proved me wrong. One more surgery later, my spirits were nearly as broken as my ankle was. However the Lord sent encouragement in the form of the guys on the team and I began my long road to physical recovery. This year, injury free so far! There is still time though!
As our preseason concludes this weekend with our first game in Colorado, we leave our two a days behind us with the hope that our hard work and blisters will be rewarded. As ice baths are replaced by classes and as we say goodbye to free team meals, it is important not to forget one thing… At least we had the Olympics to come home to this year.
As a student athlete, the greatest struggles this year will come not necessarily on the soccer field, but everyday life as we attempt to juggle schoolwork, athletic competition and employment. My prayer for our team this year is that we stay mentally focused on performing to the best of our abilities in all aspects of our lives. If we can keep our focus, I feel as if our squad can do great things.
Time for an ice bath…