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Me, Basketball, and Time Management


Ok so I have officially made it through my first "complete" week of college. Let me tell you, this was no easy task. I know some of you are thinking, "Wow, this chick is being extra dramatic." Little do you know, my week is extremely different from your average college student's so when I say "complete" don't take me lightly: a "complete" week for me includes class, conditioning, skills, pick up, and weights. BUT, I survived with the help of my teammates!

Monday: Slept in later because my first class doesn't start until 10:10... winning already. I had time to eat breakfast with my ninas ( Bri and LB).  After a full day of classes, I strolled through the cafe to grab a bite to eat then I had the rest of the day to do whatever tickled my fancy; until 2:30, my scheduled AEP time. After AEP, I headed to the locker room to get ready for weights. Weights were, well you know, weights. Got in, did work and got stronger; got out. Next, the team played a few pickup games and we eventually called it a night. However, I had to head back to the field house for my second AEP session.  Not a bad day! 

Tuesday: My peaceful slumber is disturbed by the obnoxious horn of my alarm at 5:46 a.m. I roll over a couple of times, and proceed down the ladder of my lofted bed to get ready to head over to Ramsey for team conditioning. We push through and finished it out strong. After conditioning, I head back to my dorm to get ready, and grab breakfast before my 9:30 class. After class, I head back over to Ramsey to have my weekly academic meeting with my favorite post coach, Treka. We discuss my grades and upcoming exams/projects in my classes and enjoy some girl talk along the way. After that, I rush back over to my neck of the woods to grab a quick lunch (PB&J sandwich, trail mix, kettle corn, Gatorade and some fruit) , and then head to my freshman seminar (Facebook Generation Marketing), which is probably my favorite class. Next I'm headed to my Chemistry lab which lasts two and a half hours!!! So two and a half hours later, its 4:50 and I have skills at 5:20, so I jet over to Ramsey for my hour post workout. After skills, we have a team weights session. After weights, we usually play pick up until we just can't move anymore. We start heading back to Blue Ridge  to shower, get ready for bed and finish this little thing called homework.  Day 2 complete.

Wednesday:  I'm thanking God for my 10:10 class, as I take advantage of these extra hours of sleep. I must say, the hardest part of my day will probably be getting out of bed. By this time of the week, my body is getting tired. My legs feel like giant Sequoya trees and my arms feel like noodles (cooked noodles that is, hold the spaghetti sauce). I finish my day's worth of classes and speed through lunch in the cafe so I can savor every minute of nap time I have before AEP and afternoon conditioning. Our conditioning workout today consisted of 8 stride run strides and 10 stadiums. The workout wasn't too bad, it was just a warm day! I felt like a meatloaf just baking in the oven! No matter, the team made it through though. We challenged and encouraged each other to do our best, and know this will only make us stronger (physically and mentally) in the long run. After our run, we played pick up again. I then headed to AEP again, and got some work finished. I trudged back to my dorm and knocked out, preparing for another early morning.

Thursday: 5:38 AM comes around. I set my alarm earlier so I can have time to lie in bed. By the way, I've found that if I sleep in my workout clothes, I can get an extra 7 minutes of sleep. ; I must say I enjoy my walks with Bri to conditioning. We talk about how tired we are , laugh at how long our days are going to be, and discuss all the rewards we are going to give ourselves this weekend (when we make it through the week).  My body is tired, tight, and a little sore but why should I let that stop me? The team fights through conditioning like the beasts we are and I then head back to my room to shower and get ready for class. My day is the same as Tuesday, except that the academic meeting I had on Tuesday is not there and I have Biology Lab instead of Chemistry lab. (Unfortunately, it's still the same amount of time.) I begin trucking it over to Ramsey for my skill workout. I also had homework to finish up that night.

Friday: PRAISE THE LAWD ITS FRIDAY!!!! The fact that all I have to do is make it through class and weights and I'll be home free is all the motivation I need! Friday's classes speed by and I fly through weights! I did it! I made it through the week! For my reward.... a five hour nap!

Saturday: Doing whatever I want....

Sunday: Doing whatever I want, AEP from 5-7, and getting ready to do it again!

Yes, my week seems like a lot of work, but to be honest, I wouldn't have it any other way. All this work that is going on will pay off later down the road when our team is playing for the SoCon Championship. That is the only way you can look at it to keep from listening to that lazy creature in your body and getting off track. Our team is working hard and getting better every day.


Treka- (n): the world's greatest post coach, hands down. She makes sure we go hard in the p-p-p-p-paint. 

Skills- (n): Workouts with the coaches, in which you practice basketball techniques, specialized for your position includes: shooting, offensive and defensive drills. Skills groups consist of 3-4 members.

Sequoya trees- (n): big ole trees found primarily in California woods. Said to grow up past 90ft tall

Stride run strides- (n): a technique frequently used to condition athletes; jogging to the 35yd line then sprinting to the other 35yd line then jogging the rest of the way to the end zone

Stadiums- (n): a conditioning technique in which one runs up and down the steps of the big ole football stadium

AEP- (n): Study hall which is mandatory for all freshman athletes, we have to complete six hours a week.

Knocked out- (adj): the state of being soooooo tired that nothing can or will disturb your slumber

SoCon-(adj): Southern Conference

Ramsey- (n): the gymnasium; where the Catamounts go to work

Blue Ridge- (n): the name of our residence hall (dorms) the best dorms on campus are located here. They are the newest and come with Wi-fi and air conditioning (and we each have our own room).

SoCon Championship- (n): What we will be winning this year.

Until next time,

Live each day like EJ

ErikaJoseph2Hello all! My name is Erika Joseph and I am a freshman on the Women's Basketball team here at Western Carolina. I am from Atlanta, GA, born and raised. My favorite color is purple and I like the smell of the air after it has freshly rained. 

I am used to the hustle and bustle of city life, but am slowly adapting to life here at my new home in Cullowhee.  This is my first of many blog posts. I hope I can give some insight in to what it's like being a student athlete, specifically from a freshman's point of view.

My first adventure began with attending summer school in the 'Whee for the month of July.  Let me tell you...this was a summer I'll never forget!

All four freshmen women's basketball players were here on campus:  Lindsey Burleson (aka LB), Lindsay Simpson (aka AY), Brianne Mack (aka Bri), and myself in one suite.  It was like a sleepover every day! We each had our own room and shared one bathroom, and a living room. We stayed at the Central Residence hall here on campus.  Most would shutter at the thought of four girls living in one space for a long period of time, however, I could honestly say that we had no problems at all. We all genuinely liked each other and knew how to have fun together. 

Bri, LB, and I even spent some time in the studio putting a few rhymes together. We produced our platinum single "Cat-Tran Mercy" this summer and our album will be dropping sometime this fall.  Be on your toes.

Now for the schooling part; I had two classes, a health/nutrition class at 8:00 am and a communications class at 10:15am. In true freshman style we got lost on our way to class on the first day and, of course, arrived late. Upon entering the classroom we were all sweaty and frazzled from running around campus and all eyes were on us...Talk about a grand entrance. Nicely done ladies... nicely done.

Both classes were full of athletes so you know there was never a dull moment in class. It was really neat getting to know the other athletes.  Most of the time, we hung out with our male counterparts, the freshmen from the men' basketball team.  They are all pretty cool dudes and like us, each one of them has their own distinct personality. When different personalities meet, fun times are bound to be created. We took them under our wings as our little brothers because they shared our mutual love of basketball and honestly, because they needed our help.

Getting around campus was a breeze. The first couple of weeks we tried to walk everywhere we went. However, somewhere in between that walk all the way from Central to Ramsey in the pouring rain, or the blazing sun, we realized this was not going to be a realistic approach. I ended up driving us around campus the majority of the summer. While this was definitely hard on gas, it saved us a lot of time and headache.

After class we would have the rest of the day to do whatever we wanted...SIKE!!  I wish! Our afternoons were packed like a can of sardines.  We'd have lunch, then an hour of mandatory AEP, which is a study hall for athletes. I can't tell you how many times I sprinted up those endless steps to the cafe in hopes to get a decent meal without having to spend money (the cafe has set meal hours in the summer), especially when my activities on campus had me running late.

Things I learned in summer school:

ALWAYS, ALWAYS, ALWAYS carry a rain jacket or an umbrella. Apparently it rains at random times of the day here in Cullowhee, and no one wants to get caught in the middle of a tsunami, so you always want to be prepared.

Don't go grocery shopping while you're hungry. You'll end up buying the whole store.

DECLINING BALANCE IS A GOD SEND!!!! Cannot tell you how clutch our DB was! It came in handy those nights we missed dinner at the café or when we wanted a bite to eat in between classes!

Be nice to the Cat Tran drivers! You never know when you will need one of them to be your knight in shining armor saving you from walking in the rain!

To close, being able to attend summer school was such a blessing. I didn't want to go back home! After leaving, I felt like I had a leg up in the college world. I got to meet new people, bond with my teammates and learned a few things along the way! What more could a girl ask for?

Until next time live everyday like EJ

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