The Dog Days of wrestling are upon us.
You can only hope your opponent never used one practice during the season to get better.
You can only hope your rival opponent sold their souls to the weight cutting gods and have made practice only about losing weight and are now three months deep into a grueling weight cutting cycle of diminishing returns.
You can only hope after completing their weight cutting yo-yoing cycle for three months, your opponent crawls into the month of February, the post-season, with a depleted and unprotected immune system.
You can only hope they wonder why they just can’t get rid of that cough.
You can only hope they arrive 10+ pounds overweight to their first post-season practice on Monday.
You can only hope they put on six layers of clothing which makes wrestling nearly impossible.
You can only hope when their first post-season Monday practice is over, they arrive home, only to head right out to their second practice of the day, this one at their wrestling club; just to do the same thing.
Make practice all about losing weight.
You can only hope that on Tuesday, after depriving their thirsty bodies of water, they are ‘only’ 5 pounds over after practice.
You can only hope on Wednesday that they practice the same way as they did on Monday.
You can only hope their thirst rises while everyone else is on a water break.
You can only hope they leave Fridays practice 2 1/2 over because they didn’t have enough energy to keep their sweat going consistently during practice.
You can only hope when they get home they need to go for a run delusionally planning on losing 2 1/2 lbs.
You can only hope that during their “run” is at a snails pace and they only lose 1 pound, still leaving them 1 1/2 over.
You can only hope they mistakingly attempt to float that 1 1/2 pounds overnight.
You can only hope that their attempt falls short due to their lack of water intake throughout the week.
You can only hope that every one of their waking moments is consumed thinking about water.
You can only hope they can’t sleep, and they toss and turn all night.
You can only hope that as they lay there thinking they are #1, they realize they haven’t gone #2 in more than a week.
You can only hope their mouth is as dry as a cotton ball.
You can only hope their parents hear the sound of running water coming from the bathroom faucet in the middle of the night.
You can only hope their parents are thinking to themselves “don’t swallow…”
You can only hope that when their parents don’t hear a gargle or a spit that they confront them in the hallways on the way back to their room and they argue about cutting weight.
You can only hope there is a divide in your opponent’s support system.
You can only hope their mother is yelling, “This has to stop,” as their father barks at them that “You do this every time. When are you going to learn?”
You can only hope after a night of zero sleep that they ‘wake up’ and find themselves still 1 pound over.
You can only hope they get to the other school just to realize the other team’s scale is 1/2-pound heavy.
You can only hope there is a line at weigh-ins and they find out that they are now 1 1/2 pounds over with only :45 minutes until the close of postseason weigh-ins.
You can only hope they feel the pressure of having to drop weight in a short length of time or their post-season is over before it began.
You can only hope that your opponent checks their weight five times in ten minutes, each time becoming more frustrated than the last time he checked.
You can only hope they ‘find a way’ to make the weight right at the bell.
You can only hope they wrestle their first two matches on Saturday, drained looking like crap, barely beating inferior opponents.
You can only hope they make an excuse that they weren’t feeling well.
Enjoy the benefits of having eaten the same amount at each meal for the last three months, regardless of whether it was the night before a weigh-in, or immediately after.
While you ate for energy, built strength and recovered your body properly.
While you replenished your water loss during and after every practice.
While you showed up for practice in a pair of shorts and a tee-shirt.
While you focused on three things each practice; timing, technique, and becoming the best wrestler you can become.
While you are peaking for the postseason.
Your opponent can only hope that you didn’t have the discipline to live in such a way.
But you did.
You can only hope to meet that weight cutting opponent with it all on the line…