August 14, 2001 - by
The Chris Hope Diary – What A Typical Preseason Practice Includes

Aug. 14, 2001

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  • Entry 2, Aug. 11
  • Entry 1, Aug. 10

  • Florida State’s All-America safety Chris Hope discussed life outside of football in his daily visit with Hope, a candidate for the Jim Thorpe Award as the nation’s top collegiate defensive back, and his teammates are in the midst of a two-week period of two-a-day practices that began on Aug 11 and end Aug. 23.

    What Does A Typical Day Of Preseason Practice Include?

    A typical day of two-a-day practices includes waking up early in the morning, three meals a day, one practice in the morning, another one in the afternoon and meetings after the second practice. A typical day includes various sleeping patterns, your body is in constant motion. We have sore bodies and hurting legs. You still have to push yourself because practice is very demanding. Sleeping between practices (both during the day and at night) is very short if you are able to get any. Though your legs and your body are tired, you might not be sleepy. Sometimes you have to force yourself to go to sleep. Sometimes you don’t feel like eating, but you have to force yourself to eat because if you don’t you will be lazy during the next practice. Just like sleeping, sometimes you have to force yourself to eat.

    Could You Take Us Through Your Day From Wake-Up to Lights-Out.

    I wake up early at 7 a.m. Breakfast is from 6:30 to 7:30, so I eat before getting taped and dressed and go to my positional meetings. At about 8:20 we get out of our meetings and head to the practice field. After the morning practice, I usually run a couple of extra gassers and work in a couple of extra drills to better myself. I come off the field, take a shower and eat lunch. After eating lunch and taking care of my media interview requirements, I go home for a nap. I usually get home around noon and try to fall asleep as quickly as I can. Then it’s backup at 3:45 to be in the locker room at 4:00. We have a special teams meeting at 4:30 and a defensive meeting when that’s over. After both meetings end, it’s time to get taped and dressed again and onto the field for special teams practice. After the second practice is over, I like to get in some more extra work. We grab a snack before heading back into meetings until 10 or 11 p.m. and go right home and get into bed. The same pattern starts over again the next day.

    How Much, If Any, Free Time Do You Have?

    During the week, free time is very limited. The time that were are away from practice and meetings, we need to rest our bodies. Even if we don’t sleep during our free time, we need to rest our bodies. We are able to find some time to ourselves on the weekends after Saturday scrimmages because we don’t practice on Sunday. We aren’t totally off on Sunday because we have to get up early to go to church or come to the training room to get treatment. Free time is limited.

    Are You Able To Get Any Personal Errands Taken Care Of?

    It is possible that you can get personal errands taken care of but you have to take care of them during the afternoon break when you should be getting your rest. Last year, my roommate Jamal Reynolds and I were moving apartments during two-a-day practices. We had to go buy furniture and move during the break. Between moving and practices, we didn’t get a lot of rest last year. There is time to run errands but it is limited.

    When Do You Find Time To Sleep? Can You Sleep During the Day?

    Sometimes your body is tired and fatigued, but you are unable to fall asleep. There are times when you just lie awake in your bed, feel restless and don’t feel like you are getting any rest. Unfortunately, when you aren’t able to sleep you come to practice the next morning feeling drowsy because you didn’t get the right amount of rest. Some people can fall right asleep but, unfortunately, I’m the type of person that has to be sleepy to go to sleep. I can’t just force myself to go to sleep. It’s usually easier to fall asleep after the morning practice because the morning sun is very draining. It always seems to be a little cooler during the afternoon practice. Afternoon practices are still tough but not as strenuous as the morning practice, simply because you body has to focus itself for the morning practice because you have to wake up so early. Sometimes at night, you get the urge to stay up a little bit later because that may be the only free time you can find for yourself.

    How Do You Keep Up With What Is Happening Around the World In The News?

    I don’t really watch television or read the newspaper during two-a-day practices. During two-a day practices, all you are really doing is football. Focusing on football is all you need to know. You need to focus on learning plays, finding a way to get extra rest so you are prepared for the next practice and getting your needed treatment. It’s all football during two-a-days. We might get a peek at television when we are eating dinner but that’s about it.

    What Do You Miss Most During Two-A-Day Practices?

    The thing I miss most during two-a-day practices in spending time with my friends. After practice, everybody tries to get home and get in bed as quickly as possible. I miss watching television shows, hanging out with my friends and teammates and going out to eat things like that. You don’t have the opportunity to do things like that during two-a-days.

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