Summer Reading!

3 books for YOU & 3 books for your TEAM!

Last week I had a coach reach out for a suggestion of books for her to read to invest in herself and a suggestion for books to read with her team. So, thanks to Coach Megan T. you get a BONUS email this month!

What to impact of the MINDSET of your athletes? Engage them in a group book study!


  1. “The Culture Code” by Daniel Coyle

    • Whether you are a new coach or a seasoned veteran, if you lead a group of people I guarantee this book will make you think! This is usually one of the first books I recommend when someone asks me for a book recommendation. I led a book study with a group of coaches from my school a few summers ago and we had great conversations! We also spend a week discussing the concepts of this book with our Leadership Academy students every year. This book focuses on a simple insight: great groups don’t happen by chance. They are built according to 3 universal rules:

      • Start with Safety — Great group chemistry isn’t luck; it’s about sending super-clear, continuous signals: we share a future, you have a voice.

      • Get Vulnerable and Stay Vulnerable — Strong cultures don’t hide their weaknesses; they make a habit of sharing them, so they can improve together.

      • Roadmap Your Story — It’s not about nice-sounding value statements, it’s about flooding the zone with vivid narratives that work like GPS signals guiding your group toward it's goal.

  2. “The 8 Paradoxes of Great Leadership” by Tim Elmore

    • If you work with young adults Dr. Tim Elmore continually puts out great stuff on his website This is another book I led a book study with a group of our coaches that was a benefit for all involved. In this book he discusses the following 8 paradoxes:

      1. Uncommon Leaders Balance Both Confidence and Humility

      2. Uncommon Leaders Leverage Both Their Vision and Their Blind Spots

      3. Uncommon Leaders Embrace Both Visibility and Invisibility

      4. Uncommon Leaders Are Both Stubborn and Open-Minded

      5. Uncommon Leaders Are Both Deeply Personal and Inherently Collective

      6. Uncommon Leaders Are Both Teachers and Learners

      7. Uncommon Leaders Model Both High Standards and Gracious Forgiveness

      8. Uncommon Leaders Are Both Timely and Timeless

  3. The Book of Proverbs

    • No book has had a more book profound impact on my life than the Bible. I don’t know where you stand on your beliefs about the Bible, and that is okay. The Book of Proverbs is a book of timeless wisdom that I revisit every July. Conveniently the Book of Proverbs has 31 chapters and the month of July has 31 days. I read one chapter each day and I am continually reminded of things to share with my team and areas I can improve in my life. I would challenge you to give it a try!


  1. “Peak Performance: Elevate Your Game, Avoid Burnout, and Thrive with the New Science of Success” by Steve Madness & Brad Stulberg

    • I’ve led multiple book studies with groups of students with this book and the conversations are always engaging and the students share how they take a lot away from this book. This book will help you engage your athletes in conversations about:

      1. Stress + Rest = Growth

      2. The impact of their phones on their performance

      3. Sleep

      4. Routines

      5. How they think about Stress

      6. Developing their Purpose

  2. “Chop Wood Carry Water: How to Fall in Love with the Process of Becoming Great” by Joshua Medcalf

    • This book is an easy read but filled with timeless wisdom that will lead to great conversations. I’ve used this book with my own team multiple times and we have our Leadership Academy students read this book every year. If you’ve never done a book study with your team before, this is a great book to start with. This fictional story is about John learning to be a samurai archer while learning from his sensei Akira.

  3. “Strong: A Runner’s Guide to Boosting Confidence and Becoming the Best Version of You” by Kara Goucher

    • If you coach \young ladies, even if they aren’t runners, I guarantee they will benefit from reading and discussing this book. Kara Goucher was a US Olympian, and in this book she opens up about her personal struggles with confidence and shares the techniques she learned from her sports phsycologist to help her become her best. This book is part workbook and full of actionable items.


A weekly journal prompt delivered to your inbox every Sunday. Designed to help high school and college athletes think, reflect, and intentionally develop their inner coach voice so they can be FREE2COMPETE!

If you have an athlete that you think would benefit from this, please pass this link on to them:

If you are a coach who wants to learn more about journaling with your team, please respond to this email and let’s set up a time to talk. This conversation will not cost you a dime, but I guarantee an investment in this area will have a big pay-off for the athletes you coach!


We will be presenting three sessions at the NCA Multi-Sport Clinic in Lincoln, so even if you aren’t part of the group we are presenting for we hope you’ll join us for at least one of our sessions! We know you’ll take something away from it! Here are our scheduled session times:

Tuesday, July 23rd: 2:20 - 3:10 - XC and T&F Coaches

Wednesday, July 24th: 11:20 - 12:10 - Athletic Directors

Wednesday, July 24th: 2:30 - 3:20 - Tennis Coaches

If you aren’t registered to attend we encourage you to do that TODAY!


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