"My “Y” is knowing that I am taking full advantage of the body I have been given." Cole Christiansen, Linebacker, Los Angeles Chargers

What's Your "Y"

Cole Christiansen, Linebacker, Los Angeles Chargers

How has your sport journey evolved?

"My fitness and sports journey began from my father encouraging me to start playing football to grow physically and to learn the valuable lessons the sport teaches. I played several sports over the years including baseball and lacrosse over the years but football was my true love."

"As I got older I knew that football could change my life by paying for college and I wanted the experience of playing at the highest level. I love competition and developing my body and no sport provides those opportunities more than football. Going pro was a dream but I didn’t think it would be possible out of West Point until recently and I am so grateful I now have that opportunity."

What (or who) has been your main source of motivation or inspiration?

"My dad has been my greatest source of motivation because he got me into the sport and has always been both my greatest fan and critic (which I believe is necessary)."

Where do you find more motivation, doubters or supporters?

"I gain more motivation from supporters because it gives me more people to play for and it gives me confidence. I generally tune out haters."

What is the biggest mental challenge you've had to face in your sport and how have you conquered that?

"My most difficult mental challenge in the sport has been dealing with the loss of friends and teammates during my time at West Point. I was able to get through it by rallying with my brothers and feeding off of our love for each other."

What do you do to make sure you're physically and mentally prepared for competition?

"To ensure I’m prepared I train and study religiously so that I am always in peak physical condition and I can anticipate the moves of our opponents."

Describe your recovery strategies. How do you know if those recovery strategies are working?

"My recovery is most dependent on strict dieting and using proper nutrition supplements in addition to active recovery techniques like STEM, ice, stretching, and sleep. I know these are benefiting me when I feel as if I could play another game within 24 hours post competition."

What's Your "Y"? What keeps you going and training as hard as you do?

"My “Y” is knowing that I am taking full advantage of the body I have been given as well as seizing opportunities that have been afforded to me by the sacrifices my family and friends have made for me to get where I am now. I train as hard as I do because I don’t want to go a day thinking that I could do more to ensure my body and mind could be better than they are. There will always be room for improvement but I sleep soundly knowing I invest all I can into myself."

Where do you see yourself as an athlete in 5 years?

"Ideally in 5 years I will still be playing in the NFL and having the success I’ve always dreamed of."