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Career-Changing Decisions for Strength Coaches Unveiled

Cody Hughes
Aug 21, 2019

While in Lake Charles, Louisiana, I was living the dream. I was finally a full-time Division 1 collegiate Strength and Conditioning coach. I thought I had finally made it to the big time. Being part of the McNeese State University Strength Staff seemed like a dream job, until 6 months in and I was miserable. I was working 60+ hours a week, constantly in survival mode, and barely getting to see my wife. It caused me to question so many things about the career I chose and the profession that I truly loved. I made the decision that if a better opportunity for my family came about that I would take it.

In January 2018, I got a job offer to enter the private sector in Longmont, Colorado. My wife and I are originally from Alabama, and we thought Colorado would be a fun adventure to go on. I certainly thought that our lives would get much better since we would get the opportunity to spend much more time together. We moved out to Colorado and I began my life outside of collegiate strength and conditioning.

Two months later I was miserable again. I was brought out on false pretenses and the job I thought was going to give me fulfillment was doing the exact opposite. My wife and I spent a lot of money to move out to Colorado for my job to become a complete flop. It was a scary moment in our lives and I had to question everything up to that point. I was out of coaching and found myself in a dark place and a long way from home. This forced me to begin asking questions that were important that I asked with honesty.

This move was by far the best career move I ever made, not because it was rewarding, but because it revealed to me everything I needed to know about my identity and who I was. Although painful, the move out of collegiate strength and conditioning gave me the opportunity to finally grasp what I wanted out of my career and my life with my family. I am thankful for that experience and would not trade it for the world.


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