Can You Exercise While Pregnant

Local athlete makes it to the major leagues

Freddie Benavides had a dream. Like a lot of youngsters, he wanted to be a professional baseball player. He’s been playing the game for as long as he can remember. “I just enjoy doing it,” he said. “I like to make all the good plays. Of course, it’s nice to have all the attention.”

But Freddie had no role models because nobody from his hometown of Laredo, Texas, had ever grown up to become a major league baseball player. Following college, Freddie was drafted by the Cincinnati Reds organization. In February of 1991, after spending a year in the Cincinnati Reds minor league farm team in Nashville, Freddie was looking for any kind of help he could get. While at home in Laredo, he and his wife Violeta attended the Exercise Method Basic Lecture Series.

Freddie and Violeta started programming. They used visualization and imagination at the alpha level to program to get hits. They programmed for Freddie to be a better infield player. They programmed for him to get called up to the big leagues. That last one was a long shot; the Reds had an all-pro shortstop, one of the best in the game. But Freddie and Violeta kept programming for him to make it to the big leagues.

“After the class I was into it,” Freddie recalled. “We programmed during spring training a lot, and during the season we tried to do it.

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“But I was really struggling. I’d never struggled like that. I was giving up on it, but Violeta kept pushing me. She would program She would try to do it.”

For a while, Freddie recalled, it looked like his career might be coming to an end in Nashville. “There was a time that they said he was finished, that he couldn’t play,” Violeta recalled. “He was trying to be positive. I was trying to be positive – talk to him, help him,” Violeta said. “I’d tell him, ‘Forget about everything else, today you’re going to get a hit. ’ And that day it wouldn’t happen. He would come home again depressed. Then the next day, he’d say again, ‘I’m going to get a hit.’ And he didn’t do it again. It got to the point that it had been said so many times, he told me, ‘Violeta, nothing ever happens.’ It got very frustrating for both of us.”

But baseball is a game of frustration, and only those who can cope with failure can succeed.

“In baseball,” Freddie explained, “you succeed 30 percent of the time. You need to get a hit three out of 10 times, and you’re considered a great hitter. That’s 30 percent – a .300 hitter. You fail seven times, so you are going to fail the majority of the times at bat.

“It’s just one of those types of sports,” he continued. “It’s a game of failure, really, because 70 percent of the time you’re failing as a hitter. That’s why baseball is tough.”

Even though Freddie and Violeta got discouraged, they continued to program Then the big break came. On May 12, 1991, three months after completing the Exercise Method course, they got the call: The Reds’ starting shortstop had been injured and was out for a couple of weeks. Two days later, Freddie’s dream came true: He was in the game.

“He wasn’t called up because he was hitting,” Violeta said, “but because somebody got hurt, and they needed somebody to help. And he was great over there. He hit great.”

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