It doesn't matter what sport or the level of competition, being a coach is a time-consuming job that is enough for any one individual to tackle.
Now, imagine two spouses coaching two different sports that have seasons running simultaneously. Time-consuming just became time-challenging.
Take those same two coaches, add a pair of toddlers into the mix and you venture into uncharted regions that most people wouldn't dare to explore.
The Inter-Mountain photo by Edgar Kelley
Davis & Elkins College baseball coach Ron Palmer talks to Senator catcher Eric Doyle during a mound meeting earlier this season.
announced that it has accepted an invitation to join the conference in 2012. All sports will participate in the Big East. (Max Faulkner/Fort Worth Star-Telegram/MCT)
That's unless you're the Palmers, who recently survived a spring journey that most families not only wouldn't, but couldn't endure.
Ron Palmer, who is head baseball coach at Davis & Elkins College, and his wife, Corinne, Elkins High School's head softball coach, recently wrapped up the first go-around at coaching their respective sports.
With their children, 5-year-old Owen and 3-year-old Caleigh, being the Palmers' top priority, the couple embarked on making their plans for coaching at the same time.
So before both spouses' seasons even began, the two sat down and made sure it would work for everyone involved, especially the children.
"Once we knew that my father (John Gawason) was going to come down and stay for the season, we knew the kids would be taken care of," Corinne said. "He's retired, so he was more than happy to come down and stay for the season and help out. But in the end, he was probably more worn out at the end of the season than we were."
Once the children were taken care of, Corinne put a plan together that seemed to make the transition easier for both coaches.
"I sat down on the couch at the beginning of the year and mapped everything out for the entire season," Corinne said. "I focused on the days we both played, which was a red-flag day, and went from there. It all seemed to worked out pretty well."
Corinne said that the biggest adjustment wasn't the coaching, but being away from her children more than she was used to.
"This was the first time since we've been married that we both coached at the same time," said Corinne, who teaches social studies at Elkins High School. "Before this season, it was just Ron out there coaching, so I was with the kids most of the time. The toughest thing was when I had two back-to-back road games. With me teaching, I would be out the door before the kids were out of bed in the morning. So when I had games like that, I wouldn't see the kids for like three days, which was hard."
Ron also had to make adjustments, which consisted of what he refers to as "daddy duties" in the morning.
"Getting up with the kids and getting them ready for preschool was a challenge sometimes," he said. "Getting a boy (Owen) ready to go wasn't as tough as getting ready a little princess (Caleigh). I had the hair, the shoes, the clothes and everything to do for her before she was ready to go out the door."
When one coach was off and the other was on the field, both children got to enjoy what they love - going to a ballgame.
"The kids spent a lot of time at the ball fields this year," said Ron. "They love it, though, and the players from both my team and Corinne's team love being around them."
Corinne agreed, "Both of our teams are like extended families," she said. "The kids know all the players on both teams and it's like having a bunch of baby sitters around."
The one thing that was consistent this season in the family's routine, no matter the time of the night, was eating dinner together.
"At the end of the day, it's all about family," Ron said. "Not matter what, we make sure to eat dinner together every night, no matter what time it is. At the end of the day, I come home and the kids are smiling, the dog's tail is wagging and the wife gives me a kiss. I know it's a good day."
Both coaches agree that even though they're going to miss being with their squads now that the season's over, being able to spend more time with the kids will be nice.
"Both of our seasons didn't end the way we wanted, but it's nice to be able to see the kids more," Corinne said. "It's nice to have life slow down a little as well."