Week 14 Update
Terrible Week of Practice but Best Scoring Round Yet?
Welcome Players! Some weeks are better than others, and some aren’t. This week my practice habits continued to decline, but were marked by first sub-100 posting to date on a beautiful golf course at Tiburon. Most importantly I played the round with my dad and enjoyed the hell out of it. Here’s to improving little by little and taking all things in stride.
Training Week in Review
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Training Week in Review
14 weeks in and I’m certainly starting to feel the effects of grinding for improvement in the game of golf.
Much respect goes out to all amateur and professionals alike that work week-in and week-out on improving their game to chase their dreams.
It’s not easy to stay balanced on life, family, relationships, friends, health, AND sport.
But we move forward nonetheless. In weeks like this I remind myself its the journey that matters - not the destination.
This is possibly the worst week of habits I’ve put together this year.
Not a single practice effort at home. I did have a solid range session and played a great round with my dad on the weekend, but things have been a bit of a struggle lately.
Sending out a reminder to myself that just a little bit goes a long way.
I was practicing so much that I guess I started to fall into this trap where I thought if I couldn’t get in as much practice as I wanted I was might as well skip it. Dangerous thoughts.
I’m going to try and get back to the simple things this week. Just 10 putts a day.
Resistance Train (Gym): 0
Conditioning (Cycling): 1
Yoga (@ home): 0
Almost an exact repeat of last week. Have been having a difficult time getting motivated to train in the gym. All journeys go through ebbs and flows - there are ups and there are downs. I’ve talked about it before but for me I try to recognize when I’m in one of those down-turns and not get too hard on myself. One of the worst things you can do is become your own worst critic. I find it easier to train conditioning and so I’ll lean into that until things start to rebound.
My camera tripod is broken so unfortunately have not been able to get any video for swing analysis.
But I did have a really solid range session during the week. Since I’ve been working on my swing so diligently I noticed my focus has been very internal. One nice part about not being able to video myself is I can just focus on the external feedback I’m getting from the ball instead of constantly nitpicking my form.
I’m hitting the ball much straighter, making consistent contact most of the time, and am even starting to work some draw patterns in.
I can’t say for certain how well I’m doing with getting my hands into the right position, but for now I’ll be happy with the takeaway that from an actual ball-flight standpoint things are getting much better.
I think I was video-ing a little too much before, recording every swing and obsessing over what I should be doing.
I’ve got to remember this is a long process and no matter how badly I want things to improve quickly it just doesn’t work like that.
Not being able to record my swings is a small blessing in disguise.
In a week full of negatives there’s one positive that out-rules them all.
I finally got to play a round of golf with my dad this weekend. Something I’ve been looking forward to since my Project started. Spending time with him on the course is one of the main reasons I started this endeavor and I cherish our time playing together.
The runner-up to just playing with him was that I posted my best score to date!
We played at Tiburon Golf Club on the Gold Course which was in fantastic shape.
Take a look at the scorecard and we’ll break it down next.
(sings) Do you see what I seeeee?
Yes that’s right!! Complete night & day turn-around from my last performance.
The range was time well spent as I learned one effective strategy to control my driver. I shortened my back swing and swung at maybe 70% effort focusing on ball contact. (un)Surprisingly it made a big difference!
The trade-off was that I lost significant distance off the tee, to the tune of maybe 30-40 yards. But being in the fairway so much made a huge difference both in confidence and being in good position for approach shots.
The good news stops there, as I had 14.5 penalty strokes (I think Grint counts sand bunkers as 0.5 penalty) and 5 three-putts.
Three Greens in Regulation was decent but could have been much better considering I hit 50% of fairways and was playing on a shortened course.
Going back to the changes I implemented from last week - we played the white tees (6150 yards) and that had a slope of 121. So although the distance is typically short for me that’s the slope I want to be playing (< 125).
I also had no caffeine and we got to the course a full hour early so had time for a full warm-up without being rushed.
For the second round in a row I par’ed 17 & 18 which demonstrates an ability to finish strong and not quit on the round. Especially on 18 where I needed Par to break 100 and I did it with a fairway and GIR.
It may be a little thing considering the whole round but I think it speaks to the effect of conditioning that I’m able to be physically and mentally engaged at the end of the round to score like that.
The biggest take-aways for me this week is I really need to start playing the course better in a sense of not incurring so many penalty strokes. It’s definitely one of my weak points in not having been around the game of golf very long but strategically these are things that make a huge difference.
It’s not necessarily that I hit bad shots, but that I’m selecting my shots based on the “best-case scenario” not based on the likelihood of margin-of-error.
I should be laying up more, aiming for area of most green instead of pin, and avoiding trouble at all costs. It’s going to take some mental fortitude to play within myself but I proved that if I can tune-down my driver I can also humble myself of shot selection.
As with everything though it’s a work in progress!
All in all it was a tough week of practicing and training capped off by one of my best rounds to date.
You can’t have it all so being able to take improvements in stride and staying positive even when things get difficult is one of the most important parts of being committed to a goal.
I’m going to get back to basics this week and work on the fundamentals of putting little by little at home.
I made good strides in swinging with less effort on my driver to hit more fairways and to play the up tees with a more fitting slope for my skill level - now I’ll just need to work on the mental side of shot selection to limit the mistakes and penalty strokes that crush my score.
It may be a little harder to stay positive this week but as with all things I’m going to do my best and work for progress, not perfection!