Sunday, November 24, 2013

The year goes towards the end and I am thankful for what I accomplished

I realize that this year is not over yet. But the next few weeks will not make a huge difference in the outcome of 2013 and the tremendous goal
It was an exciting year with many accomplishments and big steps forward towards my dreams and goals. While I end up short this time, I can not find one negative aspect of this entire mission. 2 months I was injured and could not practice and yet I was able to play some of my best golf in years. I will start practice, diet and workout again this coming. This is already in preparation for a huge 2014. There is a few tournaments left for this year. Capris Isle two men, WFGT and some skins. All those to finish out a great golfing year. But my full recap will be posted in January. I am happy, thankful and more confident than ever. There is no doubt in myq mind, that I am on track. So reset goals and time frames.Make new plans and keep going. That is what I will do.Last Friday I played a good but difficult golf round. It showed me one more time how difficult it can be to stay in focus when negativity is around you. So more than ever I will make sure to surround myself with positive people. People who believe in my goal and are willing to give and help. Nothing new and yetq so crucial. But for today and tomorrow ny focus is on getting some other things done.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Comeback after over 4 weeks of injury - Bobby Jones Golf Complex Skins tournament

Friday the 15th of  November was the day. Finally I thought I will be back an see that I have some fun doing what I like most. So I got all my stuff ready and let Bubba know that I am in the game again.
The plan was to stretch as good as I can and warm up nicely. However, I was running late yet again. So I had to do a short version of the warm up session. Which in that case was fine. I did not want to hit to many balls anyway and take it easy even before we started. Signed up and got myself a small bucket of balls. First I did some stretching for my back and it felt good. I still have a strange feeling when I lean backwards, but it is much better and it is not hurting, just a strange feeling I can not describe. Next I warmed up with wedges, 7 iron, 5 iron and a few hybrids. About 40 balls and I have to say that my wedges looked pretty good. 7 iron looked pretty good also. My 5 iron and hybrid looked pretty insecure, but that is not a surprise. After weeks of not hitting any balls or even have a club in my hand, I did not expect to hit great shots right away. I did not swing any woods at all on the range. I kept it short and then went on to do a few chips and putts. This all looked good. I think I reached a point where I can chip and putt any time. That does not mean I will not practice any more in that matter. As a matter of fact, my practice for the most part is around the green all the time.

We started on time and I had a good group. All pretty good golfers and people I like to play with.
The first tee was really strange. I was not exactly sure how hard I should swing, turn or whatever I should do. So I decided to simply start slow and move the ball forward one shot at a time ( as I should do it all the time anyway). My first tee shot was straight down the middle exactly where I wanted it. My first approach was right over the trees and on the green for my first GR and a birdie chance. I was pleased with both shots and right away felt that I will be able to increase my swing hole by hole. I made a good par to start with. My next tee shot I gave a little more and again had a great tee off. So I was confident to play good on the front 9.

So I did. Except 2 tee shots which one cost me a bogey all my tee shots were good on the front 9 and I was able to play a solid 5 over par. Not that this is a good score, but for not playing all this time I was pretty satisfied. Not hurting and feeling good I made the decision to play 80 to 90 percent on the back 9.

Started with a good drive on 10, GR and then missed the birdie putt close. My drive on 11 I put all the way to the right over the trees, but when I got there I had a shot at the green from besides the tree and over another one , clearing the bunker to a back pin. Ball was sitting on sand which was not so good. About 180 to the pin. I made a commitment and gave it a go to hit it over the tree, clear the bunker. Pulled off a great golf shot which left me 12 foot for another birdie, which lipped out. No doubt, that this was a great  shot.

12 I missed the green but had a super LW within 2 feet and saved par. Putted for birdie on 13, 14 and made 13. 14 I was short with my approach but chipped it within 9 inch. 16 I putted for birdie again and missed it by an inch. On 17 I hit a wonderful 7 iron with in 5 feet and made a difficult down hill putt for birdie. 18 I putt it within 8 feet for another down hill birdie putt which lipped out again. However, I played the back 9 2 under par for a 34. That left me with a 75 and in fact with the best round on that course in 2013! Now that was a bummer. I lipped 3 birdie putts and missed another 3 by inch or less and had one double bogey and yet I finished 3 over par . Not even playing with 100 % force and not yet sure I am all in good shape. Go figure.

My putting was doing well, my chips were no good except 2 of them, my drives were straight but not huge. Although I had a utility club in on the par 5 hole 14 which I put it on the edge of the green from 245 out.

There were some great shots and some very good putts. Good course management and I was very calm. It gave me 2 closest to the pin, 1 skin and some other winnings. So that was a good start back into the game. It showed me, that all the work I did this year was worth it. I was able to come back without practice and play and yet shoot one off my better rounds this year by playing with about 80 % power. Now that tells me something right there.

Coming home I felt great and the next day I had no issues at all with my body. So I think, I can slowly start working my way back into my practice routine and playing routine. Just need to keep it easy and focus on the right things on the course. I stretched in between and did nothing wild from difficult lies. Just moved the ball and gave myself opportunities when I could. Really was reading the greens well. Looked at every putt from all 4 sides and made sure I have a good overview. It paid off greatly and I will make sure I will do it the same way from here on.

I will not do any practice or play until about Tuesday. Just resting my back even more and do some putting and chipping at home and then start going to the range on Wednesday. Maybe we play in Capris Isle on Friday. There is a two men best ball tournament and I play with a good friend there. Since we never played there , it would be good to drive down there and see how the course is. Same before the tournament.

I am truly excited about the West Florida Amateur Tour, which starts on December 2nd at Laurel Oaks Country Club. For sure I am in this game. One of my favorite courses to play and I like the group which is playing there. Is a little more expensive, but good price money and good skins and most important , good practice for playing on fast greens and tough courses. That will help for next year. There is huge plans for next year and I better be in shape and continue to work hard. I want to move on to higher things. But that is a complete new entry :). For now , I am excited that I had a good come back at Bobby Jones and that I feel good. We will take it from here and see how things develop.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Starting practice after an injury

Ok, the time has come. I feel much better. No pain when walking around or moving. No pain when waking up. So , we made progress. This week I will start practicing again. Very slowly.
There is two tournaments coming up at the beginning of December and I am planning to play both of them. I am excited to get back in the game. It is horrible when you can not do what you do , breath and live. But this week we will take it slow. Putting, some chipping and some pitching. Might add some woods to it. One at a time. I will see how I feel. It is a matter of starting slow and then add to it. Most important part of my game and in every great golfers game , is the short game. So I will chip a ton, pitch a ton and putt a ton. I am fine with my driver. I know that I can hit it straight out there. Just take it slow and do not go for distance. Also I have a new stretching regiment which I will do before every round and practice now. This will help to avoid things like I had or even still have. If things go well I might go and play at Bobby Jones this Friday. Although I would like to play Saturday in Venice I think it is to early to go for two rounds. Need to wait for another week.
We will also add some different diet and again I will go back to some Nutrition which helped me greatly before. I will report about it when the time comes in a few days. For now I thank you all for following, visiting and joining my fan page on Facebook. Also for the tips and ideas on how to get better. I will implement some of it for sure. Some of the ideas and tips will have to wait for various reasons. One thing is for sure. I will finish this year only very little short of the goal. Which that means: Reset goal and extend plan. I am more excited then ever about what I am doing and will do and there is great things to come. What I am most happy about is the fact , that I have enough time to get it done. Meaning, being 45 really helps. But I am aware that time flies and that I need to stay in focus. For now I will prepare a BBQ and Salad for the rest of this Veterans day. Which I observe thinking of all the veterans and foremost thinking about my grandpas and grandmas as well as one person I can thank for my middle name. 

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Setting priorities in professional golf and life and how they both work together

Priorities dictated which way you go and how your journey will look like. Mine are pretty clear in most aspects and I can assure you, life gets much easier when you are totally clear on where you want to go and what your approach is. I have never felt more confident in my plan and in my goal. Both, short term and long term. It feels great to wake in the morning and besides being thankful, to have no worries but a clear vision of what to do next and what the goal is.
Being in this position my current status might not be fun and exciting, but it is relatively easy to go through. For almost 4 weeks I was not able to practice now. Just some putting. Played 2 days last week and although not a huge mistake, it might not have been the bet idea. On the other hand, I learned that I am not ready yet and need to keep healing.
This all has a huge impact on my regular life. One of the things which plague a future professional of any age is finances. Now , I am a very lucky guy and my situation is good. But what does good mean? Good mean, that I have no worries. I do not have to worry food, housing and so on. This is a huge factor in order to have s settled mind. Also good means, that I am not alone and have , at this point, supporters or if you want sponsors, which help greatly to make things happen. Last I have a great partner, who is supporting the plan and everything what comes with it.
Yet, all this is still only a start. Meaning I am working on business and even at times try to work on the side for other friends and companies. Now here comes the impact and the decisions to be made.
Working on our business is easy. I can do that from home and mostly on this laptop. For that I do not even have to sit and when in focus I get things done. This is our future. It is long term and easy to get done.
Working outside is a totally different story. It is a good way to support the cause and at this point in my career, I can use every single paid hour I can get. Now that is a challenge right now. There is plenty of opportunity to go and get hours in. But all of them are physical and hard work. I probably could do it right now. Just take enough pills and make it through the day and then through the night and so on. But what impact would it have on my golf game and plan? We will never know, because I am not taking the risk. No matter what. I will sit, rest and certainly not risk to get a long term injury. Now there a life impact decision. It is all about where your priorities are. So if you decide to work on a pro golf career or even thee attempt to get there, you are better ready to sacrifice all kinds of things and without hesitation. It can be hard and it is an emotional struggle at times. But envision your goal and the rewards coming with it and it will all get easier. Times like that are breaking points for some. To me, that is just a test to show that I am serious about what I am doing and will not let anything push me of my route and way.
All that said, I feel good just sitting here and doing work which is equally important in my life and not move much, turning down income opportunities and working on our future not a temporary fix. In terms of how I feel I share my Fan Page entry on Facebook.
Looks like a nice day out and certainly the temperature is perfect for a practice session. But I will stay put and keep resting my body, my muscles and my back. The best advice from a specialist was to keep resting. 2 to 6 weeks is the time frame estimate for a case like that. Well , I am in week 4. Only after that fact that all is gone I shall go any further with a doc. My pain is gone. I actually can turn nicely and no more problems sleeping. So big steps forward with all things. Yet, there is an uneasy feeling when I do certain movements. When we talk about the future, we talk about my career. The fact that I am planning to play golf in the coming years and earn income with that. So, the priority is clear and long term. Rest, let everything heal 110 %. I tell you, this is not easy. There is so many things to do. It is hard for me to just sit, stretch, eat, lay down and so on. But it needs to be done this way no matter what. I made great progress with my writing work. Soon there is more published in my blogs and sites and articles. Surely all in this group will hear about it . Also I made great progress with my mental training and my Spanish learning. Both I need to put more time in. But at least I am on it now. The Big Picture is getting all together. Like a puzzle , one piece at a time. I am thankful to have so many people crossing their fingers, many supporting me with writing, calling and in other ways. I can not tell you, how nice it is to receive a phone call from a loved one who shows support no matter what it is about . OK, enough rambling. Breakfast and a long list of thing to be done online is waiting LOL. Off into a new day and thankful for that big time.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Feeling much better after this week's rest

Felling better one step at a time. I knew it will take a while to get better but I just did not think it will take that long. Thing is that I am not hurting much anymore and yet stil have a strange feeling in my lower back when I do certain moves. That concerns me a little. But I trust it will work out. After the weekend we will see where we stand. I was planning to play the City Championship of Bradenton next weekend and I think it will now ok. The good news is that I get other things done, which is very important also. Although it is true that playing golf and practicie is very important, there is also many other parts to be managed and done to make it happen and the better t the result.