Six days ago I threw my back out. Last time I threw it out, it took two weeks for the pain and spasms to subside and my game was a wreck when I came back.
This week I tried my new inversion table (where you hang upside down like a bat) for the first time, and I’m back on the course already (yesterday) and in the ZONE. I really only felt pain for the first 1-2 days this time, compared to 13-14 last time. I really hope the decompression of the spine on the inversion table is the answer to the back problems…
Yesterday I played 11 holes and shot -3. I had 5 birdies, two on the last two holes. Then today I picked up right where I left off. I played the back nine again. I started out birdie, birdie, par, birdie, birdie. At that point I’d had NINE BIRDIES IN 16 HOLES! By the time I finished #15 and my eighteenth consecutive hole, I was at -7 for that stretch. I ended up -5 for my last 20 holes.
Winter is coming. In fact, it may have arrived on #16 today. It was warm earlier but the winds kicked up and it got cold, fast. Very cold.
I’ll have more info on the inversion table and what it is about, and hopefully many more birdies to brag about soon.
In addition to my previous post, I have to say today’s was craziest round of the year and one of the craziest ever.
I shoot +7 on par-3’s, 27 putts despite having several three putts, post FIVE birdies, one eagle and shoot 72. Crazy.
Not only that I end up with my friend’s Ping G10 driver in my bag after 11 holes. I hit it three times (as tests after hitting my Nike), all farther than my Nike despite not hitting it as well. By the time I got to #12 tee I had the driver and he wasn’t getting it back.
In the midst of possibly the craziest round EVER, where I shoot +7 on par 3’s, have a double, a triple and several three putts… I shot 72. Yes, crazy. How can I be +7 on par-3’s and shoot 72? Fireworks baby.
I played the back nine first… I got to #3 (my 12th hole) at even par. I then chunk a horrible 5-iron into the lake on this par three. The air is cold and my right hand went completely numb due to the cold and the horrible contact. I hit my 3rd shot on the green, then 3-putt. It is nice to be even par, then get a triple bogey. Let me tell you.
So I get to #4, the hardest hole on the front. We have a cold two club headwind. I stripe a hybrid down the middle. I’m 171 to the pin. I have to pull my 5-iron, the same club I gagged into the lake 10 minutes earlier.
I turned to my pal Dave and said “oh man I have to hit this club again. Well I guess it has a chance to redeem itself…”
I hit a super solid high fade right at the flag. The shot looked good in the air and ended up looking pretty close to the hole. The green is just slightly elevated so it was hard to see the ball but we could make it out.
As we walked to the hole, about 75 yards short I was telling Dave that my shot looked close but might be short. We could see it and really couldn’t tell how close it was.
Then as we walked up the edge of the green and got a better look… no ball. Many shots which hit this green go long, but no ball over the green.
There was only one place the ball could be, in the hole. I turned my camera on and recorded some commentary as Dave walked up. His thumbs up signal let me know that yes, I just score a two on the hardest par-4 on the course, into a cold two-club wind.
We figured that ball had to be sitting on the edge of the cup for at least five minutes before it dropped. Good thing we walked this round and it took that long to get to the hole. If we rode in a cart, my eagle would have been a tap in birdie.
That is my shot of the week, and shot of the year.
Two years ago in the biggest tournament of the year, an emergency forced me to be awake until 5:30am. At 5:30am I had the choice to go to sleep for a an hour or two then get up and make my 8:00am tee time. Instead I chose to just stay up. In the toughest, most intense conditions I’d see all year with no sleep for two days, I shot a 73.
This weekend I was up all night Saturday night frying my brain, trying to debug the HOG server problems. I remember looking over at the clock to see that it said 5:00am. I did go to sleep a few minutes later, but woke up at 7:15. Two hours sleep, max.
I then went on to shoot a 74 in high winds.
So should I just party all night and get no sleep before every golf round then?
I’m trying to figure out why I play better when I’m so tired. I have to possible reasons, which could individually or in combined fashion contribute to my low scores.
The first reason is my level of relaxation. I’m not hyped up to play. I’m moving slower. My tempo is slower. I really think being tired helps slow my tempo down, which is good.
The second reason is simply not expecting to play well. I’m not mentally intense about the round. If I make a bogey or two I don’t really care because I’m not expecting to play my best anyway. I’m able to shake off bad shots or bad breaks in about three seconds. My nerves are non existent and can’t get in the way of low scores.
Applying it to a regular, fully rested round
After yesterday’s 74 I decided that for my next round or two I’m going to perform some mental experiments. I’m going to try and replicate my pace, tempo, demeanor on the course. I’m going to be mellow and swing nice and slow. If I hit a bad shot or catch a bad break I’m not going to sweat it.
I’ve seen this video floating around for a couple of days but I never watched it. I finally did and realized that it was shot at a course about 30 minutes from HOG world headquarters! The announcer, and host of this celebrity tournament is Mark Eaton. I’ve met Mark a couple of times on the golf course. He’s the 7 foot 4 inch tall former center for the Utah Jazz NBA team.