My golf and fitness goals for 2011
In a nutshell, I’m a high school teacher with two extra duties: girls golf coach in the Spring and boys golf coach in the Fall (that is, in addition to chaperoning exchanges to Costa Rica and Spain.) I run a golfing website in western New York, more a labor of love than a profitable venture and am on the board of directors for the Buffalo District Golf Association. In 2010, when our youngest child reached high school age, I decided to venture back into competitive golf on a limited basis. I played in one NYSGA (New York State Golf Association) state days event (78 at Cornell University course, 5th in my flight, 5th overall) and one NYSGA qualifier (state mid-am…shot 81 with a double-single finish to miss qualifying by 3.) My reasoning was part selfish (I missed the glory, the adulation, the groupies) and part selfless (I wanted to become a better coach by drawing on my own, recent, competitive failures and successes.)
Although my return to competitive golf was not heralded by the national press, nor did our boys team appear to benefit (3rd place finish in league) in an substantial and defineable way, I was encouraged to expand my schedule in 2011. I’ve never been a birdie machine, tending to make 12-14 pars, a few bogies and 1-2 birdies during an excellent round. I noticed during the aforementioned mid-am qualifier that one of the area’s finer players had at least 8 legitimate runs at birdie during our round. He made absolutely nothing on the greens but still qualified comfortably. As for me, I made one birdie all day, a chip in on the first hole. Therefore, my first goal for 2011 is to give myself more birdie opportunities so that I can take more runs at birdie.
Does that explanation seem odd? Here’s my thinking: yes, you can take a run at birdie from the fringe, the sand, a nest or any other portion of the course. These runs, however, are less than legitimate or viable. A birdie opportunity is a putt from 25 feet or fewer, so I plan to hit more greens. In order to do so, I’ll need to drive the ball long and far, to put an iron in my hands to reach the green, then I’ll have to zip that iron inside my 25-feet circle. Only then will the putter have the chance to doff its cap and work its magic.
I could continue a list of goals and desires, yet their commonality will be the elusive combination of physical, psychological, emotional and intellectual. No attainable goal is so uni-dimensional that it only requires an advance in one of the four. Instead, I’ll need to meld the four points of the quadrilateral to make the progress I desire. I suspect that you, my friend, will also.
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