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A busy week of work outs and cheering others on

We travelled back to our new English base from Belfast on Sunday evening, arriving in Heathrow about 9pm expecting our car to be delivered to the front door of the Terminal. The European Tour has a great deal with one of the valet parking services and now we've moved to England we make full use of the service. Unfortunately 3 calls and 50 minutes later our car was still nowhere to be seen - the stress free parking service definitely wasn't stress free that night! Thankfully it wasn't cold and there was just the 2 of us. I had an early gym appointment with Rob, my trainer the next morning and was keen to get home and into bed to try and catch up on sleep to be fully prepared for the session. I have a few different workout routines and Rob decided we'd concentrate on my upper body on Monday. It consists of a warm-up on the bike, then stretches, then weights, then more cardio to finish. I hadn't really trained consistently until about 8 months ago and the workouts still catch me sometimes, especially when I've been lazy and not worked out the week before. My target is to put between 3 and 5 kg of muscle on this year so I have to stick with the workout plan to achieve it - but it hurts.
Tuesday was a very sore day, I couldn't swing a club or move much so I popped into central London to visit a school friend from Campbell and catch up over some lunch. I love the skyscrapers of Canary Wharf and the buzz in the city but always leave thinking how fortunate I am to work outdoors and to be my own boss.

I was still feeling sore and a little sluggish on Wednesday but I'd arranged to meet one of the Titleist reps at the golf club I've joined here to test some equipment. Sore arms or not I had to go! It's important to check the lofts of your clubs, the ball speed and spin, but it's something I've not really checked frequently in the past. Phil brought the latest Track Man, radar technology with him and I hit 5 balls with each club to check everything was as it should be. The clubs were great and with everything confirmed I felt more confident about the clubs in my bag. All the work I've been doing on my swing also showed during the testing session as the numbers I was recording were more consistent. It was great to have confirmation that I'm working on the right stuff. Afterwards I spent the afternoon practicing short game, long bunker shots, flop shots - you can never do enough practice for that stuff.

Thursday was another workout day with Rob. I'd had a heart rate monitor on since Monday morning and when we reviewed the information generated it showed that my body had really not appreciated the Monday session. The information it generates helps Rob tailor the content of my programs and helps determine which days we hit the gym hard. We also look at my diet and what foods I should be eating to aid my recovery. I'd missed the protein shake after Monday's training so Bev forced me to have one on Thursday to speed my recovery, mainly so I'd not have an excuse to avoid the house chores before Matt Zions came round for dinner and the golf coverage started! Memories of my visit ten years ago always come back when I sit and watch, it was my last tournament as an Amateur, and I narrowly missed the cut by one shot. I always enjoy watching the buildup programs and mentioned to Bev more than once that I'd spent the few nights of the event in the Crow's Nest. It was an amazing experience and one I hope to repeat next year!

I played golf at the Wisley with Matt Zions on Friday, it's always good to get a few practice rounds in with a fellow Tour Pro after a few weeks off. It helps you assess how you're really playing, and highlight areas you need to practice. I spent a bit of time practicing my short game after we played before heading home for a business meeting Bev had arranged with a potential sponsor. I find that side of things interesting and can only imagine how much time Rory, Graeme and Darren spend on it. Then it was off to the gym for the last work out of the week. Recovery was spent watching Rory climb the leaderboard and a superb round from Freddie Couples, what a legend!

I was up relatively early to get packed and catch my flight from Heathrow. Bev wasn't travelling with me this week but was dropping me off at the airport. It's the first time since early January that we've been apart. I arrived into Kuala Lumpar and headed to the Players Hotel, normally I like to stay in an apartment as there's more space and Bev cooks for us but I'm on my own this week so it's the hotel and buffet food or room service. After a quick bite and a Skype call later I finally got to watch Ulster in magnificent form. Bev and I were both cheering, I'm sure the neighbours were wondering what was going on. It was amazing and all I can do is wish the team all the best for the Semi in Dublin! Unfortunately I didn't get to watch the end of the Masters. The time difference to KL is just too much, especially when trying to recover from jetlag and prepare for a tournament. I think it's probably good for golf that Buba won. The American market is huge and with Tiger's inconsistent form of late the sponsors and crowd need someone else to cheer. I was disappointed for Louis though he's a top guy and a true gent, I'm sure there'll be plenty more opportunities for him and the rest of the European Tour members. Hopefully I'll be there with them next year as well.