Finally, home sweet home
There is no feeling like being home. As much as I love to travel and compete, I really love the feeling of coming home after a long stretch on the road. The last three weeks have been exciting, exhausting and fun, to say the least. I pretty much traveled around the world, playing tournaments in Australia, Thailand and Singapore. It took 33 hours (!) to get from door to door from Singapore to Orlando, but it was all worth it.
I played my first tournament of the year in Melbourne, Australia. It is one of my favorite cities in the world, but unfortunately I got a huge cold as soon as I got there so I didn’t have much energy to explore the city this year. Rumor has it we will be back again next year so hopefully I will have better luck then.
With all the travel we do, staying healthy is a priority, although it can be hard when flying and running into a lot of people at airports, etc. When you do get sick you have to make the best of it, fighting through it and playing under the weather and with a lack of energy. It is the same with jet lag. Your body clock might be all messed up, but you have to get through it and play the best you can.
I loved being back in competition after so many weeks of practice this offseason. My game felt good but a little rusty, as expected, the first week out. I made too many simple mistakes but left Australia with a good feeling going into Thailand.
I really focused there on the positives from my week in Australia. I played some great golf all four days and won the Honda LPGA Thailand, my first LPGA title in a couple of years. I have worked so hard through my ups and downs and couldn’t have done it without my loyal supporters who were there for me through the tough times and made me believe in myself and find the patience to wait for the next one when I almost gave up. The competition nowadays on tour is very tough and winning is only getting harder, but that means the satisfaction of coming out on top is only getting better.
I played with Michelle Wie and world No. 1 Inbee Park the last day. They pushed me really hard to make a run at it on the back nine Sunday, and I’m proud about how I handled the pressure and going into the last hole with a three-shot lead over Inbee. I made quite a few tough decisions this offseason, changing equipment, changing my coach and putting in a lot of extra work on the course and in the gym. Standing on the 18th hole with that trophy made it all worth it!
I received a lot of messages on Twitter, Facebook, texts and emails and I really appreciate the support from everyone! Mentally I was exhausted being in the lead the whole tournament and being pushed so hard late on Sunday. Also it was a very emotional win after fighting so hard for it for so long, so I was really drained by the time I teed it up Thursday in Singapore. I love Singapore and the course but never had the energy or the extra gear mentally to push all the way through the tournament, although I had moments where I played great golf there. Some rest is well needed, physically but mostly mentally.
I am excited to have some time off in Orlando before getting ready to kick off the LPGA season on U.S. soil in two weeks in Phoenix. I lived there for several years while attending Arizona State University, so I am sure excited to head back “home” to Sun Devil territory! I’ll be busy doing some media, outings, catching up with my coach and my friends, practicing and working out. But the next couple of days I look forward to some rest and getting back to a normal time schedule and dealing with 13 hours of jet lag.
Until next time, follow me on Twitter, @ANordqvist, for daily insights into my life on tour.