Grab a cup of coffee (or tea/wine/water/etc) and sit down with me and the beautiful Sydnee Michaels, a LPGA tour player.
Even if you’re not into golf, I think you’ll enjoy this interview. Sydnee helps shed light on the demands of her sport, how she balances life on the road and staying in tip top shape and of course her favorite fitness tricks.
Balancing a career and fitting in exercise can be tricky for many of us, and her advice might make it seem more manageable for you.
Who Is Sydnee Michaels?
Sydnee was the 2012 LPGA Rookie of the Year. She first joined the tour in 2011 and won two tournaments! That year, she was placed 4th over-all granting her full status on the tour.
Who ever thinks that golf isn’t a sport, is crazy. 18 holes of walking, constantly working the core and the mental game come together to create quite the physical demand.
You might be surprised to find out how many calories you can burn playing a single round of golf…
And it has motivated me to steal Dan’s clubs and go out on a course for the day. Think he would go for that? Probably not.
Sydnee Michaels Teaches Us Golf & Fitness
Taylor: Today you’re a successful LPGA golfer, however as a kid you excelled at several sports including ice skating, dance and tennis. How and when did you decide to make golf your focused sport?
Sydnee: I started playing golf when I was 8 years old, but still kept up with all of my other activities. I was about 1, was when I really decided to take it seriously and I put all my focus into golf from that point on.
Taylor: A lot of people don’t recognize golf for the true sport it is, as a golfer’s wife (Dan LOVES golf), I see the hard work that is involved. What type of workouts do you do to stay in shape for the tour?
Sydnee: Most people don’t realize that golf is actually a physically demanding sport. I burn close to 1500 calories when I walk 18 holes! Not to mention the calories I burn hitting balls on the range for an hour before I play or during practice.
I think a lot more women would play golf if they knew how much they would be burning!
To be in tip top shape for the season, I work out with a trainer 4 times a week during my off season working on building strength and flexibility, and then I try to run at least 3 times a week to keep my endurance up.
During the season it gets a little tricky because we are constantly on the go and traveling and when the tournament starts I want to conserve energy. I try to get in 3 mini workouts/week when I’m on the road whether it is running or some small weights and resistance type training. When I have an afternoon tee time i go for a 20 min jog in the morning just to get my body moving.
Taylor: What are a few of your favorite core exercises?
Sydnee: I really like exercises with a medicine ball like a twist or a double crunch holding the ball in front of you. Anytime you’re isolating your abs and making them do all the work instead of your neck or back helping, you’re getting a good ab workout.
Taylor: You’re on the road a lot, going from one tournament to the next… how are you able to keep active on the road?
When it comes to food, how do you plan your meals?
Sydnee: It’s definitely a challenge keeping in shape on the road and eating healthy. You really just have to be dedicated!
For me, I enjoy my time in the gym and it makes me feel good… which in turn, I think affects my game so I’m pretty good at keeping up with my workouts.
As for food, nutrition is a huge part in performing your best. I try to eat a lot of complex carbs and protein for energy and drink lots of liquids. (especially when its really hot outside) I try to let myself eat almost anything I want when I’m on the road (almost) because I need my energy and I know I’m burning a lot off. I try to stay away from sugar and anything heavy or fried.
On the course I eat protein bars and fruit and I love coconut water.
Taylor: The mental aspect of golf is what makes it so difficult. When you’re up at the t-box, how do you stay focused and remove the crowds/cheering fans?
Sydnee: I love playing in front of people, I always have! I think that probably comes from my performing arts days when I was growing up.
The crowds are just something that comes with being a professional athlete so you have to learn to accept it and embrace it. Nothing is more exciting than coming down number 18 with the fairway lined with people.. It’s an amazing feeling.
Taylor: We all have days when we don’t want to workout, for you it’s your career. How do you handle the days when you just don’t want to go hit balls or meet with your swing coach?
Sydnee: There are definitely days when I just don’t feel like working.
When my season is over, I give my self a break because I need it.
During my season, if I feel like I’m exhausted and need a break for a day, I’ll let myself relax.
My theory is that if you honestly don’t want to be there, you’re probably not going to do a very good job anyways so why even go? That being said, if I know I have work to do then there is really no other option than to get to work. However, If you enjoy what you do, which I love what I do, you enjoy the grind.
Taylor: I feel like golf is becoming more and more popular among women, what do you recommend to an adult woman just getting started?
Sydnee: Golf is definitely getting more and more popular with young women and it is fantastic.
For the ladies that are just getting started, I would recommend getting a set of ladies clubs that fit you (it will make life much easier) and getting some lessons.
Once you feel comfortable enough to play, join the Ladies club at your golf course and have some fun with other women that love golf too! Or, go beat up on the boys (which is what I would do)
A Few Of Syndee’s Favorites:
Favorite workout attire brand? LuluLemon
Favorite healthy snack? Greek Yogurt
Favorite guilt food? Wine (A woman with my own heart)
Favorite way to get a workout in? Running
Favorite golf course? Pebble Beach
Thanks Sydnee! Now, Its time for my to get my behind out on the golf course and start hitting some balls! I can burn the same amount of calories playing golf than when I run a half marathon? Deal… Pebble Beach, here I come!
What about you: Do you play golf?