I thought that I would provide an update to those that want to know how I am progressing. I am continuing to improve which is good news. I am playing at least twice a week (usually one round on Saturday and one on Sunday) and sometimes I am able to play a round during the week. I am going to the range once or twice a week and hitting balls as well. The nights that I do not hit balls, I practice my putting and short game at the practice green.
While I am improving, my scores are not necessarily going down. I know this sounds odd....I am now playing harder courses though and also playing from tees that are further back. I am now playing each round from tees that are at least 6300 yards where as before I was playing easier courses with yardages of usually under 6000 yards. As a result my handicap index has gone down from about 21 (last time I posted in August) to 18.1 currently.
Since I was spending about $800 or more per month just to play golf (at least 10 rounds per month x $75 per round), I joined a local country club on Sunday. I was able to get a good deal and will save money in the long run, not to mention that the course is in great shape, it has reciprocal agreements with other courses, and I can hit as many balls as I want basically whenever I want. Also, I will now have an "official" handicap that will be reported to the USGA whereas before I was just charting everyone online at fariwayfiles.com and while this was helpful, it was not official.
The biggest change that I've noticed in my game since the last time I posted is how far I am hitting the ball. This goes for all my clubs but especially with my driver. Before I was lucky to hit the ball 230 yards with my driver where now a 230 yard drive is not far. My guess is that my average drive is about 250 or so and on Sunday I hit a ball over 300 yards on one hole (granted I had some help from the wind and hit a great shot, still, I'll take that any day!). I hit the ball solid all the time now from the tee and while I do not hit every fairway in regulation, I am seeing improvement week to week.
I am using my 3W and 3H and 4H many times in rounds now because I have much more confidence in hitting them which is good. I am hitting the ball so much further with these clubs and even with my irons too. Before I could not hit a 9 iron more than 125 yards whereas now I am okay hitting a 9 iron up to 140 yards. I am not sore anymore after hitting balls at the range or playing a round as my muscles are now more used to hitting golf balls than they were before.
My best score is still an 87 which I have shot twice now. Once in August and then the other day at my country club. The difference is that when I shot the 87 in early August it was on a course that played 5800 yards and had a slope of just 119 versus the almost 6400 yards and 129 slope that I played on Sunday. The biggest challenge I am now facing is the speed of the greens at the club which are so much faster and harder than from any of the courses that I used to play.
Anyways, so that is the update on my game. I have not gotten any lessons as of yet but am still reading lots of books and trying to pick up anything I can from playing a round with someone that is much better than me (I played with a guy with a 2 handicap the other day that I learned a lot from) to tweaking things on my own based on how I am hitting the ball and the flight of my ball.
I'll update this every once in a while so the new comers to the game can see other's experiences in beginning to golf.