Harrington prescribes gym, but no TV, for jet lag

Tue Feb 12, 2013 11:58pm EST
 
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By Mark Lamport-Stokes

PACIFIC PALISADES, California (Reuters) - Sticking to a routine and hitting the gym are vital components for professional golfers to cope with jet lag, while television watching is a definite no-no, says Padraig Harrington.

"If you wake up at 3 o'clock in the morning and you're wide awake, do not put on the television," triple major winner Harrington warned while speaking to reporters at Riviera Country Club on Tuesday.

"That is the golden rule, do not put it on. Just lie there and look at the four walls, but the minute you put on the television, that's it. You ain't ever getting back to sleep."

The globe-trotting Irishman knows all about the potential pitfalls of jet lag, his most recent run of tournaments taking him to Singapore, Hong Kong, Dubai, South Africa, Abu Dhabi and then Arizona and California over the last four months.

Asked how he managed to shake off the effects of such a dizzying itinerary, Harrington replied: "You feel it if you're not working. So jet lag and travel, it's harder (to deal with) when you go home and you don't have a time scale to stick to.

"I've got to make an 8.10 am pro-am time tomorrow, so I'm getting up probably 2-1/2 hours before that. I've got to make a 7.50 am time on Friday, so I'm getting up three-and-a-bit hours before that time. I just have to get up and get on with it.

"One night's sleep deprivation has no effect on performance whatsoever. Two nights is extremely detrimental. So I know no matter how bad I sleep or how bad I feel, I can get through a round of golf. I can last that length of time. I'll be fine."

Harrington, known for his workaholic approach to the game, also recommended plenty of gym time to keep jet lag at bay.   Continued...