COLUMBIA — Missouri golfer Brad Moody arrived at school last fall overweight and out of shape. He was exhausted after one week of workouts, with no energy for anything. He knew something had to change.
Moody is 5 feet 7 inches tall, and at the time he weighed about 217 pounds. He would have to improve his fitness if he was going to compete at the college level.
“In high (school) and junior golf, you can get away with a lot of things, but not when you get here,” said Moody, a redshirt freshman from Jefferson City. “Everybody’s good. Everybody’s in the best shape they can be. It just kind of hit me.”
After his first week with the Tigers, Moody was determined to lose the pounds and improve his game. It was a slow process. Although he lost 7 pounds in the first week, he said he didn’t get serious about dieting until Thanksgiving.
“I just assumed the workouts and eating in the athletic dining hall would make it just come off,” Moody said. “A little bit of it did, but it hit a standstill.”
Getting serious included running between one and two miles a day, core exercises and a variety of weightlifting techniques. And while the exercises helped, Moody pointed to a changed diet as the most important factor. No more soda. No more fast food. Goodbye fat. Moody's weight dropped to 167 pounds.
Moody said making the change wasn’t a choice.
“I knew I had to in order to get better, make the team and travel with the guys,” Moody said.
The hard work and commitment he showed to get in better shape did not surprise men’s golf coach Mark Leroux, who said Moody has a love for the sport.
“He’s the kid who will be out here all day and then go home and watch the Golf Channel to try and pick up something to make himself better,” Leroux said.
Moody’s love for the game began as a 2-year-old living outside of Philadelphia. His dad would bring him out to a spacious yard to hit golf balls. Moody would strike ball after ball while his father shagged them riding on his lawn mower.
Moody is still attempting to qualify for his first tournament as a Tiger. Since losing weight, he has had to adjust his swing. He said he has lost some power, but the added flexibility has allowed him to start doing more on the golf course. He has already proven willing to do anything that will benefit his game.
“There’s nothing I’d rather be doing (than playing golf),” he said. “A lot of guys love the attention, and obviously I haven’t had a ton of articles written about me, but that hasn’t stopped me. I still love it.”