I read "The Talent Code" and have really started trying to incorporate "deliberate practice" into my training routine. I made a list of my problem areas and decided to work on the weakest areas of my game using deliberate practice. I didn't have a match this morning, so I set the ball machine up to run drills on stuff I suck at, like consistency and overheads. To practice consistency, I set the ball machine to hit about 120 random direction (but easily reachable) deep balls and the goal of the drill was to see how many shots in a row I could return. I wasn't trying to do anything fancy - just get the ball in. My longest strings were only 13 shots. I had no idea my strokes were that inconsistent. My prior training routine, which consisted of "try to look like Federer and slam impossible winners on every shot" is clearly not working. I'll be running the consistency drill a lot until I can get at least 25 in a row. The overhead/lob drill was an eye-opener as well. My overhead sucks. When I'm at the net and I see my opponent lob, I get a feeling in the pit of my stomach that's something just shy of terror. I hit a lot of overheads this morning. Many went into the net, some even went into the fence, but by the end I was at least getting most of them in. I'll be running that drill again too. (But not for a few days - I'm old and don't want to injure my shoulder).