Rory McIlroy: ‘At least I can’t be criticized for [weight lifting] this year’

Rory McIlroy told reporters that he hasn’t lifted weights all year–and that he hopes criticism of his gym routine can finally be put to bed.

“Honestly, I haven’t lifted a weight all year, and it’s tough for me to come out and sort of say I don’t. But I literally have — the most I’ve lifted in the gym is 15 pounds this year because of my injury,” McIlroy said at a press conference ahead of the Travelers Championship. “I’m nowhere near as strong as I used to be. I’m not. But I don’t need to be. I feel like physically if I’m stable and I’m strong in the right areas, I’m okay…So at least I can’t be criticized for that this year.”

McIlroy injured his rib in January and was also forced to take a hiatus from playing golf while it healed.

Back in 2016, the Golf Channel’s Brandel Chamblee had a few words about McIlroy’s dedication to lifting, comparing him unfavorably to Tiger Woods. “What he [Woods] did towards the middle and end of his career is an example to be wary of. That’s just my opinion. And it does give me a little concern when I see the extensive weightlifting that Rory is doing in the gym,” Chamblee said at the time. McIlroy responded with a series of tweets and Instagram posts, and continued to pump iron.