Monday, July 25, 2011

Drop and give me twenty maggot

As I mentioned a couple of posts ago I was going to start with a personal trainer in the form of Suzie who is also my cousin's girlfriend. Last week we had our first session at the gym. She started off with taking measurements and my current weight. I love horror movies but I knew these measurements were going to scare me more than any horror movie I've ever watched. They suck big time and no I won't be posting them but I know where I stand now so all I can do now is try to improve those results. Suzie put me through various cardio exercises to see where I am. I was sweating like a pig by the end of it and felt like throwing up but Suzie didn't even raise a sweat! I've also got to keep a food diary which has already had an effect on what I eat because I know Suzie will be reading it so I think twice about eating the take away food I'm accustomed to. She's also set me my first short term goal. I need to lose 4kg's in 6 weeks, can I do it? We shall see. I already like Suzie as a trainer, she won't take bullshit or excuses which is just what I need. This has a flow on effect for roller derby because it'll help me shift the extra weight and get my body stronger so that I can handle the rigours of derby.

While I'm loving my new found positive, ain't no fear holding me back attitude with roller derby, I did get a reality check at training on Friday night. I ain't going to lie I was secretly hoping this new attitude was going to make picking up things I struggled with before a bit easier but the truth is it doesn't. Case in point when all the new and old freshies had to go off with the more experienced skates to work on single knee falls. I favour going down on my right knee, you can tell with my left knee pad and toe guard, they're hardly marked. When I tried going down on my left knee I kept landing too heavily on it or would end up falling on both knees. We also worked on skating between cones. While my wheels are grippy which makes it a bit more difficult, having a huge arse worked to my advantage because using it to full effect by swinging it around helped getting around the cones easier. Later on we lined up in groups of four and we would have to push or pull the rest of the group around the track. I enjoyed that and it gave my legs a good workout.

Saturday I headed off to Skatel armed with my ipod. I loved it. I only lasted an hour because my legs were sore from training the night before but it was great because I got to block out the rest of the world for a while, all I had to worry about was dodging people and little kids skating the wrong way. All I really did was skate and worked on balancing on one skate at a time, it paid off though because while practising the hydrant move we do at training I managed to skate around the whole bend while balancing on my right foot, not once but numerous times :) Balancing on my left foot, not so good so I need to work on that.

Before training on Sunday arvo a few of us met up to go bowling. It was pretty fun and I quickly discovered that Poz and I share something in common, we're both extremely competitive :) Her, Ness and I were in one lane. Poz won the first one, I still claim she cheated because she was drinking Red Bull while were playing, that's got to be performance enhancing right? Ness won the second one quietly while Poz and I were busy psyching each other out. I lost count of how many times Poz and I said fuck while we were playing when we stuffed up hehe. As for training, personally it was a good and shit one for me. It started off well, to prove that it wasn't the Skatel effect that got me to skate on one foot around the bend, I tried it at training and most times that I attempted it I managed to do it. Balancing on my left foot is still crap. I also noticed that my left skate automatically veers left when I try to balance on it. It was great seeing Amba back :) While we were skating around during warm up Cherry cut in front of me and of course I reacted. I got around her on the inside and hit her with my right shoulder. It was a pissy little hit, nothing to write home about but I was pleased as punch because it's the first time I've hit someone with my right shoulder while on skates. That night was also the first time I got up using my right toe stop. First time I needed Cherry's help but I did it by myself the next time. It then went down hill when we started doing t-stops. I still suck at them, very rarely can I fully stop. I'm better when I have my left leg trailing, when it's trying to stop on my right leg I'm completely shithouse at it. When I do it my trailing leg almost gets me to a full stop but then it'll lift up slightly and I have to put it back down so I don't overbalance, I don't know why so I hardly ever stop properly. I practised it so many times that night, going up and down the court and I was pissed off with myself because I wasn't getting it. Bede and Katie were great they came over to help the freshies out with snowploughs and t-stops.

While we were working on our t-stops the more experienced skaters were on the other court practising more advanced drills relating to scrimmage and pack work. How I wish I was there with them, every week there's part of me that wants to try and sneak into one of the lines and hope no one notices that I shouldn't be there. The stupid thing is before my last injury I got a taste of hitting practise and carves at both training and Skatel with Cherry and I got more comfortable with that than the basic stuff I still can't do like crossovers, single knee falls on both knees, t-stops etc etc. The things that I was too scared to try before which I was crap at have now come back to bite me on the arse. There's more things that I can't do than I can for the Corporal test that it really feels like I'm starting roller derby for the first time. Roller derby and I have a love/hate relationship when I learn something new especially something that I've been trying to do for ages I'm happy as Larry, when I continue to struggle with something I get really shitty and frustrated with myself and I feel like punching the wall.

The major difference this time is that instead of running away from the things I struggle with, I'm actually working on them so that I can eventually do it. It just means that I'll probably have an angry expression on my face at training while swearing to myself, don't mind me :P I've also asked one of my favourite skaters for advice on how to improve and I was chuffed that she took the time to help me out. She's given me a list of suggestions for both on and off skates which I'll be implementing. There's also some extra off skate training I'll be implementing myself to give myself every chance of passing my Corporal test come October.        

Friday, July 22, 2011

Third time lucky? Nah luck doesn't have anything to do with it. I'm ready to kick arse.

I spent the past few weeks strengthening my ankles before I got back on my skates. I took a bit longer because I wanted to make sure this time round my ankles could cope with the demands of roller derby as I was sick of breaking down every few months because I injured my ankles yet again. While I was off skates I still stayed involved with our league. I was helping with scrimmage practise by timing the jams and starting and finishing the jams. I enjoy doing it because it gives me a chance to hear the ref's and the calls they make plus I get to watch the scrimmage practise and what they're doing right and wrong. Mind you two weeks before I got back on skates I was so desperate to do something at training instead of sitting down the entire session that I asked if I could do off skate training hehe

Last Friday night we had our latest fresh meat intake kick off. There were lots of new faces and some I've met over the last couple of weeks and months. It was a good turn out hopefully we see a few more over the next few weeks. It was also the night I got back on skates after a month off injured and re-strengthening. The cool thing was I wasn't nervous at all or scared like I had been since I started in January. I was smiling most of the night and had a great time, although having a month off got rid of whatever fitness levels I may have had so I almost hurled during the night but it was all good. I eased slowly into it and got no pain in my ankle so I just went for it and skated like I never stopped skating for a month. I use Interceptors and for some annoying reason they sound like best chirping when I skate. Poor Scott had enough of listening so he suggested I try one of his 96A wheels. I've never gone higher than 93A's but I thought what the hell and tried them. After a few steps I got the hang of them and they were absolutely brilliant. Yeah they were a bit more slippery to skate on but my gosh I didn't have to work as hard to roll. I fell in love with them and asked Scott if he could make me a set in red (of course). Now that I've got a taste for harder wheels I want to try some other ones while I'm waiting for Scott to make those. If anyone could recommend something in the 96A rating with a bit of grip and aluminium hubs I'm all ears. Back to Friday night, here's some pics courtesty of Spank photography

I hit Skatel last Saturday and got about an hour of skating in. I managed to do crossovers while holding onto the rail so I was pleased as punch because I still can't do the bloody things yet. Last Sunday night fresh meat officially kicked off, since I flunked the last one I get to do it all again. I won't lie not being able to scrimmage or do more advanced skating drills sucks but I've turned the disappointment into motivation. This is the third time I'm starting fresh meat, I started in January with WSR but got injured (surprise) and then switched over to H*A*R*D, flunked that so now I'm back again. The major difference this time is that I believe I'll pass, the other two times I was skating with fear in my head so I never really pushed myself. In the second hour we didn't have off skate training because Mick was sick so us freshies and old tough meat (who are repeating) were left to our own devices. I used the time to practise on my skating technique, carves, single knee taps, looking behind me while skating and crossovers. I even raced Sarah and the cool thing was my 93A's beat her 97A's :) With the crossovers I made progress, I could finally get my right foot in front of my left foot while skating around the bends but dammit I can't get it that bit further to make it a crossover. I don't how much of an impact having big legs has with doing crossovers but it's annoying the hell out of me that I can't do them yet. I'm determined to do them so expect a lot of anger and swearing over the coming weeks :P

Ideally I want to try playing pivot, jammer and blocker. Right now I've got my heart set on becoming a kick arse blocker because I believe that where my strengths lie. My two favourite blockers are Atomic Cherry and Godjilla Sold Separately

I love their playing styles and I reckon I could learn so much from them. I look up to them (or in Cherry's case I look down because I'm taller than her :P) The cool thing is I get trained by Cherry so I love training sessions plus the Skatel sessions because I learn a lot. I do my best to try not to act like a little fangirl :) I love watching scrimmage practise on Sunday night because Cherry is like a lion, while some might be skating around in a frenzy, she's cool as fuck but then she pounces for an accurate hit whether it's to knock the opposition on their arse or to make way for her jammer to get through. While I'm at it I love watching Fifi Box-her scrimmage. She's an awesome jammer the kind that'll annoy most blockers because she's so agile but her blocking work often goes un-noticed. She's not the biggest built but she's a giant killer, she'll take on people twice her size and she knocked a few of them down.

Until next time...