Monday, November 29, 2010


Hello to the one or two people who actually read my blog haha. It has certainly been an interesting weekend. First off my sister and I took my dad to the roller derby on Saturday night and he actually loved it! He even said he wants to go watch more bouts. It was pretty cool seeing tactics played out but I suppose most people are interested in the big hits and equally big stacks and both sides didn't disappoint. Twice players ended up crashing into the crowd and one skater lost one of her front wheels twice during separate jams and had to go off for running repairs. It's great fun to watch and I highly recommend going to see a bout.

Next up I lived up to my promise and went to the indoor roller skating centre in Emu Plains yesterday morning. I won't lie I was crapping myself thinking how many stacks I'd possibly have. I get there and there's lots of little kids roller skating. To make matters worse none of them had any safety gear on whereas I had the full kit and was the tallest and oldest one about to hit the rink. I thought bugger it all roller derby skaters have to start somewhere. Some kids stare at me while I put all my gear on and I think to myself 'Keep staring and I'll deliberately fall on you when I get on the rink'. Yeah I know I'm shocking. While I'm getting the courage to get up and skate a lady about my age sits next to me and she has the same brand and coloured helmet as me. I ask her if she does roller derby and she said yeah she's fresh meat (the term given to beginners of roller derby). We have bit of a chat and as we get ready to skate she says she hopes she doesn't stack it, I tell her I hope I don't break anything haha. I get up and go, so far so good, I stop every few meters and grab to the walls which are waist height. I'm extremely pleased to say I didn't stack it all during that session YAY! Anna was cool to give me some pointers while we were skating. The only downside was after a while my feet were killing me. I'd sit down let the pain go away, skate some more then it would come back. Anna said it's quite common and takes a couple of weeks until your feet adjust to the skates. So I'll have to grin it and bare it for a while.

An amazing thing happened though during my first proper roller skating session. It was like some injected me with great enthusiasm. I can't explain it, I think maybe because I didn't fall and got a bit more comfortable with it the longer I skated that it triggered something in me that makes me want to skate every waking moment, hit the gym more just so I make this dream a reality.

I've decided to tackle a real weak spot of mine and inject more running into my exercise. My goal is to be able to run more than a few meters without feeling as though I've just run a marathon. I want to be able to last indoor soccer and my boxing classes without fading fast in the first few minutes. Plus it'll help me with roller derby so bonus points for that. I've decided to try and get up early before work and hit the park near my house. For some reason I can't get this image out of my head when I picture myself running in the park:

Ahh you've got to love Rocky!

Until next time...

Currently listening to songs I'm planning on putting on my iPod for my morning runs.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Back to school

There were a few developments this past week. I ordered myself some indoor wheels for rollerskating and they arrived today. This now means I can get some lessons on how to skate. There's an indoor roller skating rink in Penrith called Penrith Skatel which offer lessons on Saturday mornings and they have general skating sessions on the weekend so more time for practise and hopefully shed some of this extra weight I'm carrying. I admit I haven't skated outdoors since my first attempt due to the fact that a bit of fear crept in because I struggled so much with it. I went ice skating on Sunday arvo and I had no problems, for some reason I'm struggling with the roller skates. I didn't have any problem when I tried skating on the carpet in the house maybe learning to skate on bumpy concrete wasn't the easiest way to start off. I've decided to go to the roller skating rink this weekend and try my luck even if it means spending most of my time swapping between falling on my arse or holding onto the side walls for dear life to stop myself from falling on my arse. In fact I'm making it a goal to go at least one day a week to the roller skating rink to make a fool of myself practise :)

I came across a book called Kick the fat by Anne-Marie Millard and I have started going through it. She has some interesting ideas for example through away the scales and instead set yourself some goals like trying to fit into a particular item of clothing, you're more likely to notice that change than you will weighing yourself every week. The book is mainly based on incorporating kick boxing related exercises into your weight loss program which interests me as I love taking boxing classes. My quest for roller derby greatness goes hand in hand with my goal to shift my excess weight. Believe it or not you need to be an athlete to be involved with roller derby, sure there's women of all shapes and sizes but roller derby involves pacing yourself but getting ready to sprint plus knocking down your opponents and helping your own team mates out while looking after yourself. I'm trying to vary my exercise so that way my whole body gets a workout which I think will be more beneficial in the long run. I've been buying Women's Health magazines, I've got various books, I've downloaded training and exercise tips from roller derby skaters to the point it's a bit of information overload so I'm trying to sort it all out to get an initial training plan and modify it as required. 

Right now one of my biggest problems is minimising my addiction to junk food and soft drink. I curse the day I ever heard of Macca's, Coke and Red Bull. Sure it's good that I'm exercising more now but any benefits disappear from all the unhealthy food and drink I'm consuming. Yeah I know everything in moderation but I've developed this habit over many years that I'm really struggling with combating it. Oh self-discipline where are you? I've long since discovered you're not hiding in the wrapper of a Mars bar.

I've come to realise that if I want to make it into roller derby I need to develop some aggression. Wait a second have I looked in the mirror? Yeah I may look kinda tough but I'm a big softy under all that body fat. Take for instance all the years I've played football/soccer I've never received a yellow or red card in my life. Up until recently I've continuously apologised to people on field if I've accidently injured them if they were unfortunate enough to stand in front of the goal when I've taken a shot. I'm not saying I want to become a dirty player who illegally hacks down opposition players, maybe I need to develop bit of a hit or be hit attitude and not feel so bad about it.

One last thing a big thanks to my cousin Mark, he's been kind enough to give me some advice with goals and motivation. I got the idea to do this blog after shamelessly stealing getting inspired by his own blog 4minmark It was indeed quite inspiring. The amount of running he does each week makes me tired just thinking about it. Being Mark of course his blogs are also quite funny so check them out they make for interesting viewing.

Listening to My Chemical Romance.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

That didn't go as I had planned

Today I had my first attempt rollerskating outside on the concrete in the backyard and wow was I shite. I thought since I did roller blading when I was a kid and I've ice skated numerous times it would be pretty easy to pick up, how wrong was I! I stacked it twice, once my arse and the second time I fell forwards and did a nice little roll on the grass. It has shattered any illusions I may have had about joining roller derby in the foreseeable future. It basically means I have a LOT of work to do before I get to the stage where I'll be joining the Western Sydney Rollers (green team) in action

It was amazing how tense I was this evening. My calves and feet were sore and I was sweating even though it wasn't hot. I think I was way too worried about trying not to fall. Hopefully with more practise I'll get rid of this fear and worry more about skating. It's made me think I might have to get in some sessions at the ice skating rink to build some confidence up. If anyone has any tips on how to improve feel free to let me know, I'm all ears!

Given my previous track record I'd probably start giving up and drop the whole dream but I really want to do this so i'll be sticking with it for a while even if it does become quite painful from all the stacks that are awaiting me :P

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Roll with it

Welcome to the latest update on this hot and humid night.

The skates, helmet and other various pads and mouthguard I ordered have arrived in the post. It's really happening! I swapped the indoor wheels (which are a lot harder and grippier for smooth surfaces) for outdoor wheels (which are softer and absorb the bumps on concrete/asphalt a lot better). Being a Liverpool supporter I naturally selected red coloured wheels hehe

I also decided to decorate my helmet. If you were cool enough to grow up in 80's and 90's you would probably know about the Garbage Gang Kids (or Garbage Pail Kids if you're from the US or UK). I found a sticker that'll probably best sum me up while I'm getting the hang of roller skating, allow me to introduce Pat Splat

I haven't had a chance to try skating outside yet, I'm hoping to have a go on Tuesday night after work. I've had a go in the house it was alright overall, there were a couple of times where I overbalanced but no stacks yet! I'm trying to get used to stopping with the toe brake I feel as though I'm going to stack it when I try to do it as motion is carrying me forward.

I've been reading up on the official rules and what the minimum skills required are and it has really highlighted how much I need to learn before this dream becomes a reality. They say it can take a couple of years before you're ready to bout, now I can see they're not kidding.

Currently listening to Metallica's Master of Puppets album

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Reality strikes (damn you)

Rightio so I went to the gym tonight for my PT session with Joe and we're doing leg work so squats and hitting various leg machines. I'm thinking this is going to leave me walking like an old lady tomorrow but it's all good as it's perfect training for roller derby or so I thought. Problem is that my body has developed this amazing trait over the years, if I start getting back into any form of exercise it starts thinking 'what the hell are you doing to me you should be at home lying on the couch watching TV, I'll fix you up' and then some injury occurs. Well tonight not once but twice, first while doing squats with a metal bar on my shoulder blades I could feel pain in my lower back so Joe gets me to something else which takes the pressure off my back. Then when we hit the leg machines I feel this sharp pain in my left hamstring possibly from overstretching it.

At this stage I'm getting pissed off as my body once again turns against me. I'm also annoyed because I can't keep up with the other guy who is training with me which is irrational since Joe has been training him for five months and he's lighter than me. This is usually the part where I'll start making excuses and begin missing classes until I eventually stop going and get lazy again and so the cycle repeats itself. Problem is I can't do it so easily this time because by publicly humiliating myself with this blog it means I'll look like an even bigger idiot if I stop now. So it's time to suck it up and continue on.

It's also highlighted the fact that although I can picture it my head finally making it in roller derby it's also shown how far I've got to go before the dream becomes a reality.   

Oh and to add insult to injury my sneakers have died so I need to buy a new pair tomorrow. : (

Here's to hoping for a better day tomorrow, preferably with the news that I won a decent share in the lotto : )

Listening to my ipod on the random setting so it's all over the shop Weird Al to Explosions in the sky to Foo Fighters etc

Monday, November 1, 2010

So what's this roller derby lark?

Hello and welcome to the latest installment. I haven't posted for a few days but it's not because I've given up but I was getting things ready for our Halloween party which turned out pretty well, tiring but it was lots of fun.

Right now I'm focusing on losing some weight and gaining some fitness before I hit the skates (you have to walk before you can run and all those cliques). I've gotten in touch with my old personal trainer Joe and I'm having some PT sessions with him each week. I had 3 last week, they left me so knackered I couldn't lift my arms up for a few days, trying to wash my hair or answer the phone at work was interesting to say the least. Part of me is finding it annoying because I've been inactive for so long my fitness has gone to the crapper so it's so hard doing various bits of exercise that I used to do so easily. Using this blog has brought out my competitive hate to lose streak so I don't want to fail.

In relation to the heading what is roller derby? Contrary to popular belief it's not just women crashing into each other while wearing roller skates. If you ever get the chance to watch a bout live you'll see it's quite tactical, you're trying to help your team score points while at the same time preventing your opponents from scoring, it's a good mixture of attack and defence. Here's a video that briefly shows what roller derby is all about The basics of flat track roller derby Pretty interesting eh?

I'm off to get ready, I have an indoor soccer match tonight.

Listening to various old school theme songs