Thursday, April 29, 2010

Week 10 Crossovers at Skate King

I haven't been able to skate much this week. Monday was a scrimmage, Tuesday David came home late so I missed practice, and Wednesday was a ref lecture.

Anyways, I almost didn't make it to Skate King tonight, but I was meeting a friend who lives out of town so I couldn't bail.

I am really glad I did too. I worked on crossovers a whole heck of a lot. And squats. Lots of squats. I'm definitely improving. Crossovers feel ok. Not great, not natural but ok, and I'm ok with that.

And I was able to squat for an entire lap and did at least 6 of them before I was totally wrecked.

Hells to the yeah.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Week 10 Who's your Head NSO?

I was! It was totally by default. Texi couldn't make it. And apparently after you hand out assignments to those who've done them before, you're pretty much done.

But it was cool anyways. I got to chatter away at everyone and be bossy. How much better can you get?

The scrimmage was good, but I didn't skate yesterday. Practice tonight!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Week 10 a good practice

Today's practice was full of all sorts of fun.

Jumping, I've never done jumping. A little anticlimactic. I think it seemed like it should be freakier, but when you squat down to jump you're really only a foot from the ground so if you fall it's not really falling.

Obstacle courses. I kind of sucked at this one. I was supposed to step over and around better and I didn't really. But whatever.

Today was really good for one thing. I pushed really hard. I followed the pace line as long as I could. I had to take short breaks, but I kept skating as hard and fast as I could. Fortunately the pace line wasn't that fast so I sort of kept up. But it was still a lot of work

I pushed until my legs would start to burn and then I just kept saying "burn burn burn" to get myself through it and going longer. I took breaks when my legs were shaking really bad.

It was good.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Week 10 time to start pushing

Today's practice was a mix of good and the inevitable. We have a different coach on Saturday who is a former derby girl. I don't remember her name, but she very clearly see's through my bull.

You see today I did what I usually do. I skated, I tried new stuff, whatever. But a month ago just the usual would have left me sore, tired and feeling like a noodle.

But that's not enough anymore and it appears to be obvious. I'm not tired. I'm not sore, and there are no noodles anywhere. It wasn't for lack of coaching. The coach had us do annoyingly difficult drills. Then when the group was doing whips and hitting drills we refs went to do our usual skills, like transitions, ect.

Well apparently when she took on the role of coach she had intended to coach everyone, even if we were shirking in the corner. She had drills for us to do, in ways that were hard, practical and of course a really good idea.

You see it was enough before to just show up and get through. We've gained enough skill that we need to push, a lot more, and it seems it is obvious to the coach. One of the tell tale signs was there was no falling. Not even fumbling. So she gave us the next step and let us know next time, it's time to do more.

I like this.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Week 9 new milestones

Today's practice was awesome! I know I say that a lot, but at this point in my training I hit new levels at pretty much every skate.

What was the biggest improvement was I made it through the whole practice. Usually the warm up kills me. Usually the next drill then continues to annihilate my nearly dead muscles until I have to go sit down.

This is ok, it's a learning curve and an endurance curve. But today was my first day that I only took breaks with the players. We had 2 1-minute water breaks. There were a few times I had to skate on the outside to just barely keep moving as my legs were shaking so bad. But I did it!

Dude they wrecked me, but I kept skating! I sucked at squats! But I kept skating! I still cannot do knee dips, but one step at a time.

So we did line drills. The person in the front of the line had to skate around to the back of the pack. So I actually was not able to catch the back of the line. Details details.

Gary asked if I wanted to participate in the drill, I said "Hells Yeah!" I think we are all comfortable with the fact that technically I am not able to do the drills completely, but I will try and gracefully suck it!

We did a worm next. I made it through about a third of the line. Hey at least I caught up to the line!

Then we did pack drills. It took the entire drill for me to catch up to the pack to actually touch someone. Do I suck? Hell yeah! Do I care? Hell no! Because in another month, no one is going remember how bad I sucked, cause by then I won't be sucking anymore!

Monday, April 19, 2010

Week 9 Gay Skate!

Tonight's skate was awesome! I was sore and tired for the first 30 minutes. Yes I am still that out of shape. But then I turned a corner and stepped up a level.

It was really freakin packed so pretty much I was maneuvering in and around people. This is super good practice for ref types like me. I think I'm going to be spending a lot of nights like this.

This is such cool part of learning to skate. Each time I go I feel a significant improvement. Very gratifying.

I don't know what I am going to do tomorrow. No open skates and David is working late so no outdoor skate. Looks like hallway skating.

Week 9 Drinking and Skating

So last night was derby skate and I didn't make it because I got drunk and passed out by 6pm. Lame on pretty much all fronts.

I think I might quit drinking for a while. I don't need anything to slow down my skating progress and I think I'm old enough that a few too many drinks really takes it out of me.

Another reason skating is cool. When you have the drive to really get into something it makes you want to make healthier choices so you can further your success. That's a really good thing.

Tonight I'm making up for it. 3 hours of gay skate at Bellevue skate king. Let's see how long I can skate for!

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Week 9 open skate and Oly Bout!

I've been off skates for two days. I usually take Thursday and Friday off to rest and recoup. I want to start skating 6 nights a week but it can be a hassle with Thursday being at Bellevue and Friday being teen night.

Anyways I always feel weird after a day or two not skating. I think the best remedy for this in the future will be to do an hour at home in the hallway.

So I've been pretty low energy with the whole slim meals thing so going to skate has been difficult. I got on wheels that seemed completely foreign and of course after a few minutes I warmed up and got rolling.

I was so tired and had to really dig deep. As I've said my body is trying to revolt against the idea of eating like someone who is not a football player, and does not like the lack of easy energy.

But I got to the point where I could start really working. My biggest goal right now is balancing on my right foot. My left foot is my strongest and as I am goofy footed. If that is a term. I lead with my left, but for transitions I need to have more strength in my right.

Anyways my right ankle is weaker and I have been working on strengthening it. And today I was able to do 3 second balancing in a fairly straight line. Yeah!

Then I am still working on crossovers. I did a few of those too!

Then I headed down to Olympia and worked my first bout as an NSO! That was really cool. I was working the penalty board, which is fairly straight forward. But it was a really crazy game. Penalty tracking is awesome!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Week 8 practice and open skate

Yesterday and today are actually being combined into one. I didn't skate a ton during practice as we did a mini scrimmage.

I did drills with the team. It actually felt really good. Even though I sucked and
was the slowest and had to skate outside the line. But I've progressed enough now that I am at least included. Before I had to skate on the sidelines.

Worked on some good drills that I desperately need. It's a little frustrating as the one basic skill I need to do a lot of other stuff is currently way beyond my grasp. The open position side surf skate. I don't need to side surf, but I need to balance on my right leg enough to put my left foot behind me and in open position. Not even close yet.

But the next 30 days are likely to be spent working on that a lot.

Tonight I went to the open skate. So I'm trimming back my food intake a bit and trying to hurry up the "in shape" part of this endeavor. I know that if I can get close to the pre-baby size it will help immensely.

Unfortunately my cushy assed body has been happily gorging itself the last three years so it's not super happy about the restrictions in food. When I got out on the floor I was pretty shaky. I had last eaten at 5pm and it was now 8:30. But I worked through it and got a sports drink to get some quick sugar in.

I worked on strengthening my right leg for the most part. I was really too shaky to try and do much more. And when I have days like this I'm really just looking to get some floor time in and not super worried about longevity.

My right leg needs some serious time and attention. So I did sticky skate with using my left leg as the push and focusing on my right leg moving in a straight line. Harder than you would think and I definitely am lacking in a bunch of muscles in there.

Tomorrow I am going to go to Bellevue and do another light skate night. Unless I get it together enough to practice drills at home. Maybe both.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Week 8 Scrimmage

Last night was another scrimmage. When we have scrimmages, until my skating skills come up to snuff, I usually NSO.

This is good as we don't have a ton of NSOs and I have a lot of time on my hands, so I like to get involved as much as possible.

The skating part I did do was just the first 30 minute warm up. It's kind of a bummer when I don't get any real skating in. I'm trying to get up my endurance, I'm trying to work on skills, and I am really trying to get into shape!

But on days where you can't get a full skate in, or you're just too exhausted physically or emotionally to do a full skate, a few minutes is actually fine and really important.

Something I've found with newer skaters. I don't know if this is true for more experienced skaters, I'll let you know when I get there. Is that when you put your skates on there is this warm up period where you have to remind your body why there are wheels on your feet.

You feel weird, unbalanced and a lot like you've never skated before. If you didn't skate the day before or missed several days skating it's even worse. So my recommendation for newer skaters is that if you are not going to skate today, put your skates on and do some skills in your kitchen or hallway.

Even if it's only for 10-20 minutes. Just remembering how to move on skates for a few minutes will make the next skate practice that much easier.

Anyways last night was not a huge skating triumph for me, but I am feeling the flow of what to do for a scrimmage and hopefully soon a bout.

After practice we had a ref meeting and then a few of us went for food. While meeting and making friends has not been my primary focus, am I really glad this is a benefit to joining derby. I really like the people I'm spending my time with.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Week 8 crossovers

Crossovers crossovers crossovers. Transitions transitions transitions.

This is kind of the pattern of my life right. Today was a surprising improvement.

When our fearless leader Rpod is not able to come to practice. "What? He has a life outside of practice? Hogwash!" We usually default to the next best skater, or loudest.

Today the best ref skater was Brian. Brian has led us a few times and of course is a fairly competent skater, which means he is still surprised when I can't do simple basics. Welcome to my world Brian! Though I'm never actually surprised by it.

Anyways we worked on transitions, which I should spend an endless time on. And the elusive crossover.

All the encouragement in the world is still no match for practice so there wasn't much to do other than keep doing transitions over and over.

But today there was a little surprise in Brian's methods that may have pushed me into the strange and exciting world of crossovers.

We worked on the crappy concrete floor with all it's divits and "character" spots. We only had a small space, but he had us do about a 10 foot circle in constant crossovers.

It started slow, but it totally worked! I got faster and while it may not have been the beautiful and amazing crossover that I'm working towards, it was a bonified legitimate crossover.

Sweet. The man's a genius!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Week 7 In the shit

Oh and I mean in a good way. Each practice just gets better and better. This is what I have been working so hard for. Being able to skate well enough that I can participate in drills.

Now I can't whine about how much I suck. The girls aren't hearing it. This is part of the beauty of working in a group. I need the peer pressure and no bull attitude. They tell you to shut up and get moving. For me this works better than anything else.

We did stopping drills. Oh how I need this! First we did knee slides. I like these a lot. I need to work harder on getting up quickly, but whatever.

Then we did t-stop drills. Today is the third practice that Megs and I have really worked on t-stops. We had fooled around with them a little, but I doubt either of us had done it more than 3 or 4 times before this week. I really felt like I was doing it today. Instead of skipping and being freaky, it really dug in and felt good.

On to plow stops. I was doing them all wrong. We did shopping cart drills with plow stops and Gary gave us 20 seconds of wisdom. It's amazing how a few words of well directed pointers can make that world of difference. There isn't really that much to them, but there are lot of wrong ways to do them.

Then turn around toe stops or tomahawk stop. This involves transitions. After carefully informing our group that neither Megs or I have effectively done these. Technically we've done them off the wall at least 3 times at the rink and I did them in the hallway today. Our sob story. We'll stop doing that soon enough.

Anyways after garnering enough support from our group we did it. We sucked, we were slow. But oh yeah, we did it!

Then the drills just didn't stop. We did dodging drills where we darted in
between the skater in front of us. This was awesome, but kicked my ass.

Today was a really good day. I am very sore and so very happy.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Week 7 It was good

Today was awesome! I feel so good skating and that totally boosts my confidence.

What I need to work on right now though is transitions. Anything that gets me used to moving in multiple directions. And that is what we did. Lots of them.

We worked with the players a bunch. Which again is something I really need. I need a little peer pressure to motivate me and the team really does that.

I did a couple on the wall and a couple on the carpet. Then I hit the floor and did them without crutches. I can't say I do them well, but they are ok. They are of course at a teeny tiny snails pace. But one step at a time.

The team did pack drills and I practiced skating the infield. I wasn't as fast as I needed to be, but boy did I get a workout. I'm pretty sure I won't be able to walk tomorrow.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Week 7 The hard part

I skate ok. But here comes the hard part. Where I have to push myself. No more wall. No more super slow. No more worrying about falling. It's time to get going for reals.

Open skate tonight. That past week I had stayed home and missed a bunch of skating opportunities. This was a bad idea. My stamina is atrocious. I need every skate minute I can get. And every time I go I am so glad I did.

Crossovers feel better, though I don't look down so I'm not really sure there is any cross. I didn't practice a lot of skills like turns and transitions. Mostly I spent time weaving through traffic.

This is a really good skill that I need to get up on. Serious weave. I was watching Dig Dug trying to keep up with Zilla as she darted through the crowd. This is what I need to do. Go faster then slow then fast. Step to the side, cruise through. Start using these fabulous skills I am so diligently trying to learn.

Practice tomorrow. I hope Rpod kicks our collective ref ass!

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Week 7 Derby Night

This has been a slow week for me. Wed and Thurs night I stayed home from open skate to rest my knees. After a little conferring with my league mates they suggested stretching and exercises. So after 30 minutes my knees felt fine. Go figure.

Anyways, I wanted to skate Fri and Sat. But Fri is teen night and I was unnerved. Then Sat I helped set up for the Jet City bout, then hung out with Bricks for a while. No skating. We watched the bout, then to the Rockers and Rollers show and that was that.

So that's a total of four days of no skating except in the hallway.

Anyway, today was a scrimmage and derby night at Lynnwood. Freakin finally. I was starting to get depressed about my lack of time on skates. Scrimmages are my NSO training time, so no skating there.

But then there was finally derby night. How have I never been to this? There were a ton of preteen and teenage derby girls there. They are so good and so freakin cute! How I wish I had derby when I was a kid. I know my child will!

So skills for tonight were:
Crossovers- getting closer and feels very weird.
One leg balance- significant improvement.
180 turns-getting farther from the wall, always a good thing.
Transitions- very slow, but off the wall and of course only one direction. That's ok.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Week 6 off days

Yesterday and today have been spent laying around. My knees have been sore and I've been being good by staying off them and icing.

I always hate the beginning of getting back into shape, I get sore knees and it slows me down. I can work through it and the still get a work out in, but it usually gets a lot worse before it gets better. This time I am being conservative and staying off them.

If I had kept up even moderately on exercising the past three years I probably wouldn't be dealing with this. Or if I hadn't gained an extra 50. But blah blah blah. I did and there is no use whining about it.

I would really like to go to the gym today. I would have really liked to go skating last night. And hopefully after resting and icing today I can go skate tonight. But it's hard to complain when the punishment is having to rest.