Friday, January 31, 2014

Roller Derby: Latest Update

It's been a couple weeks since I posted how I was doing with roller derby. A lot has changed and a lot has stayed the same:

Because of the instability I was having coupled with the severe pain of the shin splints, I was pulled away from full-on contact for a couple weeks. That basically means I've been off to the side with a couple of the other new girls and learning proper form, stability, proper stops and falls, etc. I feel like it's been very beneficial and by next week (according to coach) I'll be thrown back in the pack for full drills with the rest of the girls.

According to other people on the team, they've seen a huge improvement and advancement since I first joined. I can also see and feel it. I went from being the woman who felt like a failure and contemplated quitting several times to the person who knows that I CAN do this! It's taken some time and it's been brutal hell but I know it will be worth it when I'm on skates during the first bout of the season.

One of the mandatory requirements of passing the minimum skills test is skating 27 laps in five minutes. I've passed several of the other requirements but still need to get that one down. It's freakin' hard! There's only one other 'Skater Tot' who's passed that part and the 'Vets' even have to push it to the maximum to complete it. Basically, it's skating at full-speed ahead without even thinking about stopping (no matter how much you can't breath or how much pain you're in)

During my first try (in the beginning of joining the team), I made 16 laps in 5 minutes. Definitely very short of the goal. Two weeks ago I made it at 19.5 and just last Tuesday I surpassed that and made it to 21 laps. If you do the math, I've made great strides but I still have six laps to gain. It'll happen sooner or later, I have to keep telling myself.

I've had more ups and downs than a bipolar schizo when it comes to roller derby. One day I'm proud of myself for how far I've advanced and the next day I want to call it quits. It's definitely as mentally taxing as it is physically taxing. Just the other day I received some very snide remarks about how I should "just do it" and "suck it up" (not from the girls on the team). I never asked to be coddled and I can take constructive criticism every day of the week, but those remarks, I felt, were meant to be hurtful. It brought me down for a bit. But then I did "suck it up" and decided I'm going to take their hurtful words and spin them into inspiration to push farther and harder. I browbeat myself enough that I don't need other people to help bring me down.

I am only one practice away from being out of 'Skater Tot' status and being a full-fledged derby girl. That'll be one helluva good feeling! My Derby Sister/Mentor is going to host a celebratory dinner once I've transitioned.

I just received word tonight that our team and individual pictures will be taking place in a couple of weeks. It'll be the pictures used on all bout rosters and merchandising material. I'll be breaking out the uniform shirt, bandana, booty shorts, and tights. I still have to think about the stance I want to portray. I'm not quite sure what a 'Pain Dispatcher' looks like!?!

I had no idea that skates required so much maintenance! I got schooled on bearings, wheels, grips, plates, and toe stops real quick! I just purchased a new pair of RX Toe Stops (red) to replace the original factory toe stops already on my skates. Supposedly, they'll help me stop faster and have better grip. Gonna try them out Sunday.

So far I've reached $32 of my goal for the upcoming Polar Plunge. Myself, along with a few of the roller derby girls, are going to plunge into the icy cold waters to help support Illinois Special Olympics. It's going to be a freezin' good time! If you feel so obliged to donate a little bit (shameless plug, every little bit helps) you can learn more at my Polar Plunge fundraiser page. Mucho gracias!

As far as the shin splints situation, it's gotten a lot better. Instead of being in grueling pain for the entire time of practice, it's now only for the first 10-15 minutes. I honestly believe that's what held me back in the beginning. Now that I know the pain won't last forever and I can do most of what is expected of me, I have a much shinier outlook on it all. And for that, I'm glad I've been sticking it out through the good, the bad, and the ugly.


Anonymous said...

Your blog is really nice..

Masshole Mommy said...

That's awesome - I am so glad it's going well for you!!

Henrietta said...

Wow, it sounds like you have really come a long way since you started - you go girl! I can't wait to hear about that Polar Plunge!

katy said...

Are you having fun yet? It sounds like you're in serious training mode. Good luck.