Friday, April 16, 2010

Roller derby saved my soul

Minimum skills assessment is tomorrow. In a little over 26 hours, I will be tested on the skills I have learned since I started derby back in October. I don't know if I will pass: if I do, it will be a near thing. If I don't, I'm very confident that I will pass in July.

In the last few weeks, I've massively improved my speed and endurance. It's not what I'd call *easy*, but I can totally do 5 laps in a minute now. And all I have to do to make 25 laps in 5 minutes is sustain that pace for 5 minutes. I'm either there, or almost there. Today in body conditioning class, as a warmup I got on an elliptical machine and did 5 minutes at my personal maximum -- working as hard as I possibly could. Again, I can't say it was *easy* (if it had been, it wouldn't have been my max!), but I was able to do it. (And then I did another 40 minutes on cardio, which meant maintining a heart rate of about 140.)

Anyway. So the speed and endurance are coming, and if I keep working as hard as I am at practice and in my class, it's safe to assume I'll get better.

I would say it's possible that I will make 25 laps in 5 minutes tomorrow. If not, I'll come pretty close. Even if it's the very first thing, and I don't make it (which means I will not pass min skills), I am going to go through the entire skills assessment (of course).

My two biggest stumbling blocks right now are crossovers (which I think I'm now starting to understand ... I will just have to spend the next however many practices training my legs to do it) and jumping over a 3-inch-tall object. On the jump, my barrier is plain, simple, and frustrating as hell: fear. I can jump high enough to clear a three-inch-tall object. I've done it. But I'm afraid. It's scary. So I need to work on that too, a lot. I'm going to try to do it tomorrow. I just have to get past the fear, and it could happen tomorrow. If not, then not.

Whatever happens tomorrow, I will be at practice on Monday, ready to work my ass off. Because really, whether I pass or not, I will have a lot of work to do. Passing minimum skills is the *start* of a whole lot of training, not the end. And if I don't pass, then I will want to put on the afterburners and train my ASS off for July (my next chance at min skills).

Last summer, I directed a play ("The Cover of Life") that was about women and their dreams. Not the kind of dreams you have when you're asleep, but your dreams for your future. At the time, I thought, "What is my dream?" and I didn't really have one. I was doing fine: I had a husband who loved me and whom I loved (and still do!), a job I liked, and good friends and family. But I didn't really have a *dream*.

I've found one now, and it's roller derby.

So, yeah, if I don't pass min skills tomorrow, that will kind of suck, but in the long run it won't matter. I *will* pass.

1 comment:

  1. i started at 29 and now almost 32 and it saved my soul