I'm 3/4 of the way through my annual leave from work, and it has to be said this has probably been the least productive time off I've had in ages! Things like tidying my room and making a start on packing/going through all my junk before I move have all taken a back sleep to lazing, sleeping and skating. To be fair, it's been massivley enjoyable - I can't remember the last time I just did nothing but relax and enjoy myself!
So, on to the skating. This time off means I can attend all 3 weekly sessions, which is awesome. The week I was due back in work I had been put down to work on every single day of training! Luckily, one of my friends came to my rescue and swapped, so I'm only missing wednesday now...it's still annoying, but at least I'm not missing any of the derby-specific training. I'll have to make sure I skate plenty on my days off and after work to try and make up for it.
This week's Wednesday veledrome session was a personal success for me- after falling there last week I was feeling deeply apprihensive about going there again. For some reason I'm far more scared to fall outdoors than in, and it doesn't help that so far the team are down two ladies with broken ankles! I know from my time on the ward that it's all about how you fall, I've seen people that came off motorbokes and in to walls escape with minor injuries, and someone that tripped over their cat need to have major surgery...still, I was very hesitant to begin with and skated slowly until I could calm my nerves. After about 10 minutes, I was feeling good and hitting my stride. I did notice though that I have this wierd habit of dragging my left foot a little- this is something I need to work on! Also, I've been finding it hard to corner, although I do wonder if that's more to do with how tight the trucks are on my rios. Sian, one of the founding brawlers, let me try on her R3's with amazing kryptonics wheels...and oh my, what a difference! At first it was terrifying (so much more 'slippery' feeling than the rios) but they are so much lighter and responsive. I took them for a spin on the straight, and they felt AMAZING...I found cornering a breeze, and I even managed a T-stop (I've failed every time I try to do these outdoors in my rios, they're too bloody heavy!). Skating in my rios after that felt like trying to skate in treacle.
This has gotten me pretty fired up to get some new skates, and more to the point some derby-specific skates. Nothing too fancy, but good enough to get me though this fresh meat stage until I'm ready for scrimmaging (about 8/12 months I reckon). Only problem? Ordering decent derby skates in the UK is a NIGHMARE. Riedell and sure-grips are like bloody gold dust. After much internal debate and internet trawling, I decided to buy some sure-grip rebels. They are more expensive than the R3, but I figured by the time I'd upgraded the wheels from the bog-standard ones the R3 comes with I would have spent the same amount, if not more. The rebel comes with decent wheels that should do me well until I can splash out on sugar hybrids :) Sadly, the place I've ordered them from is out of stock until next week, which means another week at least of skating on my rios...gah I'm so impatient!
On a more positive note, my quad is a hell of a lot better now. The extra stretches I've been doing seem to have made a lot of difference! I've not tested them out with any falls on skates (just off skates in my dining room) but as long as I remember to stretch out well tonight I should be able to throw myself in to the falling drills tonight...pun very much intended!
Let the good times roll...