This week did not go as well as the last. It was filled with fatiguing workouts and humiliation. ( Why YES, I DO realize how dramatic that statement sounds!) I had looked forward to training all week. It was the happy place I went to during the stress of an unusual week at work, and at night as I drifted off, I thought of skating on the banked track. I’d hoped to carry over the confidence and energy of the week before, but the warm-up of the first drill quickly sapped both.
We began with another snake drill, but several of the girls in the class had trouble keeping the line spaced evenly and together. When my turn came, I ended up sprinting to even catch the next girl in line, a hurried and draining experience. My movement between girls didn’t feel as clean or focused as the last time. To compound it, when I finished my stomach was cramping horribly again–I’m beginning to think I shouldn’t eat before Saturday morning training. Either that or I just get super nervous. (Jon says it’s the blood trying to digest my food AND supply my muscles). And of course, to really push us, directly following this we sprinted for an entire minute. I really pushed myself at this point–I wanted to go for it the complete workout, but I paid for it. I haven’t ever felt like throwing up at the end of a workout, but I was sincerely afraid I would vomit all over the track. I had to take a few minutes to cool off. My asthma hasn’t been acting up at all either, which was a pleasant surprise. At least I could breathe properly through the nausea.
Yeah, that was bad. But it wasn’t humiliating–I felt like I was at least pushing myself and accomplishing something. But as you might remember, I have a well-documented struggle with the elusive box-turn. It has become my Achilles heel in a way–the thing that defeats me. So many skaters and others tell me that they had a hard time with it for a while, but that doesn’t really help me any. I feel like I won’t be able to progress or call myself a real skater until I can master this skill–it is fundamental to so many other skills and demonstrates control over your body and skilled footwork.
All that to say–we spent a good chunk of time in class on this, going back over backwards skating, and combining the two. The very worst part of the class came when Polly had us all at the rail, then called us out one at a time to show our box turn on the track. The whole class watching. Of course, who is the second person (out of the only three people) she called? That’s right, this girl. The one miserably aware of her ineptitude. Let’s just say it was UGLY. Of course everyone in the class was supportive and encouraging and no one laughed or scoffed at me, and one of the best skaters made her way over to me to help me with it when we started again. I just couldn’t get over the feeling of “publicly” failing.
Lacy was really encouraging at that point, and helped me clarify my frustration. Am I upset because I am not meeting my own standards, or because I am unfavorably comparing myself to the other (more experienced) skaters in my class? (Mostly the first, some of the latter). She was sweet and encouraging, (oh my poor fragile ego!), telling me how well I was doing, especially for only skating a few months. I know I’ll get it one day–I had at least one breakthrough: at least I attempted it on the banked track, and managed a few sloppy turns on the flat interior. Better than nothing!
This was a weekend of derby, certainly. Pre-bash, training, Sunday Veloway training, FIRST BOUT OF THE SEASON, then the after-party following. That’s a whole other post, though. For now, I leave you with a picture of me on Sunday evening with my derby-crush (whom I’m afraid might think I’m stalking her) Dusty Doublewide. I want to skate with this girl one day.