One and done!

First game of the season is in the books. Yippee!

It was a very close game and we were trading leads for most of the first half, but unfortunately we ran into penalty trouble on a couple of jams in the second half that allowed them to take the lead and keep it. Regardless it was a fun, respectful game.

The highlight for the game for me was when I was lined up to start a jam and it was clear that their jammer wanted to hit me off the line. When the whistle blew I stepped backwards and she went flying past me as she tried to hit me. It was awesome!

My team tends to think itself as not as good as we are, but we proved that we were a very capable team, as our opponent had a number of girls that were pulled from a higher level team. I am so proud of the work we did and how well we played.

On a personal level, I felt like I was chasing the whole game and didn’t get lead jam as many times as I would have liked. That being said I didn’t get many points scored against me as I was often just a second behind their jammer and able to force a call off. I felt I held my own against their blockers, but I have difficulty dealing with small stature blockers because of my height.

My cardio felt good. I had a couple of two minute jams where I was exhausted by the end, but I felt I was able to quickly recover and get back out there. I also am getting better at my timing when calling off jams so I get points and the opposing jammer doesn’t

One thing I need to work on is getting my hands out of the way when I jam. I feel like I am pushing my opponents and sooner or later I will start to get high block penalties. I really need to watch footage of other jammers to see what they do with their hands and practice keeping mine out of the way.

We don’t have another game lined up until June 6, but May will be a busy month with boot camps, an invitational bout and a local tournament.

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Health and Fitness Fridays: Listen to your body

When I was in high school I slipped a disk in my back. I never knew what caused it, but probably bending over constantly for field hockey and having a weak core. Which is funny because at the time I was in really good shape, but apparently not in my core.

It was probably the most painful experience I have ever had. I remember not being able to stand in science class because it was too painful to sit. I remember having to roll out of bed because I could not stand due to the pain. Somehow I would get up and dressed, but I was in constant pain.

At my mum’s urging I went to physio. I had electrodes put on my back and had to work on strengthening my lower core. Eventually my back healed, but it has never quite been the same. It will act up every so often and leave me in pain for a few days. But never anything significant.

Flash forward 15 years and I am in the best shape of my life. I am very active and actually have a strong core. But that back pain started creeping up again.

It started with the cross fit workouts. Deadlifts and good mornings would leave my back in pain for a few days after the workout. But a few days rest and it would be ok and I would be on to the work out again. Pushing harder, lifting more weights.

Well the last few of weeks the pain hasn’t gone away. In fact my body has been sending me not so subtle signs to ease up. Not only has my lower back been bothering me, but my upper back too. Constantly.

But did I listen? No.

It took my husband basically yelling at me not to go to practice and not to work out because I was hurt before it hit me.

I had to check my pride.

I didn’t have to lift all the weights every time. I needed to fix my back and get my form down first.

So now I have scaled back on the weights in cross-fit, making sure I can do the exercise without hurting my back. I have also added supplementary workouts that aren’t too strenuous that focus on my posterior chain, as this is where most of my pain comes from.

So far so good, as I am pain free this week. But I need to be more aware of what my body is telling me.

Our bodies our fantastic machines, but like all machines they need to be taken care of. Would you ignore a check engine light in your care? So why ignore that in your body.

If something is hurting there is probably a reason, so listen to your body and ease up, or go get it checked out.

Slice of Life #2 – The Pull Up

One of my fitness goals has been to be able to do one pull up. One. Single. Pull up. It has eluded me for some time, but for the last month I have been working on the Armstrong Pull-up program and hoping to be able to complete that one. Last Friday I made my first attempt, and thought it would make a good slice of life.

Read more slices at https://twowritingteachers.wordpress.com/

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Today’s the day, I tell myself. I killed it yesterday using the bands and I feel that it should be achievable.

I warm up a bit and then look up at the bar, it suddenly seems a lot more daunting than I thought.

I grab on to the bar and now I am just hanging there, afraid to make the attempt. After a few seconds I begin to feel like an idiot just hanging there I make my first attempt. Half way. Darn!

Ok maybe I can’t do this.

Not one to give up I change my grip and try a chin-up. Here we go! I have to kick my feet a little bit to help me up, but I do it! One chin up!

I complete 5 sets of 1 chin-up as per the program and feel satisfied that I have done something I haven’t done before.

But then there is that thought in the back of my mind, I want to be able to do a pull up. A chin up isn’t satisfactory!

“Monday,” I say to myself. Monday I will do a pull up.

So, of course, Monday I am back at it. I am ready this time. No more jitters, no more fear, just determination.

One, two, three, four, five. 5 sets of 1 pull up done! Success!

And I even managed to stop kicking like a fish on my way up.