Getting back up again, physically and mentally.

3 months of healing, 3 months of fighting against your own body and mind, 3 months of emotional turmoil…. my break experience lasted 3 months. I broke on the 13 July 2014, and was back on skates on the 14 October 2014. Throughout those 3 months, I knew I wanted to return to derby and skate again, train, scrimmage, bout. Yes, there were wobbles on the darkest days of those 3 months, but as soon as I was physically able to and allowed to, I skated. I worked hard to get my body back in a position to return to skating, 3 months of lost fitness and stamina, 3 months that I had to really make up for.

I have since returned to skating as though my break never happened, yes… I am healed. But I’m still figuring things out mentally and emotionally.

Physically I feel strong and comfortable, my fitness and stamina is creeping back up and I keep pushing myself to keep going, breaking through the walls. I now know my body again and I have really learnt to trust it all over again in the last month. I have set goals and targets, small and big, in a bid to get to where I want to be. And when I get there I intend to keep pushing further and further.

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Mentally and emotionally? I am not really finding any middle ground just yet, more or less highs and lows. When I came back, I had so much determination and motivation and passion, and it showed as another skater friend commented on my determination. It made me feel happy and strong knowing that my want to be better and work harder showed in a positive light. At first when I returned, I was a little cautious. I think that was a completely natural way to feel post break, but it wasn’t really caution in the sense that what if I get injured again, it was caution in the way that I did not know how my mind would react to situations. What would happen when I got back in a pack, when I fell, when I took a hit? Things I would come to learn to deal with as and when they happened. The main positive about my break was that I had no muscle damage, bones heal stronger and quickly, whilst muscles can be a waiting game – so I knew physically, I was fine. Physio Jen would not have let me return if she had not thought it safe too, and with her track record working on other skaters in my league I fully trust her judgement. And I’m glad I did!

I knew coming back would be difficult, I didn’t lie to myself about it and I was not naive about the process, in fact I surprised even myself at how quickly I was able to pick it all back up and jump into scrimmages and drills again. Of course there have been moments where my wankle (bad broken ankle side, most commonly known in the UK-Derby-Crips world as a wankle!) has been moved in certain angles, that before I would not have thought about, that I have suddenly thought more about and over-concerned myself with the new feel to it. I find myself thinking that this feels weird, but then I wonder how it actually felt before I broke? I never paid attention to it before? I think it is similar to the way I process and tend to over think things, for instance in training I am always thinking how to improve what I’m doing, what I need to do to get a move right, how to correct something I did wrong, being over critical even when I do something good…. then in scrimmage? I just play, I am relaxed and at home and I just do everything that our TC have been working on with us in training sessions just so naturally.

I find when I play that during a bout or scrim, I am focused and fairly centered. But post bout or scrim? I fall really hard. I immediately start to put myself down and look at everything I did wrong or could have done better. I generally tend to brush off anything positive people have to say about me and act like it’s just people being nice and trying to cheer you up. I know at the end of the day that this isn’t true. The women I skate with are very honest and genuine people who won’t turn around and sugar coat things, but they also won’t turn around and just straight up tell you that you did bad. Mentally, I have never felt as though I am good enough, I am thankful every day I get to train at the level I do with the people I do.

Since returning, the biggest mental block I have dealt with has been an odd one. The feeling of not being good enough and being unwanted. Part of me feels like now I have been damaged, I’m not the same and I’m not good enough or wanted now, even though I’m actually ok and any damage has actually made me better after the experience. I feel like I have a lot to prove. Before my break, I was working hard and aiming to skate alongside some of the top members of our league, I had just had a taste of what it might be like and that the opportunity may have arose to do so!  I was also at a point where I was not happy with my skating, not happy with my ability as a blocker and as a jammer. Coming back I had a fire in my belly. But I still had a large sense of self doubt and self confidence. I know I have rebuilding to do, and I am working hard to do that. I guess I’m more or less saying it is ok to not be ok. I keep beating myself up about the way I feel, making myself feel more babied than I probably am being. I know people are looking out for me and have best intentions at heart, I think I sometimes take it to hear too much and feel like maybe something is wrong with me.

Be careful what you think!
Be careful what you think!

I am going to continue to work hard physically, but I think I need to begin to balance that out more. I need to pick out something good I did, something that helped the other blockers on track or helped my jammer get through. Even things like saving my point or keeping my communication strong on track. I don’t want to ignore any negatives, but I don’t want to focus on them either. And more often than not, you wake up the next day and think, why? Why did I beat myself up so much over that, because it was no-where near as bad as you thought at the time. I’m lucky to be part of a league where I am surrounded by genuinely fantastic ladies and fantastic skaters who I get to learn from and skate with every week. These women push me to be a better skater, motivated to skate & play harder and stronger. And I intend to continue to do so. I am also lucky that I can call these women my friends. Friends who tell me to keep my chin up, give me that hug, grab my padded pants, laugh over tiny pots of jelly, give you positivity and confidence, and just generally help remind you that you are not alone. These women are there on track with me, they are there off track for me, they are women I will fight tooth and nail to be there for in return.  These are my bad asses.

Derby girls keep fighting

I don’t this particular blog post has too much of a direction in what I am trying to say, this is more of a mental blurt? I think if I had to say that this came with a message, that the message is this….

It is ok not to be ok, you are only human, filled with emotions and thoughts that some days we cannot even begin to understand. There are days you feel amazing, and there are days that you have the horrific urge just to cry with no warning or reason. You are not alone. No matter what happens, you must always try to love yourself, the world is a mean enough place without you being mean to yourself.

Love yourself
Love yourself

Til next time little blue monsters xx

30 Day Plank and Legs Challenge

Following on from my last post…. tonight is day 1 of my 30 day plank and leg challenge.

These are the challenges I’m setting myself:

Sexy Legs Workout: 15 minute workout for leg and core muscular endurance. Squats, Lunges, Calf Raises

I have been a little bit nervous about posting an image of my body in its current state, I used to model and so have been so used to others seeing me in a different light altogether. For instance:

I miss being this way. I admit it. I really do. I know my thighs and butt will be derby forever but I can atleast try to get back to this somehow?? When I took the below measurements and saw the images, I admit… I did get quite upset. I never thought I looked as though I’d got to this point, didn’t think I really looked quite that big. I didn’t really want to share this after a wave of oh my gosh is that what I really look like??

But I figure if I’m going to do this, I need to man up! To quote Karat & Tankerbell “Man up princess!”  (I think I need this on a sign!)

I like to feel like this is a safe place so to speak. I hope that if you are reading this blog you are someone who won’t judge or be mean, but that you will support me. Or may even use it as a push for yourself. I am hoping these things work and I will see at least some difference before I sign my life away to the gym.

I am unsure if it just because I am focusing too much on the images, I haven’t really put weight on since this was taken for instance. So is it just me looking too much into it? I don’t think it looks like the same body if not for tattoos!

So here goes…

Current measurements:
Bust: 37″
Waist: 30″ (a far cry from my 24″ waist days…!!)
Hips: 39″ (this doesn’t seem to have changed since the last time I measured… 2008…)
Thighs: 23″ (both L+R)
Arms: 12″ (both L+R)

So… me on day 1:

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I meant to post this before I did my day one, but this will just include what happened.

I admit it. It hurt. More than I thought it would do initially. I can definitely recommend the Tribesport sexy legs as a decent workout for your legs! The plank also hurt. I am unsure whether there will be any visible change between now and day 30. I hope there will be. Fingers crossed!

Shape up or ship out!

So.. at the end of 2013 I decided I no longer wanted to have a stupid idea of what size/weight I wanted to get back down to.

I used to be around the 8 stone mark. Now this I admit was when I used to do more exercise and near the end of my gymnast days. And before I gained the despicable things that are horrifically called “child bearing hips.” I have had a moan before about hating how big my hips are and that I always feel larger because of them and the usual response is “Well lose some weight then.” Now. The problem here is that when you look at them properly, the main width on my hips is bone structure. I do have some excess I feel I could lose to help shape up a bit but the way I am built seems to run in the family.

Currently my clothing sizes sit like this (but don’t add up in my measurements?? thanks clothing companies!)
– Chest : 10
– Waist : 8
– Hips : 12

Oh and did I mention that I stand at the (not so) gargantuous height of 5 ft 4?

Last time I weighed myself (near christmas…) I was around the 11.6 stone mark. I know that getting back to 8 stone would be a horrific task and at my current age and the way my body shape has developed, would not be healthy in the slightest. And with derby (and pretty much all types of exercise…) once general body fat is reduced, any other fat converts to muscle in the process – or something like that. All I know is muscle weighs more than fat. End of.

So I am trying not to focus on what weight I want to be or what weight I will end up. I may weigh myself now and then again further down the line out of curiosity, but I refuse to get hung up on this.

My main focus is to be healthier. I also hope to increase my stamina/endurance levels & core strength.

I want to reduce my body fat and tone up – I have a bit of excess weight to lose – mostly around my thighs from the lack of exercise since gymnastics and figure skating gave me muscular legs. Initially. And also needing work: my lower ab section.

I have done some research into 30 day challenges and found it is a great starting point to increase levels of workouts and then I hope to get into a better routine and daily fitness regime to keep fit and maintain body tone. I have since produced an Excel file which includes 30 day challenges for the following: Abs, Squats, Crunches, Planks, Thighs, Arms. I have also found TribeSports to be a fantastic source who have an awesome blog around fitness and exercise ideas.

I have ran these past my derby wife and Misfit Jevo who were the ideal overseers with their fitness knowledge, and after putting together and producing a variety of papers for their enjoyment… they have given me a starting point.

Tonight I start a 30 day challenge.

I will be mixing two challenges – safely! The 30 day planking challenge alongside a 15 minute thigh/leg workout. Every night. For 30 days.

At the start, middle and end of these 30 days I will post updates.

As stated – I will be aiming to put together a continuous fitness regime to keep the work up. And when me and the Man eventually move to Mansfield full time, it will be easier to see the girls and go do some off skates/cross training together.