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Posts Tagged ‘roller derby’

I can’t believe it, it’s been a year since I tried-out and became a Naptown Roller Girl!  What an unbelievable experience.  And, for those of you wondering, a roller derby year is the same as a regular calendar year, but with more bruises. 

In July of 2009, I entered roller derby workshops.  I was 33 years old and hadn’t been on quad skates since the Roller Dome parties in grade school….you do the math.  I owned no skates.  I purchased used skates from craigslist….I think they cost me $25.  Needless to say, I was pretty awful the first day….and for many days after, for that matter.  I hadn’t skated in years and had the slowest wheels known to man, even slower than Sugars.  I remember being so tired from working so hard.  I would like to add that I was training for a marathon then, so I was in pretty good shape.  My friend, who eventually became known as Freddie Cougar, and I rented skates; they were about mid-calf and the old school roller rink kind…still very slow.  Thankfully, Ana Slays Ya let me borrow her old pair for the next month.

Try-outs were August 2, and by some miracle, I made it despite my fall at the jammer line before I started a drill.  I think they took me because I pushed myself, never gave up, got up quickly after a fall, and they were somehow able to see some potential in this skate-challenged girl.  I was so happy when I got the email from Sin Lizzie telling me I had made it…WOW….I was ecstatic to be referred to as “fresh meat.” 

And, then off to practice with the vets….very intimidating, to say the least, especially when you are a complete train wreck of a skater like my past Eve.  But, they got used to us newbs and our cuteness grew on them.   

Above is a picture of me, in red, in my very first bout in December 2009 (photo by Marc Lebryk), I didn’t skate very much, but it was awesome nonetheless.  Now, I was finally Eve Elle, The Original Bad Girl. 

I have learned a lot in this first year.  Sure, I learned tons about skating, falling, hitting, blocking, etc, but, more importantly, I learned some things about myself, roller derby, and other valuable life lessons:

  • Old dogs really can learn new tricks….and keep learning!
  • Practice and perseverance can overcome any obstacles.
  • Roller derby is more about smarts, and heart, than muscle.
  • Being fierce has nothing to do with size.
  • Talent without effort is a waste.
  • Perfection is not attainable, but improvement is limitless.  
  • What happens on the track; stays on the track.

These things that I have learned are priceless, but the most amazing thing about this past year of roller derby is the people that I have met and the friends that I will have for a lifetime.  You all have helped me grow, not only as a skater, but as a person.  I appreciate each and every one of you.  Roll on!

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This would be yours truly to the left attempting to get up after a hit.  Falling is part of roller derby, and I do it alot.  I skate for Indianapolis’ Naptown Roller Girls, who in my opinion, have the best team and fans in the nation…wOOt.  Playing roller derby, or even watching, is not for the light-hearted. Roller girls experience mostly bruises and soreness, but there is the occasional bloody nose, concussion, and even broken bones, mostly tailbones, legs, and ribs.  Even some spectators may leave a bout with some bruises, although this is the chance one takes when sitting in the suicide seats.  You have been warned. 

If you have never witnessed a bout, check out this video of big hits from the Carolina Rollergirls.  And, if you want more roller derby knock-outs, check out our website for upcoming bouts.    

As a roller girl, I know that I am putting my body at risk everytime I hit the track….I have signed all the waivers and release forms….but, I wouldn’t have it any other way. 

As a dietitian, I know that there are important nutritients to consume to keep bones strong, speed healing of bruises, and alleviate, not eliminate, stiff joints and muscles.  In my experience as a runner and yoga instructor, there are many things one can do to aid in recovery and alleviate soreness.  Here are my recommendations for roller girls and others that put them self at risk of bumps and bruises on a daily basis:

  1. Eat high quality protein.  If you’re a meat eater, then lean meats, fish, eggs, and dairy products, all preferably organic.  If you don’t eat meat, then beans, grains, nuts, and seeds will likely provide you with adequate protein. 
  2. Eat a wide variety of fruits and vegetables.  These provide the greatest amount of vitamins and antioxidants.  I am not a big advocate of multivitamins as they have not been proven to be adequately absorbed, but I suppose they are a cheap insurance if you aren’t getting much variety.  Fruits also contain fructose, a natural sugar, that can aid in replenishing muscle glycogen stores, which if not replenished, can leave your muscles feeling sore. 
  3. Read my previous post on my favorite recovery drink, chocolate milk.  If you don’t drink dairy, coconut water can be a good recovery drink as well, although, I do not have personal experience with this. 
  4. Obviously, drink plenty of water.  The amount of water one needs is certainly dependent on amount and intensity of training, weather, body fat percentage, age, and gender.  If your pee is bright yellow, you likely aren’t drinking enough. 
  5. As stated in # 2, I rarely advocate supplements, however, Omega-3 supplements, such as fish oil or flax seed oil, have been shown in many studies to reduce inflammation in the joints.  Nuts and seeds can also provide these.
  6. Stretch.  Yoga Journal’s website is a good resource to find poses for particular muscle groups. 
  7. Rest.  Rest is not something that roller girls do well.  They want to go out 100% all the time or they think they will lose their strength.  Rest is just as important as training.  Rest allows your muscles to recover and get stronger from training.  The amount of rest depends on the intensity of training and will likely be different for every individual.

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