Suzy Hotrod

Jun 072011

I am by no stretch of the imagination a fan of popular music. I don’t understand it, and frankly I don’t want to understand it. But of all the crap in modern music, I find myself fascinated with Lady Gaga. She is a willing knowledgeable participant in creating a product of the modern music machine. She is an artist who has a complete mental grasp of the game.

I don’t know anything about this woman, yet I have a lot of non factual gut feelings about her. That her band mates and dancers are all her friends and she’s the one that broke out and made it really big and took them with her, like that the House of Gaga is her NYU graduation class or something. I  imagine this woman knows how to file her own freelance performer taxes. Lastly why do I imagine this chick doing situps, practicing piano, and hot gluing fancy hats? (Dear lord, Gaga is quite the derby girl?)

As this derby thing keeps growing, no one here expected anything out of it. We joined for the love and that’s about it. So many of us are just along for the ride. And then we began seeing familiar faces, the poster children, certain names of the sport began to emerge. And I got to be one of them. Not a calculated sought out move like the production of Lady Gaga and on the other end of the spectrum hopefully this won’t end a depressing mess like poor poor Elvis.

Fame can be destructive and ostracizing. Fame is misunderstood and lusted over by those that will never have it, and its many times accidental to those that never wanted it. Luckily, “Derby Famous” means you get to be a regular everyday human for most of your life and not worry about any of that mess.

Is Lady Gaga an accidental derby inspiration to me? If you’re going to be in the business, fucking go for it, understand how it works, and do it. Be smart. She is globally the most popular music artist but looks different every time I see her photo. She has crafted a wonderful disguise, a quality I have always adored about Dolly Parton. Take the wig off, wash your face and sneak around like everyone else. Relatively, I have always loved that people rarely recognize skaters without our helmets and jerseys on.

The cliche roller derby magazine article proclaims “By Day! By Night!” We’ve all answered the questions a million times. But isn’t there something wonderful about being regarded as “Derby Famous” in our little Bio Dome of Roller Derby then you can take off your skates, walk on to the subway after a bout, and be no one?

I will always love New York City because it doesn’t care about you. You are insignificant. You are a part of it, but it will be everything it is without you. It is home, because it is honest.

Also we’re friendly to both bike and cockroach

Feb 282011

People ask me what my off skates routine is quite often. I figured recording it all in one place without giving away too many Gotham Girls high tech secrets would be a good idea. Aaaaand save me from answering email. Hoooo-ray. Everyone wins.

Bike- I ride my bike to work everyday unless it’s snowing or raining. Riding in NYC freezing weather is good for mental strength because yelling at the wind doesn’t make it any less windy.

The gym- And the truth that you’re not going to like very much. I rarely lift weights. Sorry. But it’s true. I do once in a while on the weekends with my boyfriend. He mocks me cause I can do 1/4 of a pullup. See. I can’t even climb the giant noodle without him helping. This is a great time to survey the derby community. How many of you climbed this noodle in Chicago after Nationals??

Caption. I am getting a pull-up bar.

Yoga Tuesdays! Before I forced myself to do it, I wrote it off as boring and lame. But its just another sport, yet again for body and mind. You think its boring? Force you brain to get through it. Vinyasa Yoga has a great arm workout in there. I dabble in Bikram. Yes again, because its works me out mentally in additional to physically. Improving my balance on land, has improved my balance on skates.

I play roller derby. Duh. I skate 4 days a week and I try to add 1 extra day of speed skating when my schedule permits. But when I’m attending these practices we don’t JUST skate. We are dedicating 30 mins to 1 hour of land drills during practice 2-3 times a week. Stuff that includes tons of any of the following:running/jumping/plyometrics, footwork & agility, pushups, strengthening of the hamstring, shoulders, core, back. You name it.  There are no secret here. You can google any of this, or buy a fitness magazine. Youtube has tons of training ideas. Anyone in your league that has played high school sports knows tons of drills. I actually think in high school I was training the hardest I ever trained in my life. I think that’s why 16 year old me said fuck this and quit sports for marching band.

Genetics. Hard work plus dumb luck. Everyone in my league is doing the same workouts. We’re all strong and we’re all a lot stronger than we were when we started, and we all look different. Personal development and personal results are key. You are your own benchmark. If I make you want to do pushups, super. But its not me making you do the actual pushups. Its you finding a motivational stimulant in something, and its you taking a goal on and accomplishing it. You inspire me. I respect hard work and dedication.

Post Workout- I drink a protein shake thingy. I don’t know much about it from a technical standpoint. Muscles are hungry after a workout and get strong by getting protein. Or something like that. I dunno. I drink it. It made me stronger. If you think that that powder crap from GNC that I drink is gross, drink chocolate milk. Its the perfect post workout drink cause its got sugar and protein. In NYC we have this local dairy farm called Ronnybrook that makes chocolate milk with real cocoa. No corn syrup crap.

And in general I must goody two shoes you. If you smoke, you have to stop. Its just totally unacceptable for an athlete to smoke. You likely have 40+ leaguemates that will help you quit. If you drink a lot, knock it off. Treat booze like a reward.

I gotta go do some more pushups and yell at a cloud.  See ya next time.

Feb 072011

I will be the first to admit, with Thanksgiving  and Christmas, it’s all bets off, sloth time. And then after the fun is over the guilt of making up for it is back. If you’re competitive, there is no off season. Its a natural push to keep moving constantly, or how else can you be trying to be the best at something?

So what does that mean for the off season? I saw Michael Phelps on a tv show and he said “Every day out of the pool is 2 days back in to get back to where I was.” Scary. Well after the WFTDA Championships was Thanksgiving. Then I taught at 3 boots camps: The World of Derby in Manchester England hosted by the Rainy City Rollers, Blood and Thunder camp in Toronto, and Cleveland, Ohio with the Burning River Rollergirls. So that had me active teaching and also site seeing with many new excited athletes. I love traveling and teaching. Not sure what I have lined up yet for this year, you tell me?

Back in NYC there was the gym. Boring, but a necessary evil. Not too frequent of a destination, as I play team sports and like to be either suffering with others or being bossed around by my coaches and captains. Also my shitty $10 a month a gym has few available weights and it so crowded with weird men that sell prepay cell phones for a living.

3 words to avoid. Bikram Yoga Groupon.  I was hell bent on getting enough trips to at least make it a good value. I’m cheap. I like bargains. And I like this kind of yoga, I have done it before.  BUT, I didn’t like this yoga place. The main teacher and owner was a stellar douchebag and turned my physical practice in to the ultimate mental exercise to not get up and bitch slap him. Luckily I’m competitive and took this as a brain challenge to ignore him and not quit and give in to his Groupon scheme of charging people, being a douchebag, them quitting, him getting the money. Well it didn’t work on me. This did make me mentally stronger, and at least the towels were included.

Then speed skating came our way.  Frustration, NEW! pain, being pushed, and becoming obsessed with a new challenge, (and something that directly feeds in to our game.)  Our coach is inspiring and motivating. Being taught a new sport by another athlete that is totally dedicated to their sport is a productive place where the sky is the limit because we’re all willing to put skating first and everything else second, despite our practice attire and helmet differences.  He’s always strides out of reach. I like chasing things.

Today was the first day of practice for the league.  Now is the time for resolutions. Fuck January 1st. All I want to do is play roller derby. I want to be the best. I want to train in every way possible to prepare myself as an athlete. I want to be a great teammate. I am responsible for deciding that I will get myself ready for my team. Every drill will be done the hardest I can do it. This is everything to me. I’m so glad to be back.

Oh as another derby resolution, I need to write on this blog more. Sorry for negligence.

Oct 102010

dear blog readies! this post was prepared before the the Eastern Regional Tournament! But technical difficulties went down. and thusly, uhhh..its been like 3 weeks since I was at that tournament. Sorry to ruin the end of it, but we won. Thusly, I got conehead. Read on anyway…..


I celebrated the borrowing of a Swede Hurt’s (!/swedehurt?ref=ts) car for 24 hours by doing what all urbanites do when in possesion of a car for 24 hours-Go to a Target and buy as much toilet paper and cat litter possible. Ok I don’t have a cat, but the other thing you do is call anyone you know that lives near you and freak out that you have a car for 24 hours and take them with you to Target, so THEY can buy cat litter. I digress. While at Target I stacked up on food to bring to the Eastern Regional Tournament this weekend. Yes indeed I bring stuff with me. Even though there likely are plenty of supermarkets around it can get really busy and hectic once you arrive and especially when you fly, its hard to find stuff at night when you roll in to town. And the winners are:

Plain Peanut Butter- natural, no sugar f’ing with it. i have been labeled a freedom hating terrorist twice and gotten my peanut butter confiscated at airport security. Its not really a solid despite not really being a liquid. None the less, bring it in a small container.

Oatmeal aka ROLLERGRUEL. eat it. every day. the plain stuff. Sugar sneaks its way in to everything breakfasty that isn’t plain oatmeal. it packs flat in a ziplock bag. since you never want to check your skates while flying, space saving is really important.

Brown Rice in the nifty heat and eat packages- Target has its own brand, or Uncle Bens. I like the flat rip off top packages. Again great for squeeeeeeezing in to small spaces in carry on.

Canned Tuna with tab ring to open it without a can opener- cheapy easy protein. I ate it almost every day at Rollercon

Trader Joe’s Almonds- How the hell do they sell them so damn cheap?!

Quinoa- KEEEEENWWAAAAAAH!! ever since Tina Bourbeau ( told me what the hell it was, I was impressed

Powdered Gatorade Mix- packs flat in ziplock bag, and regular strength gatorade is too sweet and makes me all dry mouth. this is cheaper and you can control the mix.

Luna Bars- again, how the hell does Target sell them so cheap?!

Stuff To Locate Once You Arrive:

Spinach, Whole Wheat Pasta, Low Sodium Pasta Sauce, Bananas, Whole Wheat Bread, Decent Turkey Lunch Meat, already cooked Frozen Grilled Chicken Breast Strips, Eggs

Now by all means, my regular life is not so nutritionally proper. But when the stakes are high, do I really need to be going in to a giant important bout feeding myself total garbage? I have a religious type of sock,lipstick, and underwear. And I bet you do too. Don’t treat your fuel tank with any less respect than your feet, your smile or your sweet can. Show up prepared. Plus if you’re cheap like me, this actually saves you TONS of money. And most of this stuff can be prepared in a hotel without a kitchen. At end end of the tournament consume 4 cakes, and 3 cheesburgers. STAT. or in this case, the Friendly’s conehead sundae for me, thanks.

Sep 202010

It’s Suzy Hotrod from Gotham Girls Roller Derby writing to you today from beautiful New York City, where strangely enough there was a tornado today. So what more fitting a way to celebrate a freak thing in nature than with me writing a blog. TrAC/DC met me at Rollercon and asked me to write for Live Derby Girls. Which is super, since I make fun of blogs and those who write them. None the less with the arrival of a tornado and the discovery that Scarlet Rage’s dog Klaus has a blog , I’m up on my courage. TrAC says I should just write like I talk, uh…. so….. shit fuck son of a bitch? What’s this blog going to be about? Damned if I know because my entire life consists of riding my bike to work, working, watering the garden, skating, eating, and sleeping. Repeat. Then on the weekends I dig in record bins and am constantly disgusted at the huge amount of Frampton Comes Alive records I find. Is that enough to drum up some blog hits? Speaking of hits, my new favorite roller derby term of the week is “Ass Punch.” In closing I wanted to attach a photo but am too stupid to figure out how to do that. So instead here’s a great video of the Gotham Girls Roller Derby Team at the gym hitting the weights.

Photo by JoeRollerFan