Jul 152010

Reed Richards is a smug, stretchy bastard

Alright, true confessions time. I had initially planned for this week’s Project (Derby) Mayhem assignment to be a real balls-(or, um, your equivalent)-to-the-wall physical challenge. It’s been awhile since we’ve even HAD a P(D)M assignment, and I wanted us to hit the ground running. Er, rolling. Whatever. So I there I was, trying to brainstorm some new torture that would kick our butts (but not be so terribly hardcore that no one else would do it with me). And as I was warming up (prior to coming up with a workout that would make you hate me, at least for a little bit) I noticed that I was kind of cutting corners on the stretching. And that I’ve BEEN cutting corners on the stretching.

I REALLY hate to stretch. This, however, is a pretty stupid reason not to be doing it.

Now, I don’t need the flexibility of a Cirque du Soleil performer or anything. But as a derby girl, I need to be significantly more flexible than, say Betty White. Or, for that matter, Bea Arthur (may she rest in peace). Getting low is not so comfy when the hamstrings are all foreshortened and hating on you. And let’s face it, a nice baseline level of flexibility is going to do a lot towards keeping a girl from getting injured out on the track.

Is it just me, or does ol' Stretch here look a little too happy?

So I’m biting the bullet, and making myself be a better, bendier kind of roller girl. And I’m taking y’all with me, as per usual.

Assignment 4: Make Like Your Mom and Bend Over Stretching More than the Truth

We’re going to be taking a minimum of 20 minutes per day for the next week and stretching. Pretty simple, right? Use your Google Fu and hunt down some good stretching routines online. Pop in a yoga or pilates DVD. Actually go to a real live yoga or pilates class (Baton Rouge girls, you might want to take a class with the ever rocktatious Trac/DC, who promised me she was going to post her schedule in the comment section). I’m going to be pretty flexible (see what I did there?) with what you can do for this assignment. One caveat, though. You have to actually do the stretches that you hate. No hanging out in Child’s Pose while you watch So You Think You Can Dance Dance Revolution, or whatever your summer trash programming of choice is. Find the spots that are extra tight, and start working on them. See if you can stretch farther and deeper by the end of the week. Discuss your progress (or how much you hate trying to do the splits) in the comment section.

If Kermit can find the time to stretch, so can we. Man, I hope he's stretching. I'm going to be really depressed if this turns out to be a picture of him having a stroke...

Already super flexible? Go ahead and repeat a previous assignment of awesomeness.
Heidi Volatile does not want to turn into a creaky old biddy, even one as awesome as Betty White (or Zombie Bea Arthur). She can be reached at blammeration@gmail.com or in the comment section.

May 262010

If you don't participate, Michael Douglas will give you the dead-eyed stare of laserdeathDOOM

This post is not about Michael Douglas. It is EVEN MORE AWESOME. For today is the day we kick off the second Project (Derby) Mayhem assignment, skate monkeys. Your assignment? FALLING DOWN

Hopefully you all made it through Assignment 1 (don’t worry if you missed out or didn’t quite make it–you can always try it again on your own). I personally got off to a slow start on that one, but once I began forcing myself to make some time I realized it was something that was perfectly doable. However, while skating it up I ALSO realized that there are a few moves that I am less than awesome at. I know I was less than awesome at them, because every time I attempted to do them, I was shaky or I fell down. And some of those moves were not exactly advanced.

This basically sums up my feelings about falling

I HATE falling down (unless it is during falling drills, which are, to borrow a word from TracDC, rad), and I hate being less than awesome. And I know I’m a good skater! So why was I so weak on these few moves? It’s because I have never practiced them enough. I think sometimes we all have a tendency to focus on the things that we’re already good at, and just work on them. It’s fun to work on the things that you’re good at! And there’s nothing wrong with working on them, those skills need to be kept sharp, too. But if we’re working on them exclusively, that means that we are neglecting the things that feel awkward, or that we just plain suck at. And that, my friends, is not going to make us the best skaters we can be.

So let’s rectify that. Awesomeness awaits!

Assignment 2

We already know that we can make time in our schedules for a little extra derby. This week, we’re going to take that time and spend it on things that make us fall down. I’d like for us all to log 2-3 hours working on this, outside of regular practice. The time can be broken up however you see fit.

I want to make something perfectly clear. I am NOT telling you to go out and injure yourself. I’m asking you to go out and work on the things that you’re just not so great at (yet) or that are just slightly beyond your skill level (right now). You need to wear your full gear, and you need to practice safely and smartly.

For my part, I’m going to be working on the following: Backwards skating (right now I’m like an awkward Frankenstein when I try to do this), 180 jumps (I apparently can only do them at Leo’s), transitions (I can only do them one way, and they’re not very controlled), and I’m going to try to start learning how to tomahawk while leading with my left foot (I can tomahawk GREAT with my right, but I’d like to be able to use either foot). That’s just my list, though. You should be working on what specifically trips you up.

So sign up in the comments section and keep us posted! We have until next Wednesday to knock this out. If enough people indicate that they are participating, I will put up a post around the midpoint and we can discuss our progress (otherwise, fee free to leave updates in the comment section of this post). Get to it, skate monkeys!

If Kitty Pryde can fall with style, so can we!

Heidi Volatile is blammer. Heidi Volatile’s ass is a little concerned about this assignment. Michael Douglas is an old dude who happened to star in the movie Falling Down, making it impossible for Heidi to NOT use his picture in this post. And Kitty Pryde is one of the most awesome comic book characters EVER, and she wants you to sign up for this assignment NOW. You can reach Heidi, Heidi’s ass, Michael Douglas, and Kitty Pryde at blammeration@gmail.com

May 192010

Get it? Because Battleship is interactive? My geekiness knows no bounds, y'all

Shit’s about to get REAL, y’all.


Roughly five million years (re: two weeks) ago, I posted about the importance of setting overall fitness goals (and there was some nice discussion about personal goals in the comment section). Before that I posted about maintaining focus (even when life goes to crap) and setting physical goals to use as benchmarks.

Today we’re doing something a little bit different. You and me, kid, we’re kicking off Project (Derby) Mayhem.

Let's face it, there will probably still be a lot of talking

Anyone who’s known me for more than two minutes knows that I really love to talk. A lot. But goals are about action, and as your go-to Goal Girl, I have been itching to stop talking and start doing. And to drag you along with me. And that’s where Project (Derby) Mayhem comes in. From now on, there will be assignments. I’m going to be doing every Project (Derby) Mayhem assignment along with you, so I won’t be asking you to do anything that I’m not doing myself. The general idea is that (in addition to inching closer to world domination) we will be able to push each other to set and follow weekly goals, see results, and do that general derby-girls-are awesome support thing. Sounds good, no? Those who partake (re: me and you and other totally awesome people) will lead the way in the Derby Death Army. Those who don’t will be crushed beneath our wheels. They will be forced to breathe in the fumes from our skate bags as we hip check our way to glory. So let’s get started:

The first rule of Project (Derby) Mayhem...

Assignment 1

Since this is our first assignment, we’re going to start small-ish (assignments will get more detailed/difficult/what-have-you as we progress). We’re going outdoor skating! Three times. For an hour each (note: that’s an hour skating, changing your wheels/putting on your pads does not count as skate time). You’ve got between today (May 19th) and next Wednesday to pencil this in. I want you to spend about ten minutes warming up, then split your time between lateral cutting, sticky skating, speed drills, getting low, and running on your skates. Drink plenty of water, and if you start to get too worn out slow up a bit until you recover (but maintain good derby form).*

*If you already do this–or more than this–on a regular basis, please keep to your routine but spice it up a little. Increase the difficulty, the amount of time spent skating, or throw in a few things that you know you need to work on. Also, if you have no other choice you can complete this assignment indoors, but try to skate outside if you can.

Time IS on your side. Really.

The important part of this assignment (and one of the harder parts) is making the extra time to go skate. For my part, I’m either going to be waking up an hour earlier, going to bed an hour later, or skipping a little TV time. Don’t let your schedule keep you from participating! You only have to skate for 3 out of 168 hours, which is totally doable. I promise.

I’m going to use the comment section to check in throughout the week, and I encourage you to do the same. In fact, why not go ahead and declare your allegiance to Project (Derby) Mayhem right now? Like I’ve said before, there’s nothing like internet accountability, and that comment section sure does look lonely without your post…

Tyler Durden will blow up your living space if you don't participate in Project (Derby) Mayhem. And he'll probably pee in the soup.

Heidi Volatile is a loudmouth and is probably going to regret this whole Project (Derby) Mayhem thing when she has to get up at 5:00am tomorrow. She knows that you’re reading this and is looking pointedly at the comment section and clearing her throat. Tyler Durden is a Very Bad Man with a few… issues, but he’s a) really hot, b) a total badass, and c) would definitely play roller derby if he were a girl. You can reach both of them at blammeration@gmail.com if you want to suggest future Project (Derby) Mayhem assignments or tell them that their hair is awesome (it totally is).

Photo Credits: Milton Bradley, 20th Century Fox, Mission Fit Possible