Tuesday, July 13, 2010

She's On To Me

I think that the Boss knows something is up with me. I am not sure if she just knows me that well or if I am being that transparent. You see, when I don't have a "goal" in front of me, like a competition or looming test session, I get kind of lazy and disaffected with my skating. My right knee has been bothering me a bit lately and my feet were hurting pretty bad after the two hours of freestyle this afternoon - but those are just excuses to me. The Boss knows...

How do I know that she knows? Well... she told me today that she wants to clean up my program (which I have not done since April) and she wants me to test my Silver MIFs in December. She basically said she is going to throw me out there whether I like it or not. POOP! I was getting so good at being lazy.

I know that she is right though - darn her. I need to get those darn Silver moves done and just sit down in my sit-spin so I can get the Bronze test over with. I need immediate goals in order to motivate me to perform and get my act in gear. I was not feeling it today however. My 15 - 20 minutes of lesson were not spectacular by any stretch of the imagination. I am doing this weird pre-rotation on my loop now for some reason. The flip was being pesky as I can't seem to get it landed on a toe. I could not spin to save my life. I came home kind of dejected and down in the mouth.

Now I am thinking more clearly and mindfully. How lucky am I to have a coach who knows me well enough to understand what will get me to work? How fortunate am I to have the time, health, and resources to do what I love almost every day of the week? Pretty darn lucky and fortunate, I would say. So, thanks Boss for knowing me better than I know myself. Now if we can just get into Muffet's psyche! ;)

Friday, July 9, 2010

It's the Little Things

I think it is hilarious that for adult skaters it is often the smallest victories that make us so happy. Today I was able to take advantage of something that just simply made my day - skating for an hour for FIVE BUCKS! AND - there were six people on the ice! Woo hoo!

I was at El Segundo again this morning so Muffet could have her last day of skate camp and her private lesson with BeBe Liang when I ran into a dear skating friend of mine. She broke her foot awhile back and this week was her first time back on the ice since the break. It was so wonderful to see her back on skates and even more wonderful to spend some time with her. Our time together usually consists of being at a competition either for us or for our girls, so we rarely get to just skate and talk. It was so fun.

To my great surprise two other dear skating friends were on the session as well. They are both getting ready to leave for Germany to participate in the World Gay Games so they were busy perfecting their programs. SG blew me away with his program to "I'm Too Sexy" - not only is it a kick in the pants, but it is fantastic with content! I am sure he will be a true crowd pleaser.

My other friend DB is strutting out in her artistic program that suits her to a "tee"! But it was not her program that I am choosing to revel in today - oh no - I have already seen that program in competition. What I am choosing to celebrate is that she finally has a solid one foot spin! She kind of laughed at herself when she told me, but I am so proud of her. It was her small victory that reminded me why I keep strapping on my skates and getting on the ice. Sometimes I think there should be a separate division for those of us who didn't skate as kids - those of us who only stepped on the ice a few years ago and have managed to stay on our feet most of the time. Not that I begrudge adult skaters who skated as kids any of their successes, but sometimes I am amazed at what true "adult" skaters have been able to accomplish in just a few short years.

So here's to you DB - kick some ice in Cologne and one-foot spin to your heart's content! I will be cheering for you!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Skating with a Star

I signed Muffet up for a week of "Summer of Excellence" skate camp in El Segundo. This is billed as "Frank Carroll's" skate camp and the Boss thought it would be a great opportunity for Muffet to be exposed to elite coaching and other high caliber skaters. She started on Monday at 6:40AM freestyle and did not finish her skating until 1:15PM - needless to say her legs were jello that night. She had her first private lesson with Olympic Silver Medalist Henrick Walentin on Monday, had group lessons with Mr. Carroll, Tiffany Chin and Bebe Liang and all in all had a blast.

I had a wonderful surprise on Monday when I picked up her skate schedule. I had requested a lesson for Muffet with Mr. Carroll and he was not on her original schedule. Her revised schedule on Monday morning left me scrambling to change her entire skate schedule to accommodate her lesson with... Mr. Carroll! She was so excited. Being the bonehead that I am at "oh-dark-thirty" in the morning, I forgot my video camera and still camera and had nothing but my eyes to document the epic event. I felt kind of bad for her in that she had already been skating since 7:40AM and her lesson was scheduled at 4:20PM. But my oh my were they cute together! He started her out by working on presentation and then moved to jump technique. By the end of the lesson she was working on her axel and getting tips from the best coach in the business. He held her hand as they moved from element to element, skated with her on the ice and spoke to her with such kindness. She was such a big girl - listening intently and working hard. I will never forget it - I hope she doesn't!

I strongly believe in surrounding children with greatness if you want them to achieve greatness. This is why I choose to have Muffet skate where she skates as she is surrounded by elite skaters on a regular basis. It was such a joy to watch her learn from the coach of the reigning Men's Olympic and World Champion and many other up-and-coming super stars. I had to pinch myself to make sure it was all really happening! What a lucky little girl.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Old Bones

Today was a fabulous day at the rink. The 7:40AM session was virtually bare with only four or five skaters. The 8:50 was not much worse so all was good...

Muffet and I skated two hours today - all during lesson! I have had hour long lessons before, but today I think the Boss has me for a good hour and a half. Muffet has new skates and didn't choose to listen to the pro-shop folks regarding punching out the fronts of the boots, so she was kaput after about 20 minutes on one session and 20 minutes on the next one. That meant that the Boss had nothing to do but chase me around the rink.

I had my usual rocky start with only a thirty minute warm-up. Three turns were shoddy. Power pulls were less than powerful. However, by the start of the second hour I was EN FUEGO! Jumps and cross-overs were stellar - so much so that I got to lutz today! Woo hoo. Now, don't get me wrong... it wasn't really a lutz, but I think I have the general concept down.

My old bones need at least 45 minutes to warm up. Is that so much to ask? Do you think that the competition committee and the referees would allow me to just skate around on the ice for that long before I compete?