Sunday, June 29, 2008

Suddenly Florida?

We've had thunderstorms every single day here in Houston lately. Kinda weird as it seems like usually summers go more in a drought/flood/drought/flood cycle. I actually prefer this in some ways because my garden is even lower maintenance without having to water it, plus it cools things off nicely. But the dog is terrified of thunder so we get trapped at home sometimes in order to calm him so he doesn't tear up the house.

Anyway, Coach and I hit the driving range and then I helped her tear some vines out of a tree behind her house. All I needed to hear was Coach--Ladder--Alone and I knew I wasn't willing to risk that. She never gets hurt playing hockey... it's always some harmless thing around the house. And I don't like when she's injured, so I held the ladder and performed other safety duties, along with yanking vines. Needless to say, between those two activities, I'm done for the day. Of course, I sucked at the driving range. Never should have tampered with my swing because now I can hardly hit anything. Ugh. I quit with several balls left and one sitting on the tee. I swung at it twice, and missed it twice, and decided I was done for the day. FU golf ball. See if I care.

At least I didn't hurt myself this time, though it didn't work out any soreness.

Man, I'm watching the NHL Network and on the bottom scroll they're showing potential UFA left wings and Fridge's name just came up. :( Oh, and there's Voros. *sigh*


Saturday Skate

So I did end up doing abs and weights (chest and arms) on Friday night. Good little workout but man, I'm still sore. I have got to get more diligent about that.

Coach Stalin worked me pretty hard yesterday. We're always having to tighten up my fundamentals when we go a spell without a lesson, but it wasn't as bad as usual. I got my swizzles under control. Tweaked my stopping a bit. No crossovers. Just worked on going backwards quite a bit and *I'm* not getting it and I don't think she understands why in order to help me fix it. I don't either. It's really just the c-cuts I do as a goalie, but backwards. I can do c-cuts forward quite easily but I feel like I'm skating in gravel when I go backwards. Just can't seem to get the thrust I need to get going. I dunno. It's frustrating, and I'm feeling a bit retarded about the whole thing.

But it was still a good skate and I did my shuffles like a good girl. :)

We're planning to hit the driving range this morning. Maybe that will work out some of this soreness in my chest and back.


Friday, June 27, 2008

Aimless Friday

So, yesterday was an off day and today is an aimless day. I was going to go to the driving range but it was overrun by a tournament, so I turned the car around. I took the dog to the park and we did a lap around the adjacent park (not far, maybe .2 mile) which I walked backwards. I have a theory that if I can get comfortable walking backwards, then skating backwards won't feel so damn awkward. We'll see if that theory holds any water over the next few weeks.

I think I'm going to do some abs and weights tonight. That's a workout I tend to avoid and I need to get with it. ETA: Done. Arms limp. Phew.

It's the ultimate personal paradox, being Ambitious but Lazy.

Finally, it looks like the Wild have signed up a new defenseman from the Czech Republic called Tomas Mojzis. Hopefully he'll fare better than Lakos. From his stats, he's definitely an AHL depth type of guy, which is fine.


Wednesday, June 25, 2008


Gotta say, the offseason sucks. Someone on the Wild board suggested that the trick is to wait until July 7 to panic, so I'm going that route, but I still can't help but feel like we're in "rebuilding" mode due to a rather weak free agency class this year and a GM who hates to over pay. While I actually appreciate that philosophy from a long term perspective, it makes the short term seem pretty depressing. Not to mention Russo projecting that my favorite Wild player, Todd Fedoruk, will not be re-signed. There WILL be tears. I love that guy.

Anyway, I went skating by myself last night. I swear, the Galleria rink has the most incompetent management. Last night, they cut the ice and then let the rink rats skate on their own for a couple of minutes immediately after cutting the ice. Of course, obnoxious skaters on wet, soft ice means big gouges in the ice. I finally got fed up and bailed after about 45 minutes. But I still got a good skate in and did some nice crossover work. My two-leg swizzles have gone to shit though. Coach Stalin is going to pull some very stern faces at me for that.

Spinning tonight. Which reminds me, I need to start guzzling water now.

ETA: Spinning was good. A Mikko clone was in the class. That didn't hurt my feelings at all.

Then he started to hit on the instructor after class in a rather meat-headed way. I wanted to tell him he's better looking with his mouth shut.


Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Catching up

You know how your mama told you if you don't have something nice to say, keep your yap shut? Well, that's been me the last few days... that and being a bit busy with this and that.

I believe I last reported a not so great skate on Thursday. Since then, we had the draft on Friday, a dinner party on Saturday, skating on Sunday, and yoga today.

Hip is still nasty looking and the hamstring still hurts a bit. I really aggravated it when I washed the dog on Saturday (so as to not offend our guests with his filth) and it's nagging me still, but not as badly.

Skating on Sunday was 25% great and 75% suck. As is usual when my hips are out of alignment, it takes me a good 30 minutes of skating to feel steady on my feet and comfortable in my boots. It amazes me how much that little adjustment makes a huge difference in my stability and strength. So I did a lot of rather weak swizzles of all varieties. I worked on skating backwards quite a bit. As usual, tiny improvements in confidence and skill there, though I still can't go one length of the ice without psyching myself out. But I went 3/4 of the ice several times just to try and push through the fear factor that's holding me back.

Also worked on crossovers once I got my ice legs going nicely and felt pretty good about it, but I'm sure Coach Stalin will shred me for my technique next time we work on it. And speaking of which, man am I desperate for a session with her that's not at the horrible Galleria rink. You just can't get anything done there, it's so full of newbies and rink rats and it's such a small sheet. Ugh. It's pretty much only good for keeping those skating muscles working between real skating sessions on the weekends. And for that, it's nearly essential. If I miss a mid-week skate, I suck badly on the weekend.

Anyway, I worked on stopping a bit and other little things but didn't do my shuffles and really only ended up skating for an hour, which is a very short session for weekend ice. But with my leg hurting a bit, something just told me to go home when they kicked everyone off to cut the ice. So I went home.

The yoga felt really good today and I felt particularly inspired by this note from Nolan Schaefer to Aeros fans that the team published today. He's talking about his summer goings-on and his conditioning program for the summer. He does Bikram yoga, which is done in a heated room. I see the appeal because yoga is so cleansing, and then to get a really ridiculous sweat out of the deal would just enhance that. Never mind the mental focus it must take to just perform the positions correctly, breathe correctly, etc. when you're doing this in a puddle of sweat.

Nice to hear that he does all the crazy stuff I've been told to do, like juggling, as part of his workouts. And boxing? Maybe that's where that fight came from at the beginning of last season? :)

Anyway, it sounds like we might try to skate tomorrow night if Coach gets off work in time. Our usual Thursday skate date is being overrun with apparently 400 skaters. I almost want to go to the Galleria Thursday night to see what 400 people skating on that tiny ice looks like. Must look like the I-45 at rush hour...

Other than that, I've been working on butterfly stretches a bit. Hurts the shit out of my hips. I have a feeling my b-fly is gonna be pretty narrow, but at this point, I'll be happy if I can just get up and down and not be immobilized in that awkward position while I get scored on. I can already tell I'm going to be grateful that there's only one puck on the ice at one time. Once it's in, it's in. Regroup and get 'em next time. (See, this is me working on my mental game...)

And BTW, Leininkugel's Summer Shandy is my new best friend. Try some. Just don't buy it at my Kroger here in River Oaks... that shit's mine.


Friday, June 20, 2008

Dr. Lisa, where art thou

Went skating last night and though I am a bit more unsteady on my goalie skates due to the lower ankle support, I felt QUITE unsteady last night. That plus the knee pain and relative lateral weakness tells me my pelvis is out of alignment again. Can't IMAGINE why! Oh wait, maybe from bouncing my hips off the ice a few times.

So, I'll need to get to Dr. Lisa, the chiropractor, pretty soon. We'll see how it goes in player skates on Sunday.

Hip is looking horrific, like someone took a hammer to me. A veritable rainbow of sickly yellow, alarming red, and painful purple. But the worse it looks, the better it feels. I could do a full leg lift last night with only a little pain in the hamstring. Only felt it a little when I was skating last night, and only toward the end of an hour in my goalie skates (which, as I have mentioned, apply greater tortional forces on the hips and knees due to so much blade on the ice).

Not a great skate but I'm giving myself permission for that to be OK as I break in my goalie skates. Man, I hate breaking in skates.


Oh dear! How could I fail to mention that the 2008 NHL Fresh Meat Parade is on tap tonight and tomorrow. I'm both excited and ready for it to be ovah! The Wild only have 4 picks and there really are no "gotta haves" for me. I'd really like a good goalie to come up behind Khudobin and of course the Wild have some holes to fill, but I'm more concerned about the UFAs and RFAs we have.

Nobody has been re-signed yet, except Maxim Noreau (an Aeros player who won't see the big show for a while). Rolston and Riser are still doing a very irritating tango. Who the hell knows about Gabby. Plus, my "fan favorites" like Fridge and Voros, plus a bunch of the Aeros. Augh! Limbo sucks!

But for now, I'll just enjoy the Fresh Meat Parade for what it is: The beginning of years of working toward a dream finally starting to come true for these boys. I think that's pretty cool to see, even if the whole thing is a giant crap shoot for the teams.


Wednesday, June 18, 2008


Hip is feeling a bit better, though the bruise is getting bigger and bluer (and yellower). I can at least lay on that side now.

As per my commitment here yesterday, I did my yoga DVD last night without a twinge of pain, so that's good. Lots of snap/crackle/pop in my hips and lower back though. Woof.

I'm thinking about hitting a spin class this evening. Need to think fast since I'll have to leave soon.

The exciting news is that Coach Stalin's team is getting a power skating lesson from Andrea Besson in July, and she sweet-talked me an invite to join the team for this lesson. Very nice of Coach Dan to let my lowly prospect ass join in the fun. Nice to have sort of a short term goal to prepare for (though I have no idea what I'm really preparing for since I'm not sure what all Andrea's going to be going over).

So, that's pretty cool. Sounds like we're going skating tomorrow night. Will be interesting to see how the hip responds.

ETA: Spinning done. Man, it was tough but good. May make this Wednesday class a regular thing. Good hard midweek workout. The usual headache is in full force. Thankfully I'm already in my jammies or I'd be heading out to find a dessert-based solution to the headache. Should down some Advil instead.


Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Everybody hurts (sometimes)

So, the bruised hip seems to be a little more than a bruised hip. I was laying in bed last night on my right side and tried lift my left leg up (like a leg lift), and found that I could only raise it about 1' before pain shot down the back of my leg along the outside of my hamstring. Gah. This isn't good when the sport you're trying to play is based on loads of lateral movement.

But it's really just that move that hurts. I can do pretty much anything else and I feel the tenderness on my hip but it's not pain pain like that.

I swear, it's always something. I must have landed a lot harder than I realized because my abs and back muscles are sore. Even my triceps are sore. How does that happen?

Anyway, no workout yesterday other than a short dog walk. I think I'm going to commit to giving yoga a go tonight and see if that doesn't work out some of the kinks.


Sunday, June 15, 2008

Sunday Skate

Well, if the phrase, "If you're not falling, you're not trying" is true, I tried doubly hard today. Yep, I busted it not once but twice! Once within a lap or two of getting on the ice and once as I was doing my last set of shuffles down the ice. Tired legs and somehow I tripped myself up. Not really sure how it happened. Doesn't matter. Just bruised hip as my badge of honor.

Otherwise, the skate was pretty uneventful. The ice was nearly empty when I got there, so I worked on skating backwards until it got busier and see a little improvement every time I work on that, but it's still slow in coming and I'm stiff as a board when I do it. It will come. Just gotta keep working.

Feeling a little bit stagnant though. I'm looking forward to working with Coach either on improving something or learning something new. Hopefully I can get a goalie-skate workout in one night this week.

Dude, I'm hungry.


Saturday, June 14, 2008

Catching up

We did end up going skating Thursday night, though in my mental funk, I didn't accomplish much and Coach Stalin knew not to push too hard.

Friday I didn't do anything. Today, Coach came over for a game of driveway hockey. Boy do I suck glove side (though I think I probably actually suck both sides, but she tends to shoot to that side, so I got beat there a lot). But it was fun. Stuck with a tennis ball and I'm glad because coach is a WAY better shooter than she was back in February when we last played. Some of those slappers would have really hurt if they'd hit me, but frankly, I'm not even gonna stand in the net for a slapper, even if it's just a tennis ball. So, Coach saw me leave the net a few times if she was winding up like crazy. :)

Anyway, I took one shot to the chin, which stung but it was just a wrister so it wasn't too bad. And at the moment, I was thinking, "Oh yeah, I'm down low here, and feel like I'm protecting the net a lot better." Indeed! With my freaking face! But I stopped the shot, and that never hurts too bad.

I'm going skating on my own tomorrow since coach has her game tomorrow night and doesn't want to wear her legs out. I need to kinda make a plan for what I want to accomplish since I won't have her there chasing me around. I really need to work on going backward, so I'm hoping the ice will be fairly sparsely populated. Hard to do when it's crowded and I don't have her to clear a path for me.

I have to say though, the last time we played ball hockey, I ended up at the chiropractor because my knees were absolutely shot from it. Today, nothing. I felt very strong in my legs the whole time and no pain at all. Nice to see that big leap in leg strength. I actually caught one ball and shrieked like I'd just won the lottery. I probably need to stop doing that. :)


Thursday, June 12, 2008


Still feeling a little "funk"y this week but hopefully I'll shake it before too long. I did force myself to go hit a bucket of golf balls with Coach Stalin last night. We tweaked my swing a bit because I was doing some goofy thing that was hurting my groin, so I hit about as bad as I ever have. Gonna have to work on that, though I'm not as into it as she and Mr. Stalin are. I can only be obsessed with one thing at a time. If I'm ever obsessed with golf, someone just go ahead and put me down.

Anyway, it sounds like we're planning to go skating tonight. I hate missing the ice for so long. My feet always hurt like a MF when I go this long without skating. Plus, when I'm feeling funk-y, it's hard to have my heart and mind all the way in it and be willing to take risks. Though on the Galleria ice, it's hard to take risks because you're packed in like sardines and the ice is crap (though the ice has been better the last couple of times).

I whine. Life could be so much worse. I think I just need a vacation.


Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Congrats Wolves

All of you except Deveaux, who can bite me. And probably would. :P I kid... I'm sure Andre is a swell guy.

Also, congrats to Erik Reitz as it sounds like he's signing a one-way contract with the Wild for next season. He may not have been given much chance to earn that spot in Minny but he earned it in Houston none the less. I'm delighted for him and can't wait to watch him next season.

Tamitopia alerted me to this fabulous t-shirt. If I had to pick a logo to represent me, that would come about as close as anything possibly could.

Didn't work out today. Bad Ms. Conduct. Time for bed. Past time, really. But I'm watching a Detroit/Toronto game from 1971. Looks like video from the 50s. Cool to watch. The beauty of the game never changes. Plante got his bell rung. Thank god for modern goalie masks.


Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Goalie's Psalm

Ya know, since Jesus Saves and whatnot:


The puck is my shepard;
I shall not ice.
It maketh me save in unnatural positions;
It leadeth me into leg splits;
It restoreth my fans’ faith;
It leadeth me in the paths of odd man rushes.
Yea, though I skate in the valley of the shadow of the net,
I will fear no sniper;
For my stick is with me.
My facemask and pads they comfort me;
They annointeth my body with Sports Crème;
My back-tippeth over!
Surely coaches and parents shall follow me all the games of my life.
And I shall dwell in the House of the Ice Rink forever.


Hell.. Oh

Well, it's nearly a week since I last posted. Spent a very loooong weekend in Vermont but had a lovely time and saw my beautiful friend get married to a great guy. Also drank many margaritas on their dime at the reception and danced a bunch, so I'm sure there are seriously embarrassing photos out there.

Anyway, I always seem to take a few days to recover from a trip and it doesn't help that Mr. Conduct ran out of town less than 24 hours after I got back, because I'm always lazier when he's gone. But maybe some quiet time isn't a bad thing after being "ON" all weekend.

Haven't worked out at all, other than making sure I worked my quads extra while I danced. :) Definitely need to do something tonight, yoga if nothing else. My lower back is talking to me from all the standing I did this weekend. Hope I can work some of that out.

The draft is less than 2 weeks away and I'm getting excited about it. Also, the Wild are doing what looks like a really fun road trip around Minnesota with a few of the players. I really hope that the fact that Fridge and Voros are on the trip means they're going to be re-signed. Chicago could win the Calder Cup tonight, so I need to set that up to record. The last of the hockey, I guess. Man, I hate the off-season.

At least I'm going to end up being at home this weekend, so I can get in a good, long weekend skating session. I feel like I haven't skated for a month.


Wednesday, June 4, 2008


Ended up going skating last night after spinning in the morning. Talk about a rough day on the legs... But I actually did okay. I couldn't have done the 1.5-2 hours that we do on the weekends, but I worked on a few things. It was pretty crowded, especially a fairly large group of rink rats, which is always dangerous and annoying.

Anyway, I worked on stopping hardly at all. It's hard to there with as crowded as it is. Did just a smidge of backwards, but it went really smoothly until I got into a crowded area and freaked out a little. Fortunately, with no figure skaters there, we could use the center of the ice to practice crossovers, which Coach Stalin says I'm teaching myself bad habits. Also did lots of swizzles and c-cuts. I worked up a big sweat anyway (man, it was hot in there) and felt like I tested myself a bit given how tired my legs were from spinning. I was pretty satisfied.

So, that's it for nearly a week since I'm headed out of town tomorrow morning. I might try to go at lunchtime on Monday when I get back and then maybe on Wednesday or Thursday since it looks like I'll be gone the following weekend, too. I'm gonna need Coach Stalin BAD by the end of this.


Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Catching up

Recovered from Saturday's skate (with a bit of knee soreness) with a bit of golf ball hitting on Sunday morning. Then yesterday was just blistering hot out, so I opted for staying indoors and doing my yoga DVD instead. Plus my back was hurting, so I was hoping that would help, and it did.

I vowed to go to spinning this morning, no matter what. Which, of course, meant the Wings-Pens game had to go into ridiculous multiple overtimes. Not only that, we were watching it on a 2 hour delay (though I think we were about 30 minutes from catching up to the live broadcast by the time Sykora pulled the GWG out of his ass.

But I DID go to spinning and it was a really good class. It was a little less intense than they usually are, which is just about perfect for me, and it was intervals, which is perfect for what I'm doing.

So, I'm proud of myself for going but man, I am so sleepy today, I can hardly keep my eyes open and head up. I keep having to shift gears on my work (like coming over to blog for a bit) to keep myself from flopping my head back and going to sleep. Even just a 15 minute power nap would rock my socks.... zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz....


Sunday, June 1, 2008

Saturday Skate

Coach and I were both yawning our way to the rink yesterday. Woke up a little when we hit the ice and still got a good session in. I have finally gotten the hang of stopping on my right skate! It was amazing how it just clicked finally. I'm not stopping on a dime just yet but I'm doing it right and it's not scary like it used to be.

It was really a matter of teaching the right leg (and moreso, the hip) to turn perpendicular to my left foot, which isn't something hips naturally like to do (try it! put all your weight on your left foot, knee bent, and stick your right leg out in front of you, still on the floor and your toes pointing directly left...)

So, that figured out, we started working on teaching dumb leg to do the same thing. That's going to come more slowly but at least I know what it's supposed to feel like and I'll spend the week jutting my left leg out and pointing my toes right so that my hip and muscles learn to do that without such a fight.

The backwards work is getting better and more comfortable, too. Well, less uncomfortable. :) I almost started to get a feel for the hip swivel that goes with it. It uses very different muscles in the lower leg though, so my feet and calves get tired and angry very quickly. I need to take a walk around the neighborhood backwards, I think.

Did a few good crossovers but the ice at Willowbrook was quite crowded due to a big group of kids that showed up. Even the other instructor and student who were working were having trouble finding the space to do drills.

Since I'm gone this weekend, I'm going to try and get a good skate in on Wednesday. If Coach can't go Tuesday or Wednesday night, I'll try to go at lunch on Wednesday to Willowbrook so I can skate on nice ice.

Today we're going to the driving range for a bit. Sure is hot and humid out though. Blech.


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