Monday, 13 June 2011

Blogger's Block and Skater's Thigh

Apologies for the long breaks between posts. I tend to experience Blogger's Block in waves. One day I'll have two or three ideas for something to ramble on about but once those posts are written, that's kind of it for a while. I know I should probably schedule the later posts for a few days afterwards in these cases but by that point things might not be as relevant any more - I mean, the Interwebz needs to know my views on last night's Apprentice immediately!

Today I'm experiencing a brief respite from my current bout of Blogger's Block, inspired as I am by another ailment from which I am currently suffering, namely Skater's Thigh. At the weekend the Yorkshireman and I went with our usual merry band of amigos to Dundonald Ice Bowl for some ice-skating. Three of the five of us were very excited about this idea, and the remaining two were somewhat less enthusiastic, verging on petrified. I was in the latter category.

I have explained before about my propensity to fall over when faced with any kind of slippery surface and consequent terror. However with ice-skating my fear was increased by the fact that I had never yet fallen whilst ice-skating. Even though I am pretty rubbish at it and wobble incesantly, I have not actually fallen over on the ice. I know that sounds like a crazy reason to be afraid - after all if I haven't fallen before then why should I be so scared of falling this time? However, knowing how clumsy I am, I knew that my days as a perpetually upright skater were numbered, and my literal fall from grace was imminent. And the only thing worse than falling? Knowing that you will inevitably fall but not when, where or how hard. Would it be a cute little Bambi-esque splaying legs type fall somewhere inconspicuous and close to the edge, or a complete wipeout head-first into the plexi glass, scattering small children and slicing off their extremities with my blades en route? The not knowing was the worst part.

However, as I strapped on my rented, slightly-too-tight-at-the-toes skates on Saturday afternoon, I decided to be very brave and give it stacks. I didn't want to be the wimp not moving more than an inch from the entrance (like previous times… *ahem*) so I held my head up high, refused to let go of the Yorkshireman's hand and soon enough was whizzing around the ice (well, moving forwards in a somewhat ungraceful but fairly efficient manner). The Yorkshireman was a complete meanie several times and kept pulling away from me, supposedly to encourage me to to it by myself but in reality because he is a sadist who clearly wanted me to die. I may in fact have squeaked "I'm gonna dieeeeeeee!!!!" several times.

In the end I did not die. I did however fall. Well, sort of. I came to an abrupt stop at the side of the rink, which turned out to be a little too abrupt, as the force of it sent me slipping backwards. I tried to stop myself falling all the way down by gripping on to the edge but it was a little too late and down I went. The Yorkshireman and another of our friends tried gallantly to yank me back to my feet but I foresaw that ending with me falling straight down again and also possibly taking them with me, so I successfully climbed to my feet with only the assistance of the side of the rink. Yay! I feel glad that I now at least have my first falling-whilst-ice-skating incident under my belt and that it didn't hurt. However it wasn't a proper mid-ice wipeout and if I had fallen by myself in the middle of the rink I have no idea how I would have ever gotten back on to my feet. But the Yorkshireman will probably not support my idea of never letting go of his hand ever again and so I will inevitably end up in said position sooner or later. Essentially the worst is yet to come.

By the time we had handed back our skates and I'd stopped shaking thanks to some coffee from the vending machine and a quick sit-down, I felt knackered but also as though I'd had a fairly decent workout. Given our big lunch at Wolfes (very nice - recommended if you're in the area) beforehand and our plans for takeaway for dinner that evening, all extra calories burned were deemed very useful. So all-in-all it was a good end to the experience and I didn't let fear defeat me…

… Except that it did anyway, in ways unimaginable. You see, because I was terrified of falling over, I had been holding my legs completely rigid while I was skating, in an effort to remain more sturdy. However it turns out that holding your legs completely rigid whilst also making them move quite quickly for about two hours makes your muscles hurt the next day. Namely the insides of your thighs. It makes them hurt quite a lot actually. And of course what's the best way to relieve muscle pain in your legs? Go and work out the next day at the gym? No? Oh, maybe that's where I went wrong then.

Seriously, I thought my legs hurt a lot yesterday, but this morning, post-gym, I woke up to searing pain every time I moved my legs. Even climbing up the one tiny step on to the bus this morning made me wince. Who am I kidding, rearranging my legs under my desk without screaming today is an exercise in logistics. Skater's Thigh is a bitch.

And now my dear family and friends want to go back. They want to inflict the fear and agony upon me again. I figure I either need new friends or new legs. But sadly, sucker that I am, I will most likely voluntarily strap on the skates again next time and once again try to convince myself that there is nothing to fear. It will be fun this time and I'm sure if I just stretch beforehand and try to relax a little more it won't hurt so much the next day. Right..?

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