Monthly Archives: January 2011

Always want more…

Congratulations to all the athletes that were at the Olympic Weightlifting competition today at the Merivale YMCA.  I had the opportunity to shadow Moira Lassen, an International Olympic Weightlifting Official.  What a treat!  She was awesome.  It was pretty exciting to see some people I know in their element, lifting weights I only dream of (!).  I’ll be getting more and more involved with O-lifting as time goes on in the next few months.  The sport is growing in Ottawa, and I’m getting in on the ground floor.  It’s pretty cool.  You just never know where you’re going to end up….



A frustrating day…

How many things can go wrong to one person in a day?  I try to remember that I have a glass, that it doesn’t always get filled up…sometimes things spill out.  I think it was that way for a few people around me.  Or so it seemed anyway.

I know I shouldn’t be attached to things…and perhaps this is my lesson for today.  And by things, I mean material things, the thoughts you have about yourself, the goals you set.  Sometimes you have to let things go to get them.  An odd concept, but does it work?  Probably.

I had some snafus today – I guess the least of which (but which costs me the most money…) is that I lost my expensive skipping rope.  It disappeared somewhere between the Y on Saturday afternoon and tonight.  It’s always in my gym bag.  It wasn’t when I got there today.  The only thing I can think of is that I left it behind on Saturday and someone picked it up.  My own fault, but still frustrating.  I came home, looked for it, couldn’t find it, and immediately ordered a new one.  In the grand scheme of things, it’s $60, but it’s still $60.  It was an investment.  I’m going to pretend that it broke and that I had to buy a new one.  🙂  And who knows, maybe it will show up somewhere.  Stranger things have happened, this month even.

All in all, if this is the kind of month I’ve been having…an ongoing series of irritants…then I want to win the lottery.  I think it’s only fair.  $50M.  I could solve and gain alot of problems with that kind of money, the least of which would be buying a new skipping rope.  It’s not a big dream or anything….I think it can happen.

I also saw a friend struggle with a lift at the gym today.  He is working towards his first meet on Saturday.  He was frustrated that what he thought he could do, he couldn’t.  He was having some trouble with his knee too, so that didn’t help.  He’s very patient with others, yet it seems that when it comes to his own expectations…not so much…he has a very short rope.  He’s a perfectionist — I get it.  I am too.  It’s frustrating to fail.  To miss the lift, or whatever else it is that you do in life.  It was interesting to see him all fired up, raw, emotional.  I like seeing people close to their limits.  It makes them more human.


Olympic Lifting – Day 3 (and some other notes…)

I’ve had an up and down kind of week with not enough sleep.

Today we had another day of Olympic Lifting with Dan.  My friend Sam Dubé was at the Y coaching another Olympic athlete, Gabriel Beauchesne-Sévigny this morning in preparation for London 2012.  Very cool indeed….it’s neat to think that these people are there, training and achieving their goals.  Very inspiring.

So, I’m quickly learning that I need to work on being more assertive.  I have no problem when it’s someone or something I know, or something I’m comfortable with…but when it’s with someone or something new that I’m learning….acting is tougher than it looks.  If it didn’t impact someone else, or really matter, I wouldn’t care…

I’m also trying to decipher what it is that I’m looking for, in terms of the lift….and not being able to do them well myself, I have to have my brain on all the time watching, which I’m good at, but I get easily distracted.  Eventually a switch will go and it will all make sense.  It happens to me like this all the time and I know that’s the way I work.

Looking forward to next Saturday when we are going to a lifting meet at the Capital Weightlifting Club.  I will be shadowing an official at the event, so I imagine it’s going to be an interesting experience.

On another note….I attended a Storytelling in the Gaming Industry in Montreal on Wednesday (and whoever can make it to Montreal in less than 2 hours is lying to you).  I guess I never realized just how much people live and breathe gaming.  I will be making another post about my Montreal adventure on The Writers’ Room – Ottawa blog….stay tuned.

Two of my favourite things…

Hockey and Superheros…..come together in the Guardian Project….

Intro to Olympic Lifting – Day 2

The gang and I learned how to properly execute the Clean and Jerk today.  Much tougher than it looks, folks.  I focused on technique ONLY as I was a wee bit on the tired side.  It will be a while before I get anywhere with that….but that’s okay.  I know I move a little slower than most when it comes to strength gains.  I can live with that….

At the end, Dan got me to practice reffing….that was interesting.  You have to be very sure of what you’re doing when you do it.  Not unlike anything else I guess, but you just have to understand and see so much at once and make a CALL.  That’s going to be the practice part.  Understanding what to look for, timing…..all very interesting though.

The rest of the group is going to participate in a small competition at the end of the month in Ottawa at Capital Strength and Conditioning.  I will be shadowing the ref.

All in all, it’s a good course.  Lots of fun.

What scoliosis taught me (about myself)…

Over the last few months, I’ve been doing some thinking about my scoliotic back and how it has impacted me as a person.  My scoliosis is idiopathic in origin – meaning that is has an unknown origin.  There are studies online that indicate, depending on what type, that scoliosis could be anything from a muscular virus to skeletal to structural issues.

My spine has an S shape, twisted to the left, at a fairly significant degree.  Therefore, my left ribcage is also twisted.  This could have an impact on my when I’m older, as some scoliosis patients discover that they have heart and lung problems, mostly on their convex side.

I also had Harrington rods inserted along the length of my spine when I was 13, in 1987.  I had a brace on for 3 years at that point from the ages of 10-13.  Absolutely the most critical time for any girl when she’s growing up, and I was encased in a piece of plastic 23 hours a day, from my hip crease to just underneath my chest.  The hour I was out of my brace, I lounged around and jumped in the shower.  It was my little freedom every day, and I savoured it.

And, some women experience rod breakage as they get older.  I don’t want that, nor do I wish that upon anyone.  The rods doesn’t seem to have much of an impact on pregnancy, but I guess that depends on the woman.

So, what has my back taught me?  Patience, acceptance, and that you make the best of the hand you’re dealt.  Could be better, could be worse.  A co-worker of mine has a great saying…’s not whether your glass is half empty of half full….just be damned glad you got a glass at all.  She’s a bright lady.  🙂

Intro to Olympic Lifting – Day 1

Note: If someone still wants to join in at the YMCA (Nepean, on Merivale Road), call in, join up, and the Coach is willing to make up the first class with you and you can hop right into next week’s class with us!

Started the class this morning with two woman who are still training at Greco, and a gentleman who trains at the Y.  Daniel Robitaille (President of the Ontario Weightlifting Association) was the Coach, and Isabelle Després (an Olympic Lifting athlete who trains at the Y) helped as a facilitator.  We started slow and progressed along the different steps to properly execute the Snatch.  Due to some flexibility, back and strength issues, I’m still struggling a bit, but all in all, it was a pretty good morning.  I was able to do the upper portion of the Snatch with a light bar overhead okay, but it will take me a while to venture up to heavier weights – going to have to work on overall arm and upper strength.  One step at a time.  Also, instead of the deep squat at the bottom, I will be doing a split lunge movement.  More comfortable that way for me.  Will need to work on hip area flexibility to get down far enough and push my weight forward enough to be in the proper position. Something else to add to my training… it stands I’m there about 12 hours a week, and I can’t always seem to get everything done….oh boy.  🙂

Like everything else I’ve learned along the way….it may take me a bit of time to get something but I can eventually make it there.  I find the added exertion to be very taxing on my cardio endurance.  Skipping and reducing the intervals for 50 rotations has been helping, but I still get pretty burnt, just doing a few good movements.  I have to remember where I was a year ago and think about how far I’ve come and remember to BREATHE.

Next week is the technical movements for the Clean.

Looking forward to next week.