If you've been reading for any length of time you know a few things about me. I moved back to Atlanta last year and don't know a lot of people. I have a job that often keeps me on the road and prevents me from meeting people. And I'm a bit of an introvert, so meeting people can be a daunting task for me.
Not having my core group around like I did in Nashville was making it easy for me to just stay at home and not do anything. Once I closed on my house, I easily convinced myself that I was nesting and that I didn't really "need to go out right now." But there's only so much nesting an unmarried, childless woman can do. And I came to the realization that if I didn't want to die alone in my house eaten by cats, I was going to have to make an effort to do...SOMETHING...and meet some new people.
I won't lie. I've wanted to learn how to skate well (emphasis on well) since watching ATL. I love the artistry of skaters. It's amazing and graceful.
A few weeks ago I decided to just do it. I decided that even though I was about that solo dolo life, I was going to take some skate lessons. Yes, I would have to do it alone. Yes, it would be scary trying something new. But the alternative was sitting at home and watching Love Actually for the 1000th time. (Which I'm not opposed to but c'mon.)
Four consecutive Saturdays of lessons later, I found myself comfortable enough to start skating without the instructor and without my classmates (skatemates?) A month after that, I found myself looking forward to the days that I could go skating. And now, two months in, I'm trying to use all of my free time to skate. I have become a skate rat and I'm okay with that.
There's something about just gliding across the floor that is, as cheesy as it sounds, liberating. It's pretty much the closest I think I'll ever get to flying. And can we talk about the exercise benefits? My knees bothered me almost all summer. I was in and out of doctor's offices and physical therapy for weeks. I had to stop running, stop Insanity, stop kickboxing. I was stuck.
My knees still aren't 100% but recently I've been able to go back to doing some of the things I love in a limited capacity. And I'm convinced part of it is from skating. Your legs are (obviously) engaged the whole time you're skating. And skates are not light. There's no doubt skating has made my legs stronger and helped take some of the pressure off of my knees. Plus, two hours of skating burns 700+ calories. (I wore my heart rate monitor a few times when I went skating to find out how many calories I burned. Don't judge me.)
I am not a great skater yet. And there are kids who can literally skate circles around me. Not to mention there are TODDLERS who will probably be better skaters than I will ever be.
(What you need to know is that little white kid SKATES!!! He is ridiculous. And the little brown kid is just learning to skate. He's not even two years old yet. Train up a child, y'all.)
I'm getting better. I can stop without the stopper. A feat, considering not too long ago I couldn't stop at all. And I can almost do the cross over turn. Almost. But most importantly, I'm having fun. And I'm meeting people. Skaters belong to a sub-culture that I didn't understand until I started skating. But most of the people that I've met have been very welcoming and extremely helpful. Every time I've had a question about technique someone has not only be able to answer it but show me how to fix whatever I was doing wrong. I see now why the skaters I've met in the past have referred to their other skater friends as family. Skaters roll deep and they roll tight.
I could go on but I've got to go to bed. Tomorrow is a long day and tomorrow night is my skate night.