Sunday, November 27, 2011

Erika Queen of bow press :D

So it may surprise you to know that what makes my world complete (certain hottie and my kittens aside), is a bow press. OMG words cannot describe how bad my withdrawal symptoms were getting... They were talking about naming the DVA sur loc press after me since I spent more time using it than anyone else. A year without one readily on hand has me practically gnawing on the furniture crazy by the time i get to use one again. Life is so much easier when you're setting up a bow if you have a bow press there to use as you need.

So a few peeps noticed that the bow in the current vid is a Contender and not a Contender Elite. This is not my new bow, it's just to tide me over and work out which cam i like. So far I'm not sure about the it's a softer cam I thought I might prefer if to be a slightly shorter draw length to account for how hard i pull on the back wall... but thinking it might be okay to run them the same now i've shot it. Now queen of the Bow Master.... great temporary fix for those without a real press...but a little scary to operate...spend a lot of time going 'please don't blow up, please don't blow up'
And I'm thinking I need to get back up to 60lb ASAP....the difference between 18m and 50m @50lb appears to require a difference in draw length...just adjusting the peep isn't's driving me another reason to run two or three bows again.

George the dinky pancreas is doing well although hiding from my endocrinologist after the last 2 months of evil George.... I've heard rumours that there's an insulin patch in phase 2 trials...then I'll just look like a smoker desperately trying to quit instead of an accident prone, human pin cushion :) can't wait! :)

24 days and counting... hope your xmas plans are as cool as mine xx

Saturday, October 29, 2011

running a little early but i'm trying to get some recurve posted... it's been a while and i really want to start getting my recurve up to speed. latest vid you can see it's a little rough, i haven't decided if i want a front or side anchor... side is more natural for me, but there's a suggestion front has better clearance.
gotta knock up a new chest guard with plastic on old one is seriously antique and my mum's doesn't fit me right :D and it's eating the no chest guard until i get one as good as my trusty and dying one... shot the Aussie Open with both compound and recurve. I'd forgotten how hard it is to do that. But I think it will be worth it in terms of strength in the long run... and we won silver in the teams event for compound.. so not a disaster.

i've got a Contender with GTX cams coming to play with and a new Contender Elite GTX on it's way...i think i prefer the spirals...but i need to check and see again. and i really want an indoor bow. it's driving me a little nutty having the same set up for indoor and out.

getting back into the swing of things. 100-200 arrows a day and an hour of cardio. the warmer weather will make life easier.... lol and planning to drop a few kg so i can do some more anatomical vids. my back musculature is looking pretty good these days, but it's easier to show the bone, muscle and tendons etc when you're a skinny diet :(

the ups and downs of a failing pancreas...the last month has been nightmarish. sky high on two slices of toast one day and hypo the next.... i'm thinking it needs a name... so i will love him and hug him and call him George (i love that cartoon :D). It's been the name of many a dead plant... a dying pancreas is kind of George is giving me a lot of grief lately. I'm thinking of having him put down. Or maybe we just need to have me put down... at least that's what my boyfriend tells me 'if you were a dog we would have put you down already'...thanks honey :) xx

There's 5 pancreases in my household...and the only working ones belong to my kittens...I'm sure there's something in that...

Sunday, October 2, 2011

So maybe wondering why so many vids close together.... I'm working on my bow arm/shoulder position... may remember I've had a fair bit of advice about this lately. But what has escaped me has been 'how' to make it steady. So the last few days have been spent at close range getting a real feel for that shoulder position. It's not something someone can tell you how to feel. You really need to find it for yourself. Also upping the arrow count gradually again.
Really loving getting some of that steadiness back.... the main thing is when you get it right that bow shoulder should be strong without constantly fighting it. So the points I've been using to judge are the stability of the bow shoulder after i've settled, the strength of the shot pre, during and post release...whether there is bow arm contact... when I get it right I don't need the arm guard... and if i collapse there is a low left shot that gives it away even if i don't hit my arm. Yesterday was 110 shots with a strong shoulder, but only into blank bale. So hopefully it will translate onto target this week.
Loving having 24hr indoor range again.... plug in some tunes, block out the world. Just me and the bow and that perfect head space.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

So Shanghai... 28C everyday..never saw the sun. Humidity you could cut with a knife and skin sticky with smog, sweat and sunscreen...and what an attractive bunch we all made at the end of each day.

The usual suspects were mostly absent, but we managed a foray into the Xinyang Markets to watch haggling over shoes, undies and phone covers.... only to find them starting cheaper again around the corner. But fun to watch the boys more experienced in such ventures haggle like pros.
And no Facebook!!!!!!!!Aaaaaaaagh!!!!First thing we all did arriving in Sydney... was catch up on FB. That's probably a bad thing... but there ya go... FB junkies all.

Aussie team shot well. Some strong performances... Especially Mike Brosnan. Watched Damsbo fight hard for every match (including Mike) and finally get defeated by Angel Ramirez who went on to take 3rd. Saw Dietmar lose a whole arrow in the finals to a busted nock... always heart breaking to watch a match go down like that. But Dietmar finished with class and Reo shot like a machine.. and Miss Jamie shot a world record... kicking arse my dear :)

Shooting: I felt great in ranking, but shot crap.
I won my first match against Pamela from Hong Kong China and then got soundly beaten by Ms Diane Watson of USA. Did that thing of barely dropping a point in practice and then dropping everything in the match. I shot bad. Nothing to report there. Working on a few things including bow arm and head space and feeling okay with the progress. Not unhappy with final world cup for the year.

And a sensitive subject came up. I was asked that I not inject insulin in public. It was suggested that this was insensitive to people who are uncomfortable around illness and needles. May as well ask me to not breathe in public...teaspoon of cement's not hurting you and I don't feel ashamed about living.

Loved Shanghai. It's a fascinating place. Would like more time to explore... maybe next year :)

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Spring. :) So new indoor range.. 24hr access assuming there's no forklifts in the way and temperature control. Got my tunes plugged in and no one to mind my horrendous off key singing along. One step closer to getting my world sorted the way I want it :)

New season and new world cup. I leave for Shanghai on Saturday and I dearly wish I had more time to practice at 50m. Main focus for August was the bow arm elbow and shoulder and the bow hand. Contact with the string is generally a good way of checking how I'm doing...and the massive bruise i'm sporting on my left arm is probably a heads up I haven't got it right.... yes I did test it without the arm guard... gotta be sure :D

Made it famous this week on the front page of the Diabetes Tasmania magazine. Doing my bit for diabetes and archery awareness in one hit :)

So last round for the year... wish me luck... it's the season of the moon festival... surely a lucky week...and if not at least we can always eat moon cakes.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Sooo Italia...

40 hours in transit. With a stop in Hong Kong and Heathrow. The guy that drove me from the airport to the hotel didn't speak a word of English and I don't speak Italian. But somehow in my broken Spanish and his Italian we managed conversation and a coffee on the way :D

Someone on AT was whinging about how much I whinge on here... so heads up..archers like to whinge. It's our hobby. Shooting arrows is just our obsession. And well the whinging in Italy has been stella :D The hotels are all miles apart and the food has been interesting, there's riot police in all our hotels and nothing to do at night unless the ladies hanging on the street corners outside all the hotels are of interest. I'm guessing they aren't outside every night for their health...
:D and our hotel was one of the better ones :D

The opening ceremony was epic. A massive light show to kick off the week and a chance to hug old friends. It's the best opening I've ever seen and not even the most cynical archer has claimed otherwise (although a few hardcore cynics griped about the need to have one in the first place).

Practice... seemed okay. Good weather. Good arrows. My usual telling off about my gear...this time my fletching is okay and it's my nocks that aren't good enough... baby steps :) one day I'll get through an event and have everything up to scratch :D

OMG we got George back!!! We love you George! :) World events are never the same without George's dulcet tones. Folk keep asking what these events feel like. They feel like home. The people who understand why you do what you do, the field of play and George's baritone to welcome us back.

Started on a high note in practice and then shot a miserable first half and a much improved second half. Ivana noticed my bow arm elbow was sloppy and too much tension in my hand and the coach from Nederlands gave me a verbal smack up the back of the head and the second half went much better. He said 'bow hand and release hand must be the same in here' and pointed to his head... and truer words have yet to be spoken. There were lightning strikes and we got rained on, but otherwise perfect weather.

Went down by two points in the first match to Victoria from the Ukraine. I shot okay. Not great. Just okay. No disasters, just not enough tens. So I'm alright with it. No I'd rather not be officially on holidays, but I can live with that match.

On the technical stuff... the consensus is that nocks must be perfect at all times. I figure I'm not good enough to see the difference right now, but point taken. Every little bit helps. Fletching, I've been using a  glue with a primer. My comp arrows I used a glue that came with my previous telling off... and my practice arrows with a glue I found at home that seems to work the far not a fletch lost.

The fight with my bow shoulder may finally be won with turning that elbow. When I turn it the same way I do with recurve, the shoulder is much improved. And the balance of bow hand and release...well something I know, but sometimes hearing it from a different source is really what you need. Man was a life line. Told me to come to Nederlands and train and checked on me all week. How cute is that? And I'm seriously tempted.

And the rest... well my fav peeps haven't had such a good run this trip... so teams aside, we're all officially on holiday...
Maja from Denmark took out a Korean (people are still saying wow) in fact there was a lot of upsets this week... the usual suspects aren't all going to finals. And here we thought somethings never change :)

Saturday, June 11, 2011

The calm before the storm and that damn wheel again...

So here we are again...World Champs coming up. People always ask are you ready? Hell no. I've been told that the winners are the ones that feel like they are prepared. I have to admit that none of the winners I know ever feel that way. They always feel that more time would be good. Some of us would just like a little more time than others :)

So going into the home stretch, I am feeling okay about where my shooting is. I don't know what clicked in the last few weeks, but I'm stronger than I had been. It's felt like my body is just failing me day after day... but in the last couple weeks it's finally been improving for the work I put in. We had a team camp in Melbourne and shot in evil icy wind all weekend. And I shot like arse... but sometimes it's the awful shooting that you need to gauge your performance off because you haven't seen good weather in so long you don't know how a good day looks anyway :D And right now a crap day is better than a good day was 3 months ago. So we'll take it. 

There's a subtle change in my bow shoulder position. A bit of work with Mr James Park (of Mastering Compound Bows) and he reminded me as he always does that my shoulder line runs very close to the string... so if my arm guard is chewing through serving like crazy, I'm probably turning into the string a tad too close. Jim said just move it out. And in my first decent weather in weeks that's what I'm working on.

Thanks Jim :) Sometimes we need to be told what we should already know. That damn wheel keeps getting remade over and over... but Rome wasn't built in a day... maybe they made a lot of wheels too :D

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

It's character building....apparently

so... Croatia... well the weather was nice... ice cream was good as always... and my fav boys and girls were of course all gorgeous. and when someone asks me how I shot...well the weather was great....

it's an awful truth that when you shoot like poo you're going to spend the next month with people asking you how you shot and then offering you excuses for why did you so's okay. i shot like arse... we don't need to make excuses. so it's kind of like salt in the wounds...and there's no way to get out of such conversations politely... have tried... actually even being blunt doesn't help... 'i don't want to talk about it' has never been met with a polite change of subject ever... so you just grin and bear it and i'm sure it's character building or something and nice to know that people are trying to make you feel better :D

but at the end of the day. this trip was more a practice run than anything. Insulin and blood sugars were good. No accidents or trips to the hospital... so at least that's something... and some time to do nothing but shoot, eat and sleep... best way to spend your days.

a day in Porec... on a virtuous day starts with a run at 6am. breakfast at 7.... fairly high protein, high fat sort of affair... no no sugar/no fat cereals to be found here...
morning shooting sometimes a pre and post breakfast event. all at 50m. lunch of meat...meat and pasta oh and more meat.... afternoon shooting, a little shopping or maybe a game of mini golf... dinner: meat again... some unidentifiable goo with cheese... and desserts that all look great but all taste exactly the same (however do they do that?).....maybe a post dinner shoot...a lot of hi how are you going?!! and then 'who was that and have i actually met them before?'.....a lecture from certain Danish boys for how dodgy my fletching is....a giggle over the sleeping arrangements since twin share  for some reason never means two beds in europe...the inevitable boom in fb friend requests...sometimes from folks who never said a word to you.

and the inevitable post cup lament...i wish i could live at world cup.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Take that evil boxing bag!!! Ha!!!

It's bucketing with rain and cold as a penguin's bum and I'm contemplating hibernation until we see 30C again sometime in Jan next year... but being driven into the garage for my daily shooting does remind me of my favourite wind down when not trusty boxing bag. I'm told by better experts than me that I hit like a girl so nothing more than exercise really, but some days it really is the answer to all evils.

As we start counting down to Croatia I'm trying to get in as much shooting as possible, but day light is limited now and the bad weather is making it worse. Last week I could start shooting at about 6.30am, but this week being so wet and overcast I'm lucky if there's enough light before 7am. I hate this time of year.

Notes to self... bow shoulder looking too mobile, but could just be because of the sharp angle shooting at a low target. Bow hand too tense, getting cramps in the fingers..could be they're just cold, but vid shows the little finger with that distinct crook that usually gives me away. But the head space is great...that still frame like a photograph where everything is just right and the shot goes off... doesn't get much better than that.

So training more in the garage than not. It's a bit like spending too much time in the lab... people who spend too much time at work or training, you can spot them by how comfy the clothes are. I've degenerated to beanies, trackies and my fav and fading Hoyt step is rocking up in your PJs...

Friday, March 11, 2011

Less like a toaster...yay!

K, so I was in Lonnie all week for work. And that means morning training at Paringa. The ground was covered in wallabies at 7am. as the sun came up and the fog lifted there were plumes of butterflies with every step. And not a breath of wind. Kind of hard to not love this ground.

Following on from my epiphany of stupidity, I've been working on keeping the set up high and the shoulders low. Scores are on the rise. Shooting less like a retarded toaster everyday. Tuesday morning shooting was one of those do a little dance and punch the air kinds of moments that you're rather thankful no one else is silly enough to be out of bed to witness... but it was a good moment non the less. That point when you realise the hard work is starting to pay off. When you shoot the arrow and know where it's going to land.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Windswept and interesting or just major bed hair..

The disadvantage of posting your training vids online, is when you have those days where you rolled out of bed and went straight to training, bed hair and all....well then everyone knows...It's windy, you can see it's windy, so I'm calling it.

And to add to my bad hair day, I'm starting to feel like I'm reinventing the wheel. The bow shoulder has been driving me skitzo for weeks. Never seeming to get stronger no matter how many arrows I shoot. Well today I remembered something that any recurver worth her salt should know...if you pre-draw/set up high and let gravity guide your aim onto the target, the shoulder is naturally lowered and much more consistent. I'm thinking it's not my pancreas that failed, but my brains. I've been setting up too low the whole time and I even noticed I was doing it a couple weeks back.

So in the mean time I've been changing it up for my cardio sessions...yes the crappy Tasmanian summer that never happened has been driving me inside. So this week was step aerobics with the fabulous Gilad... hahahahaha bad 80s aerobics vids are gold! Big hair, bad lycra the whole bit. It was all a plan to get the girls in the family into a daily workout that my sister has consistently piked on all week... but it was a giggle and the weather really has been down night uncivil... I think I'll be shooting in the garage more often than not this Autumn :(

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Lazy day!

So 5am I woke to the sound of the sky falling. By 9am I had given up any pretensions to leaving the house... I think we got a whole season of rain in a single day. So finally a day to start setting up what would be a 'man cave' if I was a man... funny how girls don't get a man cave... you'd think we don't need somewhere to break down and rebuild our bows, shoot a few arrows and beat up the ol' punching bag in peace. Or just fletch some arrows without fear of ruining the table finish etc
I've got the target set up, and the punching bag... still no room for the bow cases... :D my recurve is currently leaning against the bed in my room... I really need to get the bat cave sorted :D
But I'm an out of sight out of mind kind of girl. So the recurve will probably stay where it is. I won't do SPTs everyday if the bow needs setting up every time... lazy I know, but working around your own laziness is an art :D
Main focus at the moment is my bow shoulder. So set the shoulder low at pre-draw using lats to keep it down. I had this really strong, back in May 2009, and a weak shoulder shows up in my bad shots big time.. so it's a good place to work on this week.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Remember there is no spoon...

So... team selection done and dusted.

And what a calamity of misfortunes that was. Day 1 couldn't hit the side of a barn standing inside with the doors shut. No clue what was going on...but it wasn't pretty (1303...I'm pretty sure I haven't shot that bad since I first picked up compound..). Day 2 shooting was marginally better (1343)..would have been hard to be worse... but my back was freaking from too many days of driving and plane flights so I was actually crying with the first arrow each end. And then my draw hand cramped up baaad at 30m and I had to time out for an end and try and ease it up... 5.30am physio to get me sorted before matchplay, said it was just fatigue...stoopid body!!!!!! lost the semi-final on a one arrow shoot off by one point and then won the bronze. Not exactly quality shooting in either match.

But in the midst of this I rediscovered an old friend...patience. At the moment the technique is mostly sound, the strength is a work in progress... but that finesse just isn't there. Yesterday I just remembered that thing I always forget when I'm out of condition.... there is no spoon :)
That perfect moment of looking at the target, but not looking and just waiting for the shot to happen in it's own good time. Don't think too hard about it or it will slip away. Like trying to see a magic eye picture...well okay not a good analogy for the stereoscopically challenged, but hopefully you get the idea.

Of course the thing that makes the ultimate patience really work is having the physical strength the hold it... sigh! Lots of work to do. But what else does a girl do in her spare time really?

Sunday, February 6, 2011

6am procrastination and why are we doing this??

So it's dawn and I'm putting off going for my run cos it's cold out there and anyone who ever met me knows that cold and Erika do not mix. I am that chick wearing jeans and a hoody on a 30C day when everyone else is boiling.

And so the brain turns to ponder a recent statement by our national shooting body, that running will improve your shooting. I recall being told that when I was a junior and being asked to think of the best archer I knew to prove their point...well he was over a 100kg most of his life. Amazing archer, but certainly not a benchmark for athletic supremacy. And even now...physique is not really a standard thing in archery.

All I've done since I started running again is gain weight (:D well okay insulin is helping that) but it seems a bit like I'm better designed to being a languishing couch potato than a runner if I want to be waif thin. And honestly as the possibly the fittest female compounder in the team selection this year... I can't say my scores have been my friend.

Awesome to see a new slim and slinky Pat Coghlan at the Australia Day shoot. I haven't been that impressed since Jorje Imenes dropped all his weight. Didn't recognise the man. But interestingly the scores at Aus Day were pretty poo all round. Our compounders at their best were called the 100kg club for a reason...Hahahahaha so maybe running just disagrees with our archery :D

But admittedly I like to it's just me pondering rather than complaining...and avoiding the cold cold morning rather than the run :)

Saturday, February 5, 2011

6Jan2011 Sunday Training

In the beginning there was archery...and then there was training and then there was video training and then there was youtube...and now there is blogging... sounds a little too close to Aussie slang for something else... but then that's not inappropriate for airing one's thoughts on the internet.

So this is for keeping my progress a little better documented..haha and we'll see how the discipline holds up.

Today I added 15 minutes of jump rope to my daily cardio. So current cardio regime is 15minute run at 12km per hour and 15 minutes jumping rope. Also 10 minutes of hill sprints when I pass the evil hill. May as well use it since it's there. Not a huge amount of exercise, but I'm an archer not an athlete :D

Shooting will be 160 arrows compound and whatever I can fit in recurve wise before running off to shout a friend arvo tea for her birthday.

Currently my main concern is how fat I'm getting and how much strength I've lost since my poor old pancreas packed it in. Insulin is freedom, but being healthy means I'm gaining weight dammit! So upping the cardio counting the carbs and getting back on track.

Goals: 200 arrows a day, better time on the running, a leaner Erika, and recurve!!!