Being A Boston Sports Fan

Being a Boston sports fan sometimes reminds me of battered-wife syndrome. You get beaten down, but you keep coming back. You’re given just enough to make you feel warm and fuzzy inside, just enough to ensure your devotion, but then you’re inevitably and sorely disappointed. I don’t know why a woman would ever go back to a coward who hits her, and I often don’t know why I remain a Boston sports fan. The Pats, Celts, Sox and Bruins make you want to like them, but it’s sometimes painful to remain a devoted fan throughout all their turmoil.

I grew up in a hockey family and my dad was particularly faithful to the Bruins. From a very early age I can remember him watching Bobby Orr and Esposito skate circles around other teams. By the time I was old enough to actually understand what was going on, the Bruins were comprised of some more awesome players like Middleton, O’Reilly, Pederson, and Milbury. I used to love to watch Boston play Montreal with my father, but it seemed like Boston lost a lot more than won.

It was great to see Terry O’Reilly beat the heck out of other players, and it was cool to watch all these veterans a few years later skate around without helmets while the rest of the players had to wear them. I guess it was some sort of grandfather clause or something. They just looked tough. When Cam Neely and Ray Bourque started playing I enjoyed the Bruins just as much. But after Orr and Esposito were gone, none of these more recent players won the Boston Bruins a Stanley Cup, quite frustrating.

But not to fear, The Celtics around this time were hot. Like the Bruins/Canadians, the Celtics/Lakers rivalry was a blast to experience, especially when the Celts won. And they did. I remember probably one of the greatest NBA teams ever to exist, Bird, McHale, Parish, DJ and Ainge. They weren’t the prettiest bunch of guys around, Bird being particularly funky looking, but they were so fun to watch. It was wonderful to see them beat the L.A. Lakers in the 1983-84 championship and the Houston Rockets in 1985-86 championship.

Unfortunately the last few Celtics’ seasons lately have been dismal. They don’t even make it to the playoffs regularly any more. How many more �•building years” do we need? Watching Pierce take off his shirt and wave it around his head while being ejected from one of the playoff games against the Pacers this year was sad.

But 1986 was the end of Boston championship teams for a long while. In fact, it was sixteen years until the Patriots finally won Super Bowl XXXVI in 2002. That’s a long wait. That’s a lifetime for crying out loud.

The New England Patriots were another difficult team to watch and remain devoted to. Grogan was a decent quarterback and many would argue Drew Bledsoe was even better, but they never brought a championship home. Watching Drew throw numerous interceptions and trudge off the grid iron with hunched shoulders was disturbing. I like to think of Bledsoe as an ‘almost’ kind of player. He was almost awesome, was almost a championship quarterback. He almost won the game. Bledsoe actually drove me crazy. He was New England’s franchise player, but he just didn’t seem to ever do quite enough to win. It was so frustrating to watch him play. All big and gawky, shuffling out of the pocket like my nana.

But the tide turned. Third string quarterback Tom Brady took the place of an injured Bledsoe, and brought the championship home to Bostonians. The 2002 NFL playoffs were absolutely awesome to watch if you were a Boston sports fan. Watching Vinatieri blast it though the uprights in a blizzard to beat the Oakland Raiders, and again to win the Super Bowl beating the St. Louis Rams was monumental. Thank God for the Pats. They brought respect back to Boston. They showed what true grit is, what the word �•team” actually means, in a day when everything in sports seems to be centered on individual feats. I loved it when they ran out on the field together as a team instead of being introduced one at a time at the beginning of the Super Bowl.

Pathetically enough, most people thought the Pats would not win it all again. They thought it was a fluke. The Pats had lost for so long that few had faith in them. But they won it again two years later and people started to pay attention. The word �•dynasty” crept up in New England vernacular. When the Pats won their third Super Bowl in four years, they were finally accepted as a dynasty. These wins will carry me for many years. Again, thank God for the Pats.

But no good article about being a Boston sports fan can be complete without discussing the Boston Red Sox. What can be said about the Sox? They were the epitome of frustration. They were the Bad News Bears for so long. Of all the Boston teams, they were the most painful to watch. They often had the talent, they often played well, but they didn’t win a World Series for 86 years! Between the ball rolling between the knees of Bill Buckner, and Grady keeping Pedro in against the Yankees during the 2003 playoffs, every Sox fan was pushed to the limit of what they could endure. Of course there were many other less notable, but just as frustrating moments in Red Sox history. Any Red Sox fan who remained a fan throughout should be given a gift.

And what a sweet gift it was when the Sox won the 2004 World Series. Being down 3-0 in the ALCS against the Yankees, and then coming back to beat them and sweep the Cardinals in the World Series was one of the greatest professional sports stories in history. In fact, it’s been called one of the greatest comebacks ever. All those long years of no championships in Boston finally came to end with the Pats winning in 2002. But after 86 years of no World Series rings, the Red Sox win was the sweetest of all. 2004 was one of the greatest years in Boston sports ever. A World Series and Super Bowl win by Boston teams in the same year, almost unbelievable.

So I guess being a Boston sports fan is not so much like battered-wife syndrome. It’s more like being in a difficult marriage that has lots of ups and downs only, but is worth working at to keep. Being a Boston sports fan is as frustrating as it is rewarding. Patience, loyalty, persistence, and faith will get you through. And in the end, it all works out. Just keep the faith.

Extreme Sports – Moving To The Next Level

The youngsters of the city turn to urban sports because you need an outlet for them to express themselves. No much gear is needed, and the activity can take place at any urban spot. Due to being seen only in cities, these sports games have been known as urban sports.

But don’t confuse urban sports with extreme sports. In terms of safety, urban sports are much safer games. Due to the extremity of the activities, the risks are also much higher for extreme sports. In many cases, the execution for extreme sports is hazardous and involves more skill. The whole idea of extreme activities is to push the human limit. The risk return trade off? Getting the body to experience the adrenalin rush that comes from the sport.

Thinking of joining an interesting sport? Just take a look around the neighborhood. Take note of what sport activity that catches your eye. As long as the sport takes place in the city, it’s considered an urban sport. Notice how similar these sports are. Any one will do find as long as you like the sport.

First and foremost, you will need the right gear and equipment to get started. They are readily available in local sports retail shops. There are many activities that don’t need much equipment. Just make sure you have at least a comfortable pair of urban sport shoes and you are good to go.

Ensure that you wear the right shoes and clothing for the sport that you are joining. Sports that require side to side movements means that you need a flat soled shoe. Such shoes are produced by many major brand names.

There are many benefits that are associated with an urban sport activity. You never face the problem of commuting. You can choose to train in an area near your home. Join a few sports enthusiasts in the neighborhood and practice, practice, practice. Over time, you will find that your overall fitness improve due to exercising regularly.

As you feel yourself growing stronger and getting better at a sport, you may wish to consider moving the bar up a little and participate in some extreme sports. Always play safe and wear protective gear, even when you are practicing. If you find yourself without the appropriate protective gear, just resist the urge to jump in and join your friends.

Some examples of extreme activities are stunt biking, skateboarding, speed blading, etc. There is no fixed definition for extreme sports. More innovative and challenging games are being invented by talented young people daily. They seek to new challenges, and as long as the activity provides an adrenalin rush, they will try it.

A word of advice – never try to be too ambitious when participating in extreme sports. Many extreme activities require a certain level of strength and skill to execute. Build up your strength and skill and you will enjoy the sport more, and be able to prevent injury.

What is Middling a Sports Bet

Sports betting has been around for decades now and it is always growing in popularity. There are thousands of places where a person can bet and professional sports like baseball, football and basketball make for the most popular events to bet upon. Those who bet professionally need to understand the calculations behind the bet. They need to understand the values of spreads and betting lines.

Once you have an understanding of these things you can start betting with a popular new addition to sports betting. It is called middling your bet. The concept behind middling is quite simple. You place bets on the opposing side at different counters and make it so that your chances of losing money are minimized and your chances of winning money is maximized. Although that might sound like a bettor’s paradise, it is actually quite possible. It has become a common practice now a days and it is making a lot of money for bettors who are successfully doing this.

This is a kind of safety net that you buy for yourself and make sure that no matter what the outcome is; you are safe and only stand to lose a little money at the worst. A bookie of course won’t like it but then again you will be betting on different stands. However, be warned that you are going to need some cash to do this. That is because you are placing two bets instead of one. Now that you know how to begin, here’s practical example of what might be happening.

Let us assume that you are betting on team A at home against Team B for the home at -4. During the halftime, you see that team A is winning 20-3 and the line at halftime is team B -2.5. Here is where you can change things for yourself. If you really think that A is not going to win even though the large lead, you can place a bet on B. However, if B finally does lose and A emerges winner, you will only lose the bet on B and will win your original bet on A, but this is really the worst that can happen to you.

In case B stages a comeback in the second half and lose only about 23-20, your second bet will really help you out to cover the damages on the original bet so that you do not lose all your money and only a small amount.

However, the best scenario is something that is quite common here. Say team A is around 20-3 at halftime, but team B fights back nonetheless, losing at 28-21. In this case, the second half became totally risk free for you and you were able to win on both bets. Team A covered the -4 for the game and you got your -2.5 on team B as well.

So you successfully bet and won two bets for the same game and you did it at a very low to no risk at all.

Sports Nutrition: The Importance Of Staying Hydrated

Your body needs three things to function smoothly: energy (food), hydration (water), and rest (sleep). Cutting out one of these components would play havoc on your body and its ability to properly function, so you need to ensure that you are not lacking for either of them. If you are active you will notice that your need to stay hydrated is a bit more acute than if you did not play a sport. When you exert yourself two things happen:

1 Your body burns calories – Your body will burn calories in order to sustain a sufficient level of energy. This will keep you on your toes and ready to rock, and proper nutrition will ensure that you’re fueled up enough to outlast your opponent. Many times it is not the player that wins, but the diet- the saying “you are what you eat” definitely applies here, as if you are able to outlast your opponent by keeping your A game on longer, victory will almost certainly be yours.

2 Your body expels moisture – You lose a lot of moisture simply by breathing, and that amount skyrockets when you are performing an intense physical activity. You don’t have to sweat to become dehydrated, though sweating will amplify the effects of dehydration.

There is nothing worse than becoming dehydrated, especially when you are performing a physical activity. Many things may happen to you once you’ve reached a certain level of dehydration: you may feel ill, become dizzy or unbalanced, or even lose consciousness. Extreme dehydration will lead to death, though it is unlikely that you will encounter that situation at a fencing tournament.

There are several ways to ensure that you remain well hydrated throughout the course of the tournament:

1 Cut the junk from your diet – Get rid of high-salt foods and soft drinks. Both are the leading cause of hydration loss in North America. Contrary to popular belief, soft drinks don’t hydrate you. In fact, they actually cause you to become even more dehydrated, defeating their purpose.

2 Drink lots of water – Drink a small bottle of water every half an hour. Sure, you’ll have to pee a bit more, but the whole “staying alive” thing is more important than whether or not you have to pee more than usual.

3 Stay in the shade – Avoid spending too much time under the direct rays of the sun. Along with cooking your skin, it will cause the moisture from your skin to evaporate, forcing your body to replace it. Unless you are consuming boatloads of water it is generally a better idea to stick to the shade.

Energy drinks, such as Red Bull, should be avoided, as the energy that they provide is temporary at best, and they are known to dehydrate you. A tall glass of water is just what your body needs.