Good horse, questionable rider

When the sun shines, we ride…after working nine hour days so I could skip out early today. I loaded up kid, dog, and mare and headed to McIver. Kade walked Benny a bit while I tacked up, then hung in the trailer til I was done (have I mentioned I love my trailer?)

I changed up a few things and my main goal was a short but faster ride, aiming for at least 4 miles an hour. To meet endurance speed, 25 miles in 6 hours, leaving time for a vet check, I need to average between 5 and 6mph. I had a new pair of breeches, my new stirrup cages and…I shortened my stirrups to help me post a bit better. This is not what happened.

I was the embodiment of the meme “I’ve been riding my whole life!” “So are you a good rider then?” *Sad trombone* My legs wouldn’t stay where I put them and my ankles wouldn’t bear weight for long, no matter how I futzed or rested or positioned them. In all my focus on ensuring Tarma’s fit enough and her boots fit and her saddle pad fits and the saddle is well flocked…I let myself go too long between my own workouts, especially as my walking buddy was stoned all week recovering from his neuter.

As you can imagine, my ankles inability to bear weight coupled with my worst habit of gripping with my toes put a crimp in our speed work. Tarma was so good putting up with me and trying to adjust to what I needed. Every time she felt me get off balance she’d slow or shift herself over to stay beneath me. We did manage to average 4mph, just barely.

Kade helped me with my mock vet check, and Tarma stood solid while he listened to her heart rate and the dog followed me around. I trotted her out, again with Benny’s help, and checked her gums and gut sounds, all good. She was already at 56bpm by the time I hopped off even with trotting all the way back.

I sense crunches in my future if we’re going to conquer long trails and mountains together.

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After years of borrowing horses, working to ride and catch riding, I finally have my own horse, a spicy chocolate mare...but also a demanding day job (who doesn't?), a nerdy husband, a soccer loving kid who needs to be parented (by me, duh), and the ultimate trail buddy, a chocolate Labradork!

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