Hey yall!

Welcome! My blog is about 2/3 OTTB retraining and 1/3 newbie eventer (former hunt seat/equitation girl). Please follow along with my experiences, share insight, and enjoy!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Raining on Wednesdays

WHY?!!!!! Does it always rain on Wednesdays??!!!

Has anyone else noticed this? Maybe its just around Central Virginia. Im not sure....but seriously. It has rained on 90% of Wednesdays for the last....5-6 months?! Its CRAZY!!! I know this, because I have most of the day off on Wednesdays. I go into work at 4:30pm so I usually try to book other work (Im a photographer and I sell Thirty-One in addition to my full time job as a personal trainer). If I am free, or after I have done my other jobs, I go out and ride my horses!
The problem is there are days like this...when it rains and rains and rains and the footing gets crappy (I don't have an indoor). I can't go riding in this weather so I do other things. Mainly yoga, but also doing my strength and cardio routine.

For today, I was pretty busy with other jobs but I was able to squeeze in 45 minutes of cardio and strength.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Size doesn't matter. Clearly.

My three boys are 16.2 hands, 17.1 hands, and 17.2 hands tall. The mini donkeys are not much larger than my yellow lab. And the TB's are *terrified* of the donkeys. SERIOUSLY??!!!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

2012 Goals

I keep looking at my calendar and all of the things I want to do this next year with my horses, thankfully I have written down goals and milestones for us.  As I work in the fitness industry we always stress making goals that are S.M.A.R.T.  That is, specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and time sensitive.  Instead of saying "I want to lose some weight." You'd say "I'd like to lose 15lbs in 20 weeks." or whatever.

So on that note-here we have some goals....don't judge me if I don't follow the above plan though!! :) 

1.  Compete!! I am planning at this point to event Lego.  So my plan, since there are fewer events than shows, is to get him used to being off the farm at some schooling hunter shows.  

a.  Thoroughbred Celebration Horse Show on March 16-18 in Lexington, Virginia is a priority for us.  I really want to support this show, even though its not eventing, to help showcase what amazing athletes and fantastic riding partners OTTBs are.  
b.  I'd like to do a local schooling show or two before then, ideally one in late Feb, one in early March.
c.  I want to take him to a farm down the road to ride him there and see how he does in a different environment.  Ideally, at least twice, I need to call them and schedule it!! 
d.  Our First Event! Small, local-ish, schooling event!  Hopefully mid-late spring. I just want to survive it! 

2.  Stay healthy!  Both the horses and me!! :) ...Yeah, yeah I know, it doesn't follow the SMART principles...whatever. 

3.  Be able to complete Novice (or training?) level Dressage Tests
a.  work on bending, suppleness, straightness (oddly, its one of our main challenges), transitions
b.  work on our leads to become super consistent!!!

4.  Compete Chick! 
a.  just a few hunter shows, or dressage shows
b.  keep him healthy!

5.  Keep Connor healthy!! He's doing SOOO well, and I am SO unbelievably grateful for every single day we have with him!   We need to make sure his hooves stay healthy, and his muscle atrophy doesn't worsen significantly.  You can read more about Connor here

Addendum:  As I have just found out that THREE (!!!!!!) people read my blog I am adding a goal of posting 2x per week or more. Ideally I'd post every time I ride, but with three jobs,  I don't think I have any more hours in the day so twice per week sounds okay I guess!! =) 

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Merry Christmas!!!

Christmas presents!!!

I received some AWESOME Christmas presents this year!!!  Among some of the wonderful things I was blessed with are some great equine products!!!

1.  An OTTB saddle pad from OTTB Designs!!! What an amazing saddle pad it is!! Its so nice and cushioned, really nice quality.  The embroidery is just tons and tons of stitches and is so nice.

2.  A protective vest.  Since I am wanting to get into eventing and they are required for cross country, I was hoping I'd get one soon!  After thinking more about it, I just think its a great idea to have one.  I  know that I'm not done working with Off Track Thoroughbreds and in the industry of retraining ex racers, its a good idea to be as protected as possible.  I love it so far, its not restrictive at all!!

Is it Summer yet?

1/4/12 around 2:30pm

Oh. My. Gosh. It was SOOOO cold riding today!!!

I rode Lego today.  The thermometer said 33 degrees!! And that's not counting the wind chill!!!
We warmed up and I asked him to trot.  It was like he had 6 legs...at least.  It was soooo awkward!! I think he must have just been that cold!!! My mom said it looked fine.  She thought he was probably just very cold as well.  The ground wasn't the best condition either and we slipped slightly a few times so I decided we'd not risk doing much with a lot of intensity.  We worked for the first time on leg yielding/side passing at a fence.  He chews the bit like crazy when I ask him something new and I have to be VERY INCREDIBLY specific on what I am asking with him.  He's much different than Chick in that way.  We struggled through it both directions and then we walked away to take a break for a bit.  We came back to face the fence and I asked again, very clearly and calmly.  He did much better both directions.   We then cooled out and got him back under his blanket! :)