I promise this isn’t going to be a post lamenting about all of the hair in my car right now because it is shedding season. (why didn’t I buy a dark bay horse??) I think at one point or another, every Adult Amatuer is forced to make the decision about how seriously they want to pursue this sport, and it is definitely something that is buzzing around my head.
At my lesson yesterday morning, May came out a bit tense and forward. It had gotten cold again and we were riding outside. However, I still put her in the Neue Schule boucher and put on my large soft touch spurs. Why? Because I need to ride more from my leg and, until I get my hands under control, I do not dare use a stronger bit. One of my biggest problems lately is May likes to fall in to the right. To counteract this, I lean left. This is not the right way to fix a leaning problem, so we did some Dressage work on a 20M circle to start out, just getting her off my right leg and lifting through that shoulder. It took us a while, but we figured it out. Then we got right to jumping.
The course wasn’t set particularly large, right at BN height. For the most part, the ride was fine. However, she still gets so scambly (technical term) when I try to open up her stride. It is especially obvious through the one-stride combination, where we have to gun it to get the step and then she is completely unbalanced through the corner. (See above video) Eventually, after being yelled at several times, I connected my hind end to the saddle and closed my leg to engage her hind end and close her legs; instead of trying to haul her large head up with my hands. Shocking how that works…
Basically at the end of the lesson, both May and I were falling apart. My trainer gave us some strong words about how our fitness needs to improve and how I need to get to the barn more often. So this is where the whole Lifestyle thing comes into play:
I, like a lot of AA riders, have a 9 – 5 job (more like 8:30 – 6 on a good day) with at least one night event a month. The barn is 45-60 min from work and 35 minutes from home. I am also recently engaged and planning a wedding while my fiance is in the process of moving in. No big deal, except, it means I have only been riding 3 – 4 days per week, when I really need to be in the saddle for at least 45 minutes 5 – 6 days a week. Did I mention I am also going to Florida this week for an engagement party? Sooo typical day ends up looking like this:
6AM – alarm goes off
6:30AM – finally out of bed
7:45AM – off to work
8:30AM – 6PM – Work
6PM – 7PM – Drive to Barn
7PM – 7:15PM – Tack up
7:15PM – 8PM – Ride
8PM – 8:15PM – Untack
8:15PM – 9PM – Drive Home
Of course, I also want to start getting to the gym 3 days a week, so that schedule would start at more like 5. I know for some people, this is a total reasonable day-to-day schedule, but I am very conscious of giving myself breaks to avoid burnout. And, this schedule doesn’t allow for really any time with my family or fiance or extra work events. Of course, if I end up stuck at work until 7, that seriously throws off the whole plan… I am going to give it a try for the couple of days I have this week and then all of next week. Maybe a weekend day will end up being my day away from barn.
How do you all handle your jobs/lives/horses?