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Discipline: LD/Endurance, CMO, Trail Rider, Cartoonist, Writer, Co-Director/ Green Bean Endurance

March 29, 2010

A beautiful day to ride, but I'm letting her have it off.

She has done 20 miles in the past two days, so even though the sun is shining and it is a PERFECT spring day I decided to let her have the day off. If I get off work early enough tomorrow I will probably spend an hour either schooling, or go work hill intervals. It is hard for me to decide at this point, but I'm kind of leaning towards cardio since the course we are going to is NOTHING BUT HUGE UPS & DOWNS.

Another thing that is on my mind is Nicole and I rode a fair pace on that section of trail, trotting some pretty big hills and based on our overall time we were averageing under 5 mph when you factored in the downhills and the attempts to get these mares to drink. I'm just not at the point that I feel good about passing up any opportunity for my horse to drink, even if it is 100 yards down the trail (because I'm trying to teach her as well as condition her). Based on our average pace we would not have completed the 30 based on my calculations because the second half would have been slower with fairly tired horses. I went to the AERC site and tried to find finishing times for this Friday ride in the past, but they were 25 mile, not 30. I guess I get out the calculator and do some averages to see what speed those finishing horses are going. (Mel thinks she overthinks things...I say HA! Welcome to my world, the obsessive thinker).

Am I better to do canter intervals on the flat or on the hills? Or should I do short hand gallops on the flat, and trot the hill transitions these next two weeks. If we are to finish I darned well MUST be able to trot some very long long LONG hills. We still walk all of our downhills and probably always will.

Off topic, but who ever heard of a horse that does not enjoy being groomed? My moody mare doesn't....~E.G.


  1. I was just reading a blog last week about horses not liking to be groomed. I didn't know there was such an animal. LOL

    As for you conditioning on hills, I'm not an endurance rider but I do know that the conditioning at the three beat gait is different than that at the two beat. Seems to me at the very least you would want to condition at the gait you are going to ride to be sure those muscle groups are ready for the work.

  2. I was so sure we'd never finish RoM in time, but we actually had plenty of time. Don't flake out just because you think you'll go overtime, that's my advice!

    Dixie has never enjoyed being groomed! Sometimes when her face is sweaty she will let me scratch her muzzle, but that's the only time. I spent a year and a half thinking that she'd come around if I found the right brush, but at this point I think she just doesn't want to be touched, ever. Pity she's so white or I'd brush her even less throughly than I do. Anyway, you're not the only one!

  3. I think that obsessive thinking is a little more common than you think. =)

    As for your girl not enjoying grooming... well, there are definitely days that mine acts like grooming is tantamount to torture and days you'd think its better extra food. It always depends on her mood and how flighty she's feeling that day.

  4. Jazz and Shazam both don't like to be groomed. Stormy doesn't mind it too bad. (doesn't bother me because I am not the grooming type. I'd rather be riding and do as little as possible to just get them clean enough for the saddle to get on!) They all love to rub their faces on me though!

    "Never hurry never tarry" was the advise I recieved on endurance riding. And when their is good footing and good trail pick up some speed girl! Because there are so many places at Clark where you have to go slow that you need to watch for the good spots and use them to your advantage. Wether that is uphill or on the flat you'll know when you are out there.

    I personally, don't waste my time stopping at water holes on the first loop of an LD. It's morning, cool out and the horses are hyped from the ride environment. They aren't going to drink, no matter how long I linger around a creek. I am trying to get mine used to drinking from a water bucket when I get back from a conditioning ride. I offer that to them first instead of just letting them go to our big water trough.


  5. Doc does not generally enjoy being groomed. The only time he does is when he is shedding and when the flies get really bad. And then I think he only enjoys it because I am scratching the itchy spots. He is thin skinned so I've always thought that was part of it. I use the softest curries and brushes I can find. I'll show you what I use sometime. Have done so for years. Now Doc does have a couple of places that he likes to have scratched - his ears, the throatlatch area, between his hind legs, and his tail. All those places he can't reach himself. :-)

  6. The reason I find it so surprising is that Cree and My Puddin' Girl (deceased) LOVED grooming. Puddin' would fall asleep while being groomed. I've always liked brushing the horses. Would like it a whole lot better if mine didn't have so darned much white! You brush 'em and they still look dirty. Well-- it is good to know that Phebes is with the majority :)