Today was slotted on our calendar as an 18 mile LSD day. This morning I got up, and dressed for riding. It was raining, and cold. Each hour I'd look outdoors and it would still be raining. LSEGH was watching the weather radar on the computer to see when the front would move past us and I finally decided to load her about 11AM. She was shaking like crazy she was so cold! So I added a rump rug and a light blanket. We have the trailer mostly enclosed right now so I figured that the ride to the park would give her a chance to warm up and it did.
The low point today: MUD, MUD, and more MUD. Very few places to move out on, and when I found someplace we could Phebes just wasn't feeling it, I felt like we'd have made better time if I got off and pushed her down the trail, she was dragging her fanny. We rode the trail 7 miles to almost the end, then reversed and went back the way we had come for another 7 miles. This is when it go even s-l-o-w-e-r. She kept stopping, and putting her head down. I'm thinking she has to pee...so I gave her the let's pee cue, she stood there sight seeing but nothing happening. We'd start again, and pretty soon she'd stop again. This went on for about four miles and I was about to pull my hair out by the gray roots! Finally, after about ten false starts, she squatted and peed. Then I hit the high point of the day.
The high point: Once she had peed she was great coming the rest of the way back. She trotted nicely where we could, slowed down where the mud was really deep, and cantered up a few rolling hills. We took a break at 14 miles and my man had brought me hot and sour soup and a spring roll from the local chinese place. OH IT TASTED GOOD! Phebes munched down some hay, and pulsed down within five minutes. No spinning or goofy behavior today.
We head out again and it is like squeezing toothpaste out of an empty tube, except I know better...her pulse at the walk is 38 bpm (honest). Tapping my leg with the crop, nothing, tapping her with the crop, nothing. She just didn't want to go. Granted it is a muddy mess out there, but some places it was okay for trotting. I finally decided to annoy her to death by swinging my arms around like a fool and making a lot of whooping and hollering sounds and she grudgingly gave in an picked up a trot again. It took us an hour to make 4.5 miles. This behavior is what gets us in trouble at an LD. She doesn't want to train above 4.5 mph average, then at a ride she decides she's a firebreathing dragon and averages 6-7 mph. I'd like her to train at about 7-8 mph, and compete at 6 mph. We are backwards. She was in heat, and trying to attract anything on legs including LSEGH!
Tomorrow Big Cree goes to the vet. He hasn't been eating well and we think he might have a partial blockage going on. He did make droppings twice today that we know of which is an improvement, but still not good. He is getting his teeth floated and see if we can get something done to get his gut moving right.
Hope everyone had a good weekend! ~E.G.
Discipline: LD/Endurance, CMO, Trail Rider, Cartoonist, Writer, Co-Director/ Green Bean Endurance
Favorite Links for training, gear, and memberships!
- National Association of Competitive Mounted Orienteering
- HOW TO CMO
- What is CMO?
- Old Dominion Endurance Rides
- Renegade Hoof Boots
- Riding vs. Racing a discussion with the Duck.
- Trumbull Mountain's INTRO TO ENDURANCE RIDING
- Principles of Conditioning
- Conditioning the endurance horse by SERA
- Short Article: Feeding & Training the Endurance Horse
- Feeding the Endurance Horse, Swedish Author
- Preventing Dehydration In the Endurance Horse, Ontario Competitive Trail Riding Association
- Jim Holland's fantastic training links here!
- South Eastern Distance Rider's Association