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

September 14, 2013

We have some things to fix

Today's ride was 25 miles, ride time of 5:03, average speed 5 mph, but after pulse down we would have been overtime by three minutes.  The route was our same old same old as I wasn't in the mood to fight horse eating bushes and squirrels, she is pretty ho-hum over this route and doesn't normally give me too much drama.
The first "loop" was 17. 75 miles.  We were on time, but the pulse down put us right at 5 mph.  I changed some things to see if it would help my foot pain.  I raised the stirrups one setting.  HATED IT.    It did in fact help my right foot, but my left foot did its usual rebellion at 10 miles.  It always happens right after we trot a mile and half of gravel road.  Perhaps my foot stays into too much constant contact with the stirrup as it is straight line level riding.  The change in stirrup position made me look like a frog, my calves wanted to cramp for the first time ever and the right leather was doing a good job of eating away at my leg.   Stirrups are going back down.

 Journey blazing in after seventeen miles in a cloud of dust.  Well...there was dust, but not much "blazing."

LSEGH was on hand.  He's so good to go with me and sit for HOURS waiting on us, because he worries I'll get hurt and nobody will be there to come looking.  He is getting the crew thing down to a science.

Journey:  Thanks!  You did good!!!
Journey:  "Nom, nom, nom, crunch, crunch, crunch."
Her appetite was good.
 She'd already pretty much cleaned out her blue bucket at this point.  She didn't drink in camp, but she did tank up well out on the trail.  I gave her a half-dose of electrolytes pre-ride, and the other half after our break.  This seems to work okay for her, where a full dose puts her off her feed.

Our forty-five minute break honestly went way too fast.  I had my own nom nom nom moment with carry out from the Chinese place ala LSEGH.  It hit the spot.

Journey and I have an agreement.  She stands still for mounting, and I supply a peppermint.  It works, so meh!

Journey: " You have got to be kidding.  I have no intention of going back out there."

Me:  Well I do, so come on. 
 Look at those quirky frog legs no wonder my calves were cramping. Ridiculous...

So back out we went needing about 7.25 miles to complete the ride for today.  Journey attempted to vote with her feet a couple of times by going down wrong trail because she figured it would get us back more quickly.  She was really fanny dragging on the way out, but perked up real well when she knew we were heading back towards day parking.  Funny how the horse can barely lift on hoof in front of the other, then suddenly they just pick up the pace.   It is a real mental battle for Journey, and kind of one for me too as we end up out there longer than we really need to be to get the job done.
But out we went, and back for our third trip down one side of the A loop which we were both very much over.
So we made it back in one piece right at the wire time wise, only to go over time waiting to pulse down.  Some people / horses came in off trail she was so shocked at seeing another horse after 25 miles that her pulse did a jump to 125.  Bummer.  It took four minutes for her to settle down then all was well. 

Renegade hoof boots worked perfectly.  Not a rub anywhere.  I'm really liking these things.

It was a good training ride over all, but I'm glad I didn't lay out a couple hundred in fuel, and a ride entry fee for another over time.  Real glad about that one actually.

So the Spotted Wonder will get a couple of rest days, and I'm kicking around using the neighbors field for some cantering intervals.  (Speed being relative to "our" definition of speed)   Anything over 7 mph would seem freaking blazing fast at this point. 


  1. You are such an inspiration to me! I love reading about your rides, especially now that I'm planning a long distance ride from Ohio to Delaware on the American Discovery Trail next spring (in protest against horse slaughter). I would love it if you could ride with me, even if it's just a day ride!

  2. Robynne if you find your path near my neck of the woods give me a holler! I'm in Ripley county (southeastern Indiana). Be sure and share links if you are blogging your adventure, would love to put it up here.

  3. I have to laugh with you -- on a 2nd loop, Arie slams on the brakes every time he gets to an intersection because he knows which way is the closest back to camp. I sometimes put a crop in the gullet. I had something scarey happen at a 25-mile competitive UMECRA ride this weekend. They gave us 4 hours to do the 25 miles, plus threw in a surprise vet check so actually only 3 hr 50 min. We had no problems doing the time, walked in the last hour, got a P/R of 12/2 so I was happy, Arie is walking around trying to eat everyone else's food... Took a long time for the vets to be ready for the final vet-out. All of a sudden, Arie's back end freezes up and he just stands there without moving. Vet came over, metabolics all fine, he trotted out but barely, vet didn't see tying up but thought a muscle cramp. I got a completion but no placing. Since it was going to 50 degrees and raining overnight, I felt bad but I threw Arie in the horse trailer and drove 4 hours back home and into a warm dry stall. The next day he was trotting around, so phew!!!

    1. Karen,

      Why the trimmed down time? That would have been rough on a newb!

      Thank goodness not a tie up. That cool breeze this weekend probably contributed, but I bet you were not wishing for more hot and humid. Glad your boy is okay.

  4. BTW: boy what a mistake in my post -- should have said "walked in the last MILE". It was a very easy flat wide trail, hence the fast time given to everyone. The novice 12.5 was on Sunday and I don't know how much time they gave them. My best friend said she did her fastest 50 miler ever there, right at 5 hours. One of my problems is that Arie and I do NOT canter very much. I guess since we still walked the last mile it wasn't needed, though. In hindsight the problem was that I let him stand still while waiting for the final vet check. Even though it seemed warm and sunny enough, it was still pretty cool. I should have kept him walking...