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

February 15, 2015

The Not so Simple Post on Problem Solving

Problem #1.  Don't have a horse
  • Buy one, lease one, borrow one.     Horse rescues would love to have you come pick out a budget conscious breed of your choice.  Of course buying one is the easy part.  It is the boarding, maintenance, upkeep that's the clincher.   If that is too much, see about leasing an endurance horse, or catch riding (riding someone else's horse that needs the miles for some reason).
Problem #2.  I have a horse, but I don't have a trailer.
  • Buy one, or see about sharing the cost of travel with another up and coming endurance rider who has the trailer but not the gas dollars.  They roll you down the road, you finance the fuel and oil changes to get you there.  Your best bet at finding this person is probably through social networking to find a like minded person who wants to hit some rides.

 Problem #3.   I have nobody to condition with.
  • Do you really need someone in order to get your horse conditioned?  What you may need is a cell phone signal, or Spot or some other navigational locating device.  In this case you can ride off and just do the thing.  Not as fun maybe as having a cohort, but does get the job done.
  • If you really just have to have a buddy...back to social networking.  One of the problems networking is when you see to really hit it off with someone they generally live on the other coast or something.  Sometimes you get lucky though!
  • Join your nearest endurance club.  Places like PNER, DBDR, and OAATS are generally open to new recruits and this may help you find a live mentor.
Problem #4.  I can't afford the specialized gear?  
  • Really?   Half of what I have is stuff I "wanted" not stuff I needed.  What you need is a saddle that fits, a girth and pad that are comfortable for your horse, a bridle that fits, a lead rope, halter, and some miscellaneous buckets.  If you have a horse, chances are you already have all that stuff.  The piece of specialized gear that I like for every distance rider to have?  A helmet.  The rest is just pretty stuff.  Red reins (haven't used in two years) Blue reins (not used in three years), Brown biothane set, not used in two years.   It is easy to collect a lot of stuff that the ride dollars would better benefit you on ride entries.
  • So you really have to have it.   Take a moment.  You really don't.  But if a creepy voice is lisping "my precious" just set you out a can and stuff $20 a week in it until it is all full and fluffy with green, then go knock yourself out.  Buy what you want, but buy it once.  Or you can be like me and have this ridiculous mountainous heap of expensive pretty colored tack that you don't use.  
Problem #5.  My husband doesn't like me riding endurance.
  • What did you marry him for anyway?  (I know, that was mean) but it's true too.  If your man is jealous of your horse, he has some deep seated issues.
  • You can figure out the solution to that one ☺
Problem # 6.   My horse is too slow to finish.
  • Well speed him up!

Problem #7.  My horse is to fast.
  • I know you are ready for this...SLOW HIM DOWN.
Problem #8.  My horse won't eat.
  • I'll play nice now because this is important.  Give your horse choices.  Make sure he does not have ulcers.  Give the horse time to acclimate to the ridecamp scene.   Serve PIZZA no not from Pizza Hut, horse pizza.  A nice flat pan with grains, carrots, apples, horse yummy stuff.  Realize it might take a horse several rides to settle in and relax enough to take good care of himself.
Problem # 9.  My horse won't drink.
  • Preload your horse with some kind of a stomach acid buffer prior to the ride.
  • Preload with electrolytes as well.  Continue through each loop of the ride.
Problem #10.  I'm chafing here, there, everywhere.
  •  Two words:  Body Glide.
  • Smear that stuff everywhere you have experience chafing in the past.
Problem #11. Sunburn, chapped lips, stuffed up allergy head.
  • Sunscreen, chapstick, and your medication of choice.  
  • Come prepared, and actually follow through with these before you need them.
Problem #12.   My toe nails are falling off (yeah really mine did).
  • A half size to full size bigger shoe and cushy socks.
 Have a great day!

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