SUBSCRIBE TODAY Smiley face  Get updates via email! 

We Are Flying Solo

August 28, 2013

Clip Clop Clip Clop BANG BANG Clip Clop...

Know what makes that noise?

Wait for it.... Amish drive-by.  HAHAHAHHA.  Ok, yes, I love jokes in poor taste, it is a weakness.

That is also the sound of a llama TB speed racing over trot poles.  Bugger.

In good news, he is looking and feeling sounder on his feet.  I still have not seen anything blowing out of his front hooves, but he does seem more comfortable on them.  We had a nice little ride on the grass on Monday.  Of course, he is also getting daily bute, so...

I confess we did have a terrible ride last night.  I should just not get on when I am tired and it is heinously humid.  Things degrade quickly, we end up frustrated and I ponder a hobby of goldfish.  Or rocks. 

Part of the problem is that right now, I just do not have the money to take the lessons I should have with the trainers whose eyes I badly need.  David is a two-hour haul -- well worth it, but hard to find the diesel money at the present time.  The truth is, as I know I've said before and as became very obvious to me with Becky this spring, to make real progress, you simply must have that pro time.

There are some more local options to explore.  The simple fact is, I'm not having fun right now, which then saps my motivation.  Therefore, the point is being missed!  Whenever I catch this phenomenon occurring, I know it is time to take a step back, inhale, exhale, and plan something light-hearted, relaxing, and...FUN.  I am fairly exploding with impatience to get back out on the trails, the Devil Belly-Stabbing Bugs need to hurry up and go away.

What do you do when this happens?  How do you uncoil those springs and relax with your horse, rediscovering that oh yeah, my hobby is supposed to make me happier?  How do you keep working towards your goals yet take some of the pressure off so the pot doesn't blow its lid? 


  1. I struggle with this issue more often than I'd like. Riding is my hobby -- and hobbies are supposed to be fun. I usually start by figuring out what the real problem is, and deciding on a course of action... doing something always helps me.

    Are there any clinics you could audit in your area? Might not be as helpful as a lesson, but definitely a cheaper option!

  2. 100% agree. I had my mare without professional help for maybe a year and we just did a backwards free-fall, training wise.

    I improved by leaps and bounds when we were at the training barn, but that is $$$. I'm trying to strike the right balance for us right now. Cuna obviously isn't doing lessons or jumps with me and Courage doesn't really need spendy lessons when we're still figuring out basics, but I really value having my trainer friend as eyes in the ground or having her ride occasionally.

    It's amazing what I miss when I'm alone in the saddle. ;)

    I assume that Encore and yourself are probably beyond the simple "eyes on the ground" phase of needing help, which is more complicated and expensive. Good luck.

  3. When things are a bit of a mess, I love trail riding, preferably with a good friend.
    In the winter I live in an area with very few opportunities for lessons or clinics - I like to audit what I can, and if all else fails, watch training videos or even just event videos of riders I admire. I pick up a surprising amount that way.
    Third option is to have a friend I trust hop on my horse and tell me what they're feeling - sometimes they're very insightful.

  4. Trail riding is what helps me the most when I'm just feeling discouraged with my riding.

    Money has been super tight for me this summer so things haven't gone even close to as planned but I've gotten to do a lot of trail riding and I finally figured out that is okay. My horse is only 6 we don't have to reach all of our goals in one year or even in four. We have time to just "play" around on the trails whilst I wait for my finances to improve for more lessons/showing/clinics/etc. And while I'm not sure how much "training" we are getting we are at least having time to bond and really get to know each other which is valuable.

    I'm also lucky in that my trainer allows me to ride a lot of her baby tbs that she hosts and retrains for a local rescue and I often get free lessons out of it that I can hopefully transfer to my own guy.

    I hope things look up for you guys soon!

  5. Trail riding is most excellent and I LOVE it! Unfortunately, we are in a nasty bug season right now, so even when I try to go out, Encore gets attacked and flip out, silly thing. Counting down to fall!

    Watching clinics and videos is a great idea and I'm hoping to try and volunteer next week, it's always a transportation juggle though!

  6. I am kinda in a funk right now too. It happens every year about this time and about January to March. Honestly for me I just spend time with my horses during those times and ride when I feel motivated enough and just don't push myself to do much. I know it will pass and we will be back at our feirceness soon. It always seems like Steady needs that respite just as much as I do.

  7. I usually just try to do what I can, when I feel like it. Sometimes you just need a break :-)

  8. Yes, breaks are definitely good! It's hard to strike that delicate balance though, I can't let Encore lose too much topline without no fun repercussions!

  9. Trying to mix it up, however that is, is always good. But when I get stuck in a rut where no matter what we do it's terrible- sometimes I just give us both the week off. By day 7, we're both itching to get back at it, and things seem to 'click' again...

  10. I'm rehabbing my mare from EPM treatment and we are almost at the year point. I'm thrilled to say that she is happy, sound and making great progress. When we started treatment I wasn't sure she'd ever be safe to ride again.
    I have remind myself that when life gets in the way and I can't feel like I can ride for a week or more that she's happy with a grooming session or a bareback ride around the ring, I'm just blessed to still have my nice horse :)

  11. That's great news, laura!!

    And very good reminder, Alchemy. I get so paranoid about keeping his back strong that sometimes I forget it's ok to take a break for a week, he won't disintegrate overnight!

  12. I just had this very issue with my guy, and I decided to give him the better part of two weeks off, with one long trail ride and one short schooling session in between. He is so much happier now that he is back in work bc we both actually missed each other instead of it just being the routine. When it's not fun, it's time for a change of pace. Attitude has a lot to do with success, and I really am finding that after a little time off from each other, he actually WAS getting what I was asking of him, he was just giving me the middle finger bc he was annoyed with me. Ah, such is life with an opinionated TB.

  13. Wayy true, SouthernSon! I've pretty much done nothing with him aside from doctor his feet for the past week and now am starting to feel the itch again...