I’m planning to ride regularly this winter. Nothing crazy. No huge mileage goals or anything. But I’d like to try to maintain Dressy’s fitness level as much as possible through the winter. And King needs regular exercise to keep him healthy. So it means riding two horses. Brooke is planning to come every Sunday, as she did last winter. So that means both horses will get ridden on Sundays.
It’s my time and energy that is the problem really. I work until around lunchtime seven days a week, and then have to go back at 3pm to help bring in horses and feed. So I have about a three hour window. If I get home, have lunch, get changed, clean mud off the horse, tack up, ride, untack, and drive back to work, I have time enough for about an hour and a half ride. Assuming all goes smoothly. And that I don’t have stuff I absolutely must do (put gas in the truck, or get groceries, or pick up horse feed, etc.)
I started at the beginning of December, and have mostly done pretty well so far. Missed a few days right at the beginning when I had Dressy’s several injuries to deal with. But I seem to be riding about every other day at the moment. Of course the weather has been quite warm. Strangely warm really. Today it was 6C (about 43F). So the ground was soggy. The soil is all clay around here, so that means that the footing is very slippery and boggy when it’s wet. We can’t go fast, and today was mostly walking with just a bit of slow trotting here and there. I figure it’s still exercise. And way better than the muddy paddock she’s standing around in otherwise. It would be better if the ground froze and we had a layer of snow to cushion it a bit.
One thing that’s helping to motivate me a little bit is the blogger’s race that I signed up for. It runs for a year, and is just a cumulative mileage competition. Using gps tracks as proof of distance. It’s a little depressing to note that some of those bloggers live in places that have nice weather all freaking year long though. Ack. I’m going to have to ride in blizzards to keep up. Well… assuming we ever get a blizzard this year. Maybe it will just be MUD all winter. I might actually prefer a blizzard.