Counting Down Day=298
Grace, Grace and more Grace, where do I start? This little mare was so ready for this ride, it is safe to say that all year we had worked up to this point. While Grace is doing so well, and I am so proud of her, it really took all this time from March until now to get her ready. Even with that said, it takes years (not months) to truly condition a horse due to joints, tendons, ligaments and yes, even bones to strengthen over miles of training. But, do you know what? It was SO worth it. It felt amazing to load her up and be confident in the program we had followed, the method of conditioning we are using and knowing we had done all our homework. I am not trying for a placing, we are riding for a completion. If over the years we bump up in the pack, so be it. Though we finish where we finish and our goal is to finish strong/get the mileage, and we did. 30 of them
Dogs to the sitter, housecare, horse care & chicken care all arranged, trailer fully loaded with enough snacks to keep the kiddos happy all weekend. We packed extra everything for Grace & for us. Extra food, blankets, batteries, flashlights , bridles etc etc. You get the picture. ALL week we had been watching carefully the weather as it approached, the forecast was not good. Night temps to almost freezing and rain/snow in the forecast. God Bless Jim. His attitude was, "Let's load up an go, Babe, if you get up there, and it is too bad weather, we can always come back home." Wow, just wow, how can I say no to that? So away we went, into a very uncertain weather forecast.
All this hustle and bustle is why I have not checked in. Well I can tell you I had a most glorious ride on this little mare. We stuck to the run/walk/run theory of intervals, which I love, and it has been so good for her. She looks just amazing before, during and after the 30 miles and happy. This was her longest ride and now I am I think pretty recovered from the weekend in colder temps, ate almost nothing on Saturday/Sunday- so the scale briefly dropped down a few pounds and even though I stuck under my calories, it jumped back up- though who is to say exactly why? More muscle? Or also because I started my cycle? That one slice of birthday cake for our son's 21st birthday? I have stayed at or under my calorie restriction all except that birthday cake. Today I start the hustle on the elliptical, no program, just starting the habit on the elliptical. My brother and I talk on the phone during his commute to work almost every day, so I am thinking that is a good time to put in earbuds and start ellipticalling (?) is that even a word?
Part of why I want to do this is to be the best ride partner for Grace that I can be, so all year we focused on her; now it is time to focus on my conditioning. If I can, I will keep working her over the winter, though the focus is completely changed. We will be working on her topline muscling through dressage work and strengthening her there. Grace's mother suffered part of her life with arthritis that was aggravated by her previous owners jumping her at a young age of 2, she had injured her deep flexor tendons, though also she had weak stifles. Part of the reason I am getting Grace into an athletic activity is the same reason I am for myself, to have a better quality of life for both her and I, and hopefully both of us will have healthier elder years than our moms. I hate to say it that way, though learning by observation is better than suffering the same fate.
293 Days to go- and today I am finally starting the other part of the plan, the elliptical
and Grace is resting for a solid week or ten days, getting pampered and a bunch of neck rubs, treats and love.
Me, I'm back to using my water bottle to get at least 40 ounces in, back to the elliptical and hopefully back to my run walk run so I can get that turkey trot in!
No more trips planned, so this should be a regular update now!
*****edited to add a pic from my elliptical today******
Two miles in->working towards being that lighter rider for Grace next year
Weight over the weekend dropped to 215.3 then back to 217