Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Being Consistent

The Pony being oh so cute  <3

I love getting things done and I love being productive and I love doing things. Get the picture?
That being said, I am terrible at being consistent. Horrendous. Truthfully so.

Now that you know all of that, you should know that it is no surprise that I want to get all sorts of things done with my lovely equines (not to mention the rest of my life, however minuscule that might be compared to the horses). It should also not surprise you that I don't actually get most of those things done, due to my lack of consistency.

My goal has been for some time to work with Lady every morning. Half of my reasoning for this is that she needs the exercise daily. The rest of the reasoning comes from the new limitations of my schedule. So far I don't think I've made it through one entire week without skipping at least two mornings. Ugh.

I worked with Lady Monday morning and yesterday morning. That makes two times so far this week.

It's been raining a lot (yippee!!) and that means a lot of mud, which also means I'm a bit afraid to do anything that might cause Lady to slip or slide, since she tends to get sore and stiff quite easily. On Monday, we did just groundwork and my goal was simply to get about 20 minutes of trot done, or until she was warm. We worked on a few different things from my list of goals for the month, but did a lot of transitions on the circle, or rather, we did for a while until she offered  me a lovely canter and I stood in confusion and shock while she cantered around me for nearly four laps before asking to stop and come in. It was quite muddy and I could tell she was having a little bit of trouble handling it, but it was oh-so-cool to see her trying her heart out. We usually have trouble holding the canter for a single lap, but she offered and gave so much more this time.

Best thing that ever happened to me. Big sister is almost an exact tie.  Tehe.

Yesterday morning, we didn't actually get a "workout" done, or rather, she didn't break a sweat or even get warm. I, on the other hand, did sweat a little. We did a little bit of groundwork, mostly focusing on expression, until she wasn't pinning her ears or wrinkling her nose whenever I asked for something.
(Side note: I really wish I could see her face when I'm riding. It would make things so much easier!)
When she was being nice and sweet again, I attached reins to her halter and got on bareback for a ride. We worked on a little bit of flexion and yields and then worked on the far side of the arena for the rest of the time. She likes to drift in to the center of the arena/gates/feeding spot/whatever and I wanted to work on that, as well as I like having the fence for support.
She was quite lovely the entire time. Her back-up was soft and quiet, no hollowing at all! Yay! We went up and down the one fence, doing walk/trot transitions and hindquarter/forequarter yields. I was very very pleased with her trot too, very forward but it didn't feel like she was rushing, and I was able to sit it quite well. Another yay!
Funny ah-ha moment: during the entire ride, I had to keep a bit of my concentration on keeping her straight on the inside (outside? not sure yet...) track. I'm trying to this more by guiding her whole body or pushing her hindquarters or shoulder over rather than just using my reins to put her nose back on track. Well, when we were going along to the right, she was pretty obedient and would listen when I asked her to bend. But, when we would go to the left, she was stiff and would continue to push her left shoulder into the arena instead of more towards the fence. Later on, driving to town, I realized that she was not just being pushy or disobedient, but was mirroring me. My left shoulder has been giving me trouble again and was quite stiff when I got up this morning. Therefore, I was asking for something, but blocking it with my body.
At least its an easy fix, just relax that shoulder and be more allowing through it.

I've been pretty inconsistent about updating here lately, which only proves my point about myself. But I've been sick more often the last two weeks, so I've done less with the ponies, and I'm still working on writing 30K words in my novel this month, so whenever I sit down to write, it makes sense to work on that.  :)

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