Monday, May 23, 2011

Focus

Things have been pretty chaotic around our place. I have barely have had time to breathe , let alone sit down a write a worthy post. So, I will just try to summarize and give a few updates for now.

I have managed some decent conditioning rides on the weekends with Maggie as well as squeezing out an evening training session or two in the arena during the week. Our average mileage has been anywhere between 7-10 miles on the trail, but much of that is hill climbing. We certainly aren’t setting any records on speed or distance at this point but Maggie is becoming quite fit nonetheless. She constantly amazes me with her strength and willingness to "just keep going". On the down side, I have run into a few “training” issues with her that I am working on. Her “go” button appears to be stuck in the on position and as she has gotten more fit, it just gets a bit worse each time. I had this same issue with her last year but with some concentrated work in the arena, we made some good progress last fall. Maggie was listening well to half halts and would slow up and listen. I was even getting to where I could ask for a couple of different speeds at the trot. This year, we seem to be back to this same problem, however, I realize that that the issue is more about her focus. Her thought is not on me and the task at hand and there's a good reason for it.
For starters, she has become ridiculously attached to the younger gelding she shares paddock space with. We are going to have to separate them but that's a whole other post! It’s a love hate thing between Maggie and Brego, Tom's up and coming gelding. Often times, I am on Maggie and my husband is riding Brego at the same time in the arena and the training session turns into a frustrating battle for all of us. Both horses just worry constantly about where the other one is. It's impossible to get much accomplished if you can't get the horses attention for more than 3 milliseconds at a time.

The second part of the problem is me. It dawned on me this weekend. I have been doing a piss poor job of keeping her thought on me. This year, I have fallen into the trap of just "get on and go". Why?? Well, that ‘s pretty simple…. I am not focused, why should my horse be? I am not even trying to tune into her, why should I expect her to tune in to me, right?

I won’t go into details but there are some major stressors going on in my life right now that I am trying to manage. Unfortunately, its taking my focus away from everything else and at this point, it has to. At least for the time being.

So, pardon me for a while, I might be a bit more absent on blogs, face book and maybe a bit slow to respond to emails as this other situation consumes my time and energy. Eventually, I’ll make it back around to some sense of normalcy in my life and hopefully get back to being more “plugged in” at some point in the future .

Until then, Happy Trails!

3 comments:

Dom said...

Your rides sound awesome. I want to be back out there! Fit horses, lol.

Funder said...

Good luck with Maggie - it's a balancing act, trying to get a horse that listens and pays attention and still keeps chugging forward. And good luck with real life!

Merri said...

the "WHOA" button is highly underrated! I like the WHOA. A lot. we have a horse here that doesn't have much of one. He came to us only knowing how to go fast and having no brakes. Since he's been here, that's mostly what he's continued doing. WHen I take him out, all we do is walk, and practice stopping and slowing down! I let other people ride him fast with no whoa. it's hard to re-teach 'slow' and 'whoa' if they never learned it in the first place (*sigh*).
and the individuals in our herd also have some separation issues - that can definitely work against you too. (*sigh*)
Horses!
(we still love them)
Good luck with Maggie!
- The Equestrian Vagabond