Goals, Trail Rides & Spas!

So the other day I had these GRAND plans. Seriously, well above the plans I had initially set (see 2018 Goals). I triumphantly told my trainer – I want to do the Novice 3 Day at Galway at the end of the year! Well, I must have sounded incredibly confident because he said “OK!”. We (well I was, at least!) were SUPER excited and I got to thinking about the rest of my show season, planning conditioning schedules and PROMISING myself I’d get Zin out at least 6 days a week and hopefully start trail riding more. Yay – I love goals and plans and things to look forward to! I was SO looking forward to steeplechase and learning more about how to properly condition a horse. It would be so much fun!

Well fast forward to all of ONE day after my grand plans and, surprise! Galway doesn’t have a novice three day at the end of the year, only a training three day. Needless to say I was a bit disappointed, but quickly recovered. I could still learn how to properly condition my horse, condition myself, and prepare for steeplechase – at the Rebecca Training 3 Day Next year!! Ok, ok, I know that is INCREDIBLY far fetched (like .00000000012% chance we will be going training at the beginning of the year), but you never know. It’s something we are thinking about.

Anyway, despite our short lived goal, it still is important to make sure your horse is fit for it’s job and because of that I’ve decided I want to incorporate trail riding once a week. While the goal is to trail ride once a week, with being a mom and working full time and riding in lessons 4 other days a week …. I’m not sure if we will ALWAYS get to go once a week. But even once every other week would be better than nothing! So Sunday morning I got up bright and early with some fellow barn mates to head to Jack London State Park. Jack London is a beautiful park with gradual hills that are great for building fitness. It is SO good for horses to do slow, long work and trail riding is an excellent way to accomplish that. We rode for about 2 hours and all the horses and pones were fantastic, albeit a bit tired at the end! Zinnie actually led the way most of the time and kept up a brisk, forward and relaxed walk – so now I know it’s possible for in the dressage ring, HA!

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Trail riding with my favorite barn buddies!

After a full week of training and a long trail ride Sunday, I decided Monday was going to be a relaxing spa day for Zinnie! After work, I headed out to go spend quality time with Ms. Zinfandel. As much as she loves working, Zin also loves attention and cuddles and sometimes it’s nice to just relax and hang out with your horse!

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Zinnie mid spa treatment … she’s wondering where her grain is!

I can be pretty OCD about grooming, and try to curry and brush Zin well before every ride as well as hose (or sponge if it’s cold) her off and remove all the sweat marks from her coat. Of course, she is a horse, and loves to make herself dirty, so we started our spa day with a nice curry with one of those soft, gel like curry combs. Zin can be pretty sensitive and I find she much prefers the softer curry comb. After her coat was nice and clean it was time for her liniment bath! And speaking of sensitive horses, Zin can be VERY sensitive to liniment, even diluted liniment. We had been using the Absorbine liniment, you know the one in the yellow container, and she was NOT a fan. I don’t blame her, it made my skin tingle too every time I used it.

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Zinnie says “oooo that liniment smells nice!”

Eventually I need to purchase the SoreNoMore liniment, but for her Monday spa day, I used the brand I had – it’s called “SoreEze” by Durvet. It seems pretty similar to SoreNoMore, it is natural and not harsh. The bottle says you don’t have to dilute it, but since Zin is really sensitive I decided to dilute it a bit anyway. She seemed to really like it and didn’t pin her ears and dance around like she’s done with the stronger liniments before. This particular liniment has arnica, wtich hazel, rosemary and bergamot and smells WONDERFUL. It smells soothing and relaxing and lovely – seriously, I would take a bath in it if it wasn’t so expensive.

Since it was pampering day, I thought it would be a good time to FINALLY get rid of the “cannon crud” on Zin’s left hind. Despite multiple washings, it has been there for longer than I care to admit. For those of you who are fortunate enough to have never experienced it, cannon crud is basically a crusty grease-y layer that forms on the horses hind cannon bones. It never made Zin lame, but it sure was unsightly! I’m hoping the products I used will help clean it up. I purchased a bunch of Eqyss Grooming Products to do a product review and see if they are worth the price tag they carry!

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Grooming product haul! 🙂

I think Zin was quite pleased to have a day of pampering and relaxation. She really is such a lovable horse and enjoys attention from people. I’m hoping to get back out on the trails this Sunday, even if it means a solo trip! Then next week we are off to Paso Robles for an event ….. let’s hope I remember all the fences this time 😉

2 thoughts on “Goals, Trail Rides & Spas!

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