A list, in writing, of my training goals for Arabee (and me) from today through the day of our first LD ride!
Maybe if I get it in writing and publicize it, I'll have an easier time sticking to it. This list assumes I am able to ride 4-5 x per week (weather permitting), that Arabee continues to enjoy the the rides and doesn't get sour - I don't want to push her too hard and take the fun out of it for both of us.
Now - 2/6: Get hoof boots all around, get a good-fitting saddle. In the mean time walk in-hand to familiarize with trails around home and build rider fitness.
2/7 - 2/13: Build up riding time from 30 min walk/trot/canter to about 45 minutes.
2/14-2/20: Build up riding time from 45 minutes walk/trot/canter to 1 FULL hour.
2/21-2/27: Ride mostly at a working to fast trot, with some walking and canter added in for a FULL Hour each ride.
Starting 2/28: Each Saturday as weather and other committments allow - Ride out. As in, trailer away to somewhere and ride with other horses on real trails. At some point I'll need to "practice" camping with Arabee, to make sure she's used to whatever (tying/electric corral) way we overnight her at rides.
2/28-3/6: Longer workouts.
3/7-3/13: Longer workouts, more hills.
3/14-3/20: Faster workouts over same distances
3/21-3/27: Maintain speed, increase hills.
3/28-4/3: Fast(ish) workouts, over hills, varied terrain
4/4-4/10: Fast workouts (trot and canter), on hills, varied terrain. "Peak" conditioning program.
4/11-4/17: Gradually ease-up on workouts, with a day off on Thursday and/or Friday
4/16, 4/17, 4/18: First LD Competition! Day off the day before ride day, trailer in, and set up camp, vet in, and ride to complete and enjoy saddle time!
What do you think? Is this do-able? I believe these are realistic goals that can be accomplished, but I may be way off-base. Who knows, I may not find a good-fitting saddle in time....or any number of things could happen, but Lord-willing - this is my course! Here we go!