If you see me, say yes

Another long weekend for me! I love it!!

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Piles of ribbons and awards from back in the day. Good memories!

Victoria Day weekend here, and it was fairly quiet for us. Lots of  yard work, house work, organizing, running, riding and family time. We put up a trellis, rabbit-proofed the yard (mostly) so Tucker could enjoy the outdoors with me, and we put up a rack so I could display some race medals and ribbons. I took a real walk down memory lane sorting through some old awards…Ah memories… I am planning to donate old ribbons and medals, just have to find the appropriate place to do so.

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Riding was good, I mixed up my outdoor and indoor rides to keep Oats’ feet happy (he does get very footsore very easily). The weather could have been nicer, it was cool and grey on and off, cloudy as well and it rained on us on Saturday!

I ran on the weekend too, staying away from longer runs at this point, not ready to go long yet so ended up doing 11km on Saturday, a bit of trail running with Ian in Cobble Hill on Sunday, and then 7km on Monday mixed terrain (some beach, some grass, mostly pavement). We were able to visit with Ian’s parents at their farm on Sunday, which went well. I even found a decorative knife (kirpan?) that had washed up on the beach. Crazy eh?

The weather really cleared up on Monday late afternoon/evening and it was clear and so gorgeous! Chilly though, woah. We wrapped up the weekend by walking to the breakwater, and then enjoying a beer on the patio at the Breakwater Bistro. A great way to end the weekend.

Forever Today

Yes I’m on a real I’m from Barcelona kick right now, apparently. Anyways, I had my jump lesson in the pouring rain last night, and I did my dressage semi-private also in the rain on Tuesday. This is a recap of Tuesday!

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Back to the field!

We worked in the big field – ooh- exciting! As it turns out, I need to be better about not ‘Yahoo-ing’ around the field only, because when I go to do work in it, it gets exponentially…harder….when your pony is used to kind of just screwing around in it.

Nevertheless, it was fun! And hard! But fun! We used the angles and the elevation- small hills, going sideways across the field, terrain changes, to our advantage and as exercises.

My lesson partner and I warmed up, and then we worked on straightness with Karen. Easier said than done in a field, wow. I wobbled my

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Dressage like this, except it was grey and rainy.

way across, was not straight pretty much anytime…Even with picking a focal point (trees). We trotted across the field, walked, halted, did a turn on the forehand 3X (I got seasick doing this?? He was spinning too fast and I was getting dizzy. Karen said to look up instead of at his neck if I was feeling sick), and then trot or canter back in a straight line, trot, walk, halt and more turns on the forehand in the opposite direction.

Next, we cantered up a hill, trotted the turn and did sitting trot (VERY collected/controlled) down. Wow. My abs!

A few reps of this, and we worked to an even more steep hill and attempted canter down it. Key word here: Attempted. Yeah it kind of went oh, big trot, canter, SPLAT!

A big farm machine started rattling across the field next door, and you could just hear what the horses were thinking…BOOM! So we trotted to the top of the field to continue/wrap up our lesson. It was more trot-canter transitions, and in the attempt on the downhill, be totally ok with not getting the transition. It was more important to make the attempt, and be able to control the trot immediately afterwards. It was pretty hard! Oats got excited on the downhill and wanted to start shaking his head, etc.

It rained on and off the whole time. Yay…Our summer weather has been SO BAD. UGH. What shitty weather! If it’s not raining/drizzly/grey/foreboding, it’s sunny, cold and soooo freaking windy. Blah.

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Good rides, bad weather.

MEC Big Wild Challenge 2015- Race Review~

First up, know that this is no ordinary race. It’s not even a race at all- no timing mats! Crazy eh?

It’s more of an ‘adventure’ run through the trails of East Sooke Park, starting at Aylard Farms. I signed up primarily because I was planning on running with a friend who unfortunately was injured the week before and was unable to run, but no matter! We were going to do it anyways in her honour 🙂

Me looking weird at the start...photo courtesy of MEC.

Me looking weird at the start…photo courtesy of MEC.

We did the 12k distance and it’s funny but I was contemplating the 21k distance (jesus, so glad I didn’t) initially and then didn’t sign up for it. THANK GOD. The 12k, for your reference, took me about 1:55:30? Yeah, so the 12k took me longer to ‘run’ than a half marathon. I know, I know!

This was because of the trail. Wild, wooly, wet and slippery. The trail is no joke. I put run in quotations because I didn’t even end up running much during the race, it was more scrambling and climbing over rocks, boulders and tree roots. Something I tend to suck spectacularly at. I slipped hard a couple times and fell about three times, one time on a bit of a cliffside and man, that freaked me out!

My arms hurt after the race, mostly because I was using them to pull myself up, or down, on the trail. Crazy eh?

I was covered in mud after, even had a pretty fancy dirt unibrow going on after much to the amusement of my friends. At the turn-around, they had these nice ‘Go’ bar samples, so I stuffed one in my pants, gulped some Gatorade, and turned around and kept hoofing it. I was sweating so much it was running into my eyes, and I think that’s where the dirt unibrow came from- me rubbing my eyes with my grubby paws.

I was afraid of hurting myself. That kept me from really enjoying myself. The trail seemed like a great place to fall and hit your head, or break an ankle…

Looking relatively fresh at the finish...Photo courtesy of MEC.

Looking relatively fresh at the finish…Photo courtesy of MEC.

So it was quite a hairy experience, I’m glad I did it, but unlike my friends–I’m not sure I would do it again! I’ve now done two trail races and quite frankly I am a bit too competitive to let it go on the trail–I want to race! Also I’m pretty terrible at trail running- just not agile or balanced enough I suppose and that affects my confidence.

I was so thirsty after too, which surprised me–it was not a warm day, it was chilly and drizzly but I suppose my exertion was very great.

The food after was excellent! Small wrap bites, smoked cheese, pasta salad (yum!), juice, coffee, really soft cookies, two-bite brownies, bananas. I can’t complain about the food, it was super tasty! Too bad my hands were filthy, haha.

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I had some scratches on my wrists, and legs and mud splattered all the way up my legs. It was time to go home, shower, and then zip off to catch Brave Shores at Rifflandia!