Tuesday 17 October 2017

Winter Fitness Plan

With my new (temporary?) work schedule comes some new challenges in my neverending 'keeping pony fit' battle. Basically, I am going to be unavailable a minimum of two consecutive days a week, sometimes 3. A further 2 days, I will only be available after work (ie when it's dark, and I won't be boarding at a place with lights or even an arena). So yeah, basically weekends I can ride whenever, the rest of the week is going to be a bit...challenging.

Lucky for me, B is going to live in a large-ish paddock so it's not like she's locked in a stall when I don't ride. She is also fine to hack in the dark, and the road is quiet. The road also leads directly to the equestrian club grounds, which do contain a small indoor with lights (no jumping allowed in there, though) I have outfitted B with bike lights and reflective gear previously, so riding in the dark between the barn and arena isn't out of the question.

A trusted barn mate and I came up with the following strategy:

Monday/Tuesday: OFF. I am away for work

Wednesday: Can likely ride in evening every second week, depending on what ferry I catch home. Hack to arena, light flatwork or quick longe.

Thursday: Evening ride. hack to indoor, work on dressage.

Friday: Evening ride. hack to outdoor and work on fitness. This could be a bit adventuresome, but the outdoor is  about 200x400 ft and good footing. I think I'm probably safe to do trot and canter sets along the rail with my bike lights assisting? If not, we'll attempt it in the tiny indoor.

Saturday: Long walking trail ride (1.5-2hrs), or light flat work if the weather is unsafe for trails (high wind or snow, mostly)

Sunday: Outdoor arena - jump school.

I've tried to alternate 'hard' (jumping/fitness) days with easier days as much as possible.The name of the game here is going to be multitasking - ie I'm going to work on 'dressage' stuff at the walk while we're hacking to and from, and my jump courses are going to be long and gallop-y in places for fitness. Trail rides are definitely incorporating some hills.

I'm not super attached to this schedule, so if anyone has alternate suggestions, or ideas to make my time more effective, I'm all ears.



  1. I think the best thing to keep in mind is to be fluid and be okay with being fluid as you find your needs fluctuating. It seems like a solid plan tho!

  2. I like doing dressage work outdoors anyway, as much as possible. If you can't jump in the indoor, can you do tiny cavaletti/raised pole grids?

  3. omg those photoshops tho omg

  4. Good plans, hope they can work for you both!

  5. I always love your photo shops so much!! I like LWilliams point, no sense in being too strict or putting too much pressure on either of you.

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