Friday, September 24, 2010

I'm Back.... on Track!

Yesterday marked a grand return to our Fast Track @ Home with a lovely horseback ride in Briones, the regional park that sits just across the road from the barn I board my horses at. We took the Orchard Trail and Dove was brave, curious, athletic and fun. We rode with a good friend who brought her young horse. While Dove wasn't 100% confident the entire ride, she was calm, trusting, motivated and willing. Awesome my little rockstar is! She proved to be a great partner for my friend's young horse too. We even opened and closed gates. A major progressive note for us. Yes all that gate petting and patience paid off! I had Dove loaded down with saddle bags carrying yummy treats for our ponies and us- little bags of hay, grapes, pears (Dove's favorite), water and power bars. We stopped mid ride for our snacks. The horses were delighted to discover what Dove was carrying. Their little pierced lips stretching out for one more bite of juicy pear said it all.

That was an awesome kick off to getting Back on Fast Track @ Home. Although my horses and I have been doing little mini sessions here and there over the past 3 weeks, I haven't felt well enough to start back on a steady program. Frankly I was frustrated at how quickly and easily I got winded and tired. Thank goodness for Parelli and working on my emotional fitness or I may not have survived. Plus in the midst of all this, Dove kicked Spice good on her left stifle last Sunday. That left her with a wound and nixed our lesson with Rachel next Monday. Big bummer, REALLY big bummer.

Instead this week we all played when we could and had loads of undemanding time. At one point while giving Spice a quick bath in front of their pens, I noticed that Dove was standing in the line of the water spray. Hmmm, how interesting. She usual moves off rather abruptly. Did she want some relief from the heat or did she notice Spice getting some grazing time during bath time? Probably the latter, however while Spice as drying I took Dove out for a bath and she stood perfectly still. Even when the hose wrapped around her legs, which used to send her into orbit, she did not move. This was amazing progress. Where did this come from? What helped her be more confident? I am reminded of the saying "it is often the little things that make the biggest difference." This gives me much to think about and observe.

So today we will start by playing the same games we have dabbled in these past few weeks: The "perfect sideways everytime" game and the traveling "straight on a circle" game. Sort of a pick up where we left off kind of day. I will check our progress online and see if we can expand these games back into our freestyle riding sessions. I pledge to appreciate the "try" and reward our progress "today" vs. getting stuck in how far behind it may feel I have fallen during this time off. Principles before goals. No matter how fun and rewarding the goals would be to attain, positive and progressive principles will carry us through a lifetime of ups and downs. And help us open many more gates in regional parks!


  1. Aren't those "where did this come from?" moments just the best?!?!?! I love when things "just seem to happen"....forgetting the time and all the effort that went into getting there. They are like gifts from the horse gods.

  2. Well put Jamie! ... it really does feel like a gift.

  3. Hi Kim,
    Great post and sounds like so much fun. I have just got back to New Zealand having completed my Fast track. Wow what an amazing course....truly is all they say and more...just loved the 'freight train' progression!!


  4. Welcome home Jane! The Fast Track certainly does not leave us with idle hands or hooves. Fantastic that you had such an amazing time too.