Spooking ponies and Scones

First things first, happy mother’s day! Regardless of how you feel about the day it is always nice to say ‘thanks mum!’.

I had another private lesson on Friday – this isn’t usual, normally I ride with a group on a Sunday. So another lesson in spooking! This time I had Au, I ride her quite often but she is of a nervous disposition and being alone in the school with a cat that was jumping out of the trees and ponies galloping about in the field next door I was warned by my instructor that there Au would spook.

I was a little nervous but after her first couple of spooks I calmed down, while she does fly off she is quite easy to stop and it was much more interesting to learn about how to help her through it rather than get all tense. The basic theme was to keep her interested in what I was asking her to do, lots of increasing and decreasing circles in trot using my body to steer her inward then leg yielding to get her out while getting Au to look into the centre of the circle rather than look at the scary fence or trees.

I was also practising slowing my rise in trot then asking her to walk with my voice rather than using my reins at all. She is incredibly responsive to the reins and it can be that she rushes when you hold the reins too tight so it is good to get used to using them only to reinforce the command. We finished up by doing repeated short canters getting lots of power through the canter, it was great getting used to using the inside leg to keep her cantering and also pushing her out to the outside track. Au is known for being the fastest in the school and boy can she fly, great fun all round. These last few lessons which have involved spooking and a fall have been really useful to help me understand how to work a horse through these events, back to my group lessons next week lets see if I remember these tips!

So last week I was meant to run Lasswade 10 miler but unfortunately my sinusitis put paid to that idea. I still went along to cheer some fellow runners on and ended up coming away feeling really inspired. As perhaps can be seen from some of my comments on running I am not the fastest runner but this year I want to improve my times and I feel I can. I saw lots of women of a similar ability to myself coming through at Lasswade at around 80 minutes looking strong and importantly happy, that’s what I want to feel like and look like. I went for my first run today in about a week and a half..yes I was slow and it was a short run but I did it and it didn’t feel tough, well except that during the 30 minutes I was out there was hail, rain, sunshine and snow(!). It is the Deerstalker next weekend, a 5k and a bit race involving obstacles and fording rivers, I will post a review up of the race afterwards. We have done it before and it is great fun, maybe next year we will do the night time race.

A quick mention of the Wartime Wardrobe Challenge, I finally decided to bite the bullet and buy some new leggings and plumped for People Tree black leggings. A lovely fit and I wore them to work on Friday however while getting changed to go horse riding I put my hand clean through the body of the material! I was not impressed. However, I called People Tree and they couldn’t have been more helpful offering me a refund or an exchange and a freepost address to send the faulty leggings back. I am taking the exchange as I have quite a few clothes made by People Tree and nothing like this has ever happened before. I was impressed by their customer service too and wanted to mention that too.

Finally a quick mention of a lovely cafe I visited yesterday. Due to Team Bambi runner being pregnant and the others being ill we decided to go for a walk along Crammond Fall yesterday, the weather was pretty brutal but the scenery lovely. We stopped at the Crammond Falls cafe and it was lovely, delicious homemade scones with jam, a log fire and a friendly cat. I would recommend that if you are out that way you should stop in – friendly service and delicious food, it doesn’t get much better than that.

We did see some hard souls out kite surfing! I hope they went for a cake after that, they would have certainly deserved it. If my swimming ever improves I would love to give this a shot!

kite surfers at Crammond
Looks amazing….and cold!

Miles run: 3

WWC Coupons left: 54


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