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Sunday, February 8, 2009


I vowed to spend more time with my family this year.  Church and family really got the short end of the stick last year, which was my first year seriously riding in endurance rides.  I'm hoping to be more balanced this year.  As a step in the right direction I scheduled an entire weekend with my Grandparents.  No horses, no events, no other purpose than to hang out and enjoy their company.  

After sipping margaritas in front of the TV, watching "Home Improvement", and "Golden Girls", and touring the town to see how much it has changed with Grandma this weekend, the time has come to climb back on the proverbial wagon (or in this case the fitness ball).  
(Pictured throughout this blog are pictures of me at the California International Marathon in 2007.  I completed, but basically crashed and burned the last 6 or so miles.  I'm no where near this fit right now, and I need to be to do the Tevis or other 100 miler)

What words are in endurance?  Here's a few off the top of my head:  Dance (requires a partner....), can (as in "can do"), rude (what is so easy to be when stressed or tired), and crane (what it will take to get me off the horse after my first 100!).  The word "me" is not in endurance.  It is a partnership, and I need to hold up my end of the bargain!  It seems the fitter my horse gets, the more unfit I get.  I can't seem to be able to do both.  (There's that balance thing again)
I have done a 50 unfit and a 50 while in great shape.  It's amazing how much easier this sport is when I'm in decent shape.  
Case study (or "Melinda humiliates herself again!")
At my first 50 I was unable to get off and walk up a very steep hill in the afternoon.  It was VERY hot and kept having to stop at the side of the road and dry heave.  Not good.  By my next ride I had started running again and was able to walk my lame horse into camp on foot, even
 with the elevation over 3,000 feet (I live at sea level).  I have always been in decent shape from leading an active lifestyle.  However, the difference was being in decent shape (able to run a couple of miles etc.) versus actually exercising (strength training, flexibility, and cardiovascular workouts) was tremendous.
So what am I doing now to uphold my end of the partnership?  I can't run right now (grouchy achilles and sore IT band) and currently work precludes swimming.  I've noticed in the last year (I just turned 24) I'm loosing flexibility.  :(  Until I can run or swim, I am walking at least 30 minutes a day and doing a elastic band or exercise ball workout once a day.  The band helps with flexibility (I'm doing mostly pilates based workouts) and the exercise ball helps with balance.  I am amazed how much the ball workouts have helped my riding. 
Here's some great links for anyone looking for fitness ideas.   Feel free to add your own in the comments section.  I'm especially in need of some more elastic band workouts. (6 workouts at 3 levels) (personalized work out plans for every level) (good site for measuring routes walking or running or biking)

1 comment:

  1. Interesting site about the exercise balls! My gym has them available; I've just never known what to do with them. I may try them out.


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