Endurance Training Without Leaving the Yard🏇💨 


I wish every ride was as nice as tonight’s endurance training with Popgun.💥🔫🦄🇸🇪

 We made the most out of a long and otherwise boring day by riding 16.4 km in 1 hour and 45 minutes, despite barely leaving the yard and walking a total of 40 minutes. 🚜 🌾

The ground was perfect on the path around the big field (800 meters) and in the summer pasture (300 meters) and we could train completely undisturbed at a nice and even pace. All the joys of a racetrack just outside the stable doors. 🏇💨🌾🏁🌙💫🙏

Popgun was wearing our new saddle in navy, Royal blue and Gold from Exclusive Horsewear. It looked smashing and matched  the blue biothane bridle perfectly. 

Our ride in detail:

  • Walking 20 minutes (100 meters + 800 meters * 2 = 1.7 km)  
  • Trotting 2 big laps in both directions (800 meters *4 laps = 3.2 km)  
  • Cantering 5 small laps clockwise (300 meters * 5 laps = 1.5 km in 5 minutes) 
  • Trotting 1 small lap clockwise (300 meters * 1 lap) 
  • Cantering 5 small laps counter-clockwise (300 meters * 5 laps = 1.5 km in 5 minutes) 
  • Trotting 1 small lap counter-clockwise (300 meters * 1 lap) 
  • Cantering 2 big laps counter-clockwise (800 meters * 2 laps = 1.6 km) 
  • Cantering 2 big laps clockwise (800 meters * 2 = 1.6 km) 
  • Trotting 2 big laps clockwise (800 meters * 2 laps = 1.6 km) 
  • Trotting 2 big laps counter-clockwise (800 meters * 2 laps = 1.6 km) 
  • Walking 20 minutes ( 800 meters * 2 laps = 1.6 km)  


Approximate time and distance in each Gate: 
Walking: 40 minutes of walking a total of 3,3 km (20 minutes * 2). 

Trotting: 35 minutes of trotting a total of 7 km (3.2 km + 30 meters * 2 laps + 3.2 km) 

Cantering
: 20 minutes of cantering a total of 6.2 km (1.5 km * 2  + 1.6 km * 2 ) 

Time spent stopped, moving between fields,  slowing down and walk in sharp corners: 10 minutes.  

Total: 16.5 km in 105 minutes. 
Sponsored by 🔸Exclusive Horsewear🔸 and 🔹Puls och Träning Kungsängen🔹

A Confident Rider makes a Brave Horse

Tonight’s jump training showed us that we are slowly heading toward where we want to be. 💛🦄🏆🏅

Maybe we will sign up for a small pay&jump before or next endurance competition? 🤔  And if we do: where and when should we go? 

It was obvious that we still have some insecurities every time we try going over a new jump. But as soon as we’ve flown over a particular fence in a good way then we can jump it again without an extra thought. This  could maybe be a problem at a competition since one wouldn’t get the chance to jump the course a few times before starting. I guess, unless we sign up for multiple classes. 

Anyway, I am not quite sure how show jumpers usually start out a new horse’s carrier. Based on past experiences, I would say that most people tend to be less careful(or paranoid) than I am and I feel most people just sort of go out there and take a leap of faith. I am not sure. Perhaps there is something to be said for going and getting that first nervous competition over with. Maybe that is exactly what we need to do just because it goes against the perfectionist inside of me that loves to scream for stability and order. 

Popgun would probably think it was quite awesome as long as there was jumping (and running) involved. 

Another thing that I thought about a lot today was how much my own attitude between the jumps rubbed off on Popgun. 

We had just landed after the small black, red and white fence and were cantering towards the red oxer when a sudden flash of uncertentity came over me. 

I felt like I needed another second to prepare myself for the new jump since it was new and for some reason felt ginormous combated to the other fences ( even though it wasn’t). And this tiny change in attitude from my side immediately rubbed off on Popgun. 

My short moment of hesitation was enough to make him sort of run sideways and miss the next jump, which would count as a clear refusal in a competion. (And that is something you don’t want because it counts as 4 faults, assuming this endurance rider remembers correctly.)  

It took one more failed attempt before I took the extra time to clear my mind and properly convince him that I wasn’t afraid anymore. Then he jumped. And let me tell you, when we’ve got our flow working properly, my unicorn sure can jump.  

To me this just shows what a differance my attitude can make when it comes to our performance together. I have a feeling that I might need to remind myself about that in the future(probably on multiple occasions too.
One thing is certain: my Popgun sure looked good in his new saddle pad from Exclusive Horsewear 💙 💛 It has his name embroidered onto it with gold letters which made our outfit really Pop. 💥🔫


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Sponsored by 🔸Exclusive Horsewear🔸and 🔹Puls och Träning Kungsängen🔹

Packing list for Jump training

This evening we are going to do some light jump training at Johannesberg’s Castle again. It is a 30 minute drive to get there with a trailer, which means that we have to be somewhat organized in order to get there on time. 🦄👑 

The actual training starts at 18.00 so we usually try to start loading up around 17.00, just to make sure we don’t end up late. Before then, Popgun needs to be wearing all of his trailer equipment and everything else needs to be packed.

Things usually take longer than planned so it makes sense for me to make things as easy as possible to get ready. We also need to make sure we have enough time to bring the horses in and preferably finish up all the stable chores before we go. 

To speed things up and to make sure we don’t forget anything, I decided to make a little packing list for us to follow. 

Packing list: 

Trailer:

  • Trailer protectors 
  • BellBoots
  • Tail protector
  • Trailer Cover from Exclusive Horsewear
  • Halter 
  • Leadrope 
  • Bucket with tasty treats for Popgun
  • Hay
  • Warm gloves
  • Empty Bag to store trailer equipment in

Riding:

Sponsored by 🔸Exclusive Horsewear🔸 and 🔹Puls & Träning Kungsängen🔹

Ready for our Flag 🇸🇪

Arshaq’s new saddlepad from Exclusive Horsewear makes my little baby look ready to take on the world. 🇸🇪💛🏆🐴🌟

I really like the yellow with blue and gold trim on Arshaq and I love seeing his name things. I just know that he will and We took a ride in the snowy paddock to celebrate. ❄️🙏

There was a pony in the paddock when we got there and that would have caused a few problems for us in the past. Today, thankfully, it worked just fine, even when they were cantering.

Some strange creaking noices just outside the paddock were, apparently, way more worthy of my little Prince’s wide looks of concern.

(Because, as we all know, that must be what chestnut-eating monsters sound like.)

But I feel like I did my job in keeping him preoccupied. And I didn’t feel like I might potentially get dumped in the snow, not even once, which is a step up from some of our previous rides together.

We walked most of the time in a big circle near the gate but we changed directions often and I asked him to move laterally for a couple of steps every once in a while. We also trotted for a couple of laps in each direction but not more than that. Overall he was unusually sweet and calm again, despite (or perhaps because) the reins being attached to the sidepull again (and not to the very kind bit we use). Or maybe it was because of our progress together or because mom was there to keep us company in the dark (just in case I fell off on my face). Either way, maybe it would be good to call out the dentist again even though she was recently here and said that nothing was wrong. (Just in case it isn’t my riding skills making all the difference.)

Our biggest problem came towards the end of our ride when the sweet pony that was keeping us company (and protecting us from potential chestnut-eating monsters in the bushes) left to go inside. But I feel like we got through that in a good way too.

We finished our ride in a good place and I rode him to the stable door, got off somewhat gracefully, walked back with a calm baby to the paddock, turned off the lights, walked us over to the trailer to check out what my mom was up to and then brought him inside. Just to make a point.

I love finishing our ride in ways like this. To me it is the feeling we get from the end of the ride that is most important because that is the one that I will remember the longest.

Sponsored by 🔸Exclusive Horsewear🔸 and 🔹Puls & Träning Kungsängen🔹

Talent over love? 

Maria rode Shahina and I rode Popgun this evening for about 1 hour.We trained dressage in the paddock and then cooled off by taking a walk outside around one of the fields. 🌾🐎✨🌙 

With Popgun I focused mainly on extending his strides while carefully trying different lateral movements. He was very well behaved and soft today, which made everything feel a lot more fun and easy. 

Afterwards, young Arshaq got fussed over a little more than usual, which he really loves. I feel very blessed to have such kind horses who really love cuddles. 🍼💕

I don’t think I could ever own a horse who I didn’t deeply love, no matter how talented the horse was. It is wonderful to win, sure, but I could never put that above a loving bond with my horse. I need to feel my heart melt every time I look in to their big brown eyes. This way I remain inspired and even the longest days feel worth while. 

But how could you not love these faces? 

As you can see, Arshaq got to act like a big boy today and wear a saddle while I finished up the rest of the stable chores. Pink isn’t exactly Arshaq‘s color so I can barely wait for the flashy new blue and gold saddle pads I have ordered from my dear Sponsor Exclusive Horsewear. They are going to look great on all of them! 

Sponsored by 🔸Exclusive Horsewear🔸 and 🔹Puls och Träning Kungsängen🔹

Jump training

We liked the jump training at Johannesberg’s Castle so much last week that we decided to go back again today with Popgun. We brought Shahina along as company again too. 

Popgun more than lived up to his name today and was almost as strong as a Shotgun instead of a toy gun. He practically dragged me around the course, which is not exactly ideal. At last he shows a lot of enthusiasms. So all I need to do now is install a set of breaks and we will be good to go. (Or not. Our technique needs a lot of work as well.)

The fact that Popgun had rested both yesterday and the day before probably didn’t make things easier either. Yesterday evening, my mom and I went to a an interesting presentation on equine respiratory conditions. The night before I needed to do school work and my mom went to a presentation held by Endurance rider Annelie Eriksson (which I was told was really great). Both days we only had time to do the chores and neither of us got out riding at all. 

But I am really hoping this jump training thing has turned into something we will do every week. Not only do we get to work on our jump moves, Popgun also gets some extra trailer training. 

The only problem for me is that my own confidence level can, at times, get properly pushed down. We are both so new to jumping after all so sometimes look, quite frankly, ridiculous. It takes quite a lot of rider meditation to tell yourself that it is alright to always be the one that the trainer needs to lower the jumps for. You’d think I’d get used to it but apparently not. I will be singing with joy on the day when we are on the same level as everyone else. 

I put together a little movie of both good parts and mistakes so try not to laugh too hard when you watch it. The music is fun too so make sure to turn it on by turning your phone off silent mode. 

Sponsored by 🔹Puls och Träning Kungsängen🔹 and 🔹Exclusive Horsewear🔹 

Overcoming Fear

Our dressage trainer Per came out today and trained Arshaq and myself.

We worked mainly on my own confidence as a rider since that needs a bit more improvement.

My main problem right now is that I need to stop letting my mind paint up a million scenarios which all end with Arshaq bolting home and falling on the ice.

The idea of any one of the horses getting hurt terrifies me more than anything. But Arshaq is the youngest and the one most likely to do silly things while riding, so naturally I worry most about him.

This fear of him falling on the ice has been stuck in the back of my mind for the past month and I feel like it makes me look tense and ride worse than I can. I really want to (and know that I need to) work on it and eventually get over it. But it doesn’t get better when the best place we have to train dressage right now happens to be in such an open and vulnerable place as the summer pasture. It felt so much easier in the paddock that isn’t right next to the other pastures (with horses in them that love to join in on our fun games).

I keep telling myself that I love the opertunity to practice these sorts of things. (But right then, as I sit in the saddle and wait for Popgun or Shahina to set off at a canter right next to us, I quite honestly do not.)

A trainer like Per being there to supervise makes all the difference to me. He tells me when to “be brave and do my job” and when to let myself feel proud and take a step back.

And thank goodness for Adam who joins us out in the freezing cold during every training, just to film and make me feel more safe and confident.

So today we took some steps back to work on my attitude. We walked around in big circles, changing directions and trying to keep Arshaq’s (and my) mind busy. It was cold and a little windy and I could feel that Arshaq was a little excited. We kept turning, stopping and walking while I tried to separate the safe reality from the endless number of “what ifs” that were starting to tunnel their way through my brain.

Once walking felt natural to me again, we started trotting for a little while and nothing dramatic happened. We then went back to a walk and tried working on some “baby leg yields” which went surprisingly well despite me still being quite distracted. Arshaq appreciated all the praise and I started to feel a little bit more confident.

We then tried trotting again in a big circle and I gradually felt like I could breath properly again and trust him enough to ask him to trot faster. All of a sudden I could laugh and smile again!

Since this felt like a big sucess and the perfect time to stop, we finished up and walked back to the stable while I still felt like we could conquer the world again.


After Arshaq’s dressage lesson, we brought in Popgun and Shahina and let Arshaq out in the pasture to play with Nipeta.

I then rode Popgun while Maja rode Shahina for 13 km in almost 2 hours. 🦄👑 We went on the road down past the lakes and took it quite easy due to all the ice.


The best part about riding on those roads is, without a doubt, all the climbing. It makes even the calmest rides feel like a good workout.
My Shahina loves cantering, especially up mountains, and was a little excited on the way back but otherwise it was quite a nice calm ride. Popgun was still quite poppy again today but was looking quite nice I thought while we were practicing our dressage homework out on our trailride.

Sponsored by 🔹Puls och träning Kungsängen🔹 and 🔸Exclusive Horsewear🔸

Dancing in the Dark 


Shahina and Adam came along to babysit when Arshaq and I went for a 20 minute walk today. She is so amazing to bring along with the young and less experienced horses and she really likes feeling part of what ever it is we are doing. 🦄👑 

It was dark and icey on both the roads and in the paddock so I decided it would be best to stay in one of the summer pastures again today. Things usually feel a lot scarier for everyone in the dark.

But Arshaq was very well behaved, even though he did do one small surprised dance. To be fair, that was only because our wonderful Shahina made a small bunny jump as a light outside the stable turned on. 
Baby also made some dragon noises at a rock that he thought might be acting suspicious. But being the adventurous 4 year old that he is, Arshaq continued by it and didn’t look at it the next few times we past it. (It is strange for me that he is already 4 this year. Just think, next year we will be able to do endurance clearrounds already.) 

Arshaq walked first the entire time as usual, which works surprisingly well. We even walked away from Shahina a few times and also took an extra lap around the yard once Shahina had gone inside. 

We’ve got a fun weekend ahead of us with a lot of riding. (And I’ve got lots of nice pictures from the competition to post too.)   

Sponsored by🔹P&T Kungsängen🔹 and 🔸Exclusive Horsewear🔸

Getting things done without stress

Picture taken by Maja (@ticitic)

Tonight Maja came to the stable and we took turns riding Popgun and Shahina for about 1,5 hours. 

I was initially hoping that we could ride in the paddock but I felt that the ground was still too icey for us to ride on, despite spikes. So we made our way over to one of the summer pastures instead and rode some light dressage work there. 

This was Maja’s second time riding Popgun and her first time ever riding my Queen Shahina so we took it very slow. It’s clear that they are all going to get along just fine. 

Popgun was rather excited today though and didn’t seem the least bit tiered or bothered from last night’s jumping adventure. I think he will like going back there again next week and try to show off some more.  

It was great getting so much wonderful help today at the stable from Maja, Adam, my dad and my mom. I almost felt a little strange being at the stable for only 3 hours and still getting everything we needed to do done without a lot of stress. 

So now I am going to take my time and order some new saddle pads from my lovely sponsor Exclusive Horsewear. My brilliant plan is to match the colors with my favorite flashy covers, as seen in the picture. 🦄💙 

Sponsored by 🔹P&T Kungsängen🔹 and 🔹Exclusive Horsewear🔹 

Three rides in one day 


Today Popgun and I went on 11 km walk in 2 hours with Nipeta and My mom.🦄💛 
Popgun and I worked on our dressage moves he was looking pretty fancy. I ended up getting so cold by the time that we turned so I got off and walked the 5,5 km back to the stable. But it was totally worth it. 😂☃ 


Baby Arshaq and Queen Shahina also got dressage lessons today so I ended up spending a total of 11 hours at the stable and I am now quite tiered. 
Sponsored by 🔹P&T Kungsängen🔹 and 🔹Exclusive Horsewear🔹