Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Riding with friends for motivation

I've been a little behind on blogging because of our busy holiday weekend, but on Friday morning I rode with a fellow boarder, someone I haven't ridden with before but one of the few people at my barn who rides English (and she actually rides Western, too — I'm an oddity at my barn, I guess).  She likes to get out there early, so meeting her motivated me in more than one way — to get up and out to the barn earlier than usual, and to get some good riding in.

Friday was a gorgeous day, the first day in a while that wasn't too hot (until this past weekend, we were having a massive heat wave here in Denver).  We stayed on the property, and ended up riding for about an hour in the outdoor arena.  I got a lot of cantering practice in (though I didn't try dropping a stirrup since we were outside, and I was worried about the fact that Panama tends to like to go faster in the outdoor arena).  I often find it difficult to ride for that long without a friend to ride with or my trainer making me do it, so it was nice to ride with someone who was motivated to get a long ride in.

I often struggle with motivation when it comes to riding — it's hard sometimes to stop what I'm doing and head out to the barn during the day, and once I'm riding, I tend to lose interest if I don't have a plan in mind or something specific that we're working on — or, as sometimes happens, a battle of wills with Panama that we have to work out before I'll call it quits.  But riding with someone really seems to help keep me on the horse for longer.  Going out to the barn on weeknights with my husband also helps when I haven't felt like leaving the house all day.  I guess it's kind of like meeting a friend at the gym to help you get the motivation to work out.

I won't have as much of a problem with it as the cooler weather sets in, though.  The heat of the summer tends to sap my motivation, because really, who wants to ride when it's hot?  It doesn't sound like fun to me, so I'm pretty sure it's probably not any fun for the horse, either.

Do you ever deal with lack of motivation to ride?  How do you get past it?

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