Monday, January 1, 2018

Looking Forward: 2018

Happy New Year, everyone!!! Hope you all had a wonderful holiday weekend and are feeling fresh and excited about the year to come!

excited to do more of this again!
I used to record goals on this blog - originally monthly, but that timeline proved too fast for the goals to be very meaningful or futuristic. I switched up to quarterly and that was all peachy keen for a while, up until I broke my leg at the beginning of 2015 Q4 and all of those goals became utterly and depressingly meaningless.

So.... I kinda just quit publishing goals, tho they're certainly still bumping around in my mind.

more of this too!
However, I think this year might play out slightly differently than years past. My two best riding friends are both knocking on the door of uncharted territory when it comes to competitive riding, and I suspect Charlie and I will want to tag along for the ride. In order to keep up tho, I'll have to be a bit more purposeful.

Thus, the reintroduction of regular goals and check points to 'Fraidy Cat Eventing.

Starting with 2018 Quarter 1:
  • Sketch out the bones of a competition plan for the year. Likewise, consider timing for clinic options - on the flat or over fences. 
  • Research membership details for USEA/USEF.
  • Stay focused with twice weekly lessons with trainers P & K, schedules allowing.
  • Aim for at least monthly lessons with dressage trainer C, traveling to her farm if needed.
  • Keep myself accountable while schooling between lessons. This doesn't mean grinding ourselves down - we want freshness and variety - but I gotta at least show up.
  • Balance it all out with lots of low intensity hacking and conditioning - no more excuses about fitness, either horse or rider! Ideally, Charlie should be fit enough by the end of Q1 to not immediately pass out after crossing the xc finish line. You're a thoroughbred, dammit. Act like one! 
gotta be more fit for those fun paper chases!
  • Use cold winter indoor rides and hack rides to improve rider fitness: no stirrups work, 2pt work, double posting, the rider strengthening exercise DOC described here, etc etc etc. Ideally at least a little bit every ride. No excuses!
  • Kick season off with a Cross Derby (weather permitting). No pressure on placing or time, just focusing on riding with a little more polish and a little less green than we finished last year. Ideally, make it to a full three phase by end of quarter as well. Weather / schooling permitting.
  • Charlie: Stay sound. Seriously buddy! Plz???
  • Charlie: Also stay happy in your work. Evaluate entire ensemble for all three phases to make sure each piece satisfies Charlie's delicate sensibilities. 
  • Stay ahead of the game for what's gonna happen to Charlie's hooves when the spring grass comes up. Keratex: prepare yo'self!

looking forward to more team shots :)
And, because I'd like to have a long view, let's put down some biggies for the whole year. This honestly makes me a little nervous and uncomfortable. I don't really like talking a lot about giant personal challenges until I'm fairly sure I can actually do them.... Like when I decided to quit smoking years ago, I didn't tell anybody until I was already a couple weeks into it.

But. Again, the act of making goals is useful especially in how it can help give some structure and shape to the intermediary steps in the process. So. Here goes, in no particular order:
  • Move up to Novice by Q2-Q3.
  • Do a recognized show, level not important - timing of this depends on schedule of friends who need recognized shows for qualifications purposes for their own goals.
  • School some of training by Q3, ideally full height elements but smaller sized technical questions are acceptable. Feel good about schooling most, if not all of level by Q4.
  • Research options for an "adult event camp."
  • Schedule a clinic(s) with Dan at OF. 
  • Keep the horse on a regular massage and/or chiro schedule as needed.
  • School the bejesus out of our cross country course at home. No excuses! Also make trips to other venues - Windurra, I'm looking at you! Down banks in particular need attention.
  • Continue developing flatwork. Would like to be passably schooling all of first level by Q3. Would like to finish at least one event on my dressage score, and would like the dressage scores to be competitive.
more riding with friends!
  • Trail ride at Fair Hill!! Ideally with other bloggers!
  • Volunteer. A lot. Look for opportunities monthly, and aim for doing some type of event volunteering in 7 of 12 months. 
  • Try to maintain at least some microscopic degree of poise if there are setbacks. No matter what, have fun!
  • Be the type of competitor my friends enjoy being around at shows. And be my friends' biggest cheerleader. Nothing has revolutionized my horse habit quite like having great friends to share it with - don't take this for granted!
  • Keep the blog going: this space has been so meaningful to me, both as a means of documenting all of my horsey escapades but also as a way to participate in the wonderful equine bloglandia. Y'all are great!

a little satin to round out the year wouldn't be too bad either ;)
So. There ya have it. Written down on the proverbial paper to tempt fate. But hey, a girl can dream, right?

29 comments:

  1. Happy New Year! Those goals are easily within your reach. I really like how many of them are basically you holding yourself more accountable which is something I really need to do.

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    1. happy new year to you too! i'm hoping you're right about these goals being pretty attainable... there's a bunch of stuff on the list that i thought would have already happened by now, but... horses are horses sometimes. we'll see how it goes!

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  2. Those are some seriously exciting goals!!!! And I hear ya on rider fitness…having lame ponies does not keep you in shape! 😂 Cheers to a sound and exciting new year for you guys!!!!!!!!!

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    1. Ugh yea I'm like.... Seriously on the rider fitness struggle bus over here lol. But hopefully fingers crossed we are getting back on track again. Some of these goals might be a little ambitious (and, uh, scary) but it feels oddly relieving to actually put them out there. We will see what happens!

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  3. Windurra and Fair Hill. Just tell me when and I will be there to meet up with you:) Great goals. 2018 is going to be your year (as long as we can wrap Charlie in bubble wrap HA). Happy New Year to you and all!!

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    1. bubble wrap 4 lyfe haha!! and i would love to meet you at both of those places!!! maybe we can work something out with a sally lesson at windurra or something? i know my friends brita and rachael would probably be interested in something like that!! looking forward to riding more with you in 2018!

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    1. thanks i'm excited about the future :)

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  5. Can you bottle that organization plz? I can't string a thought or two beyond PONEeee together..

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    1. i mean, at least you got the important part covered <3 lol

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  6. Those are amazing goals. I like them.

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    1. thanks! we're gonna give 'em our best shot!

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  7. So many great things to look forward to this year and totally doable!!

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  8. How are you so organized?! Seriously, I love it. Slash it makes me feel a bit like a slum LOL! You do an amazing job blogging, and an amazing job in your horse life as well. Kudos to you- you're an inspiration for sure!!

    <3 Kelly @ HunkyHanoverian

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    1. aw thanks! i'm a very process-oriented type person, so the organization and systematic nature of planning out what i want can sometimes be easier. the hard part for me is just bucking up and actually *doing* it, esp when it makes me nervous or scared. i can come up with excuses allllll day long lol. hopefully this year tho i'll be a little more honest with myself about that!

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  9. Woohoo! I know you can do it. Those are amazing goals, and I think you'll nail them. I think Charlie is so down for all of that! Especially the jumping part. He's gonna be so happy about that lol.

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    1. ha yea, his happiness in jumping definitely makes it easier to carry him through the other less fun, more disciplined type stuff! we'll see, i'm hopeful and excited to see how it all shakes out!

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  10. I'm super excited to see what 2018 holds for you guys! You and Charlie are one of my favorite teams to follow. And I love that first picture you posted!

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    1. aw thanks! charlie's made it so easy to dream big and keep working, and i'm really excited to see where that could take us so long as we can keep him sound and happy!

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  11. love how you do it in quarters lol. i live my life by monthly closes :P

    those are some great goals. i want in on the fair hill trail ride!!

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    1. yes do come to fair hill!! and windurra too!! come to all of the places! and yea quarters turned out to be a lot easier for me last time -- my monthly goals ended up being small and somewhat inconsequential just bc what can you really accomplish in 4wks with horses anyway???

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  12. Wahoo! I think those are great goals. Listing them out helps keep everyone going the right direction. You've still made progress even if you fell short... which I kind of did in 2017. I think Novice will be very attainable for you this year! Stay sound Charlie!

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    1. ha "stay sound" is definitely the biggie here! i'm pretty confident that charlie can keep moving forward if he's healthy enough to stay on a consistent routine. the only questions then become whether i'll be able to step to the plate myself!

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  13. Probably the best goals typed out in blogland - I'm serious!

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    1. aw thanks <3 i really want it to be a good year, even if things don't go exactly how i envision right at this very moment.

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  14. I love your goals and I know you and Charlie will knock them out of the park!

    I really love the goal about being "the type of competitor my friends enjoy being around at shows. And be my friends' biggest cheerleader". That's a goal we should all heed to!

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  15. What a great list! Plenty of fun to mix in with the learning stuff :)

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  16. I LOVE IT!!! Can't wait to cheer you and Charlie on this season!! GO GO GO!

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