Oops! Time got away from me. I neglected to post my Week 5 wrap, so I'll drop it in below with Week 6.
I may not have been writing about it, but I've certainly been doing the work. Here's what's up:
Horse Days Are Back
I feel like she needs some quieter, less challenging attention to ease some underlying anxiety. I've backed off from the usual CA Method progression to really listen to her and give her time to think. I started with simple grooming and have added daily bits of things she already knows: a little bending here, some hoof handling there, some yielding of hindquarters or run-up-and-rub, but nothing too intense or for very long. She seems to respond best when asked quietly, then left alone, rather than being drilled. Interestingly, this is consistent with what a few students of Arabian bloodlines predicted. It also fits nicely with my current lack of facilities, giving us productive, relationship-building time while the ground dries out.
My Running Goal is Set Too Low
...the one about running a 10k at a 9.5 minute mile pace, that is.
Why do I think it's too low? Because I finished this week's long run of 6.89 miles at a 9:47 pace. And it's only mid-February.
Don't hold me to this just yet, but I'm thinking of adding a half-marathon completion to my goals list. I have two, main hesitations: Can my feet handle it? and Do I have enough time? Time in the days, that is, for enough training miles. I'm not sure. But I'm pondering.
Since I'm on the subject, here's my Week 6 wrap:
It's hard to see without paying careful attention, but I took this week a little on the easy side. For one thing, I had the first-day-of-period blahs on Friday, so I gave myself a pass on the strength workout. I also did more hatha yoga and less of my usual vinyasa. I felt like I needed it to facilitate recovery from my Week 5 long run. See below:
8.66 miles! Okay, yeah, I know. It's not much in the broader running world, but it's farther than I have run in...well, geez...probably since I last training for a half-marathon in my early 20's. So I'm pretty happy about that!
I'm Bored with My Strength Programming
Since about October 2021, I've been using the Ketogains Novice 5x5 Strength Training Program. It was a perfect way to recommit to strength training after a few years of inconsistency. 5x5 programming is an old friend (it's what I started with some 15 years ago), and the minimal time commitment of about 35 minutes, 3 days per week, was attractive.
I definitely made gains. I've put on considerable muscle mass and strength, and only had one setback when my old SI tweak flared up. Adding regular mobility work at the beginning of the year has kept me feeling fantastic.
But, now I'm bored. Being bored of my programming makes me reluctant to train even though I know it's one of the most important things I can do for long-term health. So...time to mix things up!
I'm looking into some MAPS programming from Mind Pump. I've followed these guys for years and concluded that, once you look and listen past their "bruh" exterior, they're actually extremely knowledgable, experienced, and service-minded. They also happen to be having a Valentines Day sale -- 50% off all programs -- that I just learned about by signing up for their emails. Cool. Happy hearts day to me!
I'm Writing, Just Slowly
If anyone is wondering what happened to my thoughts on being an athletic rider, I haven't forgotten about the series. Writing anything useful takes a surprising amount of time, but I'm working on it. I think it's valuable stuff. Stay tuned.
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Thanks for dropping by! I'm an endurance rider in the northwest region of the United States. This blog explores the mental, physical, and technical aspects of being a better horseman, athlete, and human.
The Sweaty Equestrian