Today I learned a new mantra. Taking a cue off the US Marine Corp's creed of Unit, Core, God, Country (as seen in a movie), I decided I needed to set some serious priorities. So here they are: Family, Horse, Health, Job. Not that my job is even that significant in my life, but it is LESS significant than the other three. So when my boss asked me to work late yet again tonight, I repeated my mantra in my head and discovered that no, I would not work, I was going riding.
And ride I did. Brego and I worked on our form over fences. Actually, Brego was a star over fences, as always. He really loves to jump and just pings around. We did a couple of passes through the triple and then a couple oxers. All the while, I took my mind off Brego and focused on my toes and my elbows. And I made some progress. I got the feel of holding with the side of my calf instead of the back and things started to click. I had raised my stirrups a hole and that helped me get out of the saddle. On a couple of jumps, where we blew the distance, I reverted to more squatty toes out as I focused on us not dying, but in general, if I could stay aware and relaxed, I felt much better.
I had a good spotter on the ground who noticed that I was raising my hands the stride before the fence and not following well, stiffening. When I focused on quieting my hands and relaxing, my upper body stayed more supple and I am sure Brego appreciated the room. I also did some no hands work and that really helped me feel my calf and lower thighs over fences.
And of course, while we were cantering around the course, Brego's canter was so balanced and I can thank the dreaded Dressage for that. So I know we're making progress there as well. I just need to relax and stop worrying, progress is good.
I rode my bike home today from the barn and felt good, I am getting more fit.
Family. Horse. Health... Job.