Wednesday, January 4, 2012

New Year, New You, Yada Yada

Okay guys, get ready, here comes a stereotypical New Years resolutions post.
Alright... let's do this.

So, I am one of those people who tries to do New Years resolutions, sometimes they go from very pinpoint stereotypical (Drink more water) to very airy and holistic (become a better friend). However, I see no shame in attempting to set goals and follow them through, even if they are re-named resolutions at this time of year. Due to the fact this is my horsie blog I thought I should probably share with you some horse-related resolutions.

For the sake of not being too cheesy, I'm calling them goals from here on out. Horse-related goals are near and dear to my heart, in a moment of total desperation and, "I'm never, ever going to be a good enough rider to please myself or others", on a cold and shitty night on a ranch in Nanton, in a small cramped room, I pulled out a journal and compiled a list of short and concise goals that I wished to have completed by September 2012. They were...

1. Find a barn to work at where I can trade hours for lessons.- check, I've accomplished that this year already.

2. Have a saddle by Summer 2012- I've decided to scrap this goal. There was a time when people told me that it was so important for me to have my own tack, but I've now firmly rooted myself on the side of fitting a saddle to a horse, not a horse to a saddle. Unforuntately where I work in the summer this mindset is not always reasonable or doable, but I can't imagine throwing a ton of money at a saddle now and then it not fitting a horse I perhaps regularly ride, or purchase down the road. It doesn't make sense to me, plus the many woes, aches and pains I witness in horses that have been caused by ill-fitting and improper saddle fit are just not worth it because the rider is attached to a material object.3. Compete at some level by September 2012- working on it, slowly but surely.
So, as you can see, goals are a good thing, especially when they were emotionally driven. I made those particular goals at a time where I felt like I had two options, 1. change for the better or 2. curl up in a ball, turn off all the lights, and forget my passion for horses. It was one of those milestone moments where from an outsider looking in it might have seemed like an insignificant day, or time, but for me, it meant the world.

I had someone recently comment on the fact that without her, I would have never been introduced with my trainer, and been able to obtain lessons/volunteer at my barn. I also always hear the old, "well, so and so's family is in the (insert discipline) world so that's why they have so much success", I'm even prone to that one. I always try to remember that, although someone's path may have been wider for them, no road you take is easy, and dwelling on things like "well, it was pure luck", will get you no where. There is no such thing as luck, there is such a thing as drive, determination, and willing to seek out assistance and putting yourself in places that may be out of your comfort zone but will eventually open doors for you.

So, looking toward a new year, hopefully completely overflowing with horse-everything, my new goals are as follows...

1. (Old Goal, but valid none the less) Compete at some level by September 2012
2. Build and stick to a 5 day a week exercise routine- It's interesting, my trainer's famous line is, "You wont need a gym membership after working here!", however, barn chores - similar to repetitive workouts with horses - overdevelop certain muscles, while under developing others. Also, lower abdominal muscles are key in riding, and are very hard muscles to target, pilates is a type of exercise that is effective in enhancing this muscle group. So, i'd like to build a routine that focuses on the muscle groups I need as a rider, but also on over-all health and fitness. So, there you go, the standard "get fit in the new year" resolution.
3. Continue to be at a facility not only where I can take lessons, but also learn, and be happy- seems pretty "well, duh" but these three factors, lessons, learning and happiness are key in the combination to my personal growth and development, and are, pretty much, what this blog is all about and why I started it. The minute I lose one, the other two generally follow, so continuing to satisfy these three demands will only further develop my growth in the horse world.Well. that was a pretty heavy post on introspection and meditation, wasn't it? I promise I'll go back to posting gangster-dressage video's soon! Hopefully anyone reading this is having a lovely start to the new year. If you're in Alberta we're experiencing an absolutely dream-like winter, so that is something to be happy about. I'm hoping 2012 is filled with as much fulfillment and growth for myself as 2011 did, and also, happiness... of course. Wishing the same for you!

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