Holy CRAP! .The torture of getting back into riding shape
"The horse does all the work" my BUTT. And my abs, and my biceps, and my triceps, and my feet, and my calves, and my thighs...
I had a baby in December 2009 following a most uncomfortable (though not awful) pregnancy. Whereas I rode until 6mos along with my first, I only managed until about 4mos with this one. Then, after he was born, I couldn't GET to my mare to ride as life was chaos with a newborn, a 4yro, a house, and going back to work. When I did ride, I focused on bareback to get my balance and seat back and did mostly light arena work or trail rides. I was lucky to ride once a week.
I recently moved my mare closer, and since the baby is 6mos old now, and I'm a teacher on summer break, I have an easier time getting over to saddle up. I've broken out my tack again (no more bareback) and have begun riding drills.
OH. MY. GAWD.
I can't BELIEVE how out of shape I am. Normally I did two sets of serpentines as a warm up. First time I rode, one set just about KILLED me. I also two-pointed one lap around the ring that same first ride, and my butt slapped the saddle at least a dozen times.
Today was my third get-back-in-shape ride, and I rode a mere half hour. This included two sets of serpentines in the huge main arena, asking her to frame up on the second set, which also kicked my butt. Asking her to frame up meant pushing her forward from my seat and using my core....AUGH. Just posting was excruciating. Apparently stirrups make a difference--my lower legs have been on fire since I started back in the saddle.
At one point while panting along today, I said, "This is...this is not enjoyable!" But it also made me mad to be so out of shape, and I'm resolving to ride even more now.
My mare (the saint) is in pretty good shape for a 22yro that mostly sat or enjoyed a good turn out for a year. Her arthritis makes the right lead still a bit uncomfortable, but she remembers what to do and does it. She got a bit of a belly in the time off, and her butt flattened, but hell...so did mine!
My daughter is almost 5 months old- I had to have an unplanned c-section. I only got back on to do any real work about a month ago. I'm still not doing too much sitting trot, but I know I'm getting closer with my fitness level.
It's been interesting to go back to riding. My body has changed enough that some of my old bad habits have gone away, and I'm looking at it as an opportunity to re-invent myself as a rider with a more correct position. For whatever reason, it's been easier for me to let go of some old, negative tension that I always struggled with. It probably helps that during my pregnancy my horse was ridden by a very capable person, and has advanced from schooling third to schooling most of Prix St. Georges.
My horse is pretty keen and reactive, and has been surprisingly tolerant of my efforts.
However, piriformis is not my friend at the moment.....
Oh good lord I am somewhat dreading getting back on a horse. Had baby April 29, after a difficult and exhausting pregnancy. I gained sooo much weight on bedrest. I have no muscle tone. :P
Right now I'd love nothing more than to sit on a deadbroke trail horse and mosey around for a few hours. With all the craziness in my life at the moment (new baby, new house, blah blah) I could use some saddle time!
Just not sure I could hoist myself INTO the saddle!!
We couldn't all be cowboys, so some of us are clowns.
My advice, sweat it out now. After 3 kids, and my youngest is 15 years old, I'll just tell you that time flies so fast when you have little ones. So make the time so your not 47 years old trying to figure out how you'll ever get back into riding shape! Now that mine are fairly independent I've decided to ride again! :-))
Chris Misita www.hiddenvalleyfarms.net Home of Bravo and Warrick!
To dare; progress comes at this price. All sublime conquests are, more or less, the rewards of daring.
i hear ya on the out of shape rides....i am not a mom ,but after not riding a a few yrs and now getting back into it..i am sure sore after a 30-45 minute ride .when before i could ride for up to 2couple hrs and still had the ommmph to ride alot longer...