Stallion Spotlight

Sir Donnerhall_02Beelitz

Real Estate Spotlight

IMG_1001
  • Welcome to the Chronicle Forums.
    Please complete your profile. The forums and the rest of www.chronofhorse.com has single sign-in, so your log in information for one will automatically work for the other. Disclaimer: The opinions expressed here are the views of the individual and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of The Chronicle of the Horse.

Announcement

Collapse

Forum rules and no-advertising policy

As a participant on this forum, it is your responsibility to know and follow our rules. Please read this message in its entirety.

Board Rules

2. Conversations in horse-related forums should be horse-related.3. Keep conversations productive, on topic and civil.
Discussion and disagreement are inevitable and encouraged; personal insults, diatribes and sniping comments are unproductive and unacceptable. Whether a subject is light-hearted or serious, keep posts focused on the current topic and of general interest to other participants of that thread. Utilize the private message feature or personal email where appropriate to address side topics or personal issues not related to the topic at large.

4. No advertising in the discussion forums.classifieds site and through the purchase of banner ads. The tightly monitored Giveaways forum permits free listings of genuinely free horses and items available or wanted (on a limited basis). Items offered for trade are not allowed.

Advertising Policy Specifics
When in doubt of whether something you want to post constitutes advertising, please contact a moderator privately in advance for further clarification. Refer to the following points for general guidelines:

Board members may ask for suggestions on breeding stallion recommendations. Stallion owners may reply to such queries by suggesting their own stallions, only if their horse fits the specific criteria of the original poster. Excessive promotion of a stallion by its owner or related parties is not permitted and will be addressed at the discretion of the moderators.

Members may use the forums to ask for general recommendations of trainers, barns, shippers, farriers, etc., and other members may answer those requests by suggesting themselves or their company, if their services fulfill the specific criteria of the original post. Members may not solicit other members for business if it is not in response to a direct, genuine query.

While members may ask for general opinions and suggestions on equipment, trailers, trucks, etc., they may not list the specific attributes for which they are in the market, as such posts serve as wanted ads.

5. Do not post copyrighted photographs unless you have purchased that photo and have permission to do so.

6. Respect other members.7. We have the right to reproduce statements made in the forums.
The Chronicle of the Horse may copy, quote, link to or otherwise reproduce posts, or portions of posts, in print or online for advertising or editorial purposes, if attributed to their original authors, and by posting in this forum, you hereby grant to The Chronicle of the Horse a perpetual, non-exclusive license under copyright and other rights, to do so.

8. We reserve the right to enforce and amend the rules.Terms of Service and Privacy Policy for more information.

Thanks for being a part of the COTH forums!

(Revised 5/9/18)
See more
See less

Multiday Stamina Recovery

Collapse
X
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Multiday Stamina Recovery

    My mare is good for a 3 or 4 hour trail ride. But the next day, she's asleep on her feet! Up to now I always give her (and me!) the day off after a big ride off property.

    However I'm thinking about heading off to camp out of town this summer, stay places where we can ride out in different directions every day.

    Obviously I need to continue working on fitness (for us both!). That's in progress. But I was wondering if anyone had other tips for speeding up recovery time so she's happy to go out for 2 or 3 days in a row? All I can think of is increase feed before and after the excursion? Would that help?

  • #2
    How long are your normal riding sessions and how many days a week are you riding now? Have you tried taking her out two days in a row at home?
    There is no joy equal to that found on the back of a horse.

    Comment


    • #3
      Tell us about how you ride those 3-4 hours.

      G.
      Mangalarga Marchador: Uma Raça, Uma Paixão

      Comment

      • Original Poster

        #4
        At home I have a trail system that includes a straightaway under the power lines that is just over 3.5 km from the barn to the end one way, and a set of trail loops closer to the barn that meander around approximately a km area.

        We ride daily for an hour to an hour and a half, with a day off about every 5 days, which she seems to need. She also needs a flat out nap every morning.

        We have new Scoot boots on the front she is happy with, and a new to me jump saddle we both like, and we can do an hour of walk trot sets, or trot most of the way up and down the power lines, and be fine the next day.

        We added canter sets up the power line last week and maresy was super forward all the way home, didn't act tired. The next day though she would barely jog under saddle. Following day she was just fine.

        Going up the power lines trot or canter, stopping for a graze, doing some loops on the way home, makes for a ride of about an hour and a half.

        We started adding canter on trails this spring, something neither of us felt 100% about doing consistently up to now, but we have her feet and my confidence figured out finally. She has always had the option of doing huge buck n run gallops in turnout, so she has been able to practice speed even when I wasn't asking for it under saddle.

        Maresy is a big powerful Paint with a split personality. She can be dude string pokey and barely trot, or switch to being bouncy green eventer that wants to canter everywhere. She stays bold and confident when she gets hot.

        We have had issues with balking and sulkiness in the past, but those seem to be resolved and I am happy to have her inner eventer be more present.

        Last weekend we trailered out with a friend for the first time this season, did a two plus hour ride around the horse park, some hills, mostly walk but some trot and short bursts of canter. She was eager to canter all the way around once she warned up, forward right back to the parking lot, then asleep on her feet the next day at home.

        It is a big excursion with an hour drive each direction, lots of other horses to see, and a nice graze after while the humans picnic.

        We have done that ride a number of times over the past 2 summers but only walk, or just a little trot, and she always seemed to need the next day off. But be fine the following day. So she's not coming up injured or sore.

        Our 3 or 4 hour rides last summer were genuinely gnarly mountain trails, all at a walk, where the trails have washed out a bit and you are almost stepping down stairs in places. I grew up in that kind of terrain, but hadn't been on anything like that on horseback since probably 1978, not sure maresy ever had, and she was fantastic (she loves getting on and off circus boxes in the arena).

        She held up fine but basically slept the whole next day. Lay down in the hot sand in turnout, stretched out and went into REM with me sitting beside her.

        Now I would not expect either of us to do that kind of ride two days in a row. I want to go camping up in ranch country and ride open range with rolling hills, something I've never really had the chance to do.

        Maresy is 15 now, totally sound. I've been riding her 9 years, I returned to riding 12 years ago and am in late middle age (though I can't believe any of these numbers!).

        I should also add that it's humbling to realize how good a rider I needed to become before I could do what I always thought of as the basic core activity of riding, which is a nice big canter down the trail!

        Anyhow she has many qualities of an excellent trail horse, but she has a strong self protective streak and won't work if she's tired, the saddle doesn't fit, the gravel hurts her feet, etc. When she's happy she's delightful.

        Comment


        • #5
          What are you feeding her? And when do you feed her? If she is working very hard and is tired the best time to feed her to help her recover is within 30 minutes of your ride. She of course needs to be cooled out but if you feed her with in a half an hour of exertion that is when her body needs the fuel to recover. Works for same way with humans.

          Do you give her any electrolytes? Being dehydrated makes you pretty sleepy and feeling fatigued.

          Horses sleep for short periods of time multiple times per day. And they usually have a schedule. I cannot ride at mid day because my boys love their naps. Waking them up to go riding just seems mean. That is good that she is comfortable enough to sleep deeply even when she is away from home. But it could be that she is simply a midday napper and if you woke her up she could work. She just might be grumpy about it. But I would look at what you are feeding her and make sure she has the nutrition to recover from hard work.

          Comment

          • Original Poster

            #6
            She's a morning napper, after her 7 am feeding. I realize going off in the trailer bright and early could disrupt that.

            She gets about 15 lbs of good Timothy hay in 4 or 5 feedings a day, including overnight. Thats to keep her merely chunky and not obese.

            Her current mash measured in 250 ml cups is: 2 cups beet pulp, 2 cups whole oats, 1 cup alfalfa cubes (mainly for flavor), 1 cup whole flax, one ounce salt, and her vitamin mineral supplement. The components can get increased or reduced as needed.

            When we ride at home she always gets hay in her stall before and after the ride, and when we trailer out she gets a hay bag or grazing back at the trailer. And water.

            She's not a big sweater and usually drinks OK in summer. I doubt our workload gets her very dehydrated though.

            I was wondering if giving her all you can eat hay the evening of a big ride would help her recovery. Or extra oats.

            Comment


            • #7
              Does your mare trailer regularly? That can be physically and emotionally taxing.

              How warm is your climate? Is your mare sweating a lot? If so, she may need some electrolyte supplementation. That has made a HUGE difference in my personal recovery after rides, so I would imagine horses are similar.

              It sounds like you are being very reasonable about increasing her workload gradually. I would start taking her out two days in a row at home, even if the second day isn't as hard a workout to start with. Unless she is a laminitis risk, I don't see the harm in giving her free-choice hay before big rides.
              There is no joy equal to that found on the back of a horse.

              Comment


              • #8
                I often give an alfafa cube soup after a hard ride - hydration, and the alfalfa has the nutrients she needs to replace. YOu could add some oats for protein too. She may need more of a nutrition boost than the hay provides.

                You don't need to increase her total daily feed, just change when she gets some of it.

                Comment

                • Original Poster

                  #9
                  She trailers very well, this time out she basically self loaded both leaving and returning. But I'm sure the trip even just an hour out and hour back, is tiring.

                  I ride her multiple days in a row at home and she's fine.

                  She's just really tired the day after a trailer excursion plus longer ride, even if that ride is not in itself way more exertion than at home.

                  I know from experience that if I ride her when she's tired like that she just pulls herself around and will barely do a jog trot. It's no fun for either of us.

                  The one ride at home that has currently had this effect is canter sets on the power lines which we've just started. She gets hot and doesn't want to quit but is a couch potato the next day.

                  I'll try our homemade molasses and salt drink after the next time we do that, plus maybe more hay overnight, see if that helps. Maybe need to increase her oats going forward, currently 2 cups is just 2/3 lb.

                  She's not a laminitis risk, I'm just trying to be proactive managing her weight. Free choice hay every once in a while won't hurt her.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    While it does sound like a fitness thing, maybe a blood test to rule out something underlying wouldn't hurt? In endurance there are different fitness plans out there, always starting to increase fitness with long, slow distance. Your canter sets sound like great interval training too. Maybe just mix up some long slow days of mileage with the sets? Do you happen to have a heart rate monitor? That is good tool to evaluate fitness as well as anything underlying too.

                    (I hate to mention it, because someone always does, but I know my horse has a decrease in stamina/interest when he gets ulcers. He doesn't show many other symptoms, is less interested in life until he gets "up" and then he is the same. Always eats, is shiny, not touchy. Just a secondary thought with the trailering, etc). Best of luck. I think your trail adventures sound like great fun!
                    "Do your best, and leave the rest, twill all come right, some day or night" -Black Beauty

                    http://trails-and-trials-with-major.blogspot.com/

                    Comment

                    • Original Poster

                      #11
                      I'm also curious about the extent speed work will help longer distance slow work endurance, and vice versa.

                      I don't have a heart rate monitor but I certainly pay attention to her breathing. I find she gets more out of breath doing canter work in the arena, or in turnout when she blasts and bucks full speed for ten minutes, than cantering on the trails. I think the soft footing in the riding and turnout arenas is more work.

                      I have thought about the various kinds of tying up that stock horses can have, but she doesn't show any of those symptoms, and she has more energy on moderate amount of oats than on a forage only diet.

                      Over the years we've had periods where she's been very pokey which honestly was probably OK for me at the start, but over the past several years I've been getting her more forward. She needs a day off after about 5 days work, impeccable saddle fit, hoof boots on front to really trot out with spring and confidence, some oats, and a balanced rider .

                      I had in retrospect an insanely fit little grade horse/ mustang? wildie? as a teen and never needed to give much thought to conditioning. We galloped everywhere, had lots of hills, and went on the occasional 8 hour mountain ride.

                      I never gave her a day off except for snow and torrential rain, but we were pretty much in sync and if she was tired from the previous day, so was I, and we had a slow ride.

                      I also recall feeding her a gallon ice cream bucket of sweet feed every night. Is that possible? Anyhow she was tough and healthy and sound and hot to go, but I will never be putting those kind of miles consistently on a horse at my age

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        With my prior distance horse, I had him on Ultium during the competition season. We competed nearly every weekend in the Open division of NATRC(40-60ish miles over two days), Eventing trials, or normal breed shows(over fences and on the flat). Obviously his condition was the most important, but I do believe that the Ultium helped with energy over multiple day events. He was always well dosed with electrolytes before during and after competition too.

                        Slow, gradual inclined(if you can find it) trot work, if you aren't already doing it, can work wonders. And, keeping up longer back-to-back rides to get her more accustomed to the feeling of working on tired legs. I have to do this in my own marathon training for races I have scheduled back-to-back. I can't expect to be okay on the race days if I haven't put in the training to prepare me for races that are scheduled like that.

                        But, we had another mare that no matter how many of those distance rides she went on, or how fit she was, she was always pretty pokey. She was never able to do the speed or distance of open.

                        Comment

                        • Original Poster

                          #13
                          That's interesting about working on tired legs. I think I will keep that in mind for a bit later in our conditioning work. Right now I am most concerned about not over stressing her joints with fast work on harder surfaces, plus keeping her sense of enthusiasm and go. I think it's a bit early to push her for speed when she's tired. But it's a very good point.

                          Ultium like most American feed brands isn't available where I am in Canada but I can look up the ingredients and NSC. We only have a couple of local mills doing their own brands, and its been easier and cheaper to mix my own mash here.

                          Neither maresy nor me are good candidates for actual endurance races but I think we ought to be able to get fit enough for multiday range riding!

                          About electrolytes and sports drinks, the best advice I've seen for moderate excersise in humans says you don't need to gulp down 500 ml of Gatorade after your 45 minute salsa fit class, you don't need the sugar and salt, just plain water. Figuring maresy is more at the salsa fit end of things, not the marathon, are electrolytes overdoing it at this point?

                          She loves her molasses salt water, so maybe I will try a bucket of that before and after we do our next canter sets ride, and see if that helps recovery.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            You might want to spend $35 to have her checked for PSSM - I believe stock breeds can be prone to it. It's a genetic glycogen storage issue and subclinical symptoms can be maddening to figure out. Since it's an energy production problem it might be worth ruling out?

                            Management includes things like increasing fat in the diet with magnesium (in general good for muscles) and potentially E/Se and other minerals. Dropping starch levels is recommended although not critical like for IR horses - it just encourages them to use the fat for energy rather than trying to store/use muscle glycogen. (Or that's my somewhat limited understanding.) Anyway, it's TOTALLY manageable!

                            www.animalgenetics.com

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Scribbler View Post
                              That's interesting about working on tired legs. I think I will keep that in mind for a bit later in our conditioning work. Right now I am most concerned about not over stressing her joints with fast work on harder surfaces, plus keeping her sense of enthusiasm and go. I think it's a bit early to push her for speed when she's tired. But it's a very good point.

                              Ultium like most American feed brands isn't available where I am in Canada but I can look up the ingredients and NSC. We only have a couple of local mills doing their own brands, and its been easier and cheaper to mix my own mash here.

                              Neither maresy nor me are good candidates for actual endurance races but I think we ought to be able to get fit enough for multiday range riding!

                              About electrolytes and sports drinks, the best advice I've seen for moderate excersise in humans says you don't need to gulp down 500 ml of Gatorade after your 45 minute salsa fit class, you don't need the sugar and salt, just plain water. Figuring maresy is more at the salsa fit end of things, not the marathon, are electrolytes overdoing it at this point?

                              She loves her molasses salt water, so maybe I will try a bucket of that before and after we do our next canter sets ride, and see if that helps recovery.
                              We didn't do endurance, we did competitive trail. I, personally, like the time window idea with a set pace rather than the race idea, and enjoyed the obstacles and constructive criticism from the judging cards, much like dressage, so I knew where I could improve. All of our work was slow(at pace) and steady. As for keeping enthusiasm, we mixed it up by doing multiple sports. Competitive trail had rides about every other weekend in the fall and spring. On the in-between weekends we would do horse trials. Over the summers I would sometimes take him to a place that did ranch sorting. And we did normal ring work, which he hated..haha. Other ways of keeping them stimulated on the trail, rather than just zoning out into a bored plodding walk, is to add in obstacle type activities. Sidepass over tree branches. Mount and dismount off of rocks/ledges/ditches. Back between trees. Check out this site for more ideas: https://texastrailchallengeclub.com/

                              As for electrolytes, I didn't realize you were in canada. Much different weather! Probably not as big of an issue if your horse is good at drinking during/after her trips.

                              That's unfortunate about the grain supply, but nice that you may be able to give them specs and have them make something similar. I'm not a big one to say 'go out and get this stuff' but I will say that even through all the miles my gelding put in, he never looked bad, weight wise, and always finished the weekends on par with where he should have been.(NATRC has a score for 'attitude'(of sorts) meaning they have to start and finish with the same amount of pep..lol) I did feel like it gave him long term energy without the hotness you would typically see from sweet feeds and such.

                              Comment

                              • Original Poster

                                #16
                                I think that indeed the feed on big days may be part of the puzzle.

                                Yesterday we did our 7 km round trip ride from home, trot canter out, big canter the last half mile, 20 minute graze to catch our breath, big marching walk home. About 1:40 including graze.

                                She got all you can eat hay overnight, and drank about ten gallons of molasses salt water before and most overnight. Plus about 6 gallons plain water.

                                This morning she was alert and happy to see me. We rode walk trot for about 45 minutes, she was lower energy but willing to step out unlike last week when she was just asleep on her feet the day after the same ride.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  A 3-4 hour ride is pretty close to a full day's work for a horse. Even at a sedate walk of 4 mph you're covering 12-16 miles. So being a bit tired the next day is not a surprise.

                                  The British Cavalry in modern times used a "clock system" to manage their horse on the march. At time 00 they would begin and ride for 40 min., mostly at the 4 mph walk but with a few min. at an 8 mph. Just what the mix was depended on the speed of advance that their mission required. At time 40 they would dismount, loosen the girth, and march for 10 min. At time 50 they would find a spot to rest horse and rider and let the horse graze if possible. They might also feed a small amount of grain from their grain bag. Then, at time 00, they would do it again. The day usually began at sunrise and they would "noon" after a couple of cycles and let the horses rest and graze for an hour. Then they would do one or two more cycles before camping for the night.

                                  In demanding terrain (mountains, desert, marsh, etc) they would modify the program to reflect the demands that these conditions placed on horse and rider.

                                  Sometimes "forced marches" were required and rest times were reduced and time at the trot was increased. Sometimes the gallop was added but this was only done in dire situations as the soldier always wanted to have enough "horse under him" in the event of contact with the enemy.

                                  The U.S. Cavalry used a similar system, but it was less rigid and while the times were similar they were not as closely defined.

                                  If you want about the most extreme example I can find on a "long ride" read the following link that tells the tale of Portagee Phillips. http://www.lrgaf.org/journeys/ride-help.htm

                                  At the end of the day you can mess with food, tack, supplements, etc. but the best medicine for a conditioned horse that gets fatigued is rest. If the horse is unconditioned then it needs more rest. The rider must have the skill, knowledge, and experience to manage their horse correctly. That generally comes from time in the saddle, not a box.

                                  G.
                                  Mangalarga Marchador: Uma Raça, Uma Paixão

                                  Comment

                                  • Original Poster

                                    #18
                                    Originally posted by Guilherme View Post
                                    A 3-4 hour ride is pretty close to a full day's work for a horse. Even at a sedate walk of 4 mph you're covering 12-16 miles. So being a bit tired the next day is not a surprise.

                                    The British Cavalry in modern times used a "clock system" to manage their horse on the march. At time 00 they would begin and ride for 40 min., mostly at the 4 mph walk but with a few min. at an 8 mph. Just what the mix was depended on the speed of advance that their mission required. At time 40 they would dismount, loosen the girth, and march for 10 min. At time 50 they would find a spot to rest horse and rider and let the horse graze if possible. They might also feed a small amount of grain from their grain bag. Then, at time 00, they would do it again. The day usually began at sunrise and they would "noon" after a couple of cycles and let the horses rest and graze for an hour. Then they would do one or two more cycles before camping for the night.

                                    In demanding terrain (mountains, desert, marsh, etc) they would modify the program to reflect the demands that these conditions placed on horse and rider.

                                    Sometimes "forced marches" were required and rest times were reduced and time at the trot was increased. Sometimes the gallop was added but this was only done in dire situations as the soldier always wanted to have enough "horse under him" in the event of contact with the enemy.

                                    The U.S. Cavalry used a similar system, but it was less rigid and while the times were similar they were not as closely defined.

                                    If you want about the most extreme example I can find on a "long ride" read the following link that tells the tale of Portagee Phillips. http://www.lrgaf.org/journeys/ride-help.htm

                                    At the end of the day you can mess with food, tack, supplements, etc. but the best medicine for a conditioned horse that gets fatigued is rest. If the horse is unconditioned then it needs more rest. The rider must have the skill, knowledge, and experience to manage their horse correctly. That generally comes from time in the saddle, not a box.

                                    G.
                                    Yes, this is true, and I definitely am giving her rest and days off. And our conditioning is coming along!

                                    Maresy is usually fine, even hot and forward, on a longer ride. It's the next day she shows exhaustion. Which was why I was interested in recovery times.

                                    Interesting to think that 3 or 4 hours can be considered a full days work for a horse. I probably don't want to spend longer than 4 hours in the saddle these days! But I certainly rode for longer than that regularly as a kid. This would have included rest breaks, drinking from streams, maybe grazing.

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Originally posted by Scribbler View Post

                                      Yes, this is true, and I definitely am giving her rest and days off. And our conditioning is coming along!

                                      Maresy is usually fine, even hot and forward, on a longer ride. It's the next day she shows exhaustion. Which was why I was interested in recovery times.

                                      Interesting to think that 3 or 4 hours can be considered a full days work for a horse. I probably don't want to spend longer than 4 hours in the saddle these days! But I certainly rode for longer than that regularly as a kid. This would have included rest breaks, drinking from streams, maybe grazing.
                                      A lot of folks are surprised at what was considered in times past a "full day" for a work animal!

                                      The Mongols when on campaign had 4-6 horses per warrior and could swap tack on the move. They usually didn't as they knew the value of un-fatigued horse. Other horse cultures, like the Sioux or the Comanche, did the same thing. Western armies usually had one horse per soldier and that made job of chasing native warriors who did what the Mongols did a bigger challenge. The way the Western forces usually gained the upper hand was to campaign in the winter or any season where the local mounted peoples were at a disadvantage. They could do this because Western armies each had a commissary system that provided found to horse and rider year 'round. In some places this worked better than others.

                                      The best thing you can do for your horse on the trail is dismount every hour and let them walk and rest. You can stretch that 3-4 hour window doing that. But there is no free lunch. If you push the horse on day one then on some subsequent day you must give them a "make up" period. The harder you push the more makeup you'll have to give. This also varies to a degree with the base conditioning of the horse. If your horse if fit enough to do a 50 miler then their recover will be quicker and shorted than if your horse is a "weekend warrior."

                                      Rider skill and size is also an issue. If the rider sits their horse like an old sack of wheat and is so unstable that the horse is constantly working to stay under them then that 3-4 hour window shrinks. Ditto if the horse loaded out with an oversized rider or lots of gear or whatever. A skilled rider, even if the horse is loaded, can go farther as they are not making the horse work to stay under them.

                                      The question of how far is too far or how long is too long has no specific answer. It's highly situational.

                                      G.
                                      Mangalarga Marchador: Uma Raça, Uma Paixão

                                      Comment

                                      • Original Poster

                                        #20
                                        I should keep that one hour rule in mind for longer rides. It would probably also help me to stretch a bit!

                                        Comment

                                        Working...
                                        X