Weekly/Daily Schedules

Woohoo for schedules! When I first got Frankie I was a little lost- I get to ride whenever I want??? (Seriously Olivia what did you think happens when you own a horse). I’m a creature that craves structure, so I came up with the following: a tentative outline for our rides for the week, and a tentative outline for our hacks. There will likely never be a full week that we go with this schedule, and I doubt we will ever stick to my hour-long outline perfectly, but that’s ok! This is just to help guide me to make sure Frankie is getting worked consistently without being over-taxed, and we’re working on what we need to work on.

frankie_napping
POOR THING IS EXHAUSTED AT 4PM ON A SATURDAY AFTER WORKING FOR 20 MINUTES ON FRIDAY OH NO SO OVERWORKED

Weekly Schedule

Sunday– Fun day. Trail ride, bareback, etc. Clean and condition tack
Monday– Hard hack, 1 hr. Check everything for wear and needed repairs
Tuesday– Day off
Wednesday– Lesson (jumping)
Thursday– Light hack (30 min) just to stretch legs OR fun day. Clean and condition tack.
Friday– Hard hack (1 hr)
Saturday– Medium hack (45 min). Tidy up trunk.

Summary: Frankie is in work 6 days a week, one of which is jumping and the rest with varying levels of intensity. I talked to my trainer about the frequency of riding and we agreed that he’s in fantastic shape (shout out to his eventing barn for doing conditioning sets with him!) and this type of schedule will work well to maintain muscle without over-stressing him. I’ll be taking any opportunity to get outside the ring for any of these days- we often use a big turnout to hack in, there are lots of trails nearby, etc. Once we start showing on the weekends he will get time off after each show to recover.

I wipe down my tack after every ride, but they get more thorough TLC 2x a week. My trunk is pretty neat and I intend to keep it that way, and especially now that blanket season is over it’s pretty quick to give my gear the once-over for any problems showing up.

And before I forget to mention- Frankie gets a minimum 30 minute (usually longer) grooming session every time I hop off. He’s just too pretty, I can’t resist!

frankie_trot

60 minute flatwork

0-10: Walk on a loose rein all over the ring- circles, changing directions, get our muscles moving.
10-20: Trot on a loose rein. Lots of 2-point, no stirrups, serpentines and circles and changes of bend, slowly asking for more contact as we get moving.
20-30: Walk/trot/halt transitions on a contact with a little lateral work thrown in there. Lots of extensions/collections plus transitions between gaits.
30-40: Canter work, including lots of extensions/collections.
40-50: More dedicated lateral work. For now mainly at the walk and a little at the trot, but we’ll up the difficulty as we go.
50-55: Stretchy trot.
55-60: Walk, preferably outside the ring

 45 minute flatwork

0-10: Walk on a loose rein
10-20: Walk/trot/halt transitions, slowly asking for more contact
20-30: Canter work
30-35: Lateral work, extensions/collections
35-40: Stretchy trot
40-45: Walk

Again, these are just frameworks! This is what’s working well for Frankie and me for where we are right now- tuning up our transitions within gaits and our lateral work. I’m trying to be very conscious of letting our warm-ups take plenty of time and building up the intensity slowly. Certain days we tweak it to spend extra time on one thing or another as necessary. Frankie is a very relaxed, confident horse and I want to do everything in my power to keep it that way. I don’t plan to be the person that makes him tense and anxious.

So there you have it. Frankie is working hard and loving it. We had a great hour long ride earlier this week and even though we were both sweating and tired by the end, he was still stepping out with his energetic walk and ready for more!

How do you plan your rides? Do you have a standing “framework” or do you make your plan based on where you are that day?

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19 thoughts on “Weekly/Daily Schedules

  1. Aryelle Stafford 05/03/2016 / 9:44 am

    Unfortunately for me, my horse lives an hour away so I can only go see him 3x a week :/ buttt during those days he definitely gets worked! Usually one lesson and then 2 days of working on whatever he needs. Plus, he gets used in a few lessons at the end of the week as well!

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    • hellomylivia 05/03/2016 / 3:03 pm

      That’s exactly what Addy’s mom does- she has other people hop on her or has her used in lessons when she can’t make it out! An hour away is tough, I feel for you ❤

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  2. Allison Stitzinger 05/03/2016 / 9:52 am

    Please write a book entitled “Seriously, Olivia.” Thank you. I think you are off to a good start with your new guy with this schedule! As you get to know him better, you can tailor your rides more to what he needs on that day vs. what you had planned. I have a general idea of what I want to work on each day (i.e. dressage, jumping, conditioning sets) but oftentimes end up changing the plan to suit the pony that comes out of the field that day. You are so, so ambitious with that tack & equipment maintenance schedule! I clean my bridle and girth after every ride (almost..) but the ‘big’ jobs get done whenever they get done.. ha.

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    • hellomylivia 05/03/2016 / 3:08 pm

      Haha I’ll start collecting all the occasions I say “seriously Olivia” to myself under my breath. It’ll be a lengthy novel.
      Agreed completely that as we get into a routine and get more and more in sync this will evolve and shift! For now these are all very much “getting to know you and making sure you understand my aids and I’m asking correctly” rides and I anticipate us getting to do even more cool things as we line ourselves up with each other 🙂
      I’m a leeeeetle bit obsessive about my tack haha. On a day-to-day basis I’ll just do a quick wipedown with my HS, but I feel physically uncomfortable putting my saddle away without thoroughly conditioning it. That thing is my baby (the saddle rep stopped by and said it looks even better than when she sold it to me a few months ago…so now it’s just a point of pride haha)

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  3. Stacie Seidman 05/03/2016 / 10:38 am

    Looks like a great outline to work with!
    For Jamp, I get on and see which horse has shown up that day. Some days I get the agreeable, quiet one, but most days it’s the “other” horse. On those days, we just try to get enough work in with no one dying.
    Romey hasn’t started jumping yet. Most days we are just walk/trotting trying to teach him what my aids mean. Canter I think will be a project for trainer when she gets back from FL…
    Rio is retired. So when I ride him, we just do whatever he wants.
    I can’t wait for GTO to get home so we can work on a more similar schedule to yours. He’s the only one I have that’s in real work AND has a brain. So it will be fun to actually have things to focus on and be able to actually work on them.

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    • hellomylivia 05/03/2016 / 3:12 pm

      I love how different these are for each horse- that takes such a skilled rider to be able to tweak what you’re doing for each mount. And amen to having a brain- I’ve been so lucky that Francis walks out of his stall exactly the same each day. Phew.
      I got this weird little glow in my heart when you said that you do whatever Rio wants. I just love that.

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  4. L. Williams 05/03/2016 / 11:47 am

    With Carlos I had more structure because he had a history of being off and needinging to be brought back into fitness. With Ramone I always start with a general plan and go from there. Though I used to be super stringent with my riding schedule with Carlos (had to be) Ramone is more free floating (has to be also because Grad School + Commute from hell + Full Time Job).

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    • hellomylivia 05/03/2016 / 3:14 pm

      I’ll admit you were one of my inspirations for getting more of a plan- I read a couple of your posts on how you’d deliberately choose certain pieces of “homework” (I’m paraphrasing poorly here) and it really stuck.
      Also, jesus christ woman. How do you have time to sleep??

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  5. Lauren 05/03/2016 / 11:48 am

    You are waaaaaaaaaay more organized than me. My schedule changes weekly, which isn’t always a good thing. I try to hit Simon getting 4 rides a week though, with no more than 1-2 jumping days. Fitness wise, we would really benefit from more like 5-6 rides a week but right now 4 is what I can handle.

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    • hellomylivia 05/03/2016 / 3:20 pm

      If I’m not organized, I’ll hop on and W/T/C around for 20 minutes before saying “now what??” haha- this is purely to make sure I have an idea of what to do!
      I’m a big believer in schedules that work for the horse AND you. If you’re showing up flustered because you know you don’t really have time, it doesn’t seem super helpful. We all just gotta keep rockin’ on with whatever works for us!

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  6. shelbyrallen 05/03/2016 / 12:34 pm

    You are so organized I love it!! I used to be a stickler about a weekly schedule, but now that I’m balancing working full time, managing the schedule of a jump and flat trainer and the weather (somehow I can’t control this??? 😉 ) I play it day-by-day. I adore all your posts about Frankie. I’m so happy you found a horse you love so much. He’s lucky to have you as him mom!

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    • hellomylivia 05/03/2016 / 3:22 pm

      Two trainers PLUS the weather??? I just have the one trainer with a set lesson time and an indoor ring haha. I’ve got a lot of people that have made scheduling like this a lot easier, so I definitely can’t take too much credit!
      Ohmygosh I seriously just got this stupid little smile on my face, thank you so so so much!!! He’s the best boy in the world, I’m the luckiest girl to have him ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Abby F 05/03/2016 / 7:43 pm

    Good for you for being so organized!! I do both of my horses 6 days a week also. My mare gets Sundays off and my gelding gets Mondays off and I get no days off! Haha 🙂 I try to jump them twice a week, do fitness work once a week (trot sets, hill work, gallops), a hard flat twice a week, and an easy hack once a week. I try to change the location of my rides each day. We have a covered arena, an exercise track, two polo fields, trails, and tons of pastures. I think my horses really appreciate the change of scenery and I think it keeps them from getting sour.

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    • hellomylivia 05/04/2016 / 8:02 am

      Ok first of all holy moly that’s a ton of riding. Do you have legs made of solid titanium??? Too personal? (Don’t care, still curious- you could probably crack walnuts with your thighs). I’ll stop talking about your thighs now.
      Second of all- your facility sounds AMAZEBALLS!!! I totally agree that changing up the scenery is so beneficial, and it sounds like you totally have it made in that department!

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      • Abby F 05/04/2016 / 10:10 am

        Haha! I ride a bunch!! Not sure if my thighs can crack walnuts…. But they are strong! I also take our polo ponies out on the track twice a day everyday. I’m SO grateful for our farm! It’s really nice to have so many places to ride 🙂

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  8. Emma 05/04/2016 / 11:27 am

    I would kill for a 6x wkly schedule right now, but as it is I will call 4x a win. Our schedule is a lot like yours in theory tho : intense schoolings interspersed with more “fun” type conditioning hacks

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    • hellomylivia 05/04/2016 / 12:40 pm

      It helps that there’s such a fun group of ammies at the barn and it’s so close to my office- I can pop right over after work and have social hour while we ride 🙂

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  9. Tracy - Fly On Over 05/10/2016 / 11:10 am

    You are way more dedicated than I! I ride 4-5 days a week, one jump school and my flat rides vary from 20-40 minutes. Just depends on the exercise I pick, and how well we’re able to accomplish it.

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    • hellomylivia 05/10/2016 / 12:18 pm

      Whatever works! I’m definitely still in “OOH SHINY” new horse mode so I have a feeling this will calm down as we settle in together more 🙂

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