Day in the Life: Full Training Edition

So I realized that I talked a ton last year about how busy I was, how much time I spent at the barn, balancing everything, blah blah blah we’re all adults and all have to deal with this Olivia calm down. But then I realized that I never really laid out what that schedule looked like for me, and I’m self-indulgent and want to share.

Without further ado, this is what my schedule looked like when Frankie and I were in hardcore mode. Also this is admittedly an idealized version- we all know that things came up and changed day to day. It looked a little different throughout the week, so I’ll walk through what that was.


5:30a- up for a workout. Mostly strength work with resistance bands, with some cardio thrown in. The program I used had fantastic 30-40 min workouts that hit that balance for me really well. (I’m using a different program these days that I actually like MUCH more. Still 5:30a wakeups though)

6:30a- grab breakfast, rinse off, listen to music, tidy up the house if necessary. The Spousal Unit does all the cooking around here so I cover dishes, and I’m usually too tired at night. So morning chores it is.

7:05a/7:15a- head to work. I work about 0.75 miles away from our condo, so I try to walk if weather permits. Sometimes I’m lazy or tired or cold or just a useless lump and I’ll drive. Either way, I call my dad to chat with him to start my day off. It’s the best way to kick off my morning.

He loves his grandpony

7:30a- log in and start working! Regular office hours are 8:30a-5:30p, but I have an alternate schedule to get me in and out a little earlier. My boss and the entire leadership team seem fascinated by the whole horse thing, so they’ve been incredibly supportive and flexible with me.

5:00p- log off and hop in the car. Sit in traffic for a little under an hour to get to the barn. Ugh. I usually call the SO, my mom, my best friend, my sister in law, really anyone to keep me company. I legit hate being in the car so much. If any of you are ever free between 5 and 6pm EST and want to chat, lemme know. I require constant entertainment, and still have this commute most days.

6:00p(ish)- get to the barn, woohoo! During the summer Frankie was outside at night, so I’d either text AT around lunchtime to ask her to keep him in for me, or just go out and get him. He’s a brat and doesn’t come to the gate, so I have to tromp around to collect him. His patented move is to wait for me to come close, then walk a few steps away, then stop and wait for me to halter him. It’s not running away, it’s just enough to be annoying UGH FRANCIS.

Can’t even get mad bc he’s the actual cutest

Timing then was flexible. Sometimes I’d hop on right away if the ring was relatively quiet, sometimes I’d wait a bit for it to quiet down. Or for there to be adults in the ring with solid steering. All the horses in the barn are fine with some traffic, but it’s always nice to have a bit more room to spread out. During the week we did a lot of flatwork, sometimes over poles if they were set up, lots of lateral work, extensions/collections/etc. I always tried to go along with whatever gait the lesson is working in to make it easier. Some days I’d head out for a trail ride to cool off, or some days I’d hop on bareback and plop around when we needed a mental break.

8:30/9/9:30p- head out. Usually I’d be off the horse by 8 or 8:30 at the latest, but somehow I almost always got sucked into chatting with my barn friends (still do tbh). They’re a super cool bunch. At this point traffic died down and I could make it home within 25-30 minutes or so.

In my rickety old Jeep that had questionable brakes things were fine I lived

Once I was home (between 9-10ish), it was dinner-shower-bed in pretty quick succession. Maybe an episode of something if it was early enough. But I’m an annoying cranky turnip if I don’t get at least 7-8 hours of sleep and my husband is the sleepiest man alive, so bedtime seemed like a better idea.

So that’s Monday through Thursday! The slightly longer workdays meant that Fridays were (and still are) my flex days, which is totally awesome.


No workout in the morning. Maybe a stretch session, a jog, or a walk. Maybe not.

Log on to my computer around 7:30 or 8am from home. I try to do all my “tasks” earlier in the week, and save my WFH days for the more conceptual stuff- storyboarding, sketching out layouts for new projects, things like that. I have my little workstation set up in our den, but sometimes I’ll curl up on the couch and work there.

This is my spot and it’s my favorite place to curl up ever

Log off around 11:30/noon. Since I work longer days Mon-Thurs, I only had to put in a few hours on Fridays!

Then it was time to head to the barn. Since 1p doesn’t count as rush hour, I could make it there in 30 min or so.

Friday afternoons were (and sometimes still are) for private lessons. These. Were. Intense. Sometimes these were entirely flatwork, sometimes grid-focused, sometimes jumping. Usually the jumps were fairly small as we focused on skills, but we bumped them up a couple times a month so I could remember how to see a spot to the bigger fences. I was usually gasping for air and had noodle legs by the end. But I also was beaming with satisfaction at what we accomplished.

A satisfied Frankfurter. PC- Liz Stout Photography

By the time Frankie was cooled out and put away, other people started to arrive as their kids got out of school/they got out of work. There aren’t usually any lesson kids on Fridays, so it’s the core group. We take turns bringing wine, we watch the juniors ride, we chat, it’s awesome. Friday barn happy hours are the actual best.

Depending on how much I got sucked into happy hour, I’d try to do some grocery shopping on my way home and start doing laundry/cleaning/anything else that I didn’t have time to take care of between Mon-Thurs. Eeeevery once in a while I’d get to see some friends.


Weekends were mainly spent with morning/afternoons at the barn, afternoons/evenings at home. Or at horse shows. Everything that normal people do during the week got shoved into these days.


The weekend of the horse world, right? This was Frankie’s day off, and mine as well by default. This was my day to just go home after work and relax. No chores. No anything. Just hang out at home.

At this point, Frankie was being ridden 6x/week by myself, and 2x/week by AT, getting 1 day off, along with hilly turnout every day. It was certainly hardcore mode for both of us.

So there you have it. That’s what my life looked like for much of 2018.


It was a great schedule, even when I felt a bit hectic. But I’m sure you can see why it wasn’t particularly sustainable once I added hardcore wedding planning into the mix, and now adding classes into the mix. I’m currently at a more moderate 3-4x/week schedule with Francis and while I certainly miss the drive and focus of 2018, I’m learning to slow down and enjoy the journey in a different way.

17 thoughts on “Day in the Life: Full Training Edition

  1. martidoll123 03/07/2019 / 10:05 am

    I need a nap after reading this πŸ™‚ You are amazing. I am glad you have slowed down a bit though> And Francis is adorable even if he makes you play hide and seek to catch him πŸ™‚


    • hellomylivia 03/07/2019 / 10:12 am

      I need a nap after writing it haha. I figure Francis is such a sweet creature 99% of the time, he can have his one token rebellion πŸ˜‰

      Liked by 1 person

  2. KateRose 03/07/2019 / 11:27 am

    You need podcasts for that commute! They keep me awake and entertained. Also that schedule is super hardcore, I couldn’t handle the 530am start for sure.


    • hellomylivia 03/07/2019 / 12:33 pm

      I’ve just started getting into podcasts now that I have a car with bluetooth! There was never a good way to play them in the Jeep, but I’ve got a couple to keep me entertained now πŸ™‚


  3. Tracy 03/07/2019 / 11:44 am

    Man, this is a great reminder of how freaking fortunate I am to work from home. I have 0 commute and I can get to the barn pretty much at any time of the day in 20 minutes. Sometimes depending on workload, I can even sneak out at odd hours (like taking a long lunch break to ride) which is especially amazing during the winter!


    • hellomylivia 03/07/2019 / 12:32 pm

      So jealous! I probably spend close to 2 hours a day in the car, which is actually less than a lot of people around here. Housing prices and traffic means everyone is kinda used to long commute times haha. I treasure my Fridays when I can get to the barn quickly without traffic!


  4. Liz 03/07/2019 / 2:57 pm

    I think it is so awesome that you can walk to work! I miss college where I walked to get places – so much more stress free than driving lol. And wow. Sounds like you have so much traffic just to get to the barn. It makes me scream internally on your behalf. Ugh. I have a commute currently, but it’s just due to distance, not traffic. I don’t know how y’all in NOVA/DC area cope on the daily with the traffic.


    • hellomylivia 03/07/2019 / 4:23 pm

      I got so many more steps in when i was in college, miles and miles every day!! The traffic is such a killer, there’s some homicidal rage on the regular there.


  5. Boss Mare Eventing 03/08/2019 / 10:04 am

    Very similar to myself, but horses are at home so in the morning I do chores and usually ride 2-3 after work. Rise and grind!


    • hellomylivia 03/11/2019 / 7:13 am

      I can’t even imagine adding barn chores on top of this, you are super woman!!!


  6. Amanda Lee 03/09/2019 / 2:01 pm

    I totally get you on the phone calls in the car thing – back when I was working a lot in film I would always bother my west coast friends into chatting with me when I was driving home after midnight! Chatting just makes long boring drives so much better. I can only listen to the same five songs on the radio so many times….


    • hellomylivia 03/11/2019 / 7:05 am

      Agreed so much! That 9 hour drive back from Ohio basically went podcast episode-call my husband-podcast episode-call my mom on repeat til I got home haha


  7. eventerinprogress 03/10/2019 / 5:45 pm

    Please tell me your secrets of how to get up at 5.30am (especially in winter).

    I have so much trouble falling asleep before 11.30pm and waking up before 8. I don’t know why and I wish I could fix it so badly.


    • hellomylivia 03/11/2019 / 7:00 am

      Ugh I wish I had a secret, it’s HARD and I hate it! For real especially in winter, having it that dark and cold is awful. The one thing that has actually helped me shift my sleep schedule is cutting out caffeine entirely. I’ve always been sensitive to it, and it made my sleep habits a million percent better when I cut it out.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Virtual Brush Box 03/12/2019 / 7:28 am

    “I require constant entertainment.” I reach. Audio books? Even hands-free phone calls can be distracting. Speaks the safety geek. I want you around long time to be writing and entertaining ME.


    • hellomylivia 03/12/2019 / 8:34 am

      Not to worry, I plan to be around for a long time to bother you all with my ramblings πŸ˜‰


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