Horses have a way of bringing an over confident person back to earth…sometime quite literally and sometimes with a bump!

The weekend following our first ODE I did something stoopid. The OH had a new camera and wanted to test it out so I persuaded him to take pictures of Abbey and I galloping in the fields at home.

Over the past two summers I cannot count how many times we’ve galloped at home without incident….yet when someone’s got a camera…..

On the Saturday in question we headed to the fields, we warmed up, the OH got into position and I took Abbey down the bottom to canter back up the hill towards the camera.

As we turned the corner, I simultaneously got up out the saddle and gave Abbey a great big kick and yelled “go on girl!”. Goodness knows what possessed me. Normally we establish a steady rhythmical pace before I politely ask for a bit more. I must have taken Abbey by surprise as she bucked once, twice and then a third time which landed me rather un-graciously on the floor with a thud.

Despite a sore ankle (which later turned out to be well and truly sprained), muddy jodpurs and a red face I did get back on, worked through some transitions and had half a dozen more gallops before heading back to the yard (all without incident).

That evening the ankle ballooned. It put me out of action for 10 days.

The following fortnight has been mad busy at work – I’ve frequently not got to the yard until 7pm and the weather’s turned so Abbey’s had nearly a month off.

We’ve started to pick the training up again but I’m shocked at how quickly we’ve lost fitness.  The weather doesn’t help – I only see Abbey daylight on Saturdays and Sundays.  So it’s going to be hacking one day and interval training for as long as ground holds up in the fields the other and then schooling or lunging for 3 or 4 days a week for the next couple of months.

I’m going to have to get creative with the exercises to keep our brains engaged or I fear we’ll both go circle-crazy!