Having 2 horses is a total juggling act, between keeping them both in work plus making sure life outside of horses runs smoothly.

As Henry's training increases I find myself increasingly juggling priorities between the horses. They both equally need work, to maintain fitness and continue to build our training though rides between the horses are very different.

For the most part splitting my time between the horses isn't a problem, I can work them easily on alternate days and on weekends we don't have competitions I can get a ride in on both. Neither need working daily so at this point it works out pretty well.

I come to conflict when it comes to competitions and off the property outings. And right now I am having withdrawals as a result!! Henry is at a point in his training where he needs more outings. His future is as a competition horse and so a lot of his education needs to be about how to be a competition horse and how to react in those situations.

I am taking a very slow and steady approach with him, slowly building up his experiences in new environments and making sure he has numerous positive outings. Although I know many people who are moving much faster than we are (and I have to continuously remind myself not to compare our progress against other peoples) this is working really so far. Henry is constantly stepping up when I ask him to and I am keeping my own confidence which is equally important.

Unfortunately the competitions and training days that suit Henry best often seem to clash with eventing dates... and thus I have a dilemma. I need to priorities which horse needs the outing. Earlier in the year my priority was eventing on Coolie. As the year has progressed and both horses have improved this has shifted and now I find myself thinking I should prioritise Henry more.

Not hard to prioritise him really!
I remain unsure about upgrading Coolie to 105 and this isn't on the cards yet. There are a few things  happening in the background that will help with my decision so at this point we are sticking with the lower height. We are established at 95, and as a result Coolie doesn't need competition outings. We can continue to work on our weaknesses at home and at local competitions and training days. This has been a big focus for us recently and it's working well so far. As always I am overly careful about how much Coolie and I do. I am also realising we don't have to do all the events, it's not always in our best interests.

Maybe I am growing up?

More recently I have been choosing to go to things with Henry, rather than eventing. And it's fine but sometimes choosing to not event means I feel like I am missing out. I have chosen not to do one of my favourite events in order to get Henry out to a competition specifically for off the track horses. The decision was quite carefully considered, the competition Coolie and I aren't going to has a cross country course we have competed over for the last few years and is quite straight forward. The focus at this competition is always on the dressage, our weakest phase. It's not all about ribbons, but I prefer to be challenged over all phases. Instead I will focus on a competition in a few more weeks where the cross country really is a challenge, and Henry will get to strut his stuff.

Until then I guess I will just imagine Coolie and I are flying around XC and try to schedule some training. Our weekends are filling up really fast though and things are looking really backed until October, and not just with horse things!


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