I was able to ride Eli on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday! On Friday, we just did some flat work. Mostly trotting, as cantering was more like playing, leaping, tensing up, etc., so that was fun. But after almost two weeks of nothing, I was completely prepared for that type of energy from Eli.
He played hard in turnout Saturday morning, so his canter was back to normal, and I was able to jump him some with my trainer. We worked on being straight through a two stride, but didn’t do a whole lot otherwise — I felt like Eli started to get a little bit cranky from being a bit tired earlier than usual. Having not worked for so long, he was not in top shape and neither was I.
On Sunday, light rain came down on and off throughout the morning, making the turnouts a little too wet, so Eli got to go in the round pen instead. I debated about riding. At the time, rain looked likely on Monday, too, so I thought I had better ride while the footing was still okay. I tried to catch a break in the rain, but as soon as I got up to the arena, it had started to drizzle again. For his part, Eli handled it much better than I expected — he usually hates getting rained on and he didn’t act out about it at all. Maybe having a bonnet on helped some. I wasn’t going to spend forever up there, so I kept the ride short, and took him through a little warm-up cross rail that had some trot poles in front of it and centering guide poles on the back side. I just yelled at myself in my head “look right” and we managed to stay straight through the exercise. He also didn’t seem to get as tired as he did Saturday. Leave it to a thoroughbred to shame you into getting into better shape faster.
The weather on Monday actually turned out beautiful, although I didn’t make it out to the barn. Eli got time outside, at least, and the rest of the week looks the same! Yay!