The aerobic portion of the workout was not as strenuous as it was yesterday. Apparantly, he remembers that if you only make a token resistance, the ride portion is a)easier and b)shorter. So, instead of leading me on a merry chase, he ambled (AMBLED, of all things!) around the hay 3 times, pushed himself into a trot once, up to the gate, then walked up to me and shoved his head into my arm, demanding the halter. Now. Surprised, I did as he requested. The other horses grumpily watched us go out the gate, and stood there glaring as we did the pre-ride checklist (brush, pull out some cockleburrs, saddle, bridle, remove halter) then wandered off to munch on the yummy hay.
Because there was no child-care provided today, I decided to work him in the front yard. It's about the size of a standard arena, so it's plenty big enough for a basic workout. (I determined today it's also big enough for a small hunter course...so now I need to get the jumps painted so I can set them up finally.) The dogs, of course, went nuts, because the horse is *obviously* up to No Good, forcing me onto his back and all.
The ride went well - only 2 spooks (both of which I stayed on) a little trotting, a wee bit of a canter (and a wee bit of a temper tantrum). I'm not worried about Dusty tossing me - he and I have an agreement that goes way back. He can't attempt to dump me unless we have an audience of 5 or more - and the audience *has* to be people, not cows or dogs or birds or horses. This agreement, plus the fact that he Never learned how to buck (no, seriously - he can't buck. He hasn't figured out the "front end on the ground and back end up in the air, then hop, twist, switch, and repeat" pattern. All he can do is hop like a demented rabbit, and that's pretty easy to stick on to. At almost 19, I don't think he'll figure it out.) He's stiff, but so am I.
The kids got to sit on him a few minutes each after I untacked him. Himself was a bit frightened - "I'm up so HIGH. I want down now." while Herself could just giggle. I am assuming it's because she was in her church dress...and horse hair tickles. A lot. Dusty's a champ.....that's why he's still entire.
I am hoping to keep this up. Even without the "you can't catch me" game, riding is a pretty good workout. Once I get in a little better shape (and reclaim most of my balance) I can start to work with the 2 green mares and the 1 unbroke mare. THEN, I can get the kids started on the pony. Maybe......
I am a bit sore today. My hip hurts where I hit yesterday, and my ankles are stiff. Must keep it up, though!