From Endurance to Dressage
And so it begins ...
I am not one to sit around and complain for long, so as soon as I realized that things were not so rosy and bright, I sat down and reevaluated my life choices. Izzy's not the only one whose choices are questionable. Apparently, mine are as well. It's not that I am making bad choices, it's just that I need to make fewer choices. Right now, I need to do less, want less, go less, and expect less. I think that's the way for me to get more. More done. More accomplished. More happiness.
That's the short term plan anyway.
On Thursday, I wasn't feeling much like riding Izzy, so I didn't. Instead, I decided to spend some time with Speedy doing girl loves her horse kinds of things. Since Speedy doesn't show anymore, I don't worry so much about his old man whiskers and overgrown bridle path. Even so, it's fun to spruce him up, so I dragged out my clippers and gave him a haircut. I added some conditioner to his mane and tail and then gently untangled his hair. I also banged his tail, something I hadn't done in a while. While he looked a lot better, he's still a grey horse living outdoors in early winter.
After seeing how good he looked, I decided to hop up on him bareback and ride around the neighborhood. Even at 18, Speedy still has the best back for riding bareback. His ribs are well sprung, and his withers rise gracefully from his back. He already had his riding halter on - it's a rope halter made with rings which I long ago attached reins to, so I grabbed my helmet and lead him over to our new mounting block. It works great for sliding a leg over.
We ambled out and down the long driveway as Speedy grabbed mouthfuls of newly sprouted winter grass. Before we had left the driveway I was smiling broadly. We headed out to the old golf course and circled through the cherry trees like we had done the week before. Before we were halfway home, Speedy got a wild hair, lifted his back, and proceeded to dance his way back home. Not going to lie, there were half a dozen moments that I thought about walking back on foot. He may be small, but he's quick, and when he decides to get his sas on, he's hard to sit. Whether by luck or skill, I managed to stay on despite his desire to remind me that he's still got it. I love that horse.
By the time we got back, I was laughing aloud, grateful to have found some joy.
About the Writer and Rider
I am a lifelong rider.
I began endurance riding in 1996 where I ultimately completed five, one-day 100 mile races, the 200-mile Death Valley Encounter, and numerous other 50, 65, and 75 mile races. I began showing dressage in 2010.
Welcome to my dressage journey.
About Speedy G
Speedy went from endurance horse to dressage horse. After helping me earn a USDF Bronze medal in the summer of 2020, he is now semi-retired. Speedy is a 2004, 15'1 hand, purebred Arabian gelding. His Arabian Horse Registry name is G Ima Starr FA.
Izzy was started as a four-year old and then spent the next 18 months in pasture growing up. I bought him as a six-year old, and together, we are showing at the lower levels. He is a 2008, 16'3 hand warmblood gelding. His Rheinland Pfalz-saar International (RPSI) name is Imperioso.
National Rider Awards
State Rider Awards
State Horse Awards
CDS Sapphire Rider Award
Third Level: 63.514%
Third Level: 62.105%
2023 Show Season
(r) Ride-a-Test Clinic
2023 Show Schedule
2023 Completed …
2023 Qualifying Scores
Regional Adult Amateur Competition (RAAC)
Qualifying Training Level
3 Scores/2 Judges/60%: