A different sort of training post! Hillwork for fitness.

spookypony

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There are days when Endurance is the awesomest sport ever, namely, when you get to do this sort of a work-out, on a day like today! The weather was really warm and sunny, so our ca. 2h20mins of sometimes pretty severe hill-climbing were pretty tiring! I was out with a friend whose horse won her first 80km ER last autumn, so he had to work pretty hard to keep up sometimes! :D

High above Pitfichie Castle:

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Some amazing views after the first vicious climb:

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The second hard climb left the pony puffing, so I sloshed him and dismounted to enjoy the view:

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A series, possibly out of order, of pictures of the climb, the peak and the very rocky descent:

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After this descent, my friend did another, faster loop of the first vicious climb, while the Spooky Pony and I walked back to a convenient meeting place, where he enjoyed nibbling on gorse blossoms:

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I'm planning a hilly 30k for his next competition, so we couldn't have had a better day of training! :)
 

TarrSteps

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Beautiful. :)

Who would have thought, when you were struggling with SP years ago, that he would be the horse to give you these lovely rides.
 

Carefreegirl

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Wow what a gorgeous place to ride especially with the sun out. I also have a bit of hill envy, as need more hills where I am.
 

Booboos

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How beautiful! Another one here who is consumed with envy. We only have road hacks here and I have gotten a bit fed up over the years with risking my life on a daily basis due to insane drivers. Unfortunately I don't have time to box anywhere or do anything more exciting than drag a horse to the school for 45 minutes and then run back to the screaming 3 year old!
 

spookypony

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TarrSteps, he's a pleasure to ride out in company! :) By himself, he is still nappy and disinclined to proceed faster than walk, so solo endurance rides aren't an option at the moment, because we'd get round far too slow, but has soon as he has a buddy, he's fab! Some people don't like to go in threes or fours because their horse lights up too much, but he pretty much stays the same, so that's an advantage.

Booboos, at the moment, I have to box to hack, so I'm not managing to get him out terribly often (compounded with the loading/napping issues, which means that I prefer to go with someone, or to go somewhere where I know I can get loading help if he plants). Those hills were about an hour away. I don't envy your child-care issue; I know there's a second MiniBoo coming along. But eventually, the big one will be big enough to sit the little one! :D
 

EstherYoung

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Excellent :) Hillwork like that is brilliant as you don't have to go fast but it gives them a serious workout - a friend of hours got and kept her horses 100 mile fit just walking up and down the steep pennine hills where she lived. It's interesting doing big hills with a heart rate monitor - walking up 1in3 hills or steeper were the only way I could get Hs pulse over 200bpm.
 

spookypony

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I'm told there used to be an endurance ride run up there, but the erosion of the tracks due to mountain bikers has put a stop to it. That's a shame! It would be a challenging ride, for sure.
 

ClobellsandBaubles

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I am insanely jealous I have to make do with my own two feet at the moment I keep looking at the lovely tracks round bennachie and kirkhill and sighing especially on a day like today :)
 

spookypony

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now_loves_mares, I'm not sure if Pitfichie is technically part of Bennachie or not...it's very close, anyway!

Dry Rot, I'm just doing my bit for the tourism industry! :D
 

BBP

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Really interesting, I didn't know your pony wouldn't hack alone. I've ruled out endurance for mine as he isn't the bravest hacking solo (would be fine if we didn't have so many roads) so I can't get the fitness work into him. I assumed that meant I couldn't do endurance. But nice to know you can still compete on yours.
 
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