Sunday, February 21, 2010

Semper's spa day and show day.

Friday I gave Semper a spa day in preparation for the reining show. I had braided his mane and tail over two weeks ago and had left the braids in. He had really gotten them stained. I took them out and took some pictures.

I decided to use some Spray and Wash Stain Remover on them to get the stains out. So I sprayed and sprayed lots of stain remover and let them sit while I worked on the rest of him. I got his legs clean enough that they you could see his pink skin. I had a little trouble with stains on his upper legs. For the most part he was sparkling white. I then went to work on his mane and tail. I used some Mane and Tail shampoo and worked it in really good. Then put some conditioner on. Things were looking better.

It took forever for him to dry. I have found that putting his Irish Linen blanket on and then his cooler over the top that he dries faster but it still took forever. It gave me a chance to clean my saddle, bridle and load the horse trailer for the next day. Below is the pictures of him dry. Not bad.

This is how Semper went to bed. Doesn't he look like a Knight's horse in this get up?

Saturday morning we were off to the show at 8:00am. It took 2 1/2 hours to get to the arena. We got there in plenty of time to watch some of the cowhorse classes and warm up. It was cold and the wind was blowing but it wasn't raining. Semper warmed up nicely and he was really on. My first class was the green reiner. I had walked the pattern the night before and was really confident that I knew it. The arena was smaller than we were used to and the footing was deep. The pattern started with turnarounds. I was the last one in the class so just before they called my name, I went outside and schooled turnarounds. They were fresh in both our minds as we walked through the arena gate. I think that my being nervous made Semper a little uneasy. When he is uneasy or unsure his answer is to add speed. So we went a little faster than I would have liked. We finished the pattern and got a score of 65. My goal for the day was to finish a pattern and get a score and we did that.

I still had the "green as grass" class to go. Their were only only 2 people in the class. I had not studied the pattern because everyone had told me not to try to learn both patterns at once. I had about 5 minutes to learn the second pattern. I am not a quick study with this kind of thing. I thought I had it down. I went out into the ring confident and more relaxed. Semper seemed more relaxed and things went much better until.. and you knew this was coming... I forgot the end of the pattern. I was coming down the fence and thinking I don't think this is right but I don't remember what I am supposed to do next. It is such a sinking feeling. I did our sliding stop but knew it was wrong. Total brain fade. I needed to go around the end of the arena and stop on the other side. I was 130 feet from completing a really nice pattern and blew it. Oops. Even though I didn't get a score, I do feel that it has taught me what I need to do and helped me learn the importance of being relaxed.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Goal Weight and Horse show nerves

Today the scale said that I made it to my goal weight of 150 lbs. I thought that when this day came I would be doing the happy dance and shouting it from the roof tops. But it was kind of like when you are pregnant and you reach your due date and nothing happens, no baby just appears and you don't go into labor, just nothing. I weighed this morning and then said "now what". I still have fat pockets here and there and I am am not totally satisfied that I have lost enough. So I guess my journey is going to march on until I am happy with what I see and how I feel. That is o.k. - 150 is just a number, it wasn't a magic number, it was just a number. I am not going to get hung up on it.

My first horse show is 3 days away. I am really, really, really nervous. My family and friends keep telling me how great I am going to do. They are being so supportive and kind, but it is still stressing me out. I want to do great for Semper and me and for them, but I don't know if it is all going to come together the first time out or not. I am going to keep an open mind, have a good time, and not let my nerves get the best of me. That is the plan.

I did have a good ride last night and I am going to ride a little tonight. I think that I am going to walk the pattern in the arena tonight to try to get it to stick in my head. Tomorrow I am giving Semper a spa day. It sucks to have a white horse. I actually bought Spray and Wash laundry prewash to use on his tail and mane. Haven't tried it before but they are so stained and since it isn't going on his skin I thought that I would give it a try. After his spa day he will be wearing his "dark knight" Lycra hood and black stable blanket. I will try to remember to get a picture of him. He looks like he should be carrying a knight in shining armor.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Benchmark...100 lbs!

This morning the scale said that I have lost 100 lbs. Only 2 lbs to go to goal. I won't make it by mid February but darn close. The more weight I lose the more noticeable the weight loss is. Does that make sense? When I was heavy and lost say 5 lbs you couldn't tell. Now if I lose 5 lbs, it makes a difference. You can see it.

I have seen old friends that I have known for years who don't recognize me. At first I was kind of butt hurt about people not recognizing me because I didn't think that I looked that different. My husband and daughter set me straight. They said that I do look different and I should go look at pictures. I went back and looked at pictures from the day of the Kentucky Derby 2009 and then the pictures that were taken before Christmas. I do look different. The same, but different.

It was the Derby Day photos that put me over the edge and helped me make the decision to have surgery. That was in April. I called the doctors office the next week and scheduled surgery.

Here is one of me in December just before Christmas with my niece (Mrs. Claus) and a friend.

My face is basically the same just thinner, I have a neck now, and the spare tire is going, going, gone.

My riding has greatly improved and I am sure my horse is thanking me over and over. Getting on and off is easy. And that is something considering Semper's size. I don't feel uncomfortable on my filly. I owned her full brother and traded him off because I felt he was too small for a person of my weight. I can sit and cross my legs (either way), I can sit in a chair with arms and when I stand up it doesn't stick on my butt. I am comfortable sitting on a plane. We had flown to Seattle just before I had surgery and I was embarrassed and very self conscience of how much bigger I was than the seat. I didn't need a seat belt extension but it was not pretty. I am happy with my decision, wouldn't recommend it for everyone, but it's been a wonderful journey for me.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

98 lbs of fat off my ass, 98 lbs of fat...

98 lbs of fat off my ass, 98 lbs of fat, take 1 down and pass it around 99 lbs of fat off my ass. That little song has been bouncing around my head. I was hoping to be at my weight loss goal by mid February. I might make it. To date I have lost 98 lbs. I have 4 more to go. On Sunday I only had 3 to go. In the grand scheme of things a pound isn't really that much but when you only have 4 stinking pounds to go it almost seems impossible. All week I have been weighing every morning hoping to see that scale go back down to 3 lbs to go and all week it has said that I have 4 lbs to go. Humm. I have been eating right, exercising and staying away from salt. Salt is not my friend. Salt is not my friend. Say it again.... Salt is not my friend. But I love salt. Salted nuts, salted sunflower seeds, salt on my food before I even try it. Salt is not my friend. The last week I have given up all my little salt vices and yet I am not losing that one little annoying pound.

Had a lesson last night and boy did Semp get his butt kicked. Wow. I bet he is going to rethink giving me the bird. I was working roll backs and he was just not getting with the program. The last one I asked him for, he literally gave me the "horsey finger" (if a horse could). He laid his ears back and off to the side and grunted and showed no effort at all. Trainer Lady says "May I" I say sure! She gets on him and kicks his butt good. She had been telling me to kick him, kick him. What she wasn't saying was kick the crap out of him. Which is what she did. I was giving him one good hard kick and he was ignoring it. She kicked him with her outside leg about 10 times as fast as she could and he started rethinking his behavior. It was kind of an "ah ha" moment for me. That is what she meant. Got it.