Taco is fairly easy to get fit to begin with, and he has a nice baseline. He recovered in the blink of an eye, it seemed, after our XC run at Penny Oaks. Admittedly, we were treated to mid-80s and low humidity that weekend. His resting temperature is barely 99 degrees (normal for a horse is 99-101), his normal heart rate is 36-40, and he recovers quickly after exercise.
Today was yet another hot day, and I decided to try a conditioning ride with the idea that I would pay close attention to how he was doing. It was the first week on the schedule and it was a pretty light workout: 3 sets of five-minute trots and a couple of two-minute canters at 350 meters per minute. He does more than that in many of our dressage schools. To make a long story short, he seemed to find this quite easy, although I myself really felt the heat! Ten minutes after pulling up from the second of our two short canters, his temperature and heart rate were only slightly elevated, and after his shower they were normal again.
As the workouts get longer, the weather will get cooler, or at least I hope so. Here is our plan. If you, dear readers, have some feedback about it, please tell me! It contains elements of several conditioning schedules, two of which have appeared in EVENTING USA magazine (by Nancy Koch and Gina Miles).
T3D Conditioning Schedule- Taco
1. Week of 8/8 3x5@220; 2x2@350
2. Week of 8/15 3x5@220; 2x2@400
3. Week of 8/22 3x5@220; 2x3@400
4. Week of 8/29 3x5@220; 3x3@400
5. Week of 9/5 AECs; 1x5:30@470
6. Week of 9/12 3x5@220; 3x4@400
7. Week of 9/19 3x5@220; 1x6@400; 2x1@500
8. Week of 9/26 3x5@220; 1x6@420; 2x2@500
9. Week of 10/3 1x10@220; 1x2@520; 1x20@160; 10 min rest; 1x6@450
10 Week of 10/10 Taper—hack and normal dressage/jump schools
Week of 10/17 Midsouth T3D
Day 1 Dressage plus walk
Day 2 Jump plus walk
Day 3 Hacking out/Hill work OR rest and add hills to 2nd dressage school
Day 4 Dressage plus walk
Day 5 Jump plus walk
Day 6 Conditioning/Canter
Day 7 Rest