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[RC] 100 Milers - Marinera

I think one of the reasons for the decline of 100 Mile One Day Rides is that 
people are afraid to try them. Back in the dark ages there was only one 
ride—the 100 Mile Tevis Cup Ride.  You did not have choices.  Now we are 
scaring newcomers to death that you have to be superman on a super horse to 
go a hundred miles. You do not.  The average rider and the average horse can 
manage quite nicely. 

I think newcomers to endurance riding figure they have to be in super shape 
themselves, work out, run many miles on foot, ride the dickens out of the 
poor horse.  That is not true.  Riding your horse in training will get your 
own body ready. Then just make sure you don’t bring a tired horse to a 100 
miler, one worn out by too many training miles and too many 50 milers leading 
up to the 100 miler. But don't be afraid of trying a hundred miler.  If I can 
ride the Tevis at age 76 as someone who literally cannot trot their horse out 
for the vets, who has to stand on a milk crate to get topside, then just 
about anybody can do it.  The only ingredient you can’t do without is desire. 
Without it, don’t even try. 100 Milers tax you mentally more than physically. 
Nobody I know condemns anyone for trying.  Failing is not the end of the 
world. Daring to risk failure will make you a bigger person regardless of the 
outcome. Just remember that your top priority is not crossing the finish line 
but being a compassionate rider, a rider who recognizes when his horse has 
had enough for that day.  You will find that if your horse is up to the 
challenge, you will find the inner strength to hang on and go with him.  
Don’t doubt it for a minute.  You can’t soar if you don’t try.   Julie

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