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[RC] Endurance horse/rider sizes - waldruff

Hello all, 

As this is my first post I'll introduce myself and then get on with my question.

My name is Stacey Waldruff and I live in Virginia, not awfully far from Fort 
Valley, home of the the Old Dominion 100. A few years ago,after having been 
horseless for 15 loooong years I was given a wonderful Straight Egyptian 
gelding by a lady who just couldn't find anyone to buy him. Their loss was 
definitely my gain and Simah was a dream come true for me. The first couple of 
years together we rode the roads and woodlands near my home until the day came 
when I finally got a  horse trailer. Then we began to venture out a bit. Soon 
after that I happened to see a notice in the Virginia Horse Journal that The 
Old Domion Ride Group was sponsoring 3 training rides during the summer to 
introduce people to endurance riding. I didn't know a  whole lot about it but 
went ahead and signed up because it sounded so wonderful to me. Simah & I both 
loved these rides. I had never seen him happier. I had great plan that we would 
begin to do limited distance rides and work our way up from there starting this 
spring. Unfortunately back in December, Simah went suddenly lame on the hind 
left leg. After having the vet ultrasound him it was found that he had a 
grapefruit sized tumor on his aorta that was likely restricting blood flow to 
his leg. I had to put him down. It was one of the hardest thngs that I have 
ever had to do, but I could not allow him to continue in discomfort and risk 
him falling in the pasture. He was the most incredible friend and I miss him 

A year after I was given my Simah I found a severely neglected Arabian filly on 
a farm near Warrenton, Va. I had to buy her. I don't think she would have 
lasted much longer, otherwise. She weighed 345 pounds when I brought her home 
just a few days after her first birthday. She had lice,worms and badly 
overgrown feet.
She is now 3 1/2 years old and has made it to 752 pounds according to my weight 
tape and is 14hh in height. She is very intelligent and really keeps me on my 
toes as I am beginning her training. I have been on her about 4-5 times with a 
halter and rope reins, bareback ( I have no saddle for her yet :( ). She is 
very responsive and has most of the basics down from our ground work. As far as 
conditioning is concerned I was worried about too much lunging at her age and 
so I walk her 2.5 miles 5-6 days per week over long winding hills. Last week we 
"discovered" a small pond on our walk and so I worked with her on crossing 
water. Before I knew it I was the one crossing it as she learned to swim. The 
next day I wore my swimsuit. :) She is nearly fearless and is willing to try 
almost anything I ask. Anyway she is a great little horse and I'd like to use 
her in endurance someday.
  We are now doing lots of stretches and I'm working on developing the loin 
muscling with belly tuck ups as I've read that helps to prevent sway back in 
the future. She is fed 4 pounds of 16% feed with cracked grains, alfalfa 
pellets, beet pulp and bran in it daily. She also gets 2 tablespoons of kelp 
meal, 1 cup of corn oil, 1 cup of vinegar, 2 cups of black oil sunflower seeds, 
a dash of garlic and 2 tablespoons of paprika for her bay coat. She also gets a 
flake of alfalfa and free feed of timothy hay. She gobbles all this food and 
still checks me over for signs of peppermints and apples.As I said, I am 5'7 
and weigh 145 pounds. Bashirah is 752 pounds and 14hh. I am hoping for maybe a 
little more growth but with the early neglect, I  not sure she'll have it. Is 
she too small for my frame in such a rigorous sport as endurance riding? What 
else can I do to increase her strength?  

Thank you for your help.I have enjoyed following the other Ridecamp threads for 
some time now.


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