I hate December. It’s cold; it’s dark, and it’s time spent twiddling my thumbs waiting to get to Florida. When I’ve had serious upper-level competition horses, December is a bit of let-down time. I take the last two weeks of November and the first few weeks of December to just fluff around, and then the last two or so weeks to build back up to hit Florida in good form. But with the young horses, there are really no peaks and valleys, just slow and steady work.

So we tread water. Fortunately, my horses are all being terribly good and smart, so trundling along isn’t a travesty. Puck wins the award for Most Improved. I’ve been at home for most of the last two weeks and on a normal schedule, so I got to just work him like a normal horse for two weeks, the first time my wild travel schedule has allowed. It was delightful.

I’ve settled into a weekly routine that seems to be working: Tuesday and Friday leaning on the canter work; Wednesday and Saturday focusing on the trot, and Thursday and Sunday hacking and stretching as the weather (and his exuberance level) permits. Puck has found this amazing gear at the trot, with super power and expression, but I don’t want to go bananas with it and have him end up hurt.

Read the rest at The Chronicle of the Horse!