SmartPak Monday Morning Feed: New Year, Same Goals

Despite the year that it was, 2020 brought many of us some opportunities to make changes in our lives that we would like to continue into the new year. SmartPaker Adriana shares her goals as she looks forward to the rest of 2021.

In a lot of ways, 2020 was a huge let down for so many people.

I’ve been lucky that most of the changes for me in 2020 have been inconvenient, not devastating.

I came into 2020 with some big ideas of what my year was going to be like and then….

While they weren’t my typical goals, I got a few things accomplished with myself and Finley that I’d like to hold on to as we head into 2021.

Get Outside, Again!

We were really lucky to have a pretty mild winter here on the south shore of Massachusetts in 2020 and early in the year I made it a priority to get myself and Finley more comfortable out around the property at the barn. There are a few trails, a long driveway up a hill, a large outdoor arena and some hilly fields to explore and utilize where I board Finley. I feel lucky to have access to all these amenities and also kind of foolish for not taking as much advantage of them in the past as I could and should have.

Photo courtesy of SmartPaker Adriana

I don’t know if I’ll ever dedicate hours of my day to go trail riding, but I’ve really enjoyed getting out of the arena and having these quieter moments with Finley. Over the past 9 months, he’s become so much more independent and confident in the great outdoors which I know will help us when we finally get back into the show ring.

Since daylight savings rolled by, I’ve still made it a priority to get outside with Finley once or twice a week. I’m going to try my hardest to stick to this plan (and send some nice thoughts to mother nature) so that we can continue enjoying our time out around the farm much as possible until the warmer weather is back!

Photo courtesy of SmartPaker Adriana

Got Fit, Stay Fit

Last spring I did couch to 5k (remotely) with a group of my co-workers here at SmartPak. I spent a lot of time on these bog roads, getting back some of my endurance in running that had been missing since I broke my ankle a couple of years ago. Being in shape enough to run a couple of miles without stopping goes a long way toward being fit enough to ride a 5 or 6 or 7 minute dressage test.

Photo courtesy of SmartPaker Adriana

This year, I’m going to keep up this fitness by jogging a couple of times a week even through the cold and snowy weather. This won’t be the first winter I’ve run through and I’m just hoping for less snow than when I took this photo a few years ago:

Photo courtesy of SmartPaker Adriana

Grow Some (More) Food

Working from home for most of 2020 gave me an opportunity to do something I’d been thinking about doing since I bought a couple of 12” planters back in 2017: I grew Finley carrots from seed! Finley is a big fan of carrot greens, so it felt really rewarding to give him the carrots and the tops I grew myself. I don’t worry too much about the carrots I buy from my local grocery store for most of the year, but it was nice knowing exactly what went into growing these cuties and, therefore, exactly what Finley was eating. I had middling success with my carrots (see below and take a guess which one Finley liked better) but I learned a lot (really, don’t transplant your carrots!) and enjoyed the surprise of what kind size and shape carrot would be revealed as I pulled them mid-summer through the fall.

Photo courtesy of SmartPaker Adriana

While my work from home status seems pretty set for now, it’s hard to predict how far into 2021 it will continue. Regardless, I’m definitely growing some more treats for Finley this Spring! I’ll skip the smaller varieties of carrots this time and probably add a few more pots so he can enjoy even more (and bigger?) carrots this year.

Head (Back) Down the Centerline

I renewed all my riding memberships in 2020 with real hope that there would be some recognized shows in the season that I would feel comfortable traveling to and competing at. For quite a few reasons, it just didn’t end up working out that way for me.

To look on the bright side, instead of having just 6 months of training in between show seasons, Finley and I will have like a year and a half of lessons, learning and development under our belts for (fingers crossed!!!) the 2021 show season!  As we’re stepping into the last few months of winter, I’ve got my eye on 2021 and trying out a level I’ve never shown before!

Photo courtesy of SmartPaker Adriana

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Go SmartPak and go riding!