Endurance Riding

Jan 13 2011

We Joined the AERC!

Published by under Endurance Riding

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Today, Asali and I became official members of the AERC (American Endurance Ride Conference). The same night I had been Googling “Tevis Cup,” I came across the AERC website. While I didn’t join right away, I bookmarked the site and decided to keep it as a reference. However, the more research I’ve been doing, the more I have come to realize how valuable becoming a member of the AERC is… besides just all the tips and advice on endurance training, every time you sign up for an AERC sanctioned ride, you’ll receive a discounted entry fee for being a member. And since you’re required to do 300 miles of riding (in at least 50 mile increments) with AERC sanctioned rides to qualify for the Tevis, I figured the AERC membership fee would be well worth it.

But, as I began looking through the list of endurance rides being held this year in the Western Region, I began to get discouraged. While there are a handful of rides within 2-3 hours of me, I realized that each rider entry fee was going to be anywhere between $80 – $120 (not to mention the additional costs, such as gas, lodging/camping, food). Now I understand why the recommendations for the Tevis Cup read: “It is important that you carefully evaluate yourself, your horse, and your resources, so that you make good choices to maximize your success.”

The more I thought about it, however, the more I thought that the last thing to get in my way would be money. There are so many reasons not to do the Tevis Cup: the time, the commitment, the potential for failure. The one thing that I believe gets in most of our ways is our fear of failure. If we never try in the first place, we can’t fail. A much more valid reason for not doing the Tevis than money. If I can overcome that one, I can make my finances work. After all, I graduate nursing school this year and will very soon be working as a Registered Nurse.

My advice for the night is this: If you truly believe you can do it, you can. It is not if, but when. Michael Jackson said in his book Moonwalk, “I believe in wishes and a person’s ability to make a wish come true. You can’t do your best when you’re doubting yourself. If you don’t believe in yourself, who will?” He also said, “I believe we are powerful, but we don’t use our minds to full capacity. Your mind is powerful enough to help you attain whatever you want.”

Your mind is powerful enough to help you attain whatever you want.

I am writing these words for me, just as much as for you.

And from the mouth of my best friend’s dad, “Do it now.”

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