Oh, You Still Ride Endurance?

I sure do! This year has been one of shifted priorities and welcome breaks. In past years, I would have been hundreds of miles into my endurance season by now, while this year it has just begun. Luckily my break has been voluntary and now that we're settled in to our new home and routine, I can throw my renewed energy into the sport of endurance, which I truly love. 

Last weekend we packed up and headed out to my favorite endurance ride in Idaho. Old Selam is one of the longest standing rides in the Northwest as well as one with the richest history. The ride began in 70's at the old Idaho Penitentiary, following the legend of Bob Meeks, a member of the Butch Cassidy gang, who escaped from the prison in 1901 using Old Selam, an aged cart horse used at the prison. On Christmas Eve old Mr. Meeks unhitched Selam and headed out! Unfortunately for him, he was captured the next day, when both he and Selam were returned to the prison. The second escape occurred a week later when prison guards noticed Selam was missing along with a saddle, bridle and prisoner Sam Bruner. The pair was never caught and was one of the very few successful escapes from the old pen. This ride has changed locations throughout the years as land was developed and closed, but it's been housed at the Idaho City location for many years. Old Selam is challenging in that it is not only a mountain ride, but there are numerous water crossing as the trail winds in and out of the old mine tailings from the gold rush days. Following many creek crossings are steep climbs and descents. 

Headed through the "Scary Forest" on my favorite loop.

This year, my goal was to focus on my up and coming gelding, Belesemo Enchanter. I purchased Chant as a late three year old, who knew nothing but living out on large acreage with his buddies. Chant is now 7, and finally maturing mentally and physically as I knew he would, someday. I've had a tough time with this guy as he is somewhat aloof and a very confident individual who is not at all demanding or insecure and needy as some of my others. Unfortunately this has made bonding with Chant somewhat difficult. While he's always been a great ride (can we say awesome canter?), I just haven't been drawn to him. This year, I was bound and determined to change that. As such, Chantly has been my #1 guy this summer and because of it, is super fit! I knew he was ready to rock and we headed up to ride camp excited for the weekend ahead. 

Because I was only riding one 50 and Chant hasn't ever had any issues with boots, I made the easy choice of using my Easyboot Gloves for this event. Chant's wide little feet use 0 Wide Gloves up front and fancy-schmancy BLUE 00.5's behind. As he has historically twisted his right front boot, I use Mueller Athletic Tape for training and good old 2" Elastikon for endurance rides. Because I knew we would be in and out of the creek all day, I used an extra wrap for good measure and pounded those suckers on for a problem-free boot day for the next 50 miles. Slap 'em on the morning and off you go. Take 'em off after the ride. Easy-peasy. 

And we rode every, single, mile - no short ride here, folks. The first loop was a lovely (and long!) 27 miles before getting back to camp for our only hold of the day. Unfortunately my out-of-practice self did a crummy job of taking care of me, and ended up paying for the oversight in the end. No worries, we won't make that mistake again. After an hour hold we headed out on what may have been the longest, hottest, hardest 20-ish miles of my life. Yeah, it was the true meaning of endurance. While I was lucky to have two awesome riding partners, a few times I considered accidentally pushing the SOS button on my SPOT Tracker and then utilizing the emergency services so their efforts didn't go unappreciated or wasted. Dramatic? Maybe. But I was pretty much there. Like I said, lesson learned and I will not neglect myself in the future! A sick rider makes a crummy partner for an awesome horse.

Little Chant cruised through the ups and the downs, the single track, the cross-country and the creek crossings without missing a beat. My boots stayed put like I've grown to expect and the temperatures soared. Finally, FINALLY, we were finished. Chant vetted out great and I was psyched about his performance on his second ever endurance ride. This poor guy will know nothing but true 50's and looooooong loops as his first ride was a two-loop 55 and his second ride was one of the hardest I've ever done. 

Finally. DONE. (Check out those Gloves, y'all).
Photos by Jessica Anderson of JRA Photography.

My Gloves performed flawlessly, which is always a relief when riding with people who's horses are shod. If anything bad is going to happen with boots, it will be in front of people who don't use them! My one riding partner, Max Merlich, did the big XP a few years back and rode lots of miles with one of Easyboot's finest, Dave Rabe. Dave hooked Max's mule up with Gloves after a few lost shoes and the mules did great. I was glad my boots didn't mess up his perception. Ironically, along the trail I saw two lost shoes and the bottom of another brand of boot, ripped off from its glue-on shell. Chant looked great after the ride, with no rubs. Unfortunately, the next day he broke out in scratches, which could have been from the heat and water but most likely was due to the clover take-over in the pastures which has caused scratches for everyone, as well as drool and stocking up in Topper. Leave it to Topper to re-direct the focus to HIM. 

I am looking forward to lots more miles on this gelding. His scratches cleared up in a couple days and his post-ride vacation is over as of this weekend. Oh, and the clover is getting sprayed very soon. Although the endurance season is winding down, we'll be ready to rock next year. Bring it on! 

Adapting to Change

A few months ago, my husband, my dogs and my little herd of horses moved to a beautiful house on a beautiful piece of land. We've been working towards the goal of purchasing horse property for some time, and dreams finally became reality. The day we signed the papers is still a blur in my mind, and I still can't believe I was able to wait two whole weeks before bringing home the horses. 

They were in heaven, and I quickly cut off the irrigation. 

It wasn't a difficult adjustment, for me anyway. Unfortunately for my IR mare I was leasing, the green grass was not agreeable to her metabolic state. Before it became an issue, she went home and I brought back baby. My three geldings adjusted quickly and I am still learning the balance of keeping pasture irrigated enough not to die, but not enough to be lush. You see, the more you know about ideal horse-keeping, the more things like gorgeous green pastures and soft sand arenas become less than ideal living situations. That said, I still wanted to take advantage of the acreage and reduce my hay bill by utilizing the pastures as the primary food source for my ponies. Luckily, I like micro-managing and am open to change as necessary.

The pastures now look like this, and no one has died of starvation, yet.
The growing yearling is not an accurate representation of the rest of the "herd." 

Because my horses are athletes, or are supposed to be athletes, or could be athletes if I could focus on more than three things at once, soundness is imperative. The boarding situation where they came from was vastly different than their new digs. 180 acres of dry desert hills is completely different than six acres of paddock and pasture. I know plenty of successful endurance horses who thrive in similar situations so I wasn't too terribly concerned. My biggest worry was that they would lose their rock-hard feet and might not be as sound on the trail as they were when living like wild ponies at the ranch. Thus far, I truly haven't noticed much of a difference while trimming. Chant's feet are rock-hard while Topper's are still soft - just like always. 

I still use my Easyboot Gloves on most of my training rides and the rides where I ride barefoot don't seem any different. Perhaps it will take awhile to see the negative effects of a grass pasture, but I am willing to adapt as necessary. We are already making plans to add pea gravel to the horses night paddocks and loafing areas. For the first time ever, my horses are eating 100% grass hay and I am able to feed them out of slow feeders when they get hay. The best part would probably have to be the ample shade, which I have fully taken advantage of to trim regularly despite 100+ degree heat. That, and the fully stocked fridge that's inside the house. With air conditioning. Yesssss. 

My favorite spot. The Tree of Patience, Trimming Tree.
Perpetual shade and always a breeze. Love it!

Now that we're all settled in and adapting to the changes, my focus has been shifting back to endurance. For the first time in many years, I haven't ridden one endurance mile, much less the normal hundreds I would have been at by now at this point in the season. While I have actually enjoyed the break, I am now looking forward to getting Chant to some of our gorgeous fall rides in the hopefully much COOLER weather! I am also focusing on two new up-n-comers, who have been getting some regular hoof trimming and are about set for their first official Glove fittings.

New pony, new feet. We'll fix them fast. 

I have been laughing at myself lately, as my reality has become so distorted that I now look at Coach bags as X-ton of hay and become excited at the thought of gravel. I am also excited at the thought of the seasons changing and craving the scent of fall in the air. I'm sure before I know it, I'll be cursing the mud and the wind and the rain, but for now I'll enjoy the ride. Hopefully it's a smooth one! 

The New Baby

As a happy housewarming present to myself, I went crazy and bought myself a baby! A ten month old, gawky, adorable, spindly-legged stud colt was quickly armed up into my trailer before I could change my mind. No worries there, I met this little guy the morning he was born last July 27th and immediately fell in love. I was able to watch him grow up, month-by-month, in the midst of the other colts and fillies much older and larger than he, and I fell hard. When the opportunity presented itself for this chromed-out, flaxen colt to become mine, I jumped. Welcome, Belesemo Magic Marker! 

Mark is a 3/4 brother to my gelding, Belesemo Enchanter, who has proven himself to be one of the funnest horses I've ever had the pleasure of riding. Chant came to me as a late, unstarted four year old, who presented plenty of challenges due to his independent nature and somewhat aloof personality, combined with lack of daily handling. He, himself, was sold as a yearling and grew up on large acreage with a small herd of Quarter Horses prior to his owner having to sell. This has all changed, and Chant and I have been solidifying our partnership through the long, slow distance training miles, as well as thriving under constant attention in my backyard. He's truly blossomed as a seven year old and I am thrilled with the horse that has developed. I see a lot of Chant in this sweet and curious, yet independent and confident young colt. While I am trying not to wish away his babyhood, I cannot wait to see the horse he will become. 

Mark, Chant and project-mare, Anya (who is worth a blog post, herself!)

For myself, one of the most exciting parts of getting such a youngster is knowing I have full control of his hoof care, which is incredibly important during this stage of growth and development. Too many young horses are left with improper and infrequent trimming, which can lead to permanent conformational deformities. While I haven't gotten to fully trim him yet, I have been working with him on picking up his feet and preparing him for frequent trims and leg handling. We've had a couple rasp strokes here and there, and he's nearly dependable enough for a real trim. The little punk is pretty good about his front feet, but would rather keep his hind feet to himself. No worries, I am persistent and he is little, thankfully.

Next post will be a trimming update with pictures of the little tiny hooves. Unlike the other grown-up ponies, I can't take pictures without two extra hands which seem to come in short supply during the busy summer months. I am excited to get the imbalances I see from the top fixed, and back those little toes up. It's amazing how you can see what could potentially become larger problems if left unaddressed. In the meantime, I'm going to go smooch on that adorable little face! 

Bigger is Not Always Better

I've seen it numerous times, horse shopping for myself, horse shopping with my friends and especially when speaking to people new to boots or barefoot trimming. 

"My horse has huge feet!" 

With the exception of a few true anomalies to the breed at hand, most horses have average-sized hooves. Generally when someone is bragging about their horses' big-enough-to-mention feet, they are merely overgrown. 

I remember one particular incident where I accompanied a friend on a horse-shopping escapade. The horse was perfect on paper, lovely in photographs and had the coveted "big bone, big feet." On one hand, the seller wasn't technically lying. The horse would have probably measured into a size 2.5 Easyboot Glove. Did I mention he was a 14.2hh three year old? Those suckers were splayed out like a platypus. Big does not always equal better. 

Recently life has been overfilling with exciting and time-consuming changes. Moving, getting things ready to bring horses home and actually riding on the trail! I went three weeks without even seeing my gelding who's boarded at a lovely dressage barn only 20 minutes away. For the first time in my life, I have literally not had the time to go see my poor Topper (who's probably thrilled with his vacation). Last week, I made a point to get out to see my boy and, oh my, was I surprised at how BIG he was. Standing back, I had to giggle. Not only does my formerly lean, mean, racing machine look like a beached whale, his feet looked huuuuuuuuuuge. Oh yeah. My horse has big feet. 

Putting my ego aside (I pride myself in meticulously caring for my horses' feet), here is what my horse looks like on an 8-week trim. It's pretty bad, folks, but good to remind myself a) why I slave over pony feet every week, and b) just how significant two months of growth is and how there is no way his normal boots would even begin to go on if I tried at this point. 

I'll take a nice little pair of perfectly trimmed 0.5's over a platter-foot size 2 any day! How about you? Does your horse have "super big feet"? While eight weeks is definitely not the end of the world, it certainly impacts boot fit and retention, and I feel like movement is compromised by all that extra growth. In another two weeks, Topper will be home and back on the Trim Nazi's anal trimming schedule and his foot size will shrink. We'll take it.

Not Just Back Country

I'll admit it, when I first saw the Easyboot Glove Back Country I was pretty skeptical. Before my undying love and devotion to the Easyboot Glove developed, I had used another brand of hoof boots. Post Glove infatuation I was adamant that I'd never use or consider a boot other than my beloved Gloves. The low profile, their light weight, the ease of use, staying power, what's not to love? Being fastidious about my horses' very regular trim schedule further increased my success with the Gloves and I didn't really consider a situation where they wouldn't be optimal for my horses.

Glove Back Country on a sidewalk?

Enter Dazl, who is undergoing the first year of transition to a functional bare hoof after a bout of laminitis prior to a serious environment and lifestyle change. Saying her feet are changing is an understatement and I've found the option of having a boot that offers a more forgiving fit to be helpful during this period of transition. I was worried the Back Country would be too bulky and would cause interference. They don't. I was worried they wouldn't fit well and might come off while using a larger size. They don't. I was worried the different gaiter would cause rubs. Not so.

While definitely bulkier than the regular Glove, the boot portion is still form-fitting and the external gaiter is surprisingly slim as well. The gaiter with built-in, heavy-duty power strap allows one to use a larger size than the appropriate size Glove. This is very helpful when growing out a flare or the bowed out portion of a hoof wall that is growing in much tighter. They don't twist as a too-big Glove might and I haven't lost one yet! The rounded edge of the gaiter hasn't caused any rubs and they are very easy to put on and take off. So far, the velcro gaiter is just as strong after a few months of use as they were when brand-new. During this period of change in size, shape and angle of Dazl's feet, the Back Country are just the ticket for continuing on with our training while developing a better hoof. In the meantime, I can focus on taking in the view. 

Booting Thrush

Are you fighting it? Have you found a good way to deal with it? I few years back, I found my favorite thrush remedy in the form of a little vial of Tea Tree Oil.  

Thrush can be a silent killer for performance horses, often stealthily creating soreness and tenderness in our barefoot horses. There isn't always the typical black goo or awful smell, but oftentimes a sneaky tenderness, a subtly sore central sulcus or an ever-so-slight heel-first landing. While there are plenty of caustic and chemical "remedies," the best thing I have found to prevent thrush (aside from layers of pea gravel and no rain) is a thorough scrubbing with Dawn and a generous application of Tea Tree Oil. 

A couple years ago I began experimenting with Tea Tree on my very sensitive little red mare. After a particularly wet spring, she was showing subtle tenderness by choosing to travel on the soft road shoulders. She was slightly tender to the hoof pick in the middle of her exaggerated central sulcus. I began injecting small amounts of Tea Tree Oil into her frog with a needle-less tiny syringe. I noticed changes within the week. A year later, I added a soak and thorough scrub with antibacterial Dawn dish soup and all but eradicated our thrush symptoms in just a few treatments. While I realize we are fortunate to live in the "desert," we still deal with weeks of mud at a time and I've always had issues with horses in the spring having slightly tender feet. As thrush is a somewhat catch-all term for infection and/or necrosis of the frog and surrounding tissues, there is no one "perfect" treatment. It can be caused by bacteria, fungus or yeast. Regardless of the cause, it can be a real deal-killer for barefoot horses. 

When looking for good treatments, I looked to Tea Tree, which is known to be anti-septic, anti-bacterial and anti-fungal. In addition, it is known to kill yeast. Win, win, WIN. As there are several products available that contain Tea Tree, I figured I was on the right path. Being lazy, I hoped to be able to use what I already had, and chose a small syringe to "inject" the frog with my Tea Tree. You can find these syringes to be used for insulin, and remove the needle. One syringe lasted a few times and was able to fit into the frog to really spread out the oil. After only a few treatments I noticed a huge difference and the next year saw even an quicker change after a few scrubs with Dawn. 

Scrub with some Dawn, and treat with some Tea Tree


 

For further treatment, you can treat the foot, pack some gauze in the central sulcus and slap a set of Easyboot Gloves on while you go for a ride. How do you treat for thrush? 

Balancing Booted and Bare

It's that time of year where spring seems to have sprung, at least in our neck of the woods. I am sure as I am writing this there is a wicked snowstorm or impressive hail clouds developing, but for now, I'll happily take the shift where there seems to be more good days than bad. With the swing in weather, the longer days and the overall feeling of spring comes more riding! We've been lucky to have kept riding most of the winter, short little hacks and trail rides, mostly at a walk with a little trot thrown in and an occasional gallop. These rides have all been done barefoot. My main trail horse this winter has been the adorable little mare, Belesema Dazling Lady. Dazl wasn't shod when I got her, but I still believe going from unshod and pasture pet to barefoot/booted riding horse is similar, if not the same, as transitioning a shod horse. 

Dazl came to me with pretty overgrown hind feet and a pretty normal "pasture trim" on her fronts. I've learned the hard way in the past, that sometimes less *is* actually more and I have stopped being so over-zealous in the trim department during the first few months. I want to ride my horses and want them to be comfortable. Because our horses are on such large acreage, they tend to need a little more foot at the beginning of the transition to stay completely comfortable. I have been able to ride Dazl barefoot on all of our rides since she came to me last fall with a less aggressive trim than maybe my hot little hands wanted to do. This worked out well as she was starting with no condition and could only handle short rides. Then the Deep Freeze of Hell (my version of hell is cold) came and I was even happier I had left her with some foot, as the poor horses stood on rock-hard frozen ground for two months. During this time, there was almost zero hoof growth on both of my ponies. Our rides were short on good footing but were no doubt very good for her transitioning hooves. Her condition in body, mind and hooves has improved immensely. 

Before.

6 Months After.

At this time, our rides have increased in both length and frequency. The footing is beautiful and it is very tempting to keep riding barefoot but we've reached the point where wear is exceeding growth, and the balancing act between booted and bare begins. How do you balance the need for hoof protection with the benefits of riding barefoot? Do you wing it? Stay on a schedule? Adjust your riding? Having the choice is one of my absolute favorite things about having barefoot horses. Ride on! 

Spring Cleaning, Amateur Trimmer Style.

It's that time! The temperature is starting to warm up, the birds are chirping and the horses are beginning to shed. We are fortunate to have had a brief reprieve from the mud, which is sure to come back with the storm system in the forecast for the next week. For now, I'll take it! 

The New Year is always a time for me to reflect and redirect, and I am now caught up on all my trimming and all of the other things I wanted to catch up on. Now that we've crossed that bridge, it's time for a new one! Spring cleaning, but not the typical, scrub the house from top to bottom with the windows open, no, this is spring cleaning for the barefoot horse owner! 

First order of business is quite possibly one of the most important ones. A new rasp! Be sure to invest in a high-quality rasp, such as the Save Edge Hoof Rasp. I think people tend to forget how old their rasp is and exert a lot of unnecessary energy using a dull one. At only $22, this is something that should be replaced often. You won't regret it! 

While you're buying your new rasp, don't forget the handle. It always surprises me watching people trim without a handle on their rasp. Not only does this look uncomfortable, it seems somewhat dangerous and I frequently have visions of the pointy rasp-end plunging into my body should my horse spooks or jump or fall or something. Yes, I go there. Buy a handle, save yourself from uncertain death. 

When is the last time you've had your hoof knife sharpened? Now is a good time to have it done. A sharp knife requires less force and is much less likely to skip across the hoof and scalp the inside of your wrist. Again, save yourselves, people! 

Take stock of your boots. I haven't done this yet, but I think it would be a good idea to gather up all your boots, make a pile for repairs and a pile for good-to-gos. Organize accordingly. This would also be a good time to make sure you have a full-set for each horse, and the appropriate spares. I like to retire well-used boots to spares, and start the season with a new set. I know boots are expensive up-front, but they are no more than two sets of shoes and last a whole lot longer. For some it's easier on the wallet to buy in pairs. You just don't want to get caught without boots when you need them. 

Prepare a "hoof first aid kit." Coming from an equine vet's wife, we see many clients who are unprepared to deal with a hoof emergency. Unfortunately spring time is prime time for abscesses, laminitis and hoof bruises. Abscesses are common in horses standing in mud, which is unavoidable for some. Laminitis cases spike due to the lush, rich spring grass and hooves are more susceptible to hoof bruises going from soft pastures and pens to harder or rocky trails. Your hoof first aid kit can be stored in a bucket that may double for soaking. Add a bottle of antibacterial dish soap, a long-handled stiff scrub brush, an Easysoaker for more intense soaking, a couple diapers and some duct tape to handle abscesses, an iodine scrub and ichthamol if you're so inclined. If your horse is prone to laminitis, you may seriously consider keeping a pair of Easyboot RX boots in the mix, as they are great for a very sore-footed horse. I could probably go on for a while longer, so I'll stop now. 

Lastly, clipping the long hair at the back of the pasterns prevents the nasty mudballs from forming and has been the only way to keep scratches at bay for my thin-skinned, red-headed, princess mare. I realize this is probably as controversial as me previously saying I clean up the ragged edges of the frogs, but my horses are all live and well despite my propensity for cleaning things up. If it's the worst thing that ever happens to them, well they're doing OK. 

How do you clean-up for spring? 

Breaking Out the Big Guns

They're here. 

The boots you've been waiting for, to fit the horses who's feet are bigger than most people's heads. The iconic Easyboot Glove will soon be available in GINORMUS sizes! Rock on! 

For all you big horse lovin' peeps, Gloves are now being made in sizes 4.5 and 5. That is huge, folks! For myself and my fairly standard 0.5 Gloved horses, I have a hard time wrapping my head around a size FIVE! Please, send pics. I have to see this. Given my only experience with what I thought were humongous Gloves revolved around a largish Shagya gelding who wore a whopping size 3.5 Glove, I am stoked to see all the big boys and gals who can now get some of their own Glove Love. Big, Bigger and Biggest don't have anything on the new Huge and Huger. 

 

A New Year, A New You, A New Hoof

The New Year is always an appropriate and marked point in time to take stock and make adjustments that will better yourself, your life and the world around you. It's always a time I look back at what I've accomplished throughout the year, but mostly I look ahead to what ideas I can put into action to make things better. I am not one big on resolutions, I think I've posted that before, but I do like to make goals and generally always meet them. Of course the key to meeting goals is to make them achievable and realistic, but challenging enough to be satisfying to work towards. I try to develop better habits throughout the year that will stay with me for a lifetime. I won't bore anyone with all of my goals for the year, but here are a few you can borrow that will make life with your barefoot performance horse a little nicer. 

1) Four Week Maximum Trim Cycles

Stop being lazy and just do it. Seriously. I have had my competition horses on a four week cycle for the past year and haven't regretted it once. This year I plan to keep everyone on a four week cycle despite the horse being in full work or not. Yes, I know sometimes it's hot. Yes, it can be cold. Sometimes it's rainy, windy or muddy. Build a bridge and get over it! Trimming is easier when it's done frequently, boot retention becomes a non-issue with a consistent, constant hoof shape and you are able to bypass many common hoof problems such as high heels, low heels, long toes and medial-lateral imbalances. 

This foot would take months and months to fix on a regular eight week trim cycle. Take three steps forward every time you trim.  

2) Back Up Those Toes

This is difficult to maintain without frequent trims and goes hand-in-hand with #1. Back up those toes until you think they are short enough, and then go further. I made a point to get aggressive with Topper's toes last year and am thrilled with the results. We have more concavity, thicker soles and no flare. I used to think I had a good handle on appropriate break-over, but I didn't. If you're scared, invest in a couple digital radiographs the next time your veterinarian is out. The pictures will be invaluable and a good reference point for future changes and improvements.

3) Trim Frogs

This is something I have never put much stock into and usually quickly skimmed over during my trims. Unfortunately I have been doing a disservice to my horses by skipping this as it is also one of the easier things to do. In just the short time I have been doing this, I have noticed good things. By cleaning up the edges of the frogs, both the outside edge and the central sulcus, you prevent nasty stuff being stuck in there under various flaps and dead material. By keeping this area open, I haven't seen any thrushy-type stuff and the frogs just look healthier. 

4) Ditch Your Bar

Branch out to new bars down the road. Ok, that's not really the kind of bar I was talking about, but to each his own, eh? The bars have always been one of those things for me. Do I leave 'em? Do I take 'em? Do I pretend like they aren't there and just kinda ignore them? The answer is no. So sharpen up your hoof knife, charge up your power tools, whatever, but take care of those bars. Letting them overgrow and lay over will not only create pressure and pain for your horse, but the bars can influence the hoof wall by creating flares and can trap debris if left untrimmed. 

5) If It Isn't Working, Fix It and Don't Give Up, EVER.

This is a general goals that can be applied to every aspect of my life. Maybe what you're doing is working OK. Sure, you could get by. You could skate along with mediocrity like so many do, so many different ways, but you're better than that! Strive for greatness, not "meh." Stop making excuses and go for broke. Don't forget that most decisions you make aren't permanent and can be changed. But no one ever achieved greatness by laying in bed, eating junk and making excuses. Get up, get going and make good things happen. This is a permanent goal of mine and I'm a better person for it.