Review: How to get your leg over (Diary of a Wimpy Eventer) by Victoria Brant

Over the last few months, I have been sporadically entering “retweet and follow” Twitter competitions. I never really expected to win anything, but it is worth a shot, right? Well, no one was more surprised than me that I ACTUALLY WON when Haynet offered the chance to win a copy of the Wimpy Eventer’s brand new book. Sometimes these things happen for a reason and I think this book found its way into my life at exactly the right time.

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Have you ever found yourself having a crisis of confidence? Doubted your abilities, even over something you used to be able to do with your eyes shut? The Wimpy Eventer has, and she has opened up about her decision to look fear right in the eye in honest, humorous and heartfelt fashion. It’s difficult not to fall a little bit in love with Vic, and her superstar pony Pat, after she lays her soul out on the table for her readers. The journey to regaining your confidence and trying to jump in with both feet when you’re paralysed with fear is not an easy one – and this book doesn’t pretend it is. You find yourself rooting for its author every step of the way, laughing along with her and celebrating her successes (both large and small).

Somehow, by the end, you find yourself believing in yourself a bit more. I have a number of books written by professional dressage riders that were supposed to motivate and inspire me. Sadly they have primarily left me feeling a bit inadequate and apologising to the ginger one for failing him as a trainer. This book is different. Its author is an every day rider who works several jobs to fund her expensive horse addiction, has zero transport to facilitate competition entry and is often convinced that she just is not good enough. Yet she is getting out there and smashing it. And she makes you believe that you probably can, too.

This book arrived in my life at just the right time. After 5 weeks off riding due to injury, I was definitely having my own crisis of confidence. What if all our hard work recently has been forgotten and we are back to square one? Post reading this book I have done two things that terrified me: interviewed for a part time groom job at a professional event yard (still convinced they’ll throw me off the yard as a fraud any moment) and got back on my horse. Do something you are afraid of every day. There will almost certainly be non-death to celebrate at the end of it and, you never know, you could come home with more success than you ever dreamed of. It works for the Wimpy Eventer after all!

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