I also made the mistake of starting with the pack... my horse had been really calm and relaxed in camp, and I thought she could handle it... WRONG! She was a handful for the first 8 miles-- and it had rained REALLY hard, there were some steep hills that were very slick clay, and she was grabbing the bit and trying to gallop up them, slipping and scrambling as I fought to get her under control... I suspect that had something to do with it, as I've never had muscle cramping issues before.
On a positive note, we came in 9th, my horse walked into P&R at 48 pulse, and by the time we were in vet check she as at 36, and only 40 after the trot out. The vet asked if I even rode the horse today! So she is definitely plenty fit.
So... any thoughts on cramping? Some experienced riders in ridecamp were saying to give her extra calcium? One said to use an elyte with high potassium?
What electrolyte is best for cramping? I was going to use Perform N Win, but looking at the labels I'm thinking Endura Max has more potassium and calcium? But I've heard some say it is harder on the stomach-- will that be okay if I chase it with aloe juice?
I'm really discouraged. I know she's not the best endurance prospect (3/4 TB, 1/4 paint), but she is athletic, pulses down fast, etc. Anxious horse, so keeping her relaxed and drinking is the biggest challenge. Also, she sweats a lot and I worry about over heating, so have to sponge her a lot. I have a rump rug, but didn't use it, as it was 69 in the am and got up to 79 for a high, so I didn't think I'd need it, but maybe I should with the cramping? But then she might get too hot?
I was hoping to try a 50 in the fall if everything went well. Obviously we're still at LD next time out.