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BlueGreen

Horseback Riding/free Time During Medical School?

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Hey guys!

 

I'm a UBC student from Vancouver going to be starting med school at Schulich in the fall. I'm a competitive horseback rider and am hoping to buy a horse and be at the barn about 4 hours 3-4 times a week. I also have a young golden retriever who needs a lot of care/exercise. I'm a pretty active outgoing person who goes out with my friends quite often, travels, hikes, etc. Just wondering whether you guys in med school think that maintaining this lifestyle is possible/realistic while having enough time to really focus on and excel in school. 

 

If there are any hunter/jumper riders on here, any recommendations on good coaches/barns nearby? Also is purchasing and leasing out my horse 3 days/week a bad idea (too much of a commitment). 

 

I know these are weird questions but, thank you!

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Maybe in preclerkship, you could manage this lifestyle. However, for clerkship and residency, its not realistically possible. You decided to enter medical training, which takes away control from your life and demands vast amounts of your time. Would you be able to do it? With significant effort, maybe. But would it detract from your medical training? Absolutely. Decide for yourself whether you want to be a physician or ride horses regularly.

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Maybe in preclerkship, you could manage this lifestyle. However, for clerkship and residency, its not realistically possible. You decided to enter medical training, which takes away control from your life and demands vast amounts of your time. Would you be able to do it? With significant effort, maybe. But would it detract from your medical training? Absolutely. Decide for yourself whether you want to be a physician or ride horses regularly.

 

I'm absolutely willing to do what is needed in terms of med school commitment. This is something I've worked for my whole life and I've never taken it lightly. However, I do think balance is important and I'm just not sure what med school looks like in terms of difficulty (as this will determine my free time). I did a 12 course/year honours major at UBC while riding, doing research, volunteering and working (though not all at the same time) so I know I can be pretty efficient with my time. But that was undergrad and I had my family nearby. I'm now realizing I won't be able to own a horse or have any 'relax time' but I'm hoping to at least ride and have my dog with me. Has anyone managed sports with med school like this? At least in pre-clerkship? 

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Hey guys!

 

I'm a UBC student from Vancouver going to be starting med school at Schulich in the fall. I'm a competitive horseback rider and am hoping to buy a horse and be at the barn about 4 hours 3-4 times a week. I also have a young golden retriever who needs a lot of care/exercise. I'm a pretty active outgoing person who goes out with my friends quite often, travels, hikes, etc. Just wondering whether you guys in med school think that maintaining this lifestyle is possible/realistic while having enough time to really focus on and excel in school. 

 

If there are any hunter/jumper riders on here, any recommendations on good coaches/barns nearby? Also is purchasing and leasing out my horse 3 days/week a bad idea (too much of a commitment). 

 

I know these are weird questions but, thank you!

 

In pre-clerkship there's plenty of time for extra-curricular activities, including recreational activities. Doing something as intensive as owning a horse will eat into other potential activities you may want to consider pursuing, especially if you have a dog that you're taking care of on your own. If that's your focus, however, it's doable.

 

Once clerkship rolls around, you will not have time for this. You won't be able to take care of your dog on your own without someone else in the house and/or regularly boarding them, much less a horse. You can still have a reasonable amount of relaxation time, even with the heavy clerkship schedule, but you lose all the flexibility that made your lifestyle possible in undergrad. Doesn't matter how efficient you are with your time - it's no longer your time once clerkship rolls around.

 

As for whether it's a good idea to buy a horse and lease it out... I want to say "no", because horses are ridiculously expensive, but if you're well enough off to even be asking the question, then maybe? I think asking those who you already know in the field will give you better answers than anyone here can. Medical students come from predominantly well-off backgrounds, but even then, the ability to buy a horse in medical school is well beyond most of our means. There are many stables around London, so you should be able to find one, but again, I'd ask the people you already know if they have any recommendations for people in the area.

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Are you living alone? Youll need to sort out your dog if they need a lot of ATTN and training.

 

You can probably do it if its important to you, but its going to take up all your free time outside of class. Which isnt a bad thing if thats what you like!

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Here's my take on having a dog (I had a dog through medical school). Very easy during year 1-2 - no issues at all.

 

Certainly possible during clerkship, but it is difficult. Early in 3rd year, my girlfriend was at school (we lived together), and it was easy. However, she moved across the country to start working and it was just our dog and I at home. I was able to string together dog walkers (whom I paid), but it wasn't a perfect system and led to a lot of extra stress. Earlier mornings (taking the dog for a walk at 5am to make it into rounding for 6am isn't a lot of fun, and you won't get any sympathy). There are times in clerkship you won't be home for 26 hours - that's tough on your dog, and not really fair to them.

 

If you're living with a significant other or non-medicine person who is willing to take care of the dog as if they are your own, it's easy.

 

I wouldn't even go near buying a horse. I know nothing about them, but it sounds like a lot of extra work. You could make it work for years 1-2. You won't have time during clerkship.

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Thanks for the answers everyone!

 

I'm definitely not going to buy a horse now. It's been my lifelong dream and I've saved for a while for it but it doesn't seem at all feasible. I think I will ride (3x/weekish) in preclerkship and when I can after. I'll have my dog until clerkship as well and then send her to my parents in Vancouver :'(

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Hey,

 

I was in a similar situation... why don't you just lease instead thats what I've been doing. Have you leased before? You can still go to the barn 3-4 times per week during pre-clerkship to hone your skills and have access to a coach but at the end of the day not your responsibility for additional expenses! Also if you're finding pre-clerkship too intense then just end your lease. Im just entering clerkship this year and still plan to lease. You can still enter shows while leasing as well. Win win win situation. 

 

Then at the end of medical school you can re-evaluate again whether or not buying would be feasible. 

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Hey,

 

I was in a similar situation... why don't you just lease instead thats what I've been doing. Have you leased before? You can still go to the barn 3-4 times per week during pre-clerkship to hone your skills and have access to a coach but at the end of the day not your responsibility for additional expenses! Also if you're finding pre-clerkship too intense then just end your lease. Im just entering clerkship this year and still plan to lease. You can still enter shows while leasing as well. Win win win situation. 

 

Then at the end of medical school you can re-evaluate again whether or not buying would be feasible. 

Yes, I have mostly leased before! Think that's what i'll end up doing :) Which barn did you lease at?

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