beer muscles before opening day!
For most of us the opening day of bow season is less than two months away and I bet that at this moment, your coffee table is loaded with Cabelas catalogs and Field & Stream magazines. It’s a magical time of year for those of us who long to chase whitetails around the woods in the hopes of putting back straps in the freezer and Booner on the wall. You are already going over your camo inventory, starting to tune up/shoot your bow and hurrying to get your game cameras hung but I bet there is one thing many of you are not evening considering. It’s time to get in shape for bow season.
My plea to you is simple and it is something your outfitter wants to tell you but probably won’t: Please do not enter another bow season pudgy and out of shape. You may think there is nothing to sitting in a stand waiting for a big buck to stroll by but that couldn’t be further from the truth. This article isn’t as much a “how to” as a “why” blog, so sit back and let me state the case why now is the time to add a fitness program to your pre-season preparation.
#1 Max out your overall enjoyment:
Every Fall I have the same conversation with my grandfather. Notorious for not being able to sit in a stand for more than 15 minutes, gramps is a stalker. Unfortunately, as he approaches 80 years old, he doesn’t have the gas to get up and down the hills anymore, at least for the first few weeks of the season. Once he has gotten out and walked up and down hills for a few days, something magical happens. His fitness levels improve, he has more energy and his overall mood goes from grumpy to optimistic and positive. Even if you don’t touch a dumbbell, make it a point to get out and walk prior to opening day. Now, if I can just get to him to walk year round……
#2 Build your bow muscles:
Simply stated, the stronger you are the easier it is to pull back your bow! One of my favorite things to do is train clients for BIG hunts. When my client, Joe, called and said “get me ready for an archery elk hunt” I was like “ALRIGHT, let’s get down to business!” The stronger you are the more arrows you can fling accurately during practice sessions (and practice for longer periods of time without fatiguing). It will also allow you to pull back effortlessly and hold steady when the buck you have been watching on camera all summer walks below your stand. By the way, when Joe’s 6 X 6 came barreling down the mountain he was able to kneel, draw and fire in one glorious motion. He still talks about that moment to this day and the value of getting physically strong for the hunt and he has the antlers on his wall to prove it.
#3 No bow shot in the field is anything like shooting at the range:
Having a strong core and the flexibility to rotate your trunk is a necessary ability because your buck probably isn’t going to walk to 15 yards in front of your stand and turn perfectly broadside. Bucks don’t get big antlers by being stupid so you have to be ready to turn, twist and shoot from a seated position if he walks in from behind.
#4 Getting in, out and all over the woods:
I am a purist and hate driving ATV’s into the woods. I just really enjoy the walk in the early morning with only the stars to light my path. Likewise, I enjoy the trip out in the evening with the setting sun at dusk turning the sky into a kaleidoscope of pinks, purples and reds. To me, driving an ATV directly to my stand sucks the wildness out of my adventure and I take a lot of pride in slipping as quietly as I can from the house to my stand of choice. There are also going to be moments when you are going to have to crawl on your belly, climb hills, traverse gullies and we haven’t even discussed climbing into and out of your stands. For the simple action of getting from point A to point B on your property as quickly, quietly and as stealthy as possible, please consider scheduling some regular gym time.
#5 Hauling your deer out of the woods:
I have had deer drop in wide open fields where I can drive the truck right up to load my kill but more times than not, I end up dragging them through ditches, briars and patches of honeysuckle before I can get them loaded up. That takes muscular strength, endurance and good cardiovascular fitness but even if you can drive right up to the animal, deer are heavy. Having a strong core, legs and back will allow you to load your trophy and minimize the risk of straining your back and ruining not just your hunt but potentially the rest of your bow season.
Don’t worry friends. We can still have our mid-morning naps, biscuits & gravy and a few beers around the campfire to celebrate the day’s hunt. We aren’t taking the REALLY good perks of deer camp away (I’m encouraging exercise not complete craziness) but we are asking you to think about your pre-season preparation in a different light this year. Add some fitness to your hunting preparation and get ready for a whole new hunting experience this fall.
Get your bow muscles ready for opening day!
3 personalized training sessions for only $150.
Call Jeremy today at (314) 807-8634!