Hunting fitness is crucial for being prepared for big game season, though it might be low on lots of people’s radar. Even with the latest gear and gadgets, if you’re not fit for hunting, you’ll have bought that stuff for naught. Here’s why it’s important to stay fit as a hunter and how you can properly prepare yourself for next season’s hunt.
Decrease Injury and Risk of Heart Attack
At Soap Mesa Outfitters, we use 4×4 vehicles and ATVs to get where we need to be. But just because we use ATVs doesn’t mean we don’t get a good workout in, especially at the elevation we’re at.
High altitudes mean less oxygen is available, which can put a strain on your muscles and heart. If you’re unfit, this strain can cause an injury that can either put a damper on your weekend or cause serious harm. Fitness training improves the efficiency of getting oxygen where it needs to be. The earlier you can get fit for hunting, the easier it will be for you, which means more time to enjoy being out there hunting for elk.
Overall Body Fitness
As we age from our 20s to our 30s and beyond, our growth hormone stops. To keep up the strength we had in our youth, we have to work at it. But the importance of hunting fitness goes beyond just preparing your legs. Balance and endurance strength play huge roles in effective endurance events, which is what big game hunting is.
Remaining perfectly still while aiming your gun and holding it for your perfect shot is no easy task. This works your core muscles, which supports proper posture. When the abdominal muscles are weak, the lower back will hold that additional pressure and weight which can cause problems in the long run. And don’t forget about carrying around a rifle and pack all day. These might not bother you an hour into your hunting trip, but if you’re weak in the shoulders, back, and biceps, they will begin to ache before the day is done.
Hunting Fitness Preparation
To prepare for your future big game hunts, it’s best to start your training in the summer months. Cardio, weight training, and even strength exercises will put you on the right path so you can be ready to hunt all day.
Cardio is the most important workout. If you’re not able to move around and go for extended periods of time, you will not be able to hunt all day. If you’re not one of those people who can hop on a treadmill and jog out a few miles, it’s okay. Walking is a good place to start.
Weight training is a great way to work out each muscle group. Focusing each day on a different group of muscles will help get you in shape, especially because you can focus more on strengthening your weak spots. But what if the gyms are closed? The next best thing is strength exercises, as you can do these from anywhere. Here’s a list of a few that will help strengthen you for your hunt:
- High bench step up
- Bicycle swings
- Bench dips
- Ab crunches
- Back extensions
- Arm presses
Hunting with Soap Mesa Outfitters
Follow this advice and you’ll be fit and ready to hunt with us next season. At Soap Mesa Outfitters, we provide the best guided hunts in Western Colorado. Don’t believe us? Book with us and we’ll show you what you’ve been missing.