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  1. #1
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    Evaluation time...

    It is Wednesday...

    4 days after a really rough pack out and I would say that I am now fully recovered. I don't believe that this was my heaviest or my longest, however it may have had the worst weather conditions. Wind was beyond brutal, which created weather at 10K that otherwise wouldn't have been there. Getting smacked in the neck with blowing snow while skinning and boning out my bull stunk. But we got it done...

    So now I need to evaluate my workout regimen and see what needs to improve for next year.

    1. Cardio- This season the uphill climbs didn't wind me as bad as previous years. Getting older I have gotten more patient and don't try to fly up the hill. I stop glass, look in pockets on the way etc.

    2. Strength- Since none of us bench press the entire bull elk this one is kind of subjective, but picking the heavy pack up multiple times I never got hurt.

    3. Endurance- This one was big. My endurance didn't start to crash until really late into the evening when we were getting close to the trailhead. We rested regularly and the heavy packs were getting to be tough to handle at the end.

    All in all my physical prep for a heavy packout was strong. I am going to bump my 3x sets up to 4x especially on the lower body and core to build endurance.

    What say you? Were you prepared for the physical nature of your pack out? Was it a long enough one that it even mattered?
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    My longest pack was a whole doe antelope on my back - 468 yards. I did ok but was tired after that short carry. I should have just broke her down and put her in the pack but really wanted her whole on the meat pole in camp for a couple days. My prep was ok for the deer and antelope hunt this fall but I realized I need to do more leading into next fall for my elk hunt. I'm hunting general season and know I'm going to be a couple miles in to be successful.

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    I didn't prep hardly at all; got busy and lazy. Both of my elk packouts were just over two-miles one way so a tad over four miles with a heavy pack after two trips. The first one was through killer blow down and that one got me pretty good. Honestly though, moving this fall over the course of one week was more brutal on my knees and endurance than packing elk or hiking hills.

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    hunting season is a long ways from being over. Always evaluate at the end, not the middle.

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    scott

    are you battling the age thing? I know the day I got my elk and I was solo, I was one pooped puppy at the end of the day. but I ask myself. Can I do it again next year? so far the answer is yes, but I did work out a lot this summer. For me it is a combo of cardio and strength. not just one or the other. now I do lean towards cardio more than strength. Based on what I was seeing the work out thread, is guys need to get longer workouts in. not just go to the gym for an hour. But get some 5,6 even 7 hours days of physical exercise in. The big mountain bike rides have helped on my endurance.

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    Weekend long back packing trips with a heavy pack is a great way to spend the weekend in the mountain and get some training in. After my pack with my deer and camp in one trip, I think I need both cardio and strength improvements next year. And a hunting partner lol

  10. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by tim View Post
    scott

    are you battling the age thing? I know the day I got my elk and I was solo, I was one pooped puppy at the end of the day. but I ask myself. Can I do it again next year? so far the answer is yes, but I did work out a lot this summer. For me it is a combo of cardio and strength. not just one or the other. now I do lean towards cardio more than strength. Based on what I was seeing the work out thread, is guys need to get longer workouts in. not just go to the gym for an hour. But get some 5,6 even 7 hours days of physical exercise in. The big mountain bike rides have helped on my endurance.
    Big game season is over for me, remote possibility of a migration deer hunt. But it is unlikely. Tackling an elk packout solo is daunting, nice work getting it done.

    Age hasn't been bad on me...yet(it could hit at any moment). But, one of the smartest things I have ever heard said in regard to taking care of the body is "Rest is a weapon." -Joe Sakic

    So I have made 6 hours of sleep a standard minimum and have really changed the way I workout. Every workout is about the whole body with very little isolation type of exercises that I used to love. Squats, kettlebell swings, weighted carry's, tire flips/drags etc. are where I spend most of my time.

    To prep for season I have made it a habit to scout the country I plan to hunt. With two very little girls this has been more challenging but the wife and I are ready to take on the challenge of taking them with us next summer.
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    Quote Originally Posted by tim View Post
    scott

    are you battling the age thing? I know the day I got my elk and I was solo, I was one pooped puppy at the end of the day. but I ask myself. Can I do it again next year? so far the answer is yes, but I did work out a lot this summer. For me it is a combo of cardio and strength. not just one or the other. now I do lean towards cardio more than strength. Based on what I was seeing the work out thread, is guys need to get longer workouts in. not just go to the gym for an hour. But get some 5,6 even 7 hours days of physical exercise in. The big mountain bike rides have helped on my endurance.
    I defiantly prefer the outside workouts compared to the gym. You get new views and different resistances based on weather. I really wish i could do 5 or 6 hour rides or hikes but my very young boys (1 and 3) its already hard to find time to do what i get in. Doesnt help my wife is not a nature person so she dont like hiking. I defiantly see your point though about endurance coming with longer workouts. I will say that since i started following a workouts and nutrition better over a year and 3/4 ago i can tell a difference during hunting season i can walk in further and hardly ever get winded hiking in

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    Good thread. I feel like I was physically well prepared for my hunt this year. I have been doing mostly the same program for the past few years and it has worked well for me. When you get in your upper 40s and into your 50s, you have to find that line between pushing yourself hard and overdoing it and getting injured during training. Coming from 100' above sea level up to 9,000' above sea level has its challenges. Last year I killed an average body sized mule deer and packed him out in one trip. With all my gear and the meat/head, I am sure I was north of 100 lbs. It took a couple months for my knees to get back to normal. I decided to NOT do that again. This year I killed a very heavy bodied mule deer and packed him out in two trips. My knees, hips, and back feel fine afterwards. So I hope I am getting a little smarter as I get older. I like the quote above about 'Rest being a weapon'. Slow and steady wins when hunting he mountains. I'm already back at it getting ready for next year.

  13. #10
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    I didn't have any tough pack-outs on our muley hunt this year. I struck out and my buddy shot a small one fairly close to a 2 track on the BLM. We did have 15" of snow our first night in that made things interesting. I found that the T25 lower body work-outs helped me navigate the calf to crotch deep snow we walked through depending on how it drifted in different areas. It was a fairly heavy wet snow that didn't drift to terribly, but still blew some. The 2nd day after the snow had 40mph winds. It got warm and sunny enough during the day that it crusted some in places so when walking through it hunting I took it pretty slow. I figure a human walking at a steady pace without pauses through crusted snow is about like blowing a deer whistle as you walk. I was glad I had included the squats, lunges, and other exercises instead of just walking hills with a loaded pack. Not enough high stepping to avoid getting sore in the hill walks. That's about all I can add. I still need more cardio as always, long steep climbs still kick my butt unless I pace myself and stop on occasion to take 3 or 4 deep breaths. I live at 1200ft elevation and hunted mostly 8000 to 9000 this year.

 

 
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