GPP for Bowhunting Success

Posted by: Dan Staton on Mar 11, 2013
Page 1 of 3

Fitness and bowhunting make the perfect marriage.  More fitness means hunting harder and going further.  To hunt at your best, you must own more stock in “General Physical Preparedness” (GPP).  Shares of GPP come with a steep price tag, but will lend itself to better bowhunting….I guarantee it.  GPP means you're able to perform numerous tasks extremely well; ready for anything Mother Nature throws at you.  However, GPP won't be improved if you train like a bodybuilder.

Bodybuilding isolates muscles and has distinction between weights and cardio.  Every guy in those major bodybuilding magazines uses steroids and has lots of useless muscle for the mountains.  If you want to read about tanning, supplements, empty promises, and awesome chest workouts - this is not the article for you.  Bodybuilding is a good way to train, but not the best if you're committed to bowhunting.  If training in front of a mirror is more important than making your body ready for the mountains, then your GPP will suffer. 

Along those lines, if you’re a decent runner but can’t muster a pull-up, you're lacking GPP.  Another example is if you can bench press a couple hundred of pounds, but can’t run a mile under 10 minutes, you’re lacking GPP.  To obtain more GPP you have to compromise your training, focus less on what you're good at, and spend more of your time training at what you like the least.  Weaknesses are chinks in your armor and getting rid of them is how you increase your GPP for bowhunting.

Hunting is unpredictable. You don’t know how far from the trailhead you’ll be packing meat.  You don't know what challenges may arise just like you don't know when the next weather system may roll in.  The needs of a Western bowhunter and a Midwest bowhunter differ in degree, not kind.  What I mean by that is all of us have a need for functional competencies to move our own bodies and backpack through the woods.  Whether its mountains, rolling hills, or treestand hunting, all bowhunters can benefit from fitness.  In other words, you need to be in shape if you want to tip the scales of lady luck in your favor. 



Just like the environment you hunt in your training should be an unpredictable, mixed bag of weight training moves and cardiovascular fitness.
The GPP Answer
Cross-training offer’s a wide range of athletic movements and promotes GPP.  To obtain this general fitness level you have to perform workouts with wide variety.  When we cross-train, we’re inviting several facets of fitness into the workout:
• Strength (Power, Speed, Elasticity, etc.)
• Endurance & Stamina
• Balance (Accuracy, Coordination, Proprioception, etc.)
• Flexibility (Mobility, Stability, etc.)

All these components will come in handy when bowhunting.  If just running prepared you for the demands of the mountains then this feature would be about pounding out the miles.  I’m not against running, in fact I hammer out a handful of miles each week, but I recognize that fitness doesn’t just start there.  Keep your training on shuffle mode and you can easily diminish the chinks in your armor.  Here's how to get started on improving GPP.

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Dan Staton
Filed under: GPPfitnessbackcountry

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