When one season ends another begins. With the 2010 seasons behind us, it’s time to start preparing for the 2011 seasons – don’t allow it to creep up on you! Making that extra effort now will pay off greatly, both physically and mentally, when the time comes.
Elk are in shape and you should be as well. Start out by setting goals or objectives that can be achieved over the months leading up to opening day in a way that breaks up the monotony of the “off-season”. Training can be very boring if you don’t have something to focus on throughout the year. In the past, we’ve used triathlons as steps to build on. There are many different variations of triathlons – commit yourself by signing up for a beginner-level triathlon if you haven’t participated before. Follow up with a sprint triathlon (roughly half of a full triathlon). If you’re already in great shape, sign up for a full Ironman!
Break them up over the months leading up to September, setting your sights on getting that 1’st one out of the way and the next one will be that much easier. Get your hunting partner committed as well and hold each other accountable. They will thank you when you’re ascending that steep ridge in anticipation of your first encounter of the season with a lovesick bull.
I enjoy skiing, so to hold myself accountable to getting out and working my legs throughout the winter, I signed up as an advisor for my daughters high school ski/snowboard team. Nothing beats a day hanging out with those indestructible teenagers…just don’t hurt yourself!
Keep your shooting skills sharp as well. Sign up for an indoor league if there is one in your area. They are a blast and it will help build muscle memory and get you prepared for that moment when the big bull is within range. This year when I was taking down the Christmas lights I looked down in the backyard and noticed the target sitting in the corner of the yard. I had the idea that it would be good practice taking some elevated shots to mix things up a bit…I’m sure I got a couple strange looks from the neighbor!