Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Busy busy

Hey all just a quick update:  Last week I was fortunate enough to attend the 2015 SHOT show.  I'll be writing about my experience in the context of a "survival guide".  I won't be reviewing any actual items because several other media outlets have that covered.

Also, my PT regimen has really progressed.  I'll be sharing my improvements and some WODs that I've been doing.

Stay tuned for posts on both of these later this week and into the following weeks.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Deer Hunting 2014 Ends with Lesson Learned

Yes, that's four different camo patterns.  I'm extra invisible this way.

Deer season for rifles rolled around again this year and I went during the first part of the season near Fall River, Ks.  I arrived on a Friday evening and spent the night on the land.  I woke up early the following morning and crawled up into the stand.  The waiting game began.

I spent all day Saturday with a break for lunch and Sunday morning in the stand.  Unfortunately, I did not see any deer at all.  My wife's uncles only saw three in total in that same amount of time.  I still had a great time though.  I had a squirrel crawl up into my stand and look at me like, "What the hell are you doing here!?"  I also worked on identifying the different songbirds including black capped chickadees and tufted titmouses.  I even saw a few blue birds and blue jays.  And one of the little guys took a crap on me.  Solid weekend.

I was disappointed, but undeterred for the January anterless-only season.  I went back to the land on a Friday night the second weekend of the anterless season and spent the night.  This time, I worked on controlling my scent a bit better than the last time by showering with unscented body wash and shampoo.  I also washed all my hunting clothes and undergarments in de-scenter laundry detergent and placed those garments in a plastic tub to keep them from picking up any odors until I got to the land.  I woke up, put on my clothes and made my way to the stand in the early morning hours.

My tools for the job.

It was much colder than the December hunt.  The temperature plus windchill made it feel like it was in the single digits that morning.  I had anticipated this and used chemical warmers for my body, hands and feet.  I also had three layers on my bottom and five layers on the top.

A gunshot rang out around 0930.  I immediately texted my wife's uncle to see if it was him.  It was!  Unfortunately, the shot missed and the doe did not present another shot for him as she ran around briefly before zipping out of sight.  1045 rolled around and it was time for a lunch break.

I climbed back into the stand around 1200 and kept watch until 1415.  We both came back down for a quick snack and then back into the stand at 1500.  Legal time was to end at 1756.  I kept watch, but still did not see anything as the hours passed.  I started to grow a bit frustrated.  The sun set.   I could not see very well as the light began to fail,  I decided to call it quits at 1748.  I quietly stood up and laid my rifle on the floor of the stand.  I was two steps down when I realized my mistake.  My head whipped around as I heard the snort and I saw a flash of white tail rear end disappear into the trees not 20 yards from me.  The deer had been behind a clump of four trees that had blocked my line of sight.  I kicked myself all the way home that evening:

"What if I had just sat till the end of legal time?"

"Would I have had a shot eventually?"

"Maybe it was a buck and I could not have shot it anyways."

"Would I have even seen it if it was in front of me?"

I would have answers to these questions if I had just followed a simple rule:  Stay in the stand to the end!  Thus, the lesson was learned.

Still, I did have a good time.  Being in the outdoors is a change of pace from my desk job and usual grind.  I also learned that I still need to adjust my hunting wardrobe when it comes to very cold weather.  I needed a better outer bottom layer.  Something with a bit more loft to trap the warm air generated by my body would have been perfect.  I was also lent a pair of boots with Thinsulate from one of my wife's uncles.  They worked great and plan on getting a pair for myself.

Have you missed an opportunity the way I did?  What other tips or lessons have you learned over the years?  I would love to hear them.  Please comment below and "Share" this post with others so they don't make the mistake I made!   Thanks for reading.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Physical Training: New regimen

With the New Year, comes a new physical training (PT) regimen.  I had been doing heavy lifts (mostly deadlifts when pressed for time) and rucking on the weekends, but with my future full of GORUCK events and my past performance in the last Challenge, I knew that I needed better programming.

I took a page out of John Mosby's The Reluctant Partisan.  Here's a sample of what I will be doing for the foreseeable future:

Week 1 and 2 series

Front Squats 5 x 5 (or Goblet Squat as an alternative)

WOD (Workout of the Day)
Complete all rounds for time 10/9/8/7/6/5/4/3/2/1
50# sandbag step ups
50# sandbag turkish getups
70# KB swing

Power or Hanging Clean 5 x 3

As many rounds as possible in 10 minutes
5 chin ups/ pull ups
10 parallel bar dips
15 50# Sandbag situps

Bench Press 5 x 5

Every minute on the minute for 10 minutes:
6 reps - With ruck, 8 cnt bodybuilder

Week 3 series

Back Squat 5 x 5



Deadlift 5 x 5



Push Press 5 x 5


Note, that after the third week, that I rotate back to the week 1 series of exercises.

Concerning the WODs: This is what I am doing for the first week, but the second week could be a totally different set of WODs.  Some of the things that I take into consideration include not programming a WOD in such a way that it focuses on movements or exercises that would be focused on the heavy lift that I just did.  For example, I would not do a weighted pushup WOD after doing a bench press heavy lift.

The other consideration when programming my WODs for the week is to actually have some outdoor cardio.  For example, 400 meter sprints followed by rest in the outdoors is something that needs to be incorporated.  The temptation to limit the WOD to the gym must be avoided.

Concerning the "Big Lifts":  These should stay constant.  The idea is to generate absolute strength and changing the programming does not allow for gains in the respective lifts.

John Mosby does an excellent job on expanding on his reasoning which is solid and based on CrossFit (among other systems) and good old fashioned PT principles.  I highly recommend his book "The Reluctant Partisan" (be prepared for the sticker shock... but the price is very worth it).  He covers much more than just PT which may or may not be to your taste.  I'll probably be doing a review of the book once I have finished it.

Any suggestions for WODs to pair up with my heavy lifts?  I'm open to all suggestions!