-By Randy Cooper
Last week I covered my personal experience and discovery of the fantastic benefits of getting into good shape! This is important to people in their everyday lives, not just for hunting season. It’s a lifestyle change that will add years to your life and will aid you when you least expect it. My son Jeff is a great example of that. He started body building when he was 18 years old. He trained intensively for 9 years until the age of 27, in March of ’05 he sustained a brain injury caused by a huge blood clot that pressed against his brain stem. Jeff was so critical that the neurosurgeon only gave him a 10% chance of making it through the emergency surgery to save his life.
MIRACLES DO HAPPEN! Jeff’s life was spared. I give all the credit to God’s mercy and healing power. The doctors and nurses on his team all said that if this had happened to anyone else that was not in the incredible shape that Jeff was in, they wouldn’t have stood a chance of making it. The doctors said that in addition to his lean muscle mass, he had strengthened his heart through cardio, and his immune system through supplements and eating right to support his body.
Who could have guessed that the sport of bodybuilding and staying in great shape would have someday played a crucial role in saving my son’s life? Today, he’s like someone who has had a horrific stroke. He had most of his cerebellum removed and because of that, he has no balance or coordination. He gets around with a walker and a wheelchair. Jeff’s sight, speech and hearing were also impaired. He has lost a total of 60% of his muscle mass. He has recovered as far as he ever will. Now at 30, he lives with my wife and me in our home. He is dependent on us for a lot of things in his life he can’t do anymore and he always will be. The point I’m making here is that there are no promises of tomorrow for any of us. This has changed all our lives forever; the way we live and think. Through this experience, we’ve change the way we live our lives. For our own sake as well as yours I suggest doing three things in your life if you don’t do anything else.
- Make God first in your life and know there is a place in heaven waiting for you.
- Take care of your body and use it every way that you can. Work out, take your supplements and eat right.
- Live every day like it’s your last one!
I want to talk about supplements and eating right in this part. Think about it, the food we buy every week at the grocery store looks great, from good looking cuts of meat to produce. These days, you don’t really know what you’re getting unless you grow it yourself in your own garden. Most of the raw vegetables, fruit and meat are full of growth hormones, color enhancers and preservatives. Do yourself a favor and look at the label for information such as the fresh date, how much fat, protein and carbohydrates the food contains. Also look at how many fat grams and calories are in it.
I once had permission to hunt a ladies property that raised chickens for restaurant chains. Believe me when I say, “You don’t REALLY want to know what goes into growing those birds before they become the hot wings and chicken fingers you get in your #2 combo at the drive thru.” If you did know, you’d never eat it again.
Not only is the food you buy not like nature intended, by the time it’s cooked and hits your plate all the nutritional value is gone! Cooking kills bacteria and germs but it also cooks away most of the vitamins and virtually becomes nothing but fillers and empty calories. Cook food thoroughly to kill bacteria and germs. The way we try to eat has a balance: 70% protein, 25% carbs and 5% fats. You can get an entire day’s allowance of fat by adding a tablespoon full of olive oil to your salad.
While I’m talking about food for the hunter especially, dig this: If you’re planning on going hunting, eat dishes with pasta, rice and potatoes in them for three days prior to hunting. The reason is two fold. First, the food is high in carbohydrates and that means lots of energy stored for the walking you’ll be doing. Second, when nature calls while you’re in the woods, your urine will not be saturated in protein. Why is this important? Coyotes, foxes, dogs and bobcats are all meat eaters. When their urine is detected by a deer in the woods they go on alert and avoid the area. If you urinate in the woods after eating meat for the last couple of days, a deer will smell it and detect the protein and you are sunk. This goes extra for a cagey older buck. Take a urinal of some kind with you if you’ve eaten meat before the hunt. Eat food rich in carbs and starch and don’t worry about it.
About Supplements - You don’t have to have a cabinet full of supplements to be effective. There are a few (MUST HAVE) types I would like to suggest though. First, when selecting a vitamin supplement store ask if they carry supplements that are derived from WHOLE FOODS. These are supplements that are prepared from plants, not in a chemical lab. Avoid the synthetic supplements. They are not as effective and have side effects. Also ask for the highest PHARMACUTICAL GRADE of whatever supplement you are buying. You’ll get more bang for your buck and be assured of getting the highest quality this way.
Get a good multi-vitamin derived from whole foods that you take once to three times a day. If you are weight training, use some supplements that will help your muscle grow and repair themselves. They also take away the awful soreness associated with training hard and lifting heavy.
CREATINE MONOHYDRATE in the micronized form is very cheap and works! When taken, it floods the muscle cells with water which makes the perfect environment for growth and recovery. It also gives you energy if taken 30 minutes before you train. The perfect combo to take after you finish training is a protein shake. I mix a great tasting protein, preferably WHEY, ion-exchange type and glutamine with a banana, strawberries, papaya juice, some pineapple and a cup of ice in a blender. It tastes great and restores everything you’ve just blasted out of your body during a brutal workout. The GLUTAMINE is a great supplement that actually helps the UPTAKE of the supplements into your blood steam and helps feed your muscles for repair and recovery.
I’ve talked about a life changing plan through this article. Life is too short to go through it every day feeling like crap. I know, I’ve been there, done that and have the t-shirt. Training and eating right takes a lot of discipline and work. If you cheat, you’re only cheating yourself and you have only yourself to blame if it doesn’t work. It’s all up to you and how badly you want to look good, feel good, and make things easier to do than ever before. You’ll last longer at whatever you do whether it’s work or pleasure. If you get sick or hurt, you will recover faster because you’re in great shape and your immune system is strong. Make your mind up to start training, supplementing and eating right today. In just a few short months when hunting season starts and it’s still 90 degrees outside, you’ll be able to hang when everyone else is dragging and heads to the house. This is a win-win for you and your family. Do this for yourself. In a few short months, you will love what you see in the mirror.