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  • New Year, New Gear, New Goals? - #6 "MOBILE MINUTE" Ft. Greg Staggs

    March 07, 2023 4 min read

    New Year, New Gear, New Goals? - #6 "MOBILE MINUTE" Ft. Greg Staggs

    New Year, New Gear, New Goals?

    By: Greg Staggs

    The start of a new year…the offseason, it’s all about new gear and new goals. People set all kinds of goals… financial, spiritual, and health. As hunters, we often set goals to tag a larger buck. Or one at all. To finally fill the freezer completely as the ever-spiraling cost of meat from the grocery story careens further out of control. I see lots of guys talking about “optimizing” their setup. Finding better gear. Lightening their load.

    What I DON’T see a lot of hunters talking about? Dropping weight. REAL weight. Oh, we argue over a new saddle platform weighing 4.5 lbs. – and whether that’s “too heavy” to be in a minimalist run-and-gun setup. What would make people happy? Three and a half pounds. THAT’s the ticket. If their platform were just one pound lighter, it’d be perfect. Those sticks? Yeah… a pound and a half per stick is SO 2020. As someone who’s been on almost every side of the spectrum imaginable in the weight-cutting discussion, I’ve learned a few things. For starters? The gear is the least of our worries.  

    Hunting Shape

    I’ve been in great shape heading into a hunting season, and I’ve had to work my way into it as the season went along. Usually it’s the latter. Several years back, I did two rounds of P90X back to back. I was 40 years old, and I got back down to my college weight. I got in really good shape. I’ll never say I was in the best shape of my life. That’s when I was between 16 and 19 years old, playing tennis an average of 6 hours a day. At 18 I went through basic training, and at the end of MP school I ran two miles in 10: 17 seconds for our final PT test. THAT was the best shape of my life.

    But I was way more knowledgeable about fitness during all those P90X sessions. Here’s the crazy thing you realize when you’re working out for an hour a day, every day … watching macros, entering every single bite you eat into your MyFitnessPal app: Your body can fluctuate a pound or more on any given day. Yep, that’s right – even when you’re a finely tuned machine with single-digit body fat. That’s why I laugh so much when people argue over a pound here or there in their mobile rigs. A couple pounds is often the difference of not going to McDonalds that week for most people.

    Ounces and Pounds

    Look, I get it. Ounces add up to pounds. Extra pounds can break a person mentally. How many people do you know that hunt close to the truck because they don’t want to carry all their gear further than necessary? Or they’re afraid to go over that next ridge because … well, it’s just too far. What most people don’t comprehend though is they can gain MUCH more benefit by stopping worrying about their GEAR and starting to worry about THEMSELVES. That is where the biggest gains are to be found.

    How drastically would you have to change or alter your gear to save five pounds? If you’re like most hard-core mobile junkies… a lot. Five pounds is omitting an entire saddle platform. It’s leaving a complete set of sticks behind. It’s … pretty darn hard is what it is.

    Cue dietary changes. Begin working out, even if it’s just walking around the block after dinner. How long has it been since you dropped down to the floor and banged out twenty pushups?  How about stopping in the sporting goods section and buying an old school jump rope? Starting to work out again -- and then eventually becoming hard-core with those workouts – does one major thing to me: it incentivizes me to clean up my diet. The reason? I don’t want any effort I put into me working out to be for naught… to be completely wasted. Because if you know anything at all about losing weight and getting in shape, you’ll remember this: Diet is 80% of your results.

    But those workout sessions begin building confidence. Mental confidence. And that’s a huge part of being a mobile hunter. It helps with “the grind.” Of leaving your house one more time, one more day. It helps you push further than you did before … to go check out what’s over the next hill. To feel confident that if your hunt is successful, you can pack the meat out.

    For those of you wanting to shave a few pounds off your mobile-hunting setup this year, I encourage you to set a goal of working on the absolute best place for cutting out the most weight: You. Know that I’ll be on the same journey. I’m cutting 15 pounds out of my mobile-hunting rig this year, and I’m not changing out one piece of actual gear…

    ABOUT: Greg Staggs is a frequent feature writer for Petersen’s Bowhunting among other magazines, and for many years he was the former back-page columnist for Inside Archery. His mobile-hunting videos are extremely popular on his YouTube channel, Staggs in the Wild, and you can read some of his past feature articles and numerous blogs at staggsinthewild.com.

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