06-18-2012, 03:38 AM
Re: Fly Fishing & Fitness;
Interesting that this thread should come up when it did.
Last year three of my fishing buddies (all of whom are 5 to 10 years younger than me) hatched a plan that we would go on a serious hike-in fishing trip early this year (I think we went in April). Well, I knew I wasn't in any shape to pack in a 90 lb. pack several miles over very difficult terrain with a maximum elevation change of around 1000 feet. When we came up with the plan I weighed around 193 lbs. and the short .35 mile hike we had to do up from our favorite canyon lake required at least 5 rest breaks, (elevation change approx. 600 ft.), 45 minutes, carrying at most about 40 lbs. It should be noted that I was a famous smoker of cigarettes and drinker of beer for a couple decades.
So I asked a couple trainer friends to help me out. I told them I had about 20 weeks to get in shape and that I had to really focus on "real" strength and endurance while carrying a load. As opposed to instant strength, such as a maximum bench press lift.
Another factor was the numerous injuries and re-injuries I had sustained over the years, specifically to my shoulders, lower back, and left knee.
In short, they came up with two weight training and cardio workouts of ten weeks each to be used one after the other that focused on strength and endurance training. I won't bore anyone with the details of the workouts, but I was told they are essentially modified old school fighter's workouts.
Well, it worked. The results were a net weight loss of 16 lbs., and I also probably gained 7 lbs in muscle. More importantly, my trial hikes of 3.5 miles carrying a 30 lb. load took an average of 2 hrs in the beginning. After 10 weeks I was carrying a load of 60 lbs. and finishing in under 1.5 hrs. By the time we went on our hike-in trip, I was doing the trial hike in under an hr.
The actual hike-in was challenging, but not difficult, and I found myself waiting for my buddies while they rested, instead of the other way around.
Oh, and that .35 mile hike up from our favorite lake? I don't take rest breaks anymore, and I've cut 20 minutes from my previous best time out of there.
Oh, and I drastically reduced my smoking AND drinking, which might have helped a lot.
I'm still on the PT, and surprisingly, I find that I actually like it now. Except the cardio. Cardio stinks.
But, the grin I get on my face when one of my buddies asks, "can we take a break now?" is worth every minute I've spent either on a treadmill or on a hike up some hill near my house.
"Three-fourths of the Earth's surface is water, and one-fourth is land. It is quite clear that the good Lord intended us to spend triple the amount of time fishing as taking care of the lawn." ~Chuck Clark