The Only Easy Year Was Last Year

The Only Easy Year Was Last Year

There is a certain mentality that suggests “the only easy day was yesterday”, and some may know of its dignified origin. It affirms that with each day comes new challenges and opportunities for growth, and it is a mentality adopted by some of the most capable and productive behaviors. For those that choose to hunt the West, this mentality may resonate loudly within. Having reached the high summits of terrain explored during past adventures, it’s likely that physical hardship came into play during those past ascents. With several archery elk tags in-hand for the upcoming season, I’ve recently found myself in a moment of solitary anticipation and reflection. This mentality resonates within me as well and the time to “pay the man” is upon me. It’s time to move the needle again, I’m older and more responsible now than I was during any previous hunting adventure, and the only easy year was last year.

Merciless Objectivity

With merciless objectivity, time relentlessly marches on. It doesn’t care how badly we wish to succeed in an upcoming hunt no matter how desperately we wish that it did. And with time comes aging and often increased responsibility, yet more variables in life that cease to yield to our interests of hunting. The truth is that we must tip the scales decisively in our favor through consciousness and discipline. So, knowing that this year’s hunts will likely be more challenging than those experienced previously, especially for those who choose to adventure resolutely, a decision to act must be made to tip said scales. Whether due to the terrain of a unit drawn, the unexpected coming of an early snowfall, or by no other means that one’s personal longing to have earned, the mentality that “the only easy year was last year” can be adopted to better physically prepare for the seasons ahead.

Anytime, Anywhere

Acceleration and momentum can only be experienced once initial movement is established. When it comes to physical training, few things matter more in the early undertaking than simply getting started. In my opinion, the mountain doesn’t care whether you can run a marathon or bench press 350 lbs, at least to some extent. For those who know, the mountain favors those who are willing to take merely one step followed endlessly by another. So, for the sake of self-improvement and enhancing the life at-hand, don’t wait to train based on convenience. The odds are that the perceived convenience of tomorrow won’t prove any more convenient than the opportunity that is the present. So, quite simply, don’t wait for tomorrow to come. Achieve movement in the present.

Establish a Baseline Founded on Truth

One of the key leadership principles that I’ve been exposed to in prior years, is that of knowing yourself and seeking self-improvement. The same stands true when leading oneself from the mirror to the garage, and ultimately to the trailhead and the summit that lies beyond it. Wherever your personal baseline may be on the spectrum of physical and mental preparedness, establish said baseline with integrity and truth. With the mentality suggested here and its natural companion that is discipline, your self-improvements will present more favorably following an honest baseline. Even if you can fool yourself on a random June’s Tuesday from your home garage, you don’t stand a chance at fooling the mountains of the West on a September’s Saturday. So, make it a point to establish an honest baseline with concern to flexibility, cardio, strength, recovery, and the like.

An Unfortunate Reality

If you haven’t already taken to this mindset, then there’s an unfortunate reality to consider. That unfortunate reality is that later you’ll wish you did. I’m confident that most if not all of us can relate here in some shared capacity. With so many of us having experienced it previously, why do we accept it still when we knowingly shouldn’t? The rocking chair is a timeless design of furniture and provides an ideal stage from which to tell stories of one’s trials and tribulations. The youth of tomorrow will want to hear about them and I can think of few things worse than becoming an old man without truthful stories to tell. I’m confident that many can relate here too. For the sake of yourself and the generations that may follow, seek to establish acceleration and momentum in your preparations toward this year’s hunt opportunities…now. Your stories will prove more inspirational once you do.

Why Not Thrive While Alive?

In summary, life is precious and opportunities can be few. Certainly, the opportunities that are western hunting certainly seem to be a bit of both. Whether the present holds nothing more than a single stretch of a dormant muscle group or a full, high-intensity workout, each lends itself to movement and one’s acceleration and momentum can be measured thereafter. It’s that easy whether we choose to let it be or not. It has been my pleasure to write this short article. Doing so has allowed me to reflect on much that includes “the only easy year was last year” mentality. Why not thrive while we’re alive? Best wishes and preparations to all, and may this year’s hunting adventures provide stories worth telling.






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