Summertime often sees a rise in shooting matches across the country, with enthusiasts traveling hundreds of miles to give competition shooting a change. Weapons have been cleaned and primed, and many have been upgraded to incorporate a Glock competition trigger. In addition to spending countless hours and rounds at the shooting range and dry-firing drills, it takes mental and physical skills to perform well across a multi-day match. These tips can help you make it through the weekend.
Keep Your Energy Levels Up
You will be put through mental and physical exhaustion during the course of the competition. The key to keeping your energy levels up during the match is not letting your sugar levels get too high or too low. Your body performs better when everything is in balance, including your blood glucose levels. Don’t skip breakfast or try to operate on snacks throughout the day. Balanced nutrition, with a focus on protein and low glycemic foods, will help your body avoid crashes after lunch or late in the afternoon. Eat smaller meals more frequently.
Keep Yourself Hydrated
Without enough water in your system, you will get fatigued more quickly. Your body is made up of over 70% water, and the slightest drop can impair your concentration, your stability, and your energy. That shaking in your hands or knees could be more than just nerves. Don’t settle for sports drinks or juices to hydrate yourself. These are full of sugar and will have you ending up with an energy crash. Water or electrolyte supplements are good for proper muscle function and warding off dehydration.
Keep Yourself Rested
The excitement in the air at a competition will keep your invigorated, but to keep yourself in the best shooting form possible, spend some time resting. Lay down and take a short mental break. Don’t think about shooting or the competition. You need to take a load off your feet and your mind. Giving yourself downtown between competitions will make a huge difference in your concentration levels at the line. Your body will refocus and regenerate if you allow yourself an hour to nap.
Keep Yourself Shaded
Being out in the sun all day will zap your energy. Apply sunscreen and wear a hat whenever possible. If you can wait indoors, you save yourself from the heat and sun taking from your energy reserves. The sun will also dehydrate you a lot faster.
These four tips can keep your mind and body sharp when at a shooting competition. The top shot is the one who can manage a weapon and his control over his environment and body.