For those of us who are looking to impress at the pool or lake this year it’s time to get the heart rate up and shed those extra pounds. Getting swoll and shredded doesn’t always jive with staying protected. What is a buff gun bro or bunny to do? Don’t worry we got you covered with a comprehensive list of ways to get in shape while incorporating your favorite firearm.
Take a defensive shooting or home defense class
Classes are a great way to get outside and put those guns to work. There are trainers in every state who offer some variation of a defensive shooting or home defense type class. Why are these types of classes beneficial? Defensive shooting classes often put the user in a heightened sense of awareness. A good trainer should push you to extend your abilities with your gun, naturally raising the heart rate.
If you’re lucky enough to live near a training center that offers a shoot house or a 270-degree range you’re able to employ dynamic movement, shooting on the move, breaking through barriers, and shooting around obstacles. All of which will lead you to an increased heart rate and perspiration. You’re cutting fat and slinging lead at the same time.
While classes aren’t cheap, especially ones that offer more dynamic movement, they do offer the opportunity to break a sweat with your weapon while increasing knowledge. That’s what you call a win-win-win.
Join an IDPA or USPSA league
Similar to classes every state has an IDPA or USPSA league which you’re able to join and shoot on a regular basis. Each discipline has their own regulations and unique requirements, but each league has the same thing in common — they get you off the firing line and moving. Just like defensive shooting classes, these leagues increase your heart rate by forcing you through different shooting scenarios; but they are often more affordable to participate in and occur more regularly.
Additionally, you’re not only putting yourself through physical labor, but you’ll also be challenging your mental capacity as well. Events for IDPA and USPSA are designed to get you out of your comfort zone, pushing your mental capacities. As a result, your situational awareness increases, your muscle memory will become stronger, and you’re pretty much guaranteed to become a better shooter if you stick with it. Besides the people are very welcoming and you’re bound to meet a bunch of new friends you never knew you had all while getting fit.
Working out with your firearm
Perfecting that beach body isn’t always easy, especially if you want to be comfortable and protected at the same time. You don’t have to sacrifice fitness for protection though if you know what to look for. Guns like the Glock 42, Sig P365, and Ruger LCP are all very concealable and pair well with a plethora of holsters designed for workout. Deciding which holster and gun combo that will work for you is as much dependent on the types of movement you plan on doing as it is the caliber you like.
Looking for a workout routine that can incorporate your firearm can be tricky, especially if you all you live by is gun-free gyms, but it’s not impossible. Start with deciding the type of activity you’re most likely to commit to, then decide the smallest caliber you’re comfortable carrying while getting your swell on. After that, you should have a good idea of which workout holster will work best for you. At the end of the day the place to workout will be almost entirely determined by your location and the legality in which you can carry there.
Enter a Match
Similar to taking a class or entering a competitive shooting league, matches get you off the line and moving around. The amount of which you will move is dependent on the match itself. There are 3-gun matches all over the country that get the blood flowing and the heart rate up. There are even themed matches, like Zombies in the Heartland, which allow you to add an additional layer of fun to the already good time.
A growing number of matches incorporate both fitness and shooting all-in-one. The Tactical Games, for example, pushes you physically to the limit while also demanding you shoot accurately dealing with muscle fatigue and sustained heavy breathing. It’s like Crossfit meets 3-Gun for the ultimate fitness and shooting challenge. These types of events are great because you actually need to train your body to get into shape to compete in one. If you don’t, you’ll be left reeling.
Time to shred some pounds
Well don’t just sit there, it’s time to take that summer body back. Decide which of the above best suits your physical needs and then go attack it. Remember that it only works if you put the work in. Don’t settle for not being protected while getting buff, it’s all a matter of personal preference and perseverance.