Did you take your sunshine pill?

Sunlight provides our bodies with the vitamin D it needs to survive. Healthy bones and teeth are only 2 of the reasons you need vitamin D. Studies are now showing the sunshine vitamin can also help prevent serious conditions like dementia.

Yet, most of us aren’t getting the daily dose of sunshine we need to be healthy. A surprising 93% of the average American lifespan happens indoors. 

If you want to lead a long and happy life you should find an outdoor hobby, like hunting. The health benefits of hunting extend far beyond being outside.

Not only will you be able to soak up some rays, but you’ll also be getting in shape. Read on to learn the top psychological and physical reasons you should try hunting.

Top 5 Health Benefits of Hunting

Hunting is an activity that benefits your entire well being. You’ll be able to have fun, get in shape, and learn valuable lessons.

Here’s a short list that includes 5 of the top health benefits of hunting.

  1. Fresh Air
  2. Cardiovascular Strength
  3. Food Awareness
  4. Burns Calories
  5. Self Discipline

Well rounded hobbies that address physical and aspects, help prepare you for everyday life. The lessons you learn while hunting, won’t leave when you return home. Instead, you’ll find yourself using different hunting tips and tricks to brighten up your everyday work week.

Let’s start exploring the first benefit, getting fresh air.

1. Fresh Air

You can get fresh air from gardening or taking a walk. Yet, if you feel the sense of adventure calling your name, hunting is the better option.

Imagine yourself, after a long, adventurous hunt. The sun is setting as a soft breeze gently blows the grass. Delicious, crisp fresh air fills your lungs, and a smile comes across your face.

When you’re hunting in the great outdoors, everything feels right with the world.  If you don’t already spend a lot of time outside, hunting can motivate you to change your lifestyle.

New hunters will notice that after their first experience, they start seeking more outdoor activities. One of the reasons your body begins craving to be outside more is because of the fresh air.

Here are some of the benefits that come from breathing in the fresh air.

  • Better Digestion
  • Regular Heart Rate
  • Improve Immune System
  • Increased Energy
  • Clean Lungs

When you breathe in fresh air, your digestive system will thank you. The flow of oxygen increases as the fresh air enters your body. As a result, the increased oxygen helps your body effectively digest food.

If you’re looking to lose weight, an improved digestive tract is a great starting point. Fresh air also helps improve your heart rate and blood pressure. Once again, it’s the oxygen-rich air that helps your body function at it’s highest capacity.

The benefits of oxygen filled fresh air include your immune system as well. The oxygen gives power to your white blood cells, and in return, they can kill off dangerous bacteria.

Finally, clean air helps your lungs dilate more. Airborne toxins leave the lungs as they open up for fresh air.

2. Cardiovascular Strength

Hunting requires you to move your body in a lot of different ways. Sometimes you’ll be sitting still, waiting for your chance to strike. Yet, other times you’ll be hiking, carrying, and bending.

The variety of activity helps keep your body guessing. Unlike the predictability of running on a treadmill, hunting requires your body to pay attention. Unsure of what your next move will be, every muscle will be ready to go.

Short bursts of activity you’ll experience during hunting mimic a high-intensity interval training workout or HIIT. High-intensity workouts are tremendously helpful in improving cardiovascular health.

Your cardiovascular system is a type of organ system. It allows your blood to circulate throughout your entire body.

As the blood travels, it carries important nutrients to different areas of the body. Nutrients like electrolytes, or amino acids, provide your cells the nutrients they need to function. Failing to participate in cardio friendly exercises can wreak havoc on your body.

A lack of physical activity can cause the body’s blood vessels to become narrow. Sometimes the blood vessels will even become completely blocked.

When blood vessels become tight, different serious health complications can arise. Heart attacks, chest pains, and strokes, all come from issues with the cardiovascular system.

Hunters have an opportunity to reduce their chance of ever getting heart disease. Studies show you can reduce your odds of getting heart disease with physical activity.

Being outside for 2 hours and 30 minutes a week reduces the risk of heart disease by 30% or more.

3. Food Awareness

Of course, hunting helps individuals gain a greater appreciation for where their food comes from. Yet, it also helps hunters realize how much food they need to survive.

When you go on a hunting trip, you have to plan everything you’ll be bringing. Overpacking will mean you can’t carry your load. While underpacking could mean you go home empty-handed.

Out in the woods, you’ll want to make sure you have every tool you need. Knives, guns, rope, and more, will be carefully planned and packed ahead of time. 

Keep in mind, it’s important to find a hunting rifle or gun, that you can easily carry. Smith & Wesson, Spikes Tactical, and Heckler & Koch are just a few of the companies hunters use for their guns.

After packing up your gear, you’ll also pack your food and water rations ahead of time. Preplanning meals forces hunters to learn about healthy portion sizes. First-time hunters will learn about the limited amount of food they need to survive.

A lot of people have no idea what a healthy food portion is. American adults eat 300 more daily calories than they did in 1985. One of the reasons more calories are being consumed is because of confusion surrounding portion control.

Here’s a quick overview of accurate portions for one adult individual.

  • Vegetables: 1 Cup
  • Cheese: 1 Ounce
  • Meat: 3 Ounces

Most accurately sized portions can fit into the palm of your hand. This is great news for hunters, who will have to carry everything they plan on eating.

4. Burn Calories

When you’re a hunter, you won’t have to worry about counting every calorie. After a long weekend of hunting, feel free to indulge. Now, you can enjoy a guilt-free sweet or treat, because you’ve earned it.

The body burns calories every day, but it’s not always enough to get rid of fat. Did you know a pound of body fat holds 3500 calories? The typical, sedentary body will burn just enough calories to survive.

Contrarily, hunters are able to burn an incredible amount of calories. As you eat smaller portions of food on your hunt, your body will start consuming stored fat. As a result, you’ll be able to lose weight and increase your energy.

5. Self Discipline

It’s usually easy in life to know what the right thing to do is. Yet, convincing ourselves to actually do the right thing, is anything but simple.

Self-discipline means being able to do the things you know need to happen. Even if you don’t feel like it.

It’s exciting when you’re hunting, waiting for the game, and it suddenly appears. Whether it’s a squirrel, fox, or duck, the very sight can send a rush of adrenaline through the hunter’s body.

“It’s time!”, your mind will tell you, as you feel a heightened sense of energy. However, your sense of self-discipline can override the urge to act.

First shot placement, is crucial if you’re going to be a good hunter. This goes for both large game hunting trips and small game ones.

As you learn to silence your mind, the distractions will fade away. Suddenly you won’t notice any pesky mosquitoes or uncomfortable positions you’re in. All that will matter is working towards achieving your goal, and making that shot.

Exercising self-discipline through hunting will also benefit your everyday activities. You’ll approach daily and weekly goals with a new sense of resolve.

You’ll stop listening to your mind when it tells you things like, “you can’t do that” or “this is impossible!”. Instead, you’ll know the truth, you can do it, and it is possible. You just have to wait for the right moment to act, and stay patient.

Finding You Time

Quality time is one of the best health benefits of hunting. Away from the television and cellphones, you can finally get quiet.

If you’re going on a solo hunting trip, consider bringing a small journal along. It’s a great way to document your experience while also getting out your thoughts.

Florida Independent is proud to provide you with the answers you’re looking for. We understand just how busy life can be sometimes. Between work, school, family, or friends, it can be hard to find personal time.

If you want to have a healthier body this year, you’ll have to make a few promises to yourself. Check out our latest article about 5 ways you should resolve to take care of your body.

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Here is Why It’s Never Too Late for You to Achieve Something Worthwhile

Have you ever asked yourself if it’s too late to achieve something worthwhile in life. These two most upvoted responses by Marcus and Jim respectively on Quora will help you if you still have doubts about what you can do at any stage of your career.

1. Marcus Geduld, Shakespearean director, computer programmer, teacher, writer, likes dinosaurs.

Too late for what?

If you slept through your 26th birthday, it’s too late for you to experience that. It’s too late for you to watch “LOST” in its premiere broadcast. (Though, honestly, you didn’t miss much.) It’s too late for you to fight in the Vietnam War.

It’s too late for you to go through puberty or attend nursery school. It’s too late for you to learn a second language as proficiently as a native speaker*. It’s probably too late for you to be breastfed.

It’s not too late for you to fall in love.

It’s not too late for you to have kids.

It’s not too late for you to embark on an exciting career or series of careers.

It’s not too late for you to read the complete works of Shakespeare; learn how to program computers; learn to dance; travel around the world; go to therapy; become an accomplished cook; sky dive; develop an appreciation for jazz; write a novel; get an advanced degree; save for your old age; read “In Search of Lost Time”; become a Christian, then an atheist, then a Scientologist; break a few bones; learn how to fix a toilet; develop a six-pack …

Honestly, I’m 47, and I’ll say this to you, whippersnapper: you’re a fucking kid, so get over yourself. I’m a fucking kid, too. I’m almost twice your age, and I’m just getting started! My dad is in his 80s, and he wrote two books last year.

You don’t get to use age as an excuse. Get off your ass!

Also, learn about what economists call “sunk costs.” If I give someone $100 on Monday, and he spends $50 on candy, he’ll probably regret that purchase on Tuesday. In a way, he’ll still think of himself as a guy with $100—half of which is wasted.

What he really is is a guy with $50, just as he would be if I’d handed him a fifty-dollar bill. A sunk cost from yesterday should not be part of today’s equation. What he should be thinking is this: “What should I do with my $50?”

What you are isn’t a person who has wasted 27 years. You are a person who has X number of years ahead of you. What are you going to do with them?

* What I’d intended as a throwaway comment, about the difficulty of second-language acquisition after childhood, has generated interest and disagreement. I will admit upfront I am not an expert on the matter, and was mostly informed by research I’d read about.

It claimed there’s a window of childhood, after which the brain stops being able to hear certain sounds—one’s not used by a child’s native language—which is why it’s so hard to learn to speak a second language without an accent.

Some people may master it, but not many. (How many people do you know, after 25, learned a foreign language and can speak it so well, natives have no idea they’re listening to a foreigner?) It’s also challenging to learn all the idiomatic expressions that native speakers have known since they were small children.

However, since having written this answer, I’ve learned that the Science behind this is very controversial. As I’m not an expert, let me refer you to the wikipedia article (and it’s linked resources).

“In second-language acquisition, the strongest evidence for the critical period hypothesis is in the study of accent, where most older learners do not reach a native-like level.

However, under certain conditions, native-like accent has been observed, suggesting that accent is affected by multiple factors, such as identity and motivation, rather than a critical period biological constraint (Moyer, 1999; Bongaerts et al., 1995; Young-Scholten, 2002).”

2. Jim Lawrenson, Still driving…

Unfortunately for ‘real’ people, the media is obsessed with the tiny minority who succeed early and display this very publicly.

This is then amplified by the high profile ‘subject’,  for PR purposes, to perpetuate their success.

Justin Bieber, Michael Jackson, Britney Spears, River Phoenix, Justin Timberlake, Bill Gates, Jimi Hendrix, Steve Jobs, James Dean, Richard Branson, Whitney Houston, One Direction, Amy Winehouse, Mark Zuckerburg. Need I go on.

Notice a trend in there somewhere?

You are probably being influenced, (like all of us), in how you assess your own progress, compared to these people. It can be a dangerous game to play.

It takes a tremendous amount of luck, as well as talent, to get into the right position at the right time. Not many people who make it will tell you that, often preferring to put it down to their hard work.

That is because they believe that this is the case, not because they are intentionally misleading you. I know that because, to an extent, I’ve done it.

You also may not have considered that even if you were on the list of young successes. It is very hard to follow that early success later in life. Your expectations of yourself are higher and based on that youthful virtual reality you experienced once, you can never improve on your past.

That can be a tough pill to swallow and despite all the money in the world, many struggle with that.

Look at any list of young successes from just 10 years ago and count the number who have disappeared, died or been in rehab. Lots.

Half the list of super successful people above are dead for a start off.

This is not an excuse for you to give up trying however. 

Try to think of life as a long road journey.

The journey can be as exciting or as boring as you choose to make it.

Wherever you are on the journey, there are new experiences, as long as you welcome them and seek them out. Some you can plan in advance.

Often, you need to get out of the car to experience them. Otherwise, you will see them flash past the window and feel like it is too late to stop.

  • Do something every day which contributes to your progress on the journey and always be learning and experiencing new things.
  • Don’t put off experiences which can be done today by getting out of the car, for a tomorrow which may never arrive.
  • Build a vision of where you want to get to in 1, 5 and 10 years and then think about the steps you need to complete in the next 30 days to move towards it, but don’t set deadlines that are too harsh. Do the first step on the list today.
  • Like any long journey, you will hit diversions, obstacles, traffic lights, speed bumps, closed roads and all manner of other problems. There will be crashes – you might be involved in them. Like any long road journey, if you want to get the destination enough, you won’t turn back, you will reroute. The car might break down or need repairing. Just accept it will happen now, and carry on.

Most importantly, don’t wait for all the traffic lights between your house and your destination, to turn green at the same time, before you set off.

They won’t!

Get in the car and start driving.

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