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Old December 8, 2005, 12:08 AM   #1
jcims
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What/when do you eat before you shoot?

Probably a really dumb question.

Last range session, i felt good going in, but petered out within about 30 minutes...hands visibly shaking. It was about 3pm and all i had to eat all day was some high carb cereal in the morning.

So, what's the best 'pre-training' meal? How long between eating and shooting?
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Old December 8, 2005, 06:49 AM   #2
Jeff22
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check out the forum on Brian Enos' website: www.brianenos.com.

Select the "Shooting Discussions" forum and then "Training Techniques" and look in there or do a search. They've had a long running discussion on the best snacks to eat during a long match.

I don't find it makes a lot of difference to me for a routine practice session, which for me is about 90 minutes and 250 rounds. If you're standing around all day at the range during a match or a class or a qualification, I do like to have a power bar of some variety mid-morning and mid-afternoon. Hydration is critical in hot weather. Caffeine is critical all the time.

Consuming protein is probably a good idea. Lots of carbs might make you sluggish, unless you are performing lots of physical exertion like hiking or something.
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Old December 8, 2005, 10:02 AM   #3
Quantrill
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The "Army Marksmanship Training Manuals" cover this in detail. Quantrill

Last edited by Quantrill; December 8, 2005 at 01:49 PM.
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Old December 8, 2005, 11:24 AM   #4
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Can a civvie get ahold of those manuals?
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Old December 8, 2005, 11:27 AM   #5
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Beans. Lots and lots of beans.
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Old December 8, 2005, 12:43 PM   #6
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Beans. Lots and lots of beans.

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Old December 8, 2005, 01:21 PM   #7
jcims
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uh, lane change please?

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Old December 8, 2005, 01:48 PM   #8
Quantrill
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JCIMS,
As far as I know, civilians can obtain the manuals. When I taught pistol marksmanship, all my students ever did was to write to "USAMTU, Fort Bragg" and request one (pistol or rifle) and they would receive one. Maybe, by now, there is a charge. The army also gave them away at Small Arms Firing Schools (SAFS) at Camp Perry. I also think the USAMTU is now the USAMU. Quantrill
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Old December 8, 2005, 01:58 PM   #9
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I usually shoot early in the day, and every morning I drink a lot of coffee and eat something other than eggs, I shoot bad.
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Old December 9, 2005, 12:41 AM   #10
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AMTU manual

I forgot all about the Army Marksmanship manual . . .

You can find an on-line version at www.bullseye.com.

An extract of an earlier version of the AMTU manual is found in THE PISTOL SHOOTER'S TREASURY by Gil Hebard. (also has a pretty good section on PPC, but the book was published WAY before IPSC or IDPA existed . . . )

And go on amazon.com and punch in ARMY MARKSMANSHIP MANUAL. They have the basic manual for sale, the instructor's manual, and the coach's manual (I don't know what the difference is between the two last ones . . )

The AMTU pistol manual has always been specific to the discipline of conventional bullseye shooting (which I do indoors most winters). Since the Army and the USMC now have action pistol shooting teams of various kinds, I wish they'd come out with an updated version of the manual covering those sports . . .
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Old December 9, 2005, 09:01 AM   #11
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Try not to indulge myself the night before on inhibiting beverages. I dont drink coffee the morning I shoot because it makes me shake and acts as a laxative all throughout the day; for me anyway. Regular breakfast with oj or milk. I try to stay away from caffiene.
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Old December 9, 2005, 10:07 AM   #12
jcims
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Thanks for the tips folks! I'm a massive caffeine junkie...i got off the 'juice' for two months, but am back on it.
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Old December 12, 2005, 01:33 PM   #13
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I am late on the thread.

But here goes.

Eat a good meal in the morning as normal (for me) Juice, Milk, Coffee, Protein,
Carbs, and I do this early.
Take along plenty of water. Have a lite snack at around 10, another at lunch and another around 2 or 3 depending on how long you are training. I would not change much from a normal meal of good nutrition. Juice, Carbs and Protein. Coffee if you like or not.

Sometimes the shaking is caused by your body not being use to the training and you need to get in shape. If you are shooting a lot it is your body trying to compensate for the firing of your gun that you are not used to. Unless you train and have a schedule you will run out of steam and be very tired and drained. Keeping your self in shape is the best over all mention. Drinking a lot of alcohol is not the best either. You need to get a good nights sleep 6-8 hours.

It sounds like to me you did not eat properly for starts, and you might need to look at your intake as far as water and food, something to snack on every 2 hours or so along with water. If you drink a lot of caffine and soda you should stop it. Don't eat junk food...

Get a good nutrition book and eat according to the tables they set forth for your weight and age. Above all drink water, 64 oz's a day is a good start for a 225 pound 6-2 guy, (me) working, training, or just normal might be to cut it in half.

Harley
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Old December 12, 2005, 09:27 PM   #14
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There is really no correct answer to tell people what is the best thing for them to eat because different people react differently to different foods.

One person can get a full day of energy and be in top condition if he eats pancakes, eggs, bacon and milk in the morning where another guy's system would have him sitting on the toilet afterwards.

Another guy can drink a pot of coffee and be all hyped up where another guy drinks that much coffee it may not be as good for his system and he's ******* it out every half hour.

Adults should know by now what foods agree with them or not, which ones, give them the most energy and which ones slow them down whether it is a bunch of healthy fruit or a plate full of greasy fries.

What gives me energy may be something that makes you sick.
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Old December 13, 2005, 03:39 PM   #15
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Shooting & Nutrition

I usually go in the afternoon. I like to have a good lunch with a little bit of caffiene before I go. Afterwards I have a cereal bar or something. If I go hungry, I get hungrier towards the end of my shooting. My energy is zapped and I am further away from the bull's eye. Yes U have to be in good shape to begin with to. That is why no matter what is going on I want to go to the range once a week Minimum to stay in good physical shape. And as we all know, shooting uses different muscles from swimming or riding a bicycle.
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Old December 28, 2005, 08:18 AM   #16
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For myself it depends on how long I will be out and how much energy I will expend. I only do high power but some days are longer than the others.
My body does not hold up well to not eating.
For a some matches that I have the time to stop and eat I will just set down at a returant and eat a meal. Coffee well sometimes, Well most of the time.
For a match that I have to camp out at I will bring some things like milk and cereal with maybe a banana or a donut to go with it.

For matches like camp Perry I will eat a good breakfast and skip the coffee the first mourning or so depending on my nerves.
It usually does not bother me but sometimes it just does.

For the day I will carry usually a sandwich and have found having a foot long sub made he night before for a match like Perry I can eat one part around 10ish and the other in the early afternoon around 2 or 3. Between I will have a few snacks like the fruit bowls of mandrian oranges or the like are really good or maybe a Red Bull to give me a energy lift in the late afternoon. But at Perry the day usually starts around 5am and sometimes we do not get off the range untill 4pm but it has been as late as 6pm.

Most matches start at either 8am or 9am here in CO and end around 2pm so half a sub or something else will work and even a MRE or part of one if I was too lazy to fix something.

For a normal person you must remember the first string is the one that you usually have a problem with and in highpower that one is the off hand and not only being the toughest position for folks its the first one also.
If you are a nervous type at the beginning and most folks are before they settle down I would not suggest caffeine in the mourning. For me at my age I really do not care and the only time I will not drink it is in the first few matches of the year and the presidents and leg match at Perry If I know my relay is a early one.
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Old December 28, 2005, 08:38 AM   #17
jcims
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Quote:
Sometimes the shaking is caused by your body not being use to the training and you need to get in shape.
Spent three hours at the pistol range yesterday and confirmed this one. I haven't done any serious exercise for 2-3 years (typical work excuse) and simply don't have good upper body stamina.

BTW, i had two cups of coffee and a bowl of cereal for breakfast, then pounded down a ham and cheese sandwich about 30 mins before we left (11am)...i felt MUCH better throughout the session...no shakes... (Of course i shot about 1/3 of the session off of a bag, so i did cheat a bit)
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Old December 30, 2005, 10:13 PM   #18
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I eat nails and s**t lead, then I mold it into my bullets
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Old December 30, 2005, 10:17 PM   #19
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+1 on the beans. It cuts down on the number of people that come over to my position to see what I'm shooting or offer advice.
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Old December 31, 2005, 01:45 AM   #20
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I cant remember all the things my firearms instructor said were good/not good to eat before shooting. I can remember a few; Coffee and Soda are bad... Come to think of it, thats all I can remember. That was probably the least important part of the training

I know its important to go shooting on a full stomach however

Wow, im not much help
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Old December 31, 2005, 02:28 AM   #21
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I'm on a strict See-Food diet.

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Old January 6, 2006, 08:01 PM   #22
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lunch at noon. anything from Micky D's to BBQ.
Hit the range about 1:00 pm.

What's food got to do with shooting.
Stop thinking so hard and just shoot

AFS
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Old January 6, 2006, 09:19 PM   #23
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^Food has a lot to do with shooting.
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Old January 7, 2006, 01:12 PM   #24
jcims
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AirForceShooter
What's food got to do with shooting.
Stop thinking so hard and just shoot
I'm fairly new to the sport, and i have a tendency to overanalyze stuff (i just ended a two week search for a red dot scope for my buckmark...ended up buying the one i picked the first day )

To me it's just one of the many many variables that affect how well you shoot. Honestly it wasn't terribly noticable while punching holes in paper, but when my hands were visibly shaking while loading magazines, i wondered how much it affected my accuracy.
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Old January 8, 2006, 10:20 AM   #25
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if your hands are shaking it's not from what you ate.
It could be a case of new shooter nerves or your hands are tired.
when you're on the line you don't have to have your gun in your hands every moment. Take a break. Put it down and walk in a few circles, flex your fingers. Slow down.

AFS
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