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What are the best foods to eat before you shoot.

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by John Fugate, Aug 17, 2008.

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  1. John Fugate

    John Fugate member

    Jul 8, 2008
    This is a serious question, coffee is out for me and Red Bull makes me shake. Foods high in carbs makes me sluggish. I found a drink high in protien and low in sugar makes for a steady shot. Some foods are better for the brain and thats a fact. Has this ever been covered or brought up on this forum. John
  2. LJ-MosinFreak-Buck

    LJ-MosinFreak-Buck Member

    May 19, 2008
    Council Bluffs, Iowa
    Interesting question, and I'm looking forward to hearing some answers.
  3. Drgong

    Drgong Member

    Jul 16, 2008
    Ashe Co, NC and Gastonia NC
    A begal, juice, and propranolol does wonders....

    Sorry, couldn't resist....

    I just eat like I normally do...

    I would love to hear what Olympic and other top shooters do eat, I am going to suck at shooting no matter what I eat right now...
  4. Crunker1337

    Crunker1337 Member

    Apr 12, 2007
    I vehemently dislike energy drinks. And coffee.
    Tea, IMO, with a good bit of sugar. And toast, perhaps, and maybe and egg. Or, if you're hungrier, maybe some lightly flavored chicken or fish, pan-friend and unbreaded. 'Course, you can't go wrong with cookies and milk either, or a few pieces of sushi.
  5. kingpin008

    kingpin008 Member

    Jun 6, 2006
    Howard County, Merry Land
    Good question indeed. For plinking and informal stuff, obviously eating whatever you'd normally eat wouldn't be a problem, but will be interesting to hear what (if any) special diets or foods have been found to be effective or are recommended to competition shooters to help them with their technique.
  6. Pat-inCO

    Pat-inCO Member

    Feb 21, 2008
    Like every other "BEST" it all depends.

    It depends on glucose tolerance.
    It depends on your allergies.
    It depends on lactose intolerance.
    It depends on how fat you are or are not.
    It depends on your physical conditioning.
    It depends on how much sleep you got last night.
    It depends on how good or bad the traffic was on the way to the range.

    It depends.

    For me, Gator-aid (mixed half strength) and salted peanuts work wonders. For some others I know, that doesn't work.

    It depends.
  7. memphisjim

    memphisjim Member

    Jul 15, 2008
    raw red meat
  8. mangy

    mangy Member

    Aug 7, 2008
    A Spam sandwhich:D:D
  9. WNTFW

    WNTFW Member

    Jul 16, 2006
    To say I am competition shooter would be an overstatement. I have just done 5 matches for the 1st time this year. I have competed in many other things including bicycle racing, running, motorsports etc.. Some of this has been proven to me in several sports.
    I live in the New Orleans area. So heat is a big factor. A rifle match has you in the sun for longer periods of time. Pistol matches let you seek out the shade more regularly. The shooting jackets are fairly warm.
    The main thing is to eat right and get your rest daily. Same for hydration. You may not sleep or eat well before an event anyway. You need to take care of hydration, nutrition & rest for several days before an event to get best results. 'event' may just be a day of plinking.
    In the heat hydration is an issue. Water is the best thing to drink. I bring my own water. Only to make sure I have it. I have seen a Cooler get emptied early on. I also bring water to wash up with if the range doesn't have running water.
    I also just bring fruit to eat. Fresh & dried. I get everything prepped & ready to eat the night before. Apples, oranges, watermelon grapes, etc. are washed cut sliced peeled packed & in the fridge. It is finger food at that point. Less mess & less likely to get forgotten. It also makes it easy to constantly nibble at your convenience, even on the drive home.
    During long hot days plinking I have outlasted the other shooters. I also recover quicker. I am by no mean a vegetarian - like meat too. I would not decide to switch to a new diet all of a sudden. Try to make the change gradually. That way if a food doesn't agree with you won't let it ruin your shooting.
    At my second match several of the top guys gave me advice before, during & after shooting. I was told that your eyesight is the first thing affected when your blood sugar drops or dehydration starts. Another thing a guy shared was focusing on specific objects causes eyestrain. Look off to infinity to relax your eyes before & after shooting.
    Now if I can remember to bring a clipboard & calculator with me or not leave my spinner target in a borrow pit I'd be doing even better.
  10. mgregg85

    mgregg85 Member

    Mar 18, 2007
    Midland, MI
    I go to my buddy's pizzeria and get a philly cheese steak.

    Then again, I always shoot horribly so maybe thats not the best meal plan.
  11. Hook686

    Hook686 Member

    Jun 3, 2005
    pizza & beer (near beer)?
  12. halfbreed808

    halfbreed808 Member

    Jul 22, 2008
    Liberal Heaven Hawaii
    Mangy try a fried spam sandwich with mayo and hot sauce.:neener::D:D
  13. XDShooter07

    XDShooter07 Member

    Apr 30, 2008
    glucose is what your brain uses for energy if that gives you any ideas. FRS Healthy Energy is good stuff for a wake up call without getting shaky; and it's much healthier than red bull or coffee. Go to www.frshealthyenergy.com
  14. Kind of Blued

    Kind of Blued Member

    Sep 7, 2007
    Rocky Mountains
    If you're hunting, you should eat some of whatever animal you are hunting for.

    Not the ACTUAL animal of course. If you can take a bite out of it before you begin hunting it, you should have just killed it THEN.

    DRYHUMOR Member

    Jul 6, 2008
    I've shot better rifle groups in the evening after work, lunch being 4-5 hours previous. Seems to be you are more relaxed, your body's not trying to metabolize.

    I eat whatever, doesn't seem to matter.

    I do know those 2 BIG cups of coffee in the morning tend to widen those groups til about 4 hrs or so after.
  16. Philmccan

    Philmccan Member

    Dec 23, 2007
    Nothing but cup-o-noodles for me. Really i mean nothing else, since getting my C&R license thats it! :what:
  17. CHEVELLE427

    CHEVELLE427 Member

    Jul 18, 2008
    Never Gave It Much Thought,
    but IM not shooting any competition matches when i go out,
    but if i were i guess something that would not make me jumpy,
  18. eflatminor

    eflatminor Member

    Dec 22, 2006
    I eat my normal, healthy meals at the normal time. At the match itself, I bring LOTS of water (the eyes are the first thing to go off when you get dehydrated) and for a snack, something without carbs, which I also find makes me sluggish. Fruit or meat (jerky if no BBQ) does the trick for me. I also keep a supply of D-Lead moist wipes to clearn my hands before I eat. Lead dust and dirty hands should not be part of your diet.
  19. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator

    Nov 20, 2006
    Eat normally. Just don't do a lot of sugar, too many starches, too much greasy stuff, or coffee, energy drinks, etc. Don't overeat, and keep something like granola bars to munch on if your stomach is talking to you, just a little, not a box of em.
  20. poker88

    poker88 Member

    Feb 25, 2008
    If you are shooting to practice for competition then I think finding the right diet for you is a great idea.

    If you are shooting to practice for self-defense then I think eating your normal diet is best. And considering the posts so far in this thread, maybe varying your diet and shooting at different times of the day would be a good idea. Then you would know how you body tends to react under varying circumstances.
  21. CZ223

    CZ223 Member

    Sep 6, 2006
    It depends...

    as at least one other poster pointed out on several factors. I competed in silhouete shooting for over ten years, where steadiness is crucial. The prevailing thoughts on this subject were pretty consistant. Eat well the night before but not over due it especially on carbs. If you must eat breakfast keep it light and stay away from sugars and caffeine. I shot best when I had eaten early the night before and did not go overboard. If I had to have something to eat during the day I kept it real light. Fruit is probably not a bad idea. I limited myself to a few cheeze-its. The biggest reason is that when your body is metabolizing food you tend to shake. If you have not eaten in several hours your body tries to conserve energy and you tend to shake less. Starving yourself however is not a good idea. I knew some guys that would go so far as to not drink caffeine for several weeks in advance of a big match. I like coffee way to much for that. When I was shooting competitively I saw a lot of guys who just nibbled on stuff like Cheeze-its and bananas during the day.
  22. Justin

    Justin Moderator Emeritus

    Dec 29, 2002
    When I was heavily shooting Bullseye, I'd generally try to keep it light, protien-oriented, with heavy emphasis on hydration.

    Decent breakfast with some kind of meat. Bottled water in the range box to drink in between strings. And about midway through the match, I'd usually eat a Clif bar or some peanuts and beef jerky. Some competitors seem to swear by bananas.

    For IDPA matches, I do my best to stay hydrated, and usually eat a clif bar or two.

    I've always avoided energy drinks or coffee. However, I know of at least one master-level High Power shooter who's sponsored by Red Bull and, if the stories are to be believed, drinks the stuff like it's going out of style.
  23. Ben Shepherd

    Ben Shepherd Member

    Feb 27, 2004
    Yeah, eat a light, balanced meal. And keep a cliff bar, power bar, or tigers milk bar in your range bag. Some of the other ones(like nature valley, most nutri-grain varieties, and any bars you find in the kiddie isle next to the pop-tarts) are high in sugars and low on complex carbs. Might as well have a candy bar.

    Basically, get your energy bars at a good sporting goods store, like REI, instead of the grocery store. With thier customer base they usually carry stuff that works. Stuff that doesn't work ends up not stocked quickly.

    The key is you want foods that release glucose slowly but steadily. Lightly salted peanuts or cashews are also an excellent snack.

    It's also better to take a bite here and there, rather than eat your snack all at once. That way your body doesn't try to re-route your blood supply to your digestive tract, and you avoid glucose and insulin spiking.

    For us average types gatorade diluted down between 3 or 4 to one is a perfect drink on a hot sweaty day. The way it's packaged by the mfg. is WAY too high in sugars for a smooth release in the body. You're a shooter out for an all day match, NOT a defensive line man that needs 10 more minutes of brutally powerful major muscle movement from head to toe. BIG difference in energy requirements.
  24. O C

    O C Member

    Dec 20, 2006
    Just don't eat anything that you have to cross your legs to eat(i.e ripe avacado with mayonaise) Couldn't hit a bull in the butt with a base fiddle after that!!
  25. yakkingallover

    yakkingallover Member

    Jan 23, 2008
    Before a range trip I will usually eat two pieces of wheat toast with a smear of crunchy peanutbutter and a very small drizzle of raw honey. This covers protein and carbs and the sugars are natural and don't make me jittery. I try to eat this at least an hour before I leave for the range so it isn't just weighing me down and I don't burn all my energy on digesting...
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