Get in shape - but be careful!
Wild Sheep
Contributors to this thread:
BTM 23-Jul-17
SixLomaz 23-Jul-17
carcus 23-Jul-17
greenmountain 23-Jul-17
Brotsky 23-Jul-17
BTM 23-Jul-17
WV Mountaineer 23-Jul-17
stealthycat 23-Jul-17
DL 23-Jul-17
Ben 23-Jul-17
shade mt 23-Jul-17
W 23-Jul-17
TD 23-Jul-17
IdyllwildArcher 23-Jul-17
BIG BEAR 23-Jul-17
Crusader dad 23-Jul-17
BIG BEAR 23-Jul-17
The Famous Grouse 23-Jul-17
JohnB 23-Jul-17
Tonybear61 23-Jul-17
IdyllwildArcher 24-Jul-17
BULELK1 24-Jul-17
Alpinehunter 24-Jul-17
Owl 24-Jul-17
Pintail 24-Jul-17
APauls 24-Jul-17
TrapperKayak 24-Jul-17
TrapperKayak 24-Jul-17
TrapperKayak 24-Jul-17
Surfbow 24-Jul-17
Ken 24-Jul-17
wildwilderness 25-Jul-17
Dikndirt 25-Jul-17
From: BTM
Last fall I ran into an acquaintance at the gym. After accumulating 17 preference points, he was finally due for a sheep tag and was doing his best to drop some weight and get into shape. Over the next six months I'd see him regularly running, swimming, hitting the elliptical machine, etc., and he was really excited about his upcoming hunt. Then, six weeks ago he was found dead, slumped over the steering wheel by the side of the road after completing a run. He was 57. I delayed posting this to see if the autopsy results indicated the cause of death. No word yet, and for all I know his death was completely unrelated to his exercise regimen. However, this tragic event should still serve as a reminder to get checked out before commencing an exercise program, especially as you get on in years.

From: SixLomaz
May GOD rest his soul in peace. Amen.

From: carcus
I work in a cardiac ICU, see it all the time, 57 isn't that young to drop dead,, after the age of 35 you can drop dead at any time, actually more chance of dropping dead when you're younger!

We all want to live a long life. Exercise is essential but like everything in life there are limits. My heart goes out to you and your friend's family. Thank you for the reminder to work hard within our personal limits.

From: Brotsky
A friend of mine was in awesome shape, ran and worked out daily, ate healthy, and was at his ideal weight. Didn't come home from his run one morning. They found him dead along the trail when they went to look for him. Heart attack. It can happen to anyone, anytime. The odds are way better for you to live a long healthy life by exercising. It's a better reminder to enjoy every day you are blessed with. Prayers for your friend and his family.

From: BTM
FWIW the death notice listed the COD as "apparent heart failure." His Fitbit showed that he'd logged over four miles.


This is a reminder to everyone. It can happen to anyone. As Brotsky said, if we wake up to enjoy another day of doing or planning to do what we love, we are blessed. If we have good health, that is the greatest blessing. Also, you guys using all the pre-work out supplements need to think about what you are doing to your cardiovascular system. It is under stress during exercise anyways. That's the purpose. However, Pumping it full of things that raises your blood pressure even more is not doing anything for long term health. What good does it do to ha to be artificially stimulated to achieve a workout level if it isn't naturally obtainable anyways?

I'm not saying that is what happened here. I'm just saying think about. God Bless men

Did not Jim Fix die this way? Maybe some of you are old enough? 'The Complete Book of Running'?

As said, try and enjoy every day. Best wishes.

From: stealthycat
I think of it like if you die of a heart attack at 55 or 58 or 48 etc ..... #1 that's a very good way to go after watching people slowly die of cancer and #2 might have died of heart attack years before by NOT being in good shape

From: DL
Definitely enjoy a better quality of life. Knew a man that loved hunting and fishing. Problem was he enjoyed food more than life. Weighed over 400 pounds. Couldn't take three steps without stopping and sucking air. Died last year in his late 40s. Sad to see a life wasted.

From: Ben
I would rather be active and die young ( too bad I'm already older) than sit around and worry about any exercise killing me. The way I have always looked at is, when the good Lord is ready for you he will take you. You will have no choice in the matter. I refuse to spend my life in a chair though , just waiting to die!

From: shade mt
I would say many of us that hunt the mts, and like steep,rugged, rough, remote, terrain . Have pushed ourselves to the point that you can feel your heart slamming in your chest.

I'm in terrific shape and I know I have. I have thought occasionally....I could die out here.

I spend a lot of time in the mts.....it could easily happen.

sorry to hear of your loss.

A full cardiac work up is essential for anyone over 50. Ironically, sometimes that is not even enough for some underlying condition, but you vastly improve your knowledge and get to see what shape your heart and you are in.

I try to do what ever I can based on my family history and loosing my mom at a very young age.

Very sad to hear of such news.

May he Rest In Peace.

From: W
Hate he didn't make that hunt. Spent the weekend with a friend who is a mountain hunter dealing with heart issues.

From: TD
Geezz..... a guy I know tipped over having sex.....

All you can do is try to eat right and exercise..... don't bring it on by self infliceted...... or afflicted, whatever....

A doctor friend of mine told me once a great deal of it is already mapped out in front of us no matter what you do. Live every day. Every day is a gift. And don't take life too seriously..... nobody is getting out alive anyway.....

Prayers for the family. RIP....

If I'm thinking of the same guy, Jim Fix was found to have IHSS on autopsy. It was only a matter of time before he keeled over dead from running. Just a bad roll of the dice like getting brain cancer at a young age.

I have ZERO idea of my genetic background.... I was adopted as an infant through Catholic Social Services. I've been told to forget about the possibility of ever finding out my biological past. I'm 51 now and 50 hurts way more than 40 ever did. I recently got off the treadmill and started walking because the treadmill started hurting my joints too much. I try to do 4 or 5 days a week for 45 minutes to an hour. At 40 I did a half a marathon... I think I could have done the whole thing. I think I could be that guy that codes out while exercising.... I have heart and drive and push through pain. I have a physical coming up. My mind tells me exercise is keeping me alive..... I'd rather take the chance and push on than to take the chance and do nothing.

From: Crusader dad
First of all, I'm very sorry to hear about your friend.

This message is brought to you by me, who has had a tough go of it the last couple months.

The best advice I have is make sure all of your affairs are in order. If you love your wife, make sure you have good life insurance. Make sure your kids get half of that life insurance. If you don't love your wife, make sure your kids are your sole beneficiaries. This way you can die in peace knowing your family is taken care of.

Be a decent man. God loves you and everyone screws up. Know that he loves you and be sorry for the stupid shit you do. You can now die knowing you're going to heaven!

Live your life like you're going to die tomorrow! Love your kids, love your wife. Be a decent man. Honest and loyal. Dependable too. Most of all, ENJOY your life!!!

Nothing you do today matters when you die so long as the folks you care about know you care about them so have fun and don't sweat the small stuff.

I'm 34. I need a new heart. I don't anticipate living until 40. Luckily for me my sons will be adults by then. And my homes will be paid off so my wife will be fine too. Most of you have been blessed to only know someone who died early. I'm living it. Take what I have to say to heart.

P.s. Finding this site has been just one of many blessings in my life. Thank you all.

Shane. That was very tough to read that and I'm certain that it was a hundred times tougher to post it. We should all heed your advice.

"Geezz..... a guy I know tipped over having sex....."

Perhaps he should have stuck to more conventional, err, orientations?

Sorry. Sorry. Somebody had to.

It's tragic, but there just aren't any warranties on life. Yes, this, that, the other thing coulda, maybe, mighta, if/and/but, tax/license extra, your mileage...

Also, this has to be balanced by the "Would you REALLY want to know?" If you have this or that risk factor, but other than knowing about it, eating right, and all the usual stuff, what does knowing do besides make you worry.

A good friend of mine is a doctor and it is now a monthly occurrence that he has to counsel expecting parents who have opted for advanced genetic tests. What they expect is simple "yes or no" answers from these tests. What they get is very muddy waters of maybe might or might not. Many wish they'd never known.


From: JohnB
Thanks Shane for the great post well put, keep us posted and you will be on my prayer list. You are right this is a great web site.

From: Tonybear61
One of the biggest risk factors is the one we can't change-genetics.

My grandfather died at 29, dad at 67 both due to heart issues. But grandma made it to 89 (after losing two husbands) on Mom's side grandpa made it to 84 grandma to 88(diabetes and heart issues again on that side.) Mom is now 94 with her third pacemaker , survived Lymes (so did I ) and had a knee replacement at 93. I used to run a lot, swim, ski, martial arts, hike, bike you name it. Developed asthma in my 40s its been tougher every year but still trying my best to stay in shape.

So sad to hear about your friend but if I die while walking in the woods or training for the next hunt I will count that a blessing as long as my family is OK. (insurance and savings is set for that).

God Bless

If I keeled over dead while having sex or hunting... well, then that'd be the price of admission. If you told me I'd die in the future at an uncertain date while having sex or hunting, I'd wouldn't stop doing it...

That is very sad to read. Prayers to his family and friends.

Good luck, Robb

From: Alpinehunter
Sad read indeed and prayers to all. I full cardiac workup around 50 ish makes sense as does moderate exercise. I did an echo-cardiogram, calcium scoring test, and a cardiac stress test earlier this year and now feel like I've done my best to learn about my cardio risks and make informed decisions. I believe that fitness fanaticism is not the ticket to a long life but it does make some happy so more power to them. Moderation seems to be the universal solution to most "Quality of Life" challenges.

From: Owl
First, my condolences. Secondly, I hope they do get an autopsy for the sake of his progeny.

"One of the biggest risk factors is the one we can't change-genetics." - While it is true that genetics play a significant part in our health, epigenetics or the environmental influences to which we expose our genes comprise , at least, an equally significant role.

A crude analogy is this: genetic make-up is a door lock and epigenetic influences (diet, exposure to toxins, sleep quality, activity and other lifestyle choices) are keys that fit and open the door lock. *If the keys are not presented, the door does not get opened. *An example of this is how Type 2 Diabetics can control their disease with proper nutrition and exercise.


From: Pintail
In 2012 I was out of work and decided to get into shape before the season in September. I set up a routine of riding my mountain bike a little over 7 miles each day. Weekends and rain were the only times I didn't ride. I was hunting a steep hillside one afternoon and had three does come up the hillside when the biggest one posed for me at 27 yards. Right after I made the double lung shot I got the usual shakes and then a squeezing sensation right in the center of my chest. Not something you want to experience at 25 feet off the ground. After about 10 minutes it went away and I climbed down gathered up my stand, pack and bow and went to retrieve the doe. Long story short, I went to the local hospital and was immediately put on a chopper and flown to a hospital with a big cardio center. 7 days, 3 procedures and well over 400,000 dollars later I'm still hunting. In my case it was mostly genetics, the Dr. told me you can't cheat the hand you are born with. So, its meds and a trip to the cardio Dr. every 6 months from now until??

From: APauls
To the OP, we're sorry for your loss. Some very heavy posts in here. Crusader - not sure what to say. Good on you for your attitude. I know many men that have made it well past the "expiry date" doctors have supplied. Happy to know you are a man of faith!

Pintail - Having that situation up in the tree I imagine wasn't because of the exercise and a big question to ask is could it have been worse without the exercise? Who knows, maybe that season of exercise saved your life.

From: TrapperKayak
Now 61, working out mostly on bike and hiking, and running short to moderate distances. Need to lose 20#, Im 6', 193#. Pretty fit all my life but up until 12 yrs ago I partied like a rock star. Even then I maintained a regular exercise regiment. Biked and hiked my brains out, and ran Hood to Coast 5 times in my 40s, and did my first two Boilermaker 15Ks at 58 and 59 yo. I could have dropped dead during any one of those intense workouts, or could just sitting here thumbing the keyboard. God determined when He wants me. All been decided already, so I worry not when. I just continue to bust my tail when I feel like it, and drink a six pack or more and ride through a TStorm downpour if the urge is there and no one is there to 'see' it... IOW, I am not going to let myself get sedentary worry about having a heart attack even though Dad had two by 65 yo. He was diabetic, overweight, and lived on soda, and not athletic like me. He could have been but chose not to. My time is mapped out by God. I pray its long, but I get concerned when I see my legs' vascular system getting slight edema, purple capillaries and varicose veins now. Whatever, Its not stopping my exercise program. Fitbit just obtained, helps track my progress. Wife doing,it too. She is a workout guru. Amazing woman with unending DRIVE. She has neice who says he 'loves his family, 2 kids. Yet he is 400# drinks heavily, is totally lazy, eats garbage, and will be,dead by 50 or sooner sadly, at this rate. He is 33. If he really cared, hed do something about it, or never woyld have let himself go in the first place. While God has your number, you still have to honor the temple he blessed you with, or he may just turn his back on you and leave it 'up to you'. God bless this man who passed...

From: TrapperKayak
Correction, she has neice whos husband says he loves his kids.

From: TrapperKayak
Most of you probably think what I just wrote is totally contradictory, and it seems so to me too, but while I say to honor your temple, it has not always been easy for me since Im human and subject to temptation which I gave in to, but overall I respect my body temple and Gods gift of it, so now more than ever I treat it with respect, and am probably in the best shape of my life with the exception of my teens and 20s. I eat better, less pizza, more salad, and work out just as much. I have not slowed down one iota. You can do it too, cautiously as BTM stated, but without worry if you are of faith. The blessings of God to you all, esp you Crusader!

From: Surfbow
Nothing wrong with being in shape! However, a great exercise regimen is not a magic bullet if you're already prone to cardiovascular issues...

From: Ken
"Did not Jim Fix die this way? Maybe some of you are old enough? 'The Complete Book of Running'? As said, try and enjoy every day. Best wishes. "

Jim Fix had medical issues that he chose to ignore until it was too late.

I agree that regular physical exams should be something everyone does, especially as we age or start a rigorous exercise program. However, for every person that dies from something exercise induced, there are hundreds of people that slowly die from lack of exercise.

BTM, sorry for your loss and thanks for the reminder for the rest of us.

The only guarantee in this life, is that you will Die.

Seems like a good way to go.

From: Dikndirt
That is a hard story to hear.... even harder was a few weeks ago one of my lifelong hunting buddies son was killed in a tragic trail running accident here in the Wasatch range. He was 39 years old and in the prime of his life. We all run a risk when we push the envelope in our training and and in our hunting activities. I guess my take would be to enjoy every run, hike, hunt or whatever adventure we pursue to the fullest, it is possible it could be our last.

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