Author and Muley Freak Team Member Austin Legg is from Boise, Idaho and is married with one son and another son on the way.  He loves to hunt, exercise, spend time with his family and travel the world.  His most recent travels took him to Egypt and Jordan this last March.  He loves nothing more than spending time in the backcountry chasing the majestic animals of the West. 

Backcountry Shape

Getting into shape for hunting season isn’t something that happens overnight, or even over the course of a month of scouting.  Conditioning your heart, lungs, legs, mind and body to overcome the struggle of pounding the steep rugged backcountry takes months of preparation.  That preparation might take place in a gym lifting weights and hitting the stair stepper, or hiking a trail with a sandbag, water, cameras, critterlick, or whatever else you have in your pack during scouting/training season.  However, supplements have hit the hunting space big time in the last few years and become a staple in backcountry physical shape.  A combination of working out, diet, and supplements can be a strong recipe for backcountry shape and backcountry hunting.  Supplementing work outs and diet with something like Wilderness Athlete can ensure you’re getting proper amounts of vitamins, minerals, protein, essential amino acids, etc.  Since supplements are a more recent arrival to the hunters repertoire there are a lot of questions.  The biggest one being, is it safe?!

Are Supplements Safe

To answer this question you need to look at the label and understand exactly what you’re putting in your body and the dosage.  For example lets look at one of our favorites, Brute Force Pre-Workout from Wilderness Athlete.  It takes less than 5 minutes to look at a label and make sure that the ingredients in the product are safe.  Caution, some of the terms are technical and sound scary but understanding what they do is important.


  • L-Arginine (HCl)- An amino acid that helps synthesize protein.  Helps your body produce nitric oxide that is used to increase blood flow.  This means more oxygen and nutrients going to your muscles.
  • Beta-alanine- This is an amino acid that combines in your muscles with L-histidine and creates a chemical called carnosine.  Carnosine has been known to reduce muscle fatigue, increase strength and power, and increase aerobic endurance.
  • l-leucine- This is an essential amino acid that helps maintain lean muscle mass.
  • l-citrulline/malate- Boosts nitric oxide and helps reduce fatigue.  Citrulline malate also increases energy levels.  More blood flow and more energy!
  • l-valine- Another essential amino acid that along with l-leucine and l-isoleucine contribute to building lean muscle mass.  It also plays a key role in the repair and rebuilding of muscle following your workout.
  • l-isoleucine- Important to protein synthesis.  This amino acid is critical to repairing and rebuilding muscle.
  • Caffeine (green coffee bean)- This is the cleanest and purest form of caffeine.  This plant based form of energy is generally chemical free, organic and non-GMO.  If you are going to take caffeine don’t use a chemically manufactured caffeine from a lab.  Green bean coffee caffeine is the cleanest form of energy.
  • Rhodiola Extract (Rhodiola rosea root)- An herb that is an adaptogen (increase resistance to stress and fatigue) used to burn fat, enhance energy, and brain function.
  • Moomiyo Extract- An herb that is an adaptogen used to fight fatigue, speed up recovery, reduce inflammation, and accelerate muscle growth.

Brute Force also includes all natural colors and flavors.

Why a Pre-Workout

A pre-workout isn’t a “miracle drug.”  Simply put, its purpose is to create a more suitable environment in your body to train at a higher level through reducing fatigue and increasing energy.  By training harder and combining your training with a healthy diet you will be able to lose fat and build muscle.  Enhancing your performance both mentally and physically will help you push your body to new levels.  If you are looking to build power, strength, and endurance, all while smashing your goals, you should be taking a pre-workout.

Will It Make Me a Better Hunter

Being physically fit WILL make you a better hunter.  Hunting is a physical activity, especially backcountry hunting.  Not only will it make you more confident in your physical abilities it will make you mentally stronger as well.  Grinding out tough workouts will make you realize you can do hard things and suffer a little bit and still make it through.  When packing out a mule deer on your back or considering hiking over the next ridge to glass into the next basin, you will know your body can push through the fatigue.  You don’t need 6-pack abs or bench press 300 pounds to be a great hunter, but instead focus on workouts and exercises that build your overall strength and endurance.  There are several great workouts for backcountry hunting online that you can find in a matter of minutes.


Author and Team Muley Freak member working on some strength exercises for the upcoming hunts

My Experience

Brute Force only contains 120mg of caffeine per serving.  Generally, I like high stimulant pre-workouts (300mg).  What Brute Force lacks from caffeine, I felt like it made up through other vitamins and nutrients.  I think a lot of people, especially those who workout at night will like only having 120mg of caffeine.  I felt an increase in my focus and energy with every serving.  I never felt like I was fatigued or tired.  The energy and focus which are essential for me to have a good workout, I rated very highly.  I tried the orange pineapple flavor and liked it a lot.  It was very easy to mix and blended very quickly.  I didn’t feel any negative side effects like bloating, stomach aches, or headaches that I have experienced with other pre-workouts in the past.  The pump I experienced from Brute Force was excellent!  I felt my skin tighten and an increase of blood flow and maintained that feeling throughout my workout.  The price is $39.95 for a 30-serving container.  Each serving size is 14g which is a large scoop.  You’re getting plenty of bang for your buck.  Overall I would rate this pre-workout as a 9/10.  I had solid workouts with zero side effects at a price that doesn’t break the bank.

  • Focus 9/10
  • Energy 8/10
  • Taste 8/10
  • Pump 9/10
  • Price 9/10 (39.95 for 30 servings)
  • Overall 9/10

Know the Substance Behind the Company

Knowing the companies substance is just as important to us at Muley Freak.  If we’re going to put something in our body we want to know where the company comes from, why we should trust them, and is there substance to the marketing freight train some companies can be!  Also Wilderness Athlete is no Johnny-come-lately, they have been around for at least a dozen years, pioneering the supplement market for hunters.


Use Discount Code MF10 for 10% off your next order at WILDERNESS ATHLETE

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