January 06, 2021 4 min read

You Really Can’t "Cheat the Mountain"...

It was December of 2017, I was freshly graduated from the University of Wyoming, had ended my collegiate football career, and had just fully recovered from the surgery that ended my football career the year prior. I was currently 325lbs entering a new world, this would be “adulthood”. I had always been on a set path in my life up until this point, going to school, and playing sports. This would be the first time in my life that the world was all in my hands and I could make it what I wanted. It was time for me to fully transform myself. 

I had gone on a rifle elk hunt earlier in the year, finding no success. The only success that I had was that the mountain had successfully kicked my butt in the short 7 days and only 64 miles we had logged. I was super disappointed in myself because the woods and hunting was a passion instilled in me since I was a child, and I wanted nothing more than to be able to rekindle that passion. I knew from that day on, that I wouldn’t ever be able to elk hunt and be successful unless I made a drastic change, because I had my first lesson in, “You Can’t Cheat the Mountain”

Fast forward back to December, a new year was on the horizon and I saw it as a perfect opportunity to change my life for the better. I told myself that I wouldn’t step back onto the mountain until I knew that I could thrive on it, which drove me to push as hard as I could to better myself so that I could go find success in the woods. Even on the days when I felt like I had given my all in the gym, I had to tell myself that “nobody cares, work harder”, and this also rang true with the animals that I hunt. They don’t care how hard I work, in order to find success I have to outwork and outsmart them. Surrounding myself with positive people and continuously educating myself on the type of training that it takes for the mountain was what really helped me stay motivated as well. Learning that building up my endurance the best I could while also maintaining as much strength as possible gave me the confidence to know that I was going to be able to perform at a high level on the mountain. I knew that if I felt as fresh on day 7 of a hunt as I did on day 1, I would have what it takes to kill the game I am after. Staying disciplined in my routine not only in the gym, but with my diet was a huge part of why I found so much success. Not being too stubborn however to not be able to adapt and change what I was doing in order to reach the goals I had set for myself. Just like a hunt, or even a football game, it takes discipline and hard work in order to find success. If one play isn’t working, run a different play to find the ground you need to gain.

The products that helped me achieve my success were supplements that not only helped me feel better, they helped me perform better as well. Before the gym, I would use either MTN Ops Yeti or Bucked Up pre-workout. This gave me the spark of energy and pump I needed to attack my workout, even on days when I didn’t want to. After the gym I would drink a MTN Ops Magnum Proteinshake. I found that this protein was the perfect balance to help my muscles build and recover, while also not being too calorically dense for me not to fit in to my meal plan. Similar protein powders that I have used are the Bowmar protein powders. During my hunts and during the day, I would use MTN Ops Ignite in order to have a long lasting energy that would keep my body functioning at a high level, while also being able to maintain laser-like focus. 

The end result of all of this hard work, discipline and dedication? Losing 80lbs getting down to 245lbs. This is the lightest I have been since I was 16 years old and I feel the best I have in my entire life. I have also been able to kill two bull elk with my bow, which was my main goal and focus since the rifle elk season in 2017. I conquered more in all of my hunts and it has led to a lot more success for me than it would’ve if I never decided to make a change in my life. Looking back at the results and success of my hard work, only makes me eager and hungrier to be more successful than I have, in every aspect of my life. It isn’t just a change for me, it is a lesson that, the more you give, the more you will get. The harder you work, the more success you will find. And I will always remember, “You Can’t Cheat the Mountain!”.


Submitted by:Built4TheHunt Alpha Team Athlete - Richard Bettencourt

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