When “Parks and Rec” alum Chris Pratt slimmed down to his beasty, svelte “Guardians of the Galaxy” and “Jurassic World” self, fans noticed. Have you seen him lately? How could you not notice?! The layers of “Andy Dwyer” melted away and revealed Pratt’s washboard abs and sleek pectoral muscles. We know Pratt is an avid outdoorsman who enjoys archery and hunting. So did these two sports contribute to his jaw-dropping transformation? It’s possible.
In January, Pratt kicked his diet up a notch with a new “Game Plan”: To eat only wild meats sourced by himself or his friends for one year. “‘The Game Plan.’ Get it? Cause GAME?,” he teased.
Here I am vacuum packing some deer meat in the kitchen. I grew up in the woods. Not literally. I mean, we had a house. I wasn't raised by coyotes. But I spent a lot of time in the woods. Hunting, fishing and being outdoors with my friends and family is how I spent my free time as a young'n. That part of me will never change. I mean. I'm assuming. I don't know. Maybe it will. It hasn't yet. Maybe one day I'll wake up and be like, "I'm only gonna eat veggies for the rest of my life." If I do that's cool. It's a free country. Anyways. I just filled the freezer with a bunch of tasty meat from an awesome deer hunt in the great state of Texas. Oh! I should tell you: I'm going to start a diet I called "The Game Plan" where basically I only eat wild game for a year. "The Game Plan," get it? Cause GAME? I mean I'll also eat veggies and fruit and other stuff too. But for one year I want to eat only the meats that were caught or killed by me or my friends. Total free range organic wild game! The game plan. Join me. I mean I'm gonna still eat eggs and probably chicken and probably steak I mean I gotta have steak and oysters and definitely bacon. But other than that. And the occasional burger for a cheat meal. But other than that only wild game. The game plan. I should mention I will also have sushi because I have to have sushi because it's so good. And pepperoni. But that's not a meat technically, right? But other than that all wild game. And pepperchinis! (That's not how you spell that) Exclusively wild game. It will be tough. But it's worth the sacrifice. I will be eating turkey for thanksgiving. Probably fried. That's the best. And also ham. For Easter we make lamb. That's great. Ill have to have lamb that day. So… "The Game Plan" Who's with me!?
Confused? Although commonly used to describe sports and competitive activities, the term “game” also refers to wild animals – deer, fish, elk, turkeys, squirrels and more. In other words, Pratt ditched the grocery store to source (hunt) and process (cut, preserve and package) his own meat. “I’ll also eat veggies and fruit and other stuff too,” he said. “But for one year I want to eat only the meats that were caught or killed by me or my friends. Total free-range, organic wild game! The game plan. Join me.”
Pratt isn’t the only celebrity to adopt the wild-game challenge. Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg took a similar challenge in 2011. “The only meat I’m eating is from animals I’ve killed myself,” Zuckerberg told Fortune.
Zuckerberg’s one-year challenge promoted a new appreciation for his food and where it comes from. “I’m eating a lot healthier foods. And I’ve learned a lot about sustainable farming and raising of animals,” Zuckerberg said. “It’s easy to take the food we eat for granted when we can eat good things every day.”
Eating “good things,” as Zuckerberg said, is the basis of most diets. Wild game is “good” because it’s lean. In other words, it’s low-fat and high protein. Sounds like something you might consume on the popular Paleo diet, right? But food isn’t the only thing enticing people to pursue wild game. For some, hunting and farming promote emotional and spiritual wellness by connecting people to the food on their plate.
“I have a great deal of respect for the animals I kill,” Pratt told the Guardian. “And I feel remorse and all of the emotions that come with it. … The thing inside me that drives me to go out and hunt is very animal. But the remorse, emotion and respect I feel … is my humanity. It’s an opportunity for me to explore what parts of me are animal and what parts of me are human.”
Perhaps the human parts like those six-pack abs. But wait. There’s more! Olympic archer Brady Ellison lifts about 4 tons over the course of one Olympic event. Talk about being physically fit! Plus, a low resting heart rate helps archers, like Ellison, manage nerves and excitement when staring down a target, whether that be a 3-D target, traditional bull’s-eye target, or a “wild game” animal.
Anyone can pick up a bow and experience archery’s various health benefits. You don’t have to be ripped like Chris Pratt, or a genius like Mark Zuckerberg. So if you’ve tried the various diet and exercise trends – CrossFit, PureBarre, P90X, HIIT – but haven’t found a regime that excites you, maybe archery or bowhunting is the answer.
“The Game Plan.” Get it? Game on!