Stretching Our Socially Fit Borders

Location: Caney Creek Lodge, 400 County Road 930, Teague, TX 75860

Savannah, Here. Welcome to My Soapbox. Usually, you can check in for a collaboration of Olivia and mine’s agreeable testament of an adventure. This post is going to be a little bit different because one of us stretched the borders of the DFW area and went out of town this past weekend. *PAUSE* Alright, that one is me and I stretched the DFW border about 95 miles Southeast this weekend to a small town called Teague. And yes, I did unfortunately miss the GRIT Fitness Launch Party. (you know what they say, pick your battles wisely).

No, this isn’t the small town I claim to call home, but for one weekend this year it was a special home to a lot of special people I have come to really enjoy socializing with. So I’m going to tell y’all about them and follow it up with how you can use this post to become socially fit in Dallas a little differently than usual.

Now, we all love our endorphins, right? As one of my all time favorite movies quotes, “Endorphins make you happy. Happy people just don’t shoot their husbands, they just don’t.“. Those of us, socially fit, don’t shoot our significant others, but no one ever said we couldn’t shoot clay targets! Caution: Don’t try this at home, especially first timers.

Ok, now you’re thinking a few things. A) She’s a conservative gun loving “hide your guns” girl. B) She’s insane “ladies don’t shoot guns“. OR C) She’s a small town redneck bumpkin. Wrong. None of the Above! I like the sport of competitive clay shooting, SO judge me.img_3173

In search of a unique hobby in college, I jumped head first into this sport. Literally, I even began a student organization for it. I dabbled, while watching the natural athletes compete. Then, after college I jumped again, as I traveled all over the United States with my family to National Sporting Clay Association shoots and competed in my first US OPEN. This was a ground breaking experience even if I hadn’t hardly broken the score boards or clays.

At best, Sporting Clays dates back to Robin Hood days in Europe. It wasn’t until the late 1980’s when the sport was brought to the United States and the first tournament was held in Connecticut. Then later, when brought to Texas, the United States Sporting Clays Association was established in Houston, where the very first US National competition was held. Eventually forming the NSCA, National Sporting Clays Association, in San Antonio, Sporting Clays has become the fastest growing sport in America with over 3 million people of all ages engaging in the sport. Texas history at it’s finest! 

Sporting Clays, is special to me. It’s like being a newborn trying to walk. You start out being carried, graduate to crawling, eventually stand up, take a few tumbles, take some small ‘baby steps’, and before you know it you’re walking. Even running. It’s a journey, and the whole time, your surroundings are encouraging you and holding you up. I am the crawling newborn, walking is my game and the shooting community is my surrounding. And, it’s so great to be a part of something where everyone, even when the scores are against us, wants to help and encourage each other.  Social Lesson 101: you never know who you will run into either!

Since I moved to Dallas, I have been trying to find this community again. Finding the local ranges is always an adventure and defeating the elements such as this nasty weather lately has been putting my fitness to the test. Caney Creek Lodge was a new adventure as well. This past weekend, they hosted the 2016 US OPEN. An opportunity for shooters state, nation and internationally known to gather and shoot against one another. Can you imagine the social opportunities available on top of lifting a 7+ pound gun 100+ times. Socially fit, get it? Friday through Sunday, families and friends stood by their loved ones as they competed in all of the different events.

Shooters in this competition were all different regardless of the skill level, age, size, gender, it didn’t matter. It didn’t even matter if you were a loyal athlete to a different sport other than Sporting Clays, which was the case for a special guy I met on the squad behind me while shooting the main event. Greg Ostertag, retired NBA player for the Utah Jazz, showed his skills on the course this weekend. Native to Texas and with over 20 years of experience shooting clays, he just chose to shoot hoops first! While socializing with your squad or surroundings, you never know who you’ll meet in this sport but it was definitely inspiring to see an athlete in one sport transfer to another. Fitness is just cool like that! img_3220

If you’re wondering how this applies to you as a Dallasite, No, I don’t expect you to drive 95 miles out of your way to get sociallyfit and try something out of your comfort zone. The DFW area is lucky to have Elm Fork Shotgun Sports & Dallas Gun Club within reach! Both great places to visit too! Shotgun sports come in all different disciplines, each to their own. Granted, this gun talk might be a bit out of some’s comfort zones, it is a strong belief of mine that everyone should learn gun safety! Any shooter (including myself) is welcome to take the time to give you the low down on safety, as well as some helpful tips to help you break the clay. Drop by a range and experience the confidence, endorphins, and encouragement you receive from breaking a pair! OR if guns aren’t your thing, find a different way to get out of your comfort zone! We strongly recommend it.

P.S. Thank you to all the shooters that are constantly encourage me to keep on keeping on!

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