How Aaron Martens gets self-inflicted headaches

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — Aaron Martens sometimes thinks so hard when he's competing that he gives himself a headache.

"I do," said Martens when everyone around him laughed. "I really get headaches from it!"

The 2013 Toyota Bassmaster Angler of the Year doesn't simply answer fan questions when he is the guest of a B.A.S.S. Twitter chat. He entertains.

The seasoned Bassmaster pro gets questions ranging from his fitness regimen to his cat's temperament to his infamous record — four runner-up finishes in the Bassmaster Classic.

When a writer asked him about that potentially touchy subject, Martens just laughed:

"Do you think you need a Classic title to cement your legacy in the sport?"

"No, I think multiple seconds do just the same!"

Below is the transcript from the lively chat. You can also read transcripts from other Bassmaster Elite Series pros here. Plus, see photos of his visit to the B.A.S.S. headquarters here.

Follow @BASS_Nation on Twitter to keep up with pros, fishing industry news or hot fishing tips.

 

Bassmaster@BASS_nation

Welcome @AMartFishing to the #basschat and congratulations on winning Angler of the Year!

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

Thanks! I always love coming to the B.A.S.S. office! 

 

Michele @me_eichstead

What does a day in the life of Aaron Martens look like in the off season? 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

A lot of short fishing days and a lot of hiking. 

 

Cara Clark@caradclark

Is the second AOY win as sweet as the first in 2005? 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

It's sweeter because it's my second one. Getting two is always better than one. Maybe the third one will be even sweeter. 

 

Joel Ede@KCOPodcast

I'm heading out to some secluded ponds for some bass/crappie fishing. Any tips for late season/colder temps? is it too late? #thx

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

It's never too late! If the water is about 37 degrees in winter you can throw fast-moving baits for a reaction strike. 

 

Brandon Preece@BrandonPreece6

How many hours a day and how many days this year have you put in? 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

Hours a day on average: 12 hours on days I fish. At that pace, probably 200 days a year. 

 

Simms Fishing@simmsfishing

Congratulations, Aaron, on the AOY.  We are proud to be on your team.  And we love your awesome product feedback.  Here's to #3! 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

Thanks @simmsfishing! Looking forward to coming back to Bozeman! 

 

Justin Lundborg@JustinLundborg

Just wanted to take a second to congratulate @AMartFishing on his AOY title - truly the greatest feat in bass fishing to me. 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

Thank you! I agree but I still want that Classic win! 

 

Jacob Foutz@JacobFoutz

How do you find productive ledges? 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing 

First of all, sonar and a lot of hours graphing. A lot of times it comes out to trial and error. Graph, fish, graph, fish - basically. 

 

MercuryMarine@MercuryMarine

Congrats again on AOY @AMartFishing! Mercury is proud to sponsor such a great angler! Andy wants to know, how's the toe? 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

Thanks! It's healing. It's getting better. 

 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

Don't walk around barefoot. pic.twitter.com/KYkCM2L1vf

 

MercuryMarine@MercuryMarine

Sound advice. Hard to train with a toe like that. 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

Not for me. I was running the next day. It got tight and swelled up though. 

 

Cara Clark@caradclark

How are you preparing for the Classic with Guntersville being so close to home? 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

I haven't had a chance yet. I've been too busy but I'll be spending some time up there before the cutoff.

 

Brandon Preece@BrandonPreece6

Any tips for a high school angler? 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

Spend all your free time fishing! Time on the water is what you need. 

 

Jennifer Dome@BhamJen

Do you think running makes you a better angler? Why? 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

Yes! Definitely. It makes you feel better and increases stamina. Also makes you sharper with decisions. 

 

Dominic Turcott@Dturcott27

Remember me on St Clair? pic.twitter.com/0ZWIB7PJO7

 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

Thanks for coming out! Make sure we get another picture next time! 

 

Spotmonkey@sptmnky

You now know all the lakes for next years Elite Series, how will you prep for them? 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

I haven't memorized the schedule yet, but I'll probably prepractice for them. Usually a day or two each. I like to get a feel for each lake. 

 

Chip Moore@ChipOxMs

What's your favorite shaky head jig style?  

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

Davis shaky head with Gamakatsu O'Shaughnessy hook. That's my design! 

 

Emily Hand@ejhand

With 9 Classic qualifiers being from AL, who has the best shot? You, @theRandyHowell @ChrisLaneFish or @JLeefishing

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

Probably @ChrisLaneFish! He knows where the fish are at, and he's been catching them! 

 

Eric Cook@ecookallday

Day4 on St. Clair. My girl and I came out to see you! Any Erie advice as it's my home water?  pic.twitter.com/OK9E0qR6KF

 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

Keep your nuts tight! And use sonar there to keep you on the fish. They move there a lot & constantly change.

 

Andy Whitcomb@andywhitcomb

Favorite non-bass species to catch? And why? 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

Tuna - because they pull hard and they are fast!  

Andy Whitcomb@andywhitcomb

On "light" line? :-) #tuna

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

On both! There's times you can jack 'em but sometimes it's fun to play them, too. 

 

Doug Noni@doug_noni

For drop shot smallies up north, is really light 4-6lb fluro leaders critical? What is the advantage of a 4-6lb vs. a 12lb leader? 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

It's not reallly critical, it's more presentation. The lighter line is more natural. 

 

Matt Lee@mattleefishing

Has @tommyfrink aka "flesh weasel" ordered pizza or hibatchi since he's moved in? 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

Nope! He's getting home cooked meals almost every night. 

If not, he goes in the freezer and gets a burrito. 

Tom Frink@tommyfrink

Those frozen burritos are legit!!

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

You ate the last one. Better go buy some more! 

 

Pete Robbins@fishywriting

Do you think you need a Classic title to cement your legacy in the sport? 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

No, I think multiple seconds do just the same! 

 

Pete Robbins@fishywriting

More importantly, how gnarly is your cat? 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

She'll scratch your eyes out! 

 

Weekend Hooker@Weeknd_Hooker

How does a 7.5lb smallmouth feel compared to a similar largemouth? #StLawrenceRiver

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

Meaner. 

 

Matthew Peeler@mbpeeler

I want to know the truth on how bad @AMartFishing out fished @fishinlawyer and @GilleyScott at Eufaula 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

They were doing what worked, and I was trying to expand my horizons. 

Chandler Ray@Chandler_A_Ray

How about I get those settings now @AMartFishing since @fishinlawyer and @GilleyScott got a guided trip on eufaula 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

LOL 

 

brokenAj@bassmasteraj

Have you ever fished lake Havasu? What did you use? 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

I won some West Coast tournaments there. When I fished it it didn't have a lot of grass. My fave bait there is a jig 

 

Ross Porter@rossco_dash47

Best way to get introduced to finesse fishing? #powerfishermanconvert

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

Get yourself a really good finesse spinning rod and reel. Spend money there first. Good reel and rod are essential 

 

MercuryMarine@MercuryMarine

What kind of prop are you running on your 250 ProXS (size and pitch)? 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

A 26 Tempest on my 921 @phoenixbassboat. I got up to 78 with two anglers & a full tank of gas! 

 

Stiann Gubitz@SGubitz7

Aaron what would you do if water levels are dropping and water is stained in early summer?

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

Better find some an area where the current is focused because the fish will gather there! 

 

Jody White@vtbasser

Classic aside, what tournament are you most looking forward to in 2014?

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

I'm looking forward to Toledo Bend and Table Rock. 

 

Michael Gaydos@Michael_Gaydos

What type of music do you like listening to before a tournament? 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

I like a lot of stuff. It varies but sometimes it's 70s, 80s, jazz, and pretty much anything chill. 

 

Nathan Adams@Bass1Adams

Aaron I’m a junior angler hoping to go pro.  I always face staying mentally strong through the day. How do you do it? 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

I try not to never be hungry - staying fed and hydrated is important. I do think so hard sometimes I get headaches. It takes a lot of time and experience to stay mentally focused. That's one of bass fishing's biggest hurdles. 

 

Matt Crawford@MattCrawford

Still running? And does being physically fit help you be a better angler? 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

It makes you better at everything! 

 

Chris Murphy@MurphAngler

What is your go to bait for drop shot, and your line length between hook and weight? 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

Leader length varies btw spring/fall, but normally 6-8 inches. I like 6-inch ST @Roboworm1 in Aaron's Magic 

 

PD Swanepoel@pd111

Hey @AMartFishing when are you coming to South Africa? Lot of fans here. Come fish with me I'll show you... 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

I'd love to but not until my kids are out of the house! 

 

Evan Hakman@ehakman

Biggest superstition? 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

I don't believe in superstitions. 

 

Dean Sime@sardean88

How did Castaic lake shape your career? Did it make you the fishermen you are today? 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

It made the finesse fisherman I am today.

 

Emily Blair@Emily_Blair

What does this AOY title mean in terms of the Classic and next season?

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

I don't know yet.

 

Chris Howell@Howell_Fishing

What career would you have if you weren’t fishing for a living? 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

Race car driver! Or a golfer. 

 

Tristen@T_rodriguez1122

What do you do in the offseason to make yourself a better angler? 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

I tinker with my tackle and get in really good shape. 

 

Mandi@ahaab

Do you fish the opens? And if so which is your favorite to enter -Southern, Northern, Central, etc? 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

If I had to fish one I could fish every it would be the Northern. I acutally am fishing the Northerns this year. 

 

Joseph P. Durham, Jr@fishinlawyer

Have you lined up any new sponsors for the upcoming year

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

Possibly. 

 

Todd Walters@ToddWalters11

Why do you favor all flouro vs braid to flour for drop shooting deep water? over 30 feet 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

It's a softer presentation. At St. Clair I did use a swivel and 10-pound braid with 7-8 pound fluoro and liked it. 

Todd Walters@ToddWalters11

Swivel vs albright? would you stay at a 6-8 leader in 40+ foot, clear water. Even if you pick off suspended fish on your graph

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

I might just go straight fluoro in that situation. I like the swivel better. 

 

Brandon Johnson@Johnsonfishing

What is the most aggravating aspect of being a professional fisherman? 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

Once in a while you get a nontournament angler who follows you around & fishes the spot you were fishing. 

 

jim r@jamesras84

Any tips for fishing from shore in fall. Baits and what to look for? 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

From shore: a topwater can be really productive. A drop shot and a lipless crankbait work well, too.

 

Josh Merritt@Josh_M_111

As its getting colder, what's some of the baits you will start throwing? 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

A lipless bait, the @MegabassUSA 110 and probably a jig for a slow bait. 

 

Hayden Tilley@Spuddster22

Aaron, what's the best advice you can give to college anglers who wants to follow in your footsteps? 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

I believe that doing most of your own work pre-fishing makes you a better angler in the future. 

 

Nathan Adams@Bass1Adams

So Aaron what advice would you give to me, a junior angler, wanting to someday go pro?

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

Spend your free time fishing & pick up tips from other anglers who can be your mentor 

 

Zac Beek@zbeek20

How does it feel to be in the legendary group of anglers with two or more AOY titles? 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

It makes me want to get another one more than ever!

 

Colton Miller@cmill52

What is the best way to catch inactive fish, particularly after a cold front? 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

Deadstick & keep a bait where you know fish are at, or go the reaction way & get the bait moving past them in their zone.

 

Stiann Gubitz@SGubitz7

What is the best frequency to put your humminbird on when dropshotting? 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

I keep my chart speed about 5 and my sensitivity between 10 and 15. 

 

Brody Layher@Bro_dLayher

What's the key to your drop shot success? 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

Knowing it's effectiveness and having confidence in it. I've spent a lot of time trying to master it. 

 

Arens, Thomas E.@tarens_12

When to use strait up, light fluorocarbon line versus braided line with fluorocarbon leader when dropshotting? 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

Use straight fluorocarbon, it's safer. The advantages of the other are castability and hookups. 

 

Bass Utopia@BassUtopia

If you also secure your 1st Classic title this year do you plan to join forces w/ Greg Norman and start a vineyard?

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

That sounds fun!

 

Monster Fishing@MonsterFishing

What is the most realistic Mayfly imitation lure you know of? There seems to be a lack of options.

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

Please let me know when you find it! I like the @megabassusa Parachute Bug, though!

 

Joseph P. Durham, Jr@fishinlawyer

What size/brand of hooks do you recommend for flipping heavy mats

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

I love the new Gamakatsu heavy cover flipping hook, I'd probably use a 3/4.

 

Billy Egan@BillyEgan3

What do you miss the most about fishing Southern California trout fed lakes? 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

The big bass.

 

jim r@jamesras84

What should be the focus as far as structure/cover?

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

Where it's located and if there is bait by it!

 

Chandler Ray@Chandler_A_Ray

How do you feel about Seminole and have you been there?

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

Last time I was there was the last @bass_nation event in 2003. It's a healthy lake & has a lot of nice fish in it.

 

Chandler Ray@Chandler_A_Ray

How do you like the new mega bass series rods?

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

I love them.

 

Robin Howell@rarahowell

What runner are you on the upcoming Ragnar Relay race? Also will you be running along the banks of Lake Mead?

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

I hope so but my captain @ericlopez98 likes to surprise us when we get there! 

 

Billy Egan@BillyEgan3

What is your favorite event to fish each year and why?

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

The Classic because the stakes are high & you get the most time to prepare.

 

neil farlow@FarlowNeil

Do you think there should be a rule where no info (spots) should be shared at all from outsiders (locals)?

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

I would love that!

 

Joseph P. Durham, Jr@fishinlawyer

Rumor is you have a big hunting trip coming up.  Are you ready to chase a big whitetail?

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

Yes, but I'm most looking forward to my daughter, Jordan, hunting for the first time!

Joseph P. Durham, Jr@fishinlawyer

@GilleyScott Mark this down -- Jordan is going to get her first deer or she will sling a lot of bullets trying. 

 

Eddie Costello@eddiec6696

Best fall bait when the bite is tough, for lakes and ponds.

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

One of my favorites overall is probably a jig.

 

Stiann Gubitz@SGubitz7

How do you rig a dropshot, more texas, wacky rig or how? 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

It's about 50/50. It's all pretty equal over the season!

 

Frank J. Lillig@_FishermanFrank

Favorite shaky head and dropshot Roboworms for fall fishing and into winter fishing? Color, size

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

Favorite is 6-inch ST in the fall and winter in Aaron's Magic, MM3, bold bluegill & prism shad

 

Bassmaster@BASS_nation

Thank you for joining us, @AMartFishing! It was great to have you. Good luck in the #bassmasterclassic

 

Aaron Martens@AMartFishing

Hugs and kisses to the @BASS_nation staff, and thanks for all of your questions!