"Run for your lives!"
Wilderness survival, family preparedness, security. That’s what this blog is all about. One can and should prepare for all of those things. Here’s the thing though – when stuff happens, even if one has prepared for it – it is usually a surprise. It is a no-notice affair and the stakes can be life or death. It is a “come as you are” party.
It's Not About Stuff
To the extent that they address these issues at all, most folks prepare by purchasing stuff. Some sturdy souls actually go experiment with, play with, try, and practice with their stuff. Some actually get quite competent with their stuff. Some carry lots of stuff all the time so they are never without their stuff. If you’ve been reading this blog for any time at all you will recognize this line of thought…
Today I’m going to write about something other than stuff. It’s something you can take with you all the time. No, it’s not knowledge – I’ve beat that horse pretty well. Today I’m going to write about something that modern Americans don’t seem to need a whole lot of. Something that, when you need it – you may NEED it. Something that, try as they might, Americans cannot buy. Because at the end of the day – it’s not about money – it’s about the man or woman inside. Today’s topic is fitness.
“Run for your lives!” How many movies has that line been in? I could describe a variety of scenarios where you would be required to exert maximal physical effort or die; scenarios where, if you did not perform to the utmost limits of human capability you would get to watch your loved one die. Off the top of my head… you awake to noise and heat. The house is on fire! You stand up (uh-oh!) realize there is no air up here, drop down and make your way to the exit. Oops, your loved one is passed out. You must now grab your loved one, drag them off the bed, and crawl, pulling them with you, 35 feet, over stuff and around corners. It is HOT. There is very little air. It is loud. You get outside and you realize your loved one is in bad shape. You need help. The only help is the neighbor’s half a mile away. Time to run.
But Joe, I’d just do this. That scenario does not apply to me. Or, instead of X, I’d do Y (something not involving physical stress). Sure, I’ve heard it before. It’s your weak pathetic brain making excuses so that you can continue to live a life of self-satisfied over-indulgence lacking any sort of meaningful physical activity. Ouch.
Don’t make excuses. Your life and the lives of your loved ones may one day depend on your ability to make your body do what you want it to do. Now I am not a physical trainer (yet – I am considering it), I am not some sports-medicine doc either. But in the past (key concept, that) I have been in awesome shape. I used to run ultra-marathons; I swam in seven seas – pulling heavy things behind me; I hiked over more mountains and through more swamps and across more deserts than I care to remember… and now that song is in my ears “What have you done for me lately?” I’m still in better shape than the vast majority of men my age. And three days ago I realized I’m not close to where I need to be. Most of you are not either.
Long story short, the folks over at Warrior Talk came up with one exercise that best measured combat fitness and decided on the “burpee”. Go to Crossfit.com and look at their demo vid if you don’t know what one is. (Now this entry is not about any specific exercise so save the comments in that regard, please). The “Burpee Challenge” was issued – how many burpees can you do in 30 minutes? Quick, simple, no special equipment needed. Wow. Eye-opener. And I have a new favorite exercise.
There Are No Shortcuts
Here’s the deal: You need to be fit. You should be able to lift and move heavy things; you should be able to cover short distances very fast and long distances quickly and efficiently. You should be flexible. You should be able to do hard work for long periods of time.
Here’s another thing: there are no short cuts. As I said up there, you can’t buy fitness. See, that’s what most Americans try to do when they join gyms and health clubs, buy the latest fitness gadget on TV or worse, try to “supplement” themselves to fitness. Boys and girls, you are going to have to sweat. You are going to have to push yourself. You are going to have to eat right and take care of your body. I’m not going to tell you about hard days and easy days, proper warm up and cool down, seeing a doc first and etc. All of that info is available. If you feel the need to pay for it – go for it. Just know that in end, it all comes down to YOU. Crossfit.com is a good resource. I’m sure there are others. Again, in the end – it comes down to you and your effort.
Daniel 10:18-19 Then there came again and touched me one like the appearance of a man, and he strengthened me, And said, O man greatly beloved, fear not: peace be unto thee, be strong, yea, be strong. And when he had spoken unto me, I was strengthened, and said, Let my lord speak; for thou hast strengthened me.
See you out there.
If you have any comments I’d love to hear them.
If they really interest me, I may even post them.
You can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Prepared Americans for a Strong America