Prepping has so many aspects and disciplines its hard to cover them all. One area ALL Preppers need to look at is fitness. If you are moving to become more Self Reliant or Getting Prepared for any disaster you need to be physically fit. In a disaster situation you will be using a lot of energy. If you are not already in decent shape you may run into problems quickly! It will require a lot of strength, stamina, and maybe even speed to do things manually we take for granted today that are automated or mostly automated. Zombies, and I don’t mean the flesh-eating variety, will be roaming from place to place looking to prey upon the weak who actually thought ahead and prepared. You should consider doing something to improve your overall health and well-being.
Disclaimer: Before beginning any exercise routine consult with your doctor first!
Being in Law Enforcement, I always wanted a leg up on the bad guys. If they could run a mile I wanted to be able to run 2 miles and so forth. Personally, I have now moved to a 4 day a week workout schedule. I spend no more than an hour a day on my workout days doing my physical activity. Last year I was trying to run 3 days a week. I stay pretty busy between working, writing, doing household projects, etc. So this year I am going back to our workout schedule we held in the police academy. I plan my workout days Monday-Friday then rest on the weekends. Now that the holidays are over things should be easier for all of us to get back or start a new routine. I don’t have time or money to drive to a gym so my house and local area becomes my gym. You don’t need a lot of equipment nor supplies to workout. Personally I run a 5k (3.1 miles) twice a week, and do resistance exercises/use weights on the other two days. I stay with 5 days a week because that allows me a day to opt out if the weather is bad or something comes up. For most healthy adults you should try to get 150 minutes of moderate physical activity or 75 minutes of vigorous per week. Don’t expect to start running a 5k today if you are not active now. You must walk before you can run.
Take a Walk
Walking is one of the best exercises you can do. Studies have shown walking has low impact on your body, but can burn calories
Walking is not likely to cause injury, but you need to be prepared by wearing comfortable shoes and loose comfortable clothing. I would recommend starting small and building bigger. For example: aim for walking 10-15 minutes for your first few sessions then gradually increase the distance and intensity. With any exercise you want to warm up before you begin for a few minutes then stretch your muscles to avoid or prevent injury. When you finish, slow your pace for a cool down and stretch again. Set goals for yourself to increase distance and speed. You can easily track your distance and pace by using a standalone pedometer or many apps on a smart phone such as Nike Plus. Whether you choose to walk or run, vary your course to keep things fresh. Go for a brisk hike at your local city/county/state/national park to mix things up a bit. While you are at it take the dog too to keep him in shape also.
The Gun Show
You should also try to get some strength/resistance training in as well. No time amount is given for how long strength training should be but you can get it from a variety activities such as heavy gardening or landscape work, push ups and sit ups and of course with a weight machine or hand weights. I use two ten lb weights which are plenty to build muscle tone and challenge me to push harder. A set of 8 or 10lb weights should be perfect for a male and 6 or 8lb set for females. The main thing to remember is choose a weight you can lift 10-15 times and use proper form. You don’t want to overextend your self by trying to lift too much at a time or by using bad form and causing injury. Just like walking or running, you want to warm up first and stretch to avoid injury. Make sure to breath and work each side or set of muscles in balance, if you work the left side work the right as well. If you work you upper body one day take a break the next day and work on a different set of muscles. Of course don’t forget push ups and sit ups, they can be used to increase your strength by having you work against your own body weight.
Summary: Important things to remember
- Stay hydrated. I usually have water bottles or a Camelbak depending on what I am doing
- warm up and stretch
- Choose the right weight for you
- Dress comfortably
- If it hurts stop immediately, don’t injure yourself
- Cool down at the end and stretch
- Variety is the spice of life, mix up your routine from time to time
Thanks for reading! Happy Prepping! Comment below for additions or questions!