Letter Re: Building Strength for WTSHTF Preparedness

Dear SurvivalBloggers:

Modern images of strength conjure up big pectorals and biceps and perhaps a set of 6 pack abs but are these the muscles we need to develop for WTSHTF? No, not really.
Here’s some ideas of the less romantic parts that would be useful to work on now.

1) Hand and forearm strength: Gripping, grappling and weapon retention come to mind. Consider how many things we would have to use our hands for if there were no power (and no power tools). Kneading dough, screwing screws, pulling ropes. Do you have the grip strength to carry two 5 gallon buckets full of water 1/4 a mile at 8.3 pounds per gallon? Do you have any calluses or is your job cerebral and are your hands soft and unprotected.

2) Lower back strength: Lifting, gardening and carrying a pack come to mind. Can you carry your wife or buddy if he or she were injured? Can you drag them (hand strength again)? Try pulling 150 pound person a few times across the lawn and find out.

3) Cardiovascular strength: Okay, perhaps not a strength per se, but how’s your conditioning? Can you run an 8 minute mile without cramps and total loss of fine muscle control (meaning that you can still fire your weapon accurately)? – SF in Hawaii