The Role of Physical Exercise and the Consequences of Addiction in a Disaster, by C.A.I.

We live in an obese society driven by processed fast food and have drinking liters of soda a day and barely any water if at all. I have seen hundreds of people “preparing” for some sort of catastrophic event that can barely walk and some cannot even see the bottom of their shoes they are so obese. I am not trying to be harsh because I am by no means perfect I am just trying to point out something I see wrong with the prepping community today. We also rely on certain stimulants to get us through the day whether it is coffee, soda or any other form of caffeine. If something bad is to happen that would drive us from our normal lifestyle we need to not be so reliant on those things to get us through the day.

Those preparing for a disaster whether it is man-made or a natural disaster should find time somewhere in their schedule to exercise at least thirty minutes a day. As a prepper I find myself thinking when I look at my Get out of Dodge (G.O.O.D.) bag wondering how far I could really get with it if there was an EMP or some other disaster that left me and my loved ones walking. It weighs around thirty pounds and I am in decent shape (trying to get in better) but, I honestly do not know how far I could get with it. That is why the group of people I am preparing with we have started exercising with are bags on anytime we can. Granted it would come off a little strange being at the gym with an ALICE pack on however, everyone should practice it once in a while to get a feel for it and know what they would be carrying. Below I will lest the exercises that everyone in my group has to be able to maintain and we practice once a month to be sure we are still in shape and we can keep each other in check. (Keep in mind this without gear.)

  • Dynamic warm ups and stretching
  • A mile jog in under nine minutes (I know this is not fast but not everyone in our group is young we just want everyone to be in decent cardiovascular shape.)
  • Fireman carry’s with a partner
  • Pushups: 50
  • Sit ups: 50
  • Finally squats with a partner

This is just a basic workout to make sure everyone in the group is doing their part and we can work as a team. Everyone in the group is required to stay physically fit because it is not fair for some people to be busting their tails to stay in decent shape then have one out of shape person slowing the team down and possibly putting them in danger. Do not misunderstand me we are a team and we will always work to encourage each other when we are working out and strive to better ourselves. Every person in preparation community needs to take every measure to be in great (not good) physical shape in case there is ever a SHTF situation. If there is such a disaster there will not be a doctor or anyone to help you with your heart problems or give you the blood pressure medicine you need. Some people astound me because they are willing to put away thousands of dollars in supplies but, they are not willing to take the time to secure their lively hood and chance of survival by staying in shape. Another way to prepare physical for this type of situation is to do they type of labor you see yourself doing in whatever scenario you foresee. Gardening, working on your house or various chores could also provide the muscle memory your body may need.

I am not an expert in kinesiology or exercise and no one in my group is and we do not claim to have the perfect workout routine but we are at least trying to hold each other accountable in the actions we take. Since we only meet once a month to exercise we make sure at our preparedness meetings that the other members are preparing in all areas, especially fitness. If you are out of shape and cannot do everything on my list try and do some research on what you can do there are hundreds of routines on the internet and even more for beginners.  No one can be able to do all these things in a day but everyone preparing for a disaster should consider staying healthy another step on the road to preparedness.

The word addiction in the title of this article pertains to many things. I will do my best to cover everything that encompasses the word “addiction” in the second part of this article. Our world is driven by convenience we want things and we want it as fast it will come no matter how horrible it could possibly be for us. I can remember always waking up to the smell of coffee at my parents’ house and I wonder how people would deal with not having their comfort food or drink in a survival situation.  The society we live in has people addicted to things all around us cigarettes, caffeine, video games, candy, fast food, and the list goes on and on. We prepare food, water, shelter but how do we prepare for our lives to be stripped of the things we have become so accustomed to having handed to us.

I am writing this article to encourage people to make a change to their lives and that will help the keep their cool in a SHTF scenario. I have recently given up soda because I know that it may someday no longer be available to me. If that day comes I do not want my caffeine withdraws to affect my judgment or those around me. I know that caffeine is an endergonic aid and can help some focus however it is a stimulant. I have also tried to stop eating out except for on weekends and have stopped eating fast food completely. We live in a fast paced world but I encourage others to really take a step back and look at your diet and how it will affect you if someday there are no doctors to help you.

Cigarettes and alcohol addiction are the scariest addiction to me when thinking of a survival scenario. There are many adults who have beer with their dinner. There is nothing wrong with that and it by no means is wrong but how will that affect them if they cannot have a beer every night if there is an economic collapse? Many people have seen the way addicts act and what they are willing to do to get what they are after no matter what it is or who it effects. When my Aunt quit smoking it changed her personality for a while, she seemed like a completely different person. The thing that bothers me the most is she wanted to quit so how would it affect someone who didn’t?
If we really want to prepare ourselves for a disaster we need to start cutting the things out of our lives that we know would affect us the most in the heat of the moment. I hope that every prepper would do their best to start cutting out certain things out of their life. Whether it is unhealthy eating choices or smoking we need to make a healthy life choice. If we really want to prepare we need to do ourselves a favor and start dealing with things that could cause us problems in the long run. As an individual you know what you need to change and if you need help doing it I recommend finding a group within your community or even someone in your preparedness community.
In my short time of preparation I have come across many different types of people. We should all strive to make better life choices and cut out things in are life that will drag us down. As a person you can only do so much to prepare for a disaster mentally but if we all do ourselves the favor of shedding a little baggage and changing our lifestyles we would be that much more prepared for something to happen. I suggest that everyone give something up and do it step by step possibly wean yourself off of whatever you think you are “addicted” to or could not live without in a collapse of society.

Conclusion:

We live our lives day by day in hopes that nothing bad ever happens to us yet we prepare for it. We put away food, water, ammo, and supplies keeping our fingers crossed that nothing ever happens but, if something did in the future and we made lifestyle changes now it would better prepare us for anything. Instead of drinking coffee in the morning I now try and exercise and it has completely had the same effect as coffee for me. I feel alive and ready to go in the morning and I would suggest it to anyone that feels tired in the morning. All I hope for with this article is that anyone who is preparing makes a lifestyle change, whether it be to exercise or give something up I know that it would benefit you and your family in the future. Also freeing yourself from the financial burden of an addiction could be very beneficial and aid you in preparing.

Authors Note:
About me, I am a college student in his senior year engaged to a beautiful woman who “preps” with me and is the one who encourage me to do this. I go to school full time and work full time. I hope everyone enjoys this paper as I have enjoyed many written by JWR and other amazing people on SurvivalBlog.com.

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