5 Day/Wk Exercise Plan

elliptical-machineI just started this week doing cardio 5 days straight. I just finished day 4 of 40 minutes on the elliptical. Today I started raising the workload a level. I haven’t decided how long I’ll stay at 40 minutes before I take it up to 50. Actually I think I could probably handle the entire hour. I may try that next week sometime. That’s my goal. Once I’m able to complete 60 min. I’ll just keep raising the workload and increasing my speed.

I have had a checkered career as far as gym attendance goes. I have a lot of stuff at home that needs doing and I’ve used that as an excuse to get out of exercising. I don’t want to do that anymore. My total focus is on cardio. I am not doing any weight lifting. I want to lose weight and not add muscle mass. I’ve always been heavyset/stocky and I want to change that.

This is another of those preparedness activities that kinda gets drowned out by the rattling of beans and bullets. The recent disaster situations have more people becoming preppers and focusing on these topics. But those are also times where people are under tremendous stress. Getting ourselves in better shape helps to relieve that.

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Kits on the Cheap – When to upgrade

Eventually we’ll want to have top of the line tools in our kits. I’d start by making a list of everything that should go into the kit. I need to remember that I am going to be lugging this around with me so I need to optimize as much as possible. I’ll pick an adjustable-end wrench instead of a complete set of wrenches, a flat file with two grades of abrasiveness instead of a set. the same goes for knives and flashlights. Then as I check out forums and stores I can begin to get an idea of where I want to go with a particular tool. I have one and am saving up for another. This way I am able to take care of certain tasks and at some point the tool I began with becomes a backup after I’ve upgraded.

While you’re making the step from a lower priced item to something better made you may see something you like at Walmart. Depending on what it is you might go ahead and grab it because Walmart has a habit of discontinuing things.

Everyday Carry: When someone pops the question

S*&t Happens

Tires blow. Lightbulbs burn out. Wires come loose. Packages arrive. People get hangnails.

I have a tire iron, a flashlight, pliers, a knife and tweezers.

The tire iron is in the car and and the rest are somewhere on my belt.

I have a number of other things on me like a couple batteries for the flashlight. A while back I loaned the batteries to someone because her camera died and she popped the question. No. We’re not engaged. However I did have to answer that the batteries were for my flashlight. Then the next question was “Why do you have a flashlight?” And that answer was “in case I need it.”

Why is it odd that I carry a small amount of tools? Why isn’t it odd that when these occasional, usually minor irritations to someone’s day happen they’re running around hunting tools or asking to borrow them?

I never pop the question.

Why do you have that? is never something I ask people. I know, probably better than people who do pop the question, that sometimes people come with dishonest intentions. I’m more interested in giving the benefit of the doubt to the rest…to those folks who aren’t up to something.

If I have a flashlight I can light up your work area when you’re changing a tire. It’s a tool. And people have appreciated my having it on me when they’ve needed it. The same goes for the knife or the pliers or the tweezers or a lighter or whatever little doohickey one person has that another never seems to need and thinks no one else does either.

It’s another form or normalcy bias that has people giving the side-ways eye when they see a tiny pocketknife on a keychain. It’s not helpful. It encourages attitudes that that work to divide us, whereas the tool itself can bring people together.

I’d rather be called MacGyver and file off some metal shaving that’s about to cut someone than be looking for a Band-aid, which, by the way, I have in my first aid kits.

Kits on the Cheap

This is going to be an ongoing topic. I want to explore options for people to get themselves to a level of preparedness while paying for as much of everything else as possible. With larger and larger chunks of our checks going to the oil companies we still need to figure out a way to stock up on things and get our kits together.

When you visit gear-related forums you’ll find cliques dedicated to certain product-lines. If you have “disposable” income then you get the $100 multitool or backpack, if not then you have to do a lot more homework.

Preppers and Tools
Our goal is to get a set of tools that will probably be distributed amongst several kits. We’ll want to find a middle between affordability and quality. Places like pawn shops and thrift stores and buying from individuals off Craig’s List can help with both of those.

Preps at work

I keep a few items in a file cabinet at my desk. There are a few cans of soup, sardines and packs of Ramen noodles. It’s maybe a week’s worth as far as shifts go. That way if I’m rushed and don’t have time to get my lunch together, which happens occasionally, I can eat some of what I already have and I don’t have to go out. I have to be careful about leaving stuff in the refrigerator. No one really goes into my file drawers but people are always in the fridge. We’ve had some items disappear from time to time. We seemed to have that under control for quite a while but thieves are like rodents and they tend to resurface.

The other food related things in the “work kit” are a set of flatware, a soup mug and some spices. I hate going down to the break area only to find that we’ve run out of sporks. There’s not really much that isn’t working for me or needs changing other than bringing a couple food items every now and then.

Theory can become practice in seconds

Years ago I was watching a movie. One character had just accused another of paranoia. The other person said, “…just ’cause you’re paranoid doesn’t mean they’re not out to get you…” There were some nervous chuckles from both parties and then the story moved on.

Well as a prepper I say just because the dirtying of the bladed spinning device hasn’t happened doesn’t mean it can’t. So I’m preparing because the theory (job loss, weather, fire, illness, theft, etc) can become practice (in your face, happening to you and around you) QUICKLY. We may not see it coming. We may not have any warning. It may not be the wildfires that destroyed thousands of homes and acres in Bastrop County down the road from me. It may not affect the entire community. The devastation might only be in the life of one person.