The Weight Loss Match / Scouting!

  Last week, Jarhead Survivor wrote about achieving goals, and how one of his personal goals had been to lose 15 pounds over the course of 4 months (Sept. 3rd to Dec. 3rd). We’d been knocking the idea back and forth via text messaging, and since friendly competition usually makes things more fun and easier to work towards a goal, I told him I’d jump on that bandwagon with him. I’m not really fat, just mostly out-of-shape from not having a supremely active job anymore, and all my spare time has been spent working on the house, tending to the pregnant Mrs. Warrior, or just dealing with the other 9 million things that go on in daily life that make you lose focus on things that are important to you.   So, in an effort to better my life, and to help Jarhead stay motivated via trash-talking and encouragement, I’m also working to lose 15 lbs. in the same time period. I clocked in at 195.2 lbs, Jarhead at 185.0 lbs. yesterday, the starting point. At 4 months’ duration, we have to lose a little less than 1 lb. per week, which is measurable and attainable without much effort. I plan to try to stay away from the easy, junk foods and pack healthy lunches to work, watch portion control ( I REALLY pig out at dinner…I LOVE food) and get out in the woods to get some hard exercise with my BOB every day after work – more on that in a bit.   It’s a competition here, so what is at stake? Well, we agreed that whoever won (providing just one of us met our goals) with a minimum of 15 lbs lost on Dec. 3rd will receive the outdoors item of his choice, purchased by the loser, around $50. If we BOTH do not meet our goals, we each will donate $50 to a charity we really don’t like (We quickly settled on PETA), to make things distasteful and to give us something to work for and against simultaneously. Be prepared; we’ll be updating occasionally on the blog and very likely on the Facebook page. There will be smarmy remarks and trash-talking. There will be pats on the back and “attaboy”s. I’m really looking forward to it.   Does anyone else want to work with us to meet a similar goal? Sound off and let us know! We’ll send a SHTFblog coffee mug and a Firesteel Gobspark Armageddon to the person who A: makes aware his/her goals and keeps updated with us, and B: loses the most at the end of the 4-month duration. You get to feel better, have more energy, and win neat shit! What’s to lose besides useless weight?   SCOUTING Well, a big part of how I plan to lose weight is by getting off my ass, and instead of plunking down on the couch and nursing a beer (oh, beer, how I will miss you for 4 months) when I get home from work, I will sip water from my canteen when perched on the top of a nearby mountain. I have a mountain that I dearly love here in Southwest Maine, that happens to be both my favorite hunting grounds as well as a bug-out location if needed. I figured getting to know this mountain better would be beneficial in many ways, from helping me narrow down where game travels and when for hunting season, and also to locate natural resources (water, food, shelter) in case shit goes down and I need to vacate my premises promptly.
Backwoods selfie.

Backwoods selfie.

  A topo map tells me much about the area: a nearby lake at the foot of the mountain for water; ingress and egress logging trails, the lay of the land. However, that’s about all it will show you. At some point, you gotta recognize the fact that you have to put feet on the ground (especially if it’s a Bug-Out Location) and figure out what the hell is there. Is the terrain a bitch to walk for you? If so, how would a person with you who may be injured or otherwise infirm handle it? Is it remote enough so that others will probably not follow you? Is there shelter? Are there game trails (and consequently game to hunt/snare and eat)? Are there other worries (severe tick population, rabid animals, signs of other people)? Is there a place you can hunker down and collect your thoughts, and set up a camp? Is there an abundance of firewood? Are there other natural resources that would make life easier for you when the chips are down? These are all things I set out to find in more detail.   I found lots of neat stuff that I hadn’t seen, even though I hunt the mountain every year. 2013-09-03_17-40-50_289   This fallen tree would make a great lean-to spine, and with the help of some other trees, cut to length, leaned over the spine tree and lashed down, and with branches and other foliage above, would make a killer shelter in not much time.   2013-09-03_17-41-30_288 2013-09-03_17-40-10_754 2013-09-03_17-38-06_493 2013-09-03_17-37-36_316 2013-09-03_17-36-02_777   Rocky outcroppings and ledges work in a similar fashion: you can lean branches over them for a shelter or a windbreak, and they also reflect heat from a fire very well. They can keep driving rain and other elements off you and firewood stockpiles, and provide cover and camouflage. Snow will drift up to them, but sometimes not UNDER them. Good things to know.   2013-09-03_17-42-22_153   Keep an eye out for 4-wheeler trails and old logging trails and mentally note them; they will be the fastest points of egress if you need to get the hell out of Dodge, but they can work the other way: they will be the most likely points for other (possibly undesirable) people to walk in. They will also be the likely inroads for first responders to reach you in case of an emergency as well.   2013-09-03_17-47-23_839   How about firewood? The past few years in Maine seem to have been a little extra rough on trees, downing many, but it makes for free firewood with little no work involved. As a bonus, dead pine needles, such as on the tree pictured above, have pine pitch in them, burn quickly and easily, and make great fire-starters.   Local food, such as blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, acorns, beech nuts, and (in my lucky case) wild-growing Concord grapes, can all be subsided on when needed. You have to know where they are first, though!   I found all this stuff in just one hour of scouting and kicking around the woods, plus gave myself a hell of a good workout and got some much-needed quiet time. I can’t wait to do it again tomorrow!   Stay safe out there! If you DO get out there for some scouting, be smart! Always, always, ALWAYS tell someone where you’re going and how late you will be, and always bring a compass and fire-making material. Shoot a return azimuth too in case you get turned around. Have fun! -TRW  
16 comments… add one
  • irishdutchuncle September 4, 2013, 5:42 am

    the number on the scale doesn’t tell the whole story.

    I put 5 lbs back on, about overnight, then lost 4…
    anyway Jarhead could still almost lift me. my metabolism isn’t very efficient. I have to eat like mad to maintain this weight.
    I don’t want to buy any more larger sized clothing, so I’ll try not to gain any more. I can’t compete with you youngsters, so one of these days I’ll just buy myself a SHTF coffee mug. 251.4 lbs.

    • irishdutchuncle September 4, 2013, 6:50 am

      anyway, one of the best reasons to lose weight is to avoid developing Diabetes, and all its complications. our brother-in-laws father just lost both legs to it, and is in pretty bad shape.

      other people see improvement in their
      Sleep Apnea with weight loss. it would be nice to no longer need the CPAP…
      most important, guys please don’t give any money to PETA.

      • Jarhead Survivor September 4, 2013, 8:23 am

        As long as one of us makes our goal weight PETA won’t see a dime from us. It makes me cringe to think about writing those guys a check!

  • Road Warrior September 4, 2013, 8:38 am

    Wait, wait, wait…. I thought you meant these guys! :-)

    • Jarhead Survivor September 4, 2013, 10:37 am

      I saw this site way way back. Man, you should check out the hate mail section. People get pretty furious about eating animals.

    • irishdutchuncle September 4, 2013, 3:29 pm

      I believe it’s unethical to cook tasty animals with inferior wines and spices.

  • Ken September 4, 2013, 9:25 am

    Please agree to change the charity to a local shelter.
    I started my weight loss journey in march of 2012 at 288.6 quickly lost 30-32 pounds then hit a wall, in march of 2013 I learned of a new system. yesterday was at 197.2, shattered my goal of 210. I am at my 1979-1980 size.

    • Jarhead Survivor September 4, 2013, 10:35 am

      Way to go, Ken! Good job.

      And we agreed on PETA because it’s so distasteful to us that we’re not likely to fail.

  • Don September 4, 2013, 11:38 am

    I think that I am going to do this little test for myself. I you to Mainer’s can then so can I. Losing one pound a week during football season should be a real test. Good luck from costal Maine.

  • ken September 4, 2013, 11:52 am

    Of course you can If you want to. I am a mainer too and i am down over 90 lbs.

  • Babycatcher September 4, 2013, 1:37 pm

    Are ladies allowed? I have 60 lb to get rid of, but will be happy to meet the goals you guys have set. I’ve already lost 10 from my highest weight, and farming is putting muscle in that I didn’t have before, but I would like to see it! ;) plus, that mug sounds like Really Good motivation. 185, as of this morning. Blessings, Babycatcher. Ps, do you think the weight loss will help get the stiffness out of my back and hips? I’m too young to not be able to flex well…thanks.

    • JL September 4, 2013, 2:04 pm

      I’m a woman also and I think I will join too. I am at 180 and need to lose 25-30 lbs, anything more then that and I would be to skinny. I have found when I am not as heavy my back and legs do not hurt as much. I’m only 32 but one of my hips is turned wrong and causes back pain. Hope you have a great day.

      • Road Warrior September 5, 2013, 4:22 am

        Everyone is more than invited…we’re both very happy to see people jumping on board!

  • Jarhead Survivor September 4, 2013, 3:00 pm

    Glad to see some others jumping aboard. Welcome!

    And I suspect if you lose weight you’ll feel better all around.

  • Roseman September 4, 2013, 7:40 pm

    Man those peta letters made me laugh. I guess I have no compassion.

  • Hrothulf September 5, 2013, 12:17 pm

    I’m in it with ya’ll too. I’ll hold up the west coast for this adventure. I’m up in the corner of California in the redwood trees on the coast. I’m at 227. I was at 204 back in December. The plan is getting back to a good protein/veggie centered diet. That plus 25-35 miles per week hiking with my basset hound Gus. Any other West Coaster’s out there wanna put a side bet on? I’m liking the original gear bet/donation the guys made.


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