Sara made me realize that I have been doing all this work and never really intoduced myself. Maybe this, or maybe the abrasive nature of the other public site is the reason we never saw a lot of interest from outsiders. This is partly due to the setup of the old website and partly due to myself and what I was willing to share as well. Before I was embarrassed about the incident even knowing it wasn’t my fault. I’ll share some here and maybe one day I’ll open up the private articles for everyone which show quite a bit more. Until then, that stuff is members only. Below I will explain why I felt the need for a completely free, public fitness/ health/ survival website. This is my story. You can find more from me here …
For the first 5 years of my Marine Corps career there was a regular schedule or a set time for everything. Wake up, go to P.T. (Physical Training), go back and get dressed, go to work until the SNCO feels like letting us leave. After two deployments overseas in a sandy place, I reenlisted and received orders to Quantico Virginia. I was thinking close to home and the new job was a good thing. The first thing I heard when I arrived was why don’t I have my annual training done? I explained that I was in Iraq and didn’t have time to play with garrison games. I had a promotion warrant that was already signed January 2008 yet my new chain of command didn’t want to give it to me because I didn’t do my 3 mile run for time while I was too busy with a real war in Iraq. Somewhere in my 6 months straight of 12 hour night shift that followed, I felt like I was losing touch with humanity and slipping into a bad place. I never saw the sun and only saw people on my way out the door with their fresh cups of coffee trying to task me out while I was thinking of sleep, and in traffic in the morning as I went home and battled the incoming traffic for left turns. I was growing more and more sick of my job and at home did nothing but drink and play video games (which is the farthest place from work I could find). We have no regular P.T. here and I wasn’t doing anything on my own.
which I remember as the worst week of my life, I had a schedule a little more busy than normal. Our twelve hour shifts never ended at 12 hours by the way. We generally give up another hour between our turnovers. We always had to come in for command events, ceremonies and whatever else they felt like as well. This particular week I worked 1 day, slept two hours, had a ceremony, did whatever else, back to work, slept 2 hours, Uniform inspection, did whatever I had to at home, back to work. I ate that night and had been drinking tons of water all night as well. I drank a small coffee to stay awake because sometimes it becomes impossible without. After the shift I had my normal droning headache from dim lights, Bright monitors, and servers humming. After shift I waited one hour and a half for the 5 mile run with our new Colenol through the woods in the rain and mud. That’s not all though, the rest of the week was the same and all this was weighing on my mind during the run.
I arrived to the P.T. field at a sharp 0745. My vision is usually a little off after working all night and staring at screens. This day it was slightly worse from the extra lack of sleep. I remember people bitching and complaining about the cold and I was thinking “atleast you’re not slightly numb. I wish I was fresh and cold”. I tend to have a shitty attitude toward the guys that have it so good because I’ve never been to a command where there was lots of time off or “hookups”. We did our circle up stretch and warmups, then headed out in formation into the woods. I had to stare at the ground to keep from slipping and falling down. I remember feeling my hands and face tingle as I pushed harder up the hills. I stayed in though until the end. Marines were dropping off to the sides left and right. We could see light through the opening in the woods and as we ran toward it The front of the formation began to snake around to pick up run drops. I was getting extremely pissed that all these guys that get to sleep regularly and P.T. daily are casually falling out of the Command run. In fleet units I was in we got smoked for falling out. It just didn’t happen. We ran a good two miles back into the woods before we turned around again. Still looking at the ground as I ran, I was feeling really numb and dizzy. I started kicking the feet of the marines in front of me. I remember them cursing me for kicking their heels. I looked up and everything felt like a dream or slo-motion video. I eventually said “I’m out” and ran off to the side feeling like I was passing out. A marine with me sat me on a stump. Then two more fell back with me. They were assisting me walking back and I told them I would run. They were trying to stop me from hurting myself which I realize now in a sane state but at the time I grew extremely pissed. I tried to run and remember someone holding my shirt and ripping it. I spun around and swung at someone who I later found out was the battalion C.O. After the swing my memory of it gets really fuzzy. I remember wrestling with the other two in the dirt and seeing the C.O. leaning on a tree. I also remember calling him some names for not helping the other marines fight me… Then we walked another 50 yards out of the woods where police and ambulance was waiting on me. I could go into further detail but I’d rather not because it would just be me bitching about people not doing the right thing, but 8 days later after being thoroughly question by Psychiatrists and Psychologists I received the first medical tests. They found that my liver enzymes were through the roof. They diagnosed me with Rhabdomyolosis which comes from crushing injury, extreme stress on the body, or dehydration and any combination. This is a condition in which your muscles break down (or are crushed) and release proteins into the bloodstream. These proteins flood the liver and kidneys causing them severe damage. As you may know alcoholics become very mean as their livers are damaged. I had an acute and extreme case of this. Doing my own research it sounded more like a heat stroke from the symptoms, but I was fine with Rhabdo because suddenly the charges I was getting went away and I was being treated completely differently. My doctor told me that I was very lucky I hadn’t died.
My point in all this was that something about that day changed my life. I don’t drink nearly as much. I don’t play nearly as much video games. I spend most of my free time tuning my body and watching my health. I understand that the position I was put in had a lot to do with what happened, but at the same time I was mad at myself for not being able to fight through it and get the job done. I have recently run the Marine Corps Marathon and finished with plenty of energy due to the time I put in training the previous year. In a bootcamp platoon of 99 marines, I saw 2 fall back with heat injuries. In my current group of 6 watchstanders we’ve had three P.T. injuries. Myself in the incident above, one marine completely passed out on a three mile PFT run, and another had some heart palpatations or arrythmias or something similar during the CFT (combat fitness test). All were after working all night. Not to mention the family problems and other things this job causes. Needless to say sleep is a very important factor to your health. Don’t forget it. I am still working in the same place and on shifts, only feel a little better from my change in lifestyle at home and diet.
In my research for nutrition, I started learning of the things the food industry doesn’t want us to know. What’s really in the meats and bread. Where do the fruit come from that are out of season but always available. Where do seeds come from that we need to grow vegetables and why are the only ones available genetically modified. Why are police shutting down raw milk factories. Theses questions lead into the survival portion of the website. Raise or hunt your meat and eggs, or at least buy natural. support family farms and leave the industrial stuff to go broke. Become more independent. Think about a generator, a garden, a well for your water. Think about taking care of yourself and surviving if the government fails you. Don’t become complacent. These are things that Sara had already found, and I had only begun to find with my nutrition research. You can see her homestead project on independence and survival on her blog which is on the sidebar.
After all this is said, I am on shift now and have been awake since 4 P.M. today. I have a Combat Fitness test in the morning after getting off shift. Wish me luck haha.