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September 27, 2008 PodCast Transcription

Howdy.  Dr. Will Wong here and welcome to tonight's edition of the essentials of life and wellness.  Let's start off where we ended up last week talking about survival tips.  Let's do that first.  And let's cover some ground here.  So let me reiterate something that I spoke about a bunch of podcasts ago when I first touched on survival.  And that's the rule of threes.  The rule of threes goes something like this.  You can live three seconds without thought, three minutes without air, three days without water, three weeks without food and three months without hope.  Let me repeat that just once more.  You can survive three seconds without thought, three minutes without air, three days without water, three weeks without food and three months without hope.

Those are the primary things that you need to concentrate on in terms of a survival situation.  Now, as I said last week, survival is not reliance on gadgets.  MacGyver is not really a good survivalist.  Survival is done with the information in your head and then you find the tools available around you or you construct the tools to allow you to survive.  But let's talk about a principle, a guiding principle of survival without which you might as well not even try.  The primary guiding principle in survival is self reliance.  Pound this into your brains with a mallet.  Without self reliance, there is no survival.  Without self reliance, you are just flotsam and jetsam on the sea of in-tranquility.  And you're going to be a victim.

Let's look at the greatest story of group self reliance I have heard of yet.  And that comes from New Orleans with hurricane Katrina.  I was sitting in a hotel room in Bombay when Katrina hit the Gulf Coast.  Remember it didn't even hit New Orleans.  The flooding in New Orleans was a secondary effect because in 1973 the Sierra Club went to Federal court and prevented the Army Corps of Engineers from shoring up the sea wall to withstand a level five hurricane because it didn't want to upset all the wetland and the wildlife and the birds and whatever else.  So let's put the blame for the flooding in New Orleans exactly where it's supposed to be, with the Sierra Club. 

But as I watched the scenes from New Orleans, one thing occurred to me.  There were too many people whining and there were too many people not taking the initiative for their own well being.  This did not happen in all of the communities in New Orleans, however.  As a group, the Vietnamese immigrants, the boat people and the sons and daughters of the boat people got themselves out of the city.  Didn't ask for help.  Didn't ask for assistance.  Didn't whine.  Didn’t cry.  They got themselves out.  The ones that had to be rescued did not try to kill their rescuers.  And then afterwards, the Vietnamese folks were the first people back in New Orleans after the flood.  And they were already in the process of reconstruction when the rest of the city was still trying to figure out what in God's name to do.

So they started coming back.  They started rebuilding their houses.  They started patching up their roofs.  They started draining their buildings.  The first place that they rebuilt was Mary, Queen of Vietnam Church.  They fixed the roof.  The church wasn't flooded but they fixed it and they made it habitable.  And then Father Luke there started a soup kitchen, serving food on the weekends.  The folks were still coming in.  They were working as a community.  They were rebuilding as a community.  They were not waiting for Federal assistance.  FEMA aid did not come to them until much later in the form of whatever checks they had coming to them.  These folks started rebuilding immediately after the flooding was gone.  They didn't wait.  They didn't whine.  They just went to work.  These were people who had known great deprivation and hardships. 

These were people who got on boats to escape the Communist tyranny.  They would rather die than be slaves.  They were hearty folks who came to live the American dream and the American promise.  And they remembered, just like the cowboys, just like the pioneers, just like the mountain men that self reliance is the principle of getting ahead in America.  Not waiting to be rescued.  Not waiting for a hand out.  Not whining and pining and complaining about what government didn't do for you.  These folks did for themselves.  And they rebuilt their community way before anybody else came back to the city and they're flourishing.  And God is being gracious to them.

And God is dispensing his goodness on them.  Why?  Because as it says in scripture, God takes of those who take care of themselves.  The Vietnamese of New Orleans are a sterling example of self reliance in the face of great adversity.  These people have steel in their hearts.  They have love in their souls.  And they have family structures and communities that work together and that work, period.  They serve as a great example to the rest of us as to how to take a loss and how to recover from that loss.  How to rebuild.  How to go on and how to carry on for the future of ourselves and our families.  What a great shining example they are with how to come back from something that was so absolutely horrible.  Now, I have been asked, where to find folks who provide either the bulk foods or the bulk dried foods or the freeze dried foods that can be put away for long term storage and what to put away.

You know, a lot of folks think, well, you know, I've got a few plats of pork and beans.  And I got a few plats of dried milk cans.  And I've got some Vienna sausages.  I'll do just fine.  If the diet that you're eating during your survival times is significantly different from the diet you normally eat, you're going to get sick.  So it is a great idea to put together a survival food plan that fairly closely mimics what you're used to eating in your regular life.  Now there's a ton of stuff written about this on the internet and in books.  So I won't burden you and I won't take up the time with telling you about every "crook and nanny" that you need to investigate and all the things you need to know.  But here are the names of a few suppliers of dried and bulk foods.

Let's start off with long term food storage, military type survival foods, civil defense type survival foods and the types of freeze dried foods that are found in mountain expeditions.  And for that, please go visit my friend at  That's freeze dry guy, all one word, lower case dot com.  The phone number is 866-404-3663.  That's 866-404-3663.  And that's a toll free call.  Next on the list is a great source for canned versions of regular food like cheddar cheese, canned meats, canned butter.  These folks are the  That's  Their numbers are 903-356-6443.  That's 903-356-6443.  And finally, as I said before, you have to have some sweetness or life gets really, really bitter.  For dried bulk candies, hard candies, dried fruits of all types, go to  That's  And their telephone number is 419-537-1713.  That's 419-537-1713.

Now I have to say, for you skeptics out there, I have no connection, financial or otherwise, with any of these firms.  I recommend them because I have bought from most of them and their stuff has been great.  Now I said before that survival is not so much dependant on gadgets than on the information in your head.  So let's get your head filled with good information.  Let's start with several books.  The first book is called, "Wilderness Medicine."  I've got the fourth edition by William Forgey, M.D.  The publisher is ISC Books.  And their number is 800-541-7323.  That's 800-541-7323.  And again the book title is, "Wilderness Medicine" by William Forgey.  

Now the next book is called, "Where There is No Dentist" by Murray Dickenson.  Published by the Hesperian Foundation.  Now they don't have a phone number listed on the book but the Hesperian Foundation's address is P.O. Box 1692.  That's P.O.  Box 1692, Palo Alto, California, 94302.  And lastly, let's look at the book, "Surviving Doomsday: A Practical Guide" by Boston Tea Party with Amelia Porter.  This book is published by Javelin Press.  And their address is Javelin Press, Care of Post Office Box 31Q, Ignacio, I-G-N-A-C-I-O, Ignacio, Colorado, 81137.  Now for my own libertarian glee, let me throw in two more books.  Actually, let me throw in three more books.

First of all, from Paladin Press the book, "Total Resistance" by Major H. Dach.  "Total Resistance" is the Swiss Army manual on surviving invasions.  It's published by Paladin Press in Boulder.  And their number is 303-443-7250.  That's 303-443-7250.  I can't recommend this book enough for all you hard core survivalists out there.  And next, a couple of books by a libertarian gal whose writings I really, really, really enjoy; a gal name Claire Wolf.  Her first book, "101 Things to do 'Til the Revolution" and her second book, "Don't Shoot the Bastards Yet."  Both published by Loompanics Unlimited in Port Townsend, Washington.  Their number is 360-385-2230.  That's 360-385-2230.  My favorite one of those two is "101 Things to do 'Til the Revolution."  It is an absolute gas to read.  It's very funny but very, very, very serious in terms of politics, politicians and individual liberty.

Now let's change gears here a bit.  And let's talk about an even more concise exercise program than the one that I outlined in my minimalist strength training program.  This particular program is for folks who have very limited equipment and very limited time.  The whole thing will take you about a half an hour to do, maybe not even that much, once you get good at it.  Let's start off remembering the principles that Dr. Phillip Rash outlined when he was the head of the Naval Human performance laboratory in Quantico, Virginia back in the 60's and 70's. 

The upper body pulls, the lower body pushes.  70 percent of the muscles in the upper body pull.  70 percent of the muscles in the lower body push.  So if you find the most efficient pulling exercise for the upper body, then you've worked 70 percent of the upper body from the waist up to the tips of your fingers.  If you then add the most efficient pushing exercise to work the rest of the 30 percent, you've got 100 percent of your upper body.  You can combine the pushing exercises that are needed for the lower extremity and the pelvis along with aerobic exercise and kill two birds with the same stone.  The only thing that's left is to work on your abdominal strength.  The principles for this are really, really easy.  And here we go with the exercises.

The first exercise is the chin up.  Either the full chin up or the adapted chin up.  Let's talk about the full chip up first.  You have a doorway chin up bar, which we've spoken about before.  It'll cost you about 14 bucks at your local sporting goods store.  Or if you're handy with working with steel pipe, with plumbing pipe then you can make your own.  But I warn you.  Make it really strong or the thing's going to break and you're going to get hurt.  So it's better off just to spend the 15 to 20 bucks and get one from your sporting goods store.  The chin up is done with your palms facing you, hands shoulder width apart.  Palms are facing you.  Not away from you. 

That puts your elbows and your shoulders in the proper position to get 160 degrees of range of motion throughout the front to back plane, through the anterior / posterior plane and work the pulling muscles from your fingertips to your lats, most effectively.  You will do three sets to failure.  Which means, that if you can get the first set, up to 12, 15, even 20 repetitions, then you wait a couple minutes and then you do another set; and if you can only do 12 or 15 of those, you can't go all the way up to 20, that's fine.  Then you do a third set.  And if you can only get seven or eight or nine, that's fine.  Even if you can only do three reps on the first set, two reps on the second, one rep on the third; you build yourself up.  A passing number of chin-ups is six.  To pass a chin-up on the Marine Corps PFT, you have to be able to do at least six of them.  If you do 20, you've aced it.  If you do over 20, you're a god. 

Now to do the adapted form of this exercise, as I've spoken of before, you lay on the floor.  You put the chin up bar at arms length up from the floor.  And again, with your palms facing you, your hands shoulder width apart, keeping your body straight.  Not letting yourself bend at the waist, you pull yourself up to the bar and again, you do three sets to failure.  Three sets of max numbers of repetitions.  Then you find yourself a place to do dips.  Now you do this between either two counter tops or you get yourself a set of regular dipping bars, which again, you can find in your local sporting goods store.  These are also very easily made out of wood.  The distance between the dipping bar should be the distance between your fingertips to your elbows.  That's how we used to measure it when we used to do parallel bars in gymnastics.

Now you get yourself up on the dipping bar.  You bend you knees.  You cross your ankles and you go down as far as you can and then you push yourself back up again.  That's one rep.  If you have trouble pushing yourself back up, what you do is, you put a chair behind you and when you cross your ankles with bent knees, you put your toes on the chair.  And you help yourself up by pushing your toes down against the chair.  Try to envision that in your mind's eye.

The next exercise for your lower extremities and for your heart is the Harvard step.  And you can either use one of the step stools, the kind that Rubbermaid makes to reach up to the top of the fridge or top shelves or an exercise bench, like a bench pressing bench.  It's just the right height.  You step up first with one foot.  Let's say you step up with the left food.  You step down with the left foot.  The first foot that goes up is the first foot to come down.  So you step up with the left and then step up with the right.  Step down with the left, step down with the right.  And you lead with the left foot for one to two minutes.  Then you rest for one to two minutes.  And then you lead with the right foot for one to two minutes.  And then you rest for one to two minutes.  And then you step up again with the left foot for one to two minutes.  Then you rest for one to two minutes.  And then lastly, you do the right foot again, stepping up for one to two minutes and it's over. 

That is one hellacious cardiovascular work out.  And it is a great strengthener for the lower extremity.  All you folks who have trouble going up stairs because of a lack of strength, not you poor arthritics like me who have bad knees.  But you folks who have trouble going up stairs for lack of strength, after three weeks of that you won't have any trouble bounding up the stairs.  Now, for the abdomen, I think the best exercise in the world are flutter kicks.  And you're going to have to go look this one up.  Look up the performance of flutter kicks on the internet.  You can also do jack knife sit-ups.  If you're a newbie with very weak abs, you can do crunches.

To do a crunch, you lay on the floor, bend you knees, put your feet on the deck, put your hands on your thighs and you bring your shoulders and chest up off the deck by reaching up for the top of your knees.  As you're bringing your chest shoulders and head up, you blow out.  And again you do three sets of as many as you can possibly do.  The top of your abdominal muscles will be begin to cramp and burn to the point where you can't take a breath when they've had enough.  So you work each set until you get that cramp and that burn.  And that’s it.  If you're doing flutter kicks, if you're doing jack knife sit-ups or if you're doing full sit ups, do as many as you possibly can per set. 

There, in a nutshell, you have a great 20 or 30 minute workout for the entire upper body, for all of the lower extremity, for your heart and for your midsection, which will also strength your back.  Now for those of you who are still spry and young and want the best kick ass workout you could possibly get, you can't beat kettle bells.  Kettle bells are absolutely the best way to build a super strong, very flexible body while building great aerobic and anaerobic capacity.  You know, the anaerobic capacity, I think, is actually more important than aerobic capacity.  Because if you build anaerobic capacity, if you can sprint, your heart will be strong enough to take shocks. 

As I've said before, marathoners have died of heart attacks, like the shock when they get  bad news because they haven't been trained to take shock with their heart.  Collegiate and freestyle wrestlers, not the pro wrestlers, but the real wrestlers have the greatest anaerobic capacity of any athletes.  Try to keep up with a wrestler in his three minute match for three rounds and you'll be pucking your guts out by the side of the wrestling mat, while your trained wrestler will hardly be out of breath.  That is how much anaerobic capacity they've got.  And that is the capacity that we need to meet with the stresses in life.

Now I've been asked the question, what do I think is the best martial art around.  And I was asked this question by a bunch of MMA guys, mixed martial arts guys.  Now most of the MMA are guys who are really tough.  They're really great in their matches.  They don't do so well on the street.  They don’t do so well in war situations.  But they really think they're hot stuff.  And yes, in competition they are.  You know, boxers are really great in the boxing arena.  Professional wrestlers are really great in their own arena.  Put them out in the battlefield against a crazed enemy coming at them, put them in a situation where you've got, as I've said, gooks coming through the wire and MMA doesn't work so well.  Especially when you've got 60 pounds of gear on your back or you're carrying groceries or you're trying to protect your kids or you got all the stuff that policemen usually carry on their belts. 

The best martial arts for real life self defense are: Wing Chun.  Wing Chun is a form of Gung-Fu.  Or Karv Maga, which is a form of hand to hand fighting based on Jujitsu that the Israeli commandos use.  And the Russian Systema, which is a down to earth, no holds barred, true grit form of just whoop ass that the Russians Spetsnaz, their special forces use.  All of these are tried and true combat tested martial arts.  The Wing Chun, especially has two lineages to the Wing Chun family.  We've got the Cop lineage under Yip Man.  We've got the Triad or Chinese Mafia lineage under Ju An.  There are more fights to the death, there are more real martial arts challenge matches in Hong Kong than any other place on the planet.  And where it counts most, you've got both the cops and the bad guys using one martial art to whoop on each other. 

That says it all.  Now for more on what I think are real life martial arts, go and read my article, "MMA, Ground Fighting and other non-real life combat fads" on my totality of being website.  That's T-O-T-A-L-I-T-Y-O-F-B-E-I-N-G.  Totality of being dot com.  You can also get there by typing in - as in united - s, as in states.  Go into the articles archive.  Look into the archive martial arts articles.  And there you'll fine "MMA, Ground Fighting and other non-real life combat fads."  And for this article, particularly, I quote from history.  We have true examples of martial arts use in war with the Koreans, both in Korean War and in the Vietnamese War.  Those of you who were in  Viet Nam remember no one wanted to mess around in Two Corps.  The second corps area was governed by the South Koreans and the gooks didn't want to go there. 

After a couple of major battles the Communists made sure that they gave the South Koreans a wide berth.  The VC and NVA bothered the folks below Two Corps and they bothered the folks above them.  But they tried not to mess with second corps area because of the reputations that the Koreans developed for being absolutely ruthless, God bless them, in the way that they handled the enemy.  Over 60 percent of the casualties caused the ROK Marines and the ROK Paratroopers in the South Vietnamese War were inflicted by hands and feet; by non-conventional weapons.  By punch and kick arts.  Not by wrestling, not by grapling, not by submission holds.  You know, you put somebody in a submission hold and his friends are going to come by and bayonet you. 

The Koreans did it with punch, kick, chop.  They were absolutely deadly with it.  And there was one instance where 13 South Korean force recon marines killed an entire company of elite NVA, mostly in close combat and mostly with their hands and feet.  If the ultimate goal of the martial arts is to prepare us for real life encounters - and I don't mean the type of mall martial arts that you'd send your kids to instead of soccer practice or instead of dancing ballet or instead of whatever else. 

Yeah, those martial arts classes are sort of, kind of okay for instilling discipline and for giving a kids a fun outlet and whatever else.  But when it comes down to the real use of your body as a weapon to protect the life of the ones you love, to protect your life or to stand between your country and an enemy.  To stand between an attacker and right and wrong, you damn well better be using the right art.  Or it's going to be absolutely as useless to you as having a rubber gun.  And on that cheery note, I wish you God's blessing.  Be well.  And I'll be chatting with you again next time.  Bye-bye.

 [End of Audio]





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