Sergeant Tony's Blog

Archive for February, 2012

Feather Merchants — Sgt. Tony Ludlow’s Newsletter for Leap Day 2012

Feb. 29th 2012

I rode past them every afternoon.

They were all men and strangers to me.

But every afternoon there they were without fail. And there I was, riding my bike past them, loaded down with a backpack full of schoolbooks and other foolishness.

I looked at them. They looked at me. I rode past.

This went on for months.

Then one day I decided to wave at them.

The old men sitting in front of the “old folks home” – actually a convalescent facility — waved back.

We started waving at each other everyday after that.

One day that spring, after months of riding my bike past the home and waving, I decided to ride up the short driveway that led to the long porch where the ten or so men sat watching the world go by and from where they’d seen me ride past. That day I stopped and said hello.

When you’re 15 you tend to think that old men have been old men forever. I couldn’t imagine that these old dudes had ever been anything but old dudes. After that first day of stopping and saying hello, I learned that those old men had once been young men like me.

It might have been pity that motivated me to stop that first day – I felt sorry for the old guys, seldom visited by any family — but it was genuine intrigue that kept me coming back. The “Old Breed,” as I nicknamed them, became friends to me. I laughed as they made fun of one another and “goofed” on each other in pretty much the same way that my friends and I did. After several weeks they started messin’ with me too. That was when I knew I’d been accepted as a part of the group.

“Bicycle Boy, (what they called me when “Tony” escaped them) do you shave yet?” one would ask.

“Yes sir,” I’d said.

“With a blade and all?” another would say with a laugh.

“NO! He don’t use no blade!” another would insist! “Bet he just smears some milk on his chin and gets the cat to lick it off!”

And this kind of thing would send them all into a laughing and coughing frenzy!

“Hey, bicycle boy, got a girlfriend?” they’d ask. And no matter what my answer was, I was gonna catch hell. If I said that I did, in fact, have a girlfriend, they’d say stuff like, “oooohh! Lookie lookie at bicycle boy, havin’ a girlfriend and all … why don’t you bring her ‘round and let us have a look at her!”

Ridicule with affection.

And if I said that I didn’t have a girlfriend, they’d say things like, “What’s wrong little man, can’t get a gal to like ya with that big ol’ nose of yers? Hahahaha!”

Humiliation with humor.

As the Old Breed let me into their little club, I started paying attention to the things they said to dig at each other, I discovered that these old dudes were real men, through and through. Harold would call Carl a pansy because during World War II Carl was “livin’ it up in Paris chasin’ French girls, while I was gettin’ my ass shot off on Guadalcanal.”

Carl would counter with, “Yeah, Harold you and your little jarhead buddies (“jarhead” is a derogatory reference to Marines) wuz enjoyin’ a south sea vacation while I was freezin’ my ass off in a Belgian forest with no food and no ammunition and the Jerries shellin’ us all night.”

And on and on it would go like that with these guys.

The Old Breed included a survivor of the Bataan Death March in the Philippines during WWII. (I had to look that up.) One had stormed the beaches of Normandy on D-Day. One had parachuted into occupied France. One had been on an aircraft carrier that was sunk by a kamikaze in the Pacific, and then spent hours in the open sea hoping to be rescued. One had been a prisoner of war in a concentration camp in Germany. One had fought for his life on the sulfur beaches of Iwo Jima and had gotten wounded, winning a Silver Star on the first day of the battle and had to be taken off the island to a hospital ship. The Old Breed called him a “feather merchant quitter!” (I had no idea what a “feather merchant” was) … No one was spared the harassment! Everyone got “the business!” So you can only imagine the crap they gave me, a skinny, pimply faced 15 year-old kid on a bike, waiting for his voice to permanently change.

Theirs was a fraternity of men’s men and I was accepted into that fraternity on a limited probationary provisional basis. I had to promise to become a real man. I had to solemnly swear to “lose my virginity, buy a car, join the service, do something spectacular, and not be a wussy.” Not necessarily in that order. (They used another word that rhymes with wussy.) “Don’t you dare be a punk! You hear?! You be a man!”

These were men who could say that the only thing they minded about getting old was that other men no longer saw them as dangerous.

There are plenty of shallow and vacuous people in the world without a thing of depth, or compassion, or achievement, or contribution, or accomplishment, or self-sacrifice to commend them.
Selfish.
Narcissistic.
Pompous.
Self centered.
Petty.
Materialistic.
Dramatic.
Arrogant.
Entitled.
Self-righteous.
Most will live and die, unheralded, uncelebrated, unsung, and forgotten. Others will, unfortunately, be famous. (Hear me Lindsey Lohan? Kardashians? Housewives of (fill in the blank) … )

But on the other hand, there are untold numbers of people you casually encounter everyday who carry within them a history of incredible courage, strength, achievement, depth, dignity, survival, and meaning. But you’d never know it. This is especially true of old folks.

So many have outlived their spouses, their families and their friends. Yet here they are, alone and often forgotten, in a culture that elevates youth without merit and scoffs at anything old. A culture that has quit treating them as human beings.

Yesterday Buck Compton died at 90 years of age. Buck was a retired judge and prosecutor, having prosecuted Robert Kennedy’s murderer. But in an earlier life at a different time he was a soldier in WWII whose wartime heroics were dramatized in the brilliant HBO mini-series “Band of Brothers.”

There are untold stories behind the most unexpected people. Old men sitting in chairs waving at a kid on a bike turned out to be heroes and great men beyond my imagination. And I grieved as the years took members of the Old Breed away. Today, over 1000 of those World War II veterans die every single day. A generation of gallantry lost to a generation that doesn’t know and doesn’t care. There’s was a generation that said hard work builds character, struggle builds strength, and pride is earned not given. The Greatest Generation disappearing as The Whiny Generation takes their place.

I like what John Prine said.

“So if you’re walking down the street sometime
And spot some hollow ancient eyes,
Please don’t just pass ‘em by and stare
As if you didn’t care, say, ‘Hello in there, hello.’”

– 30 –

——————————————

ARE WE FACEBOOK FRIENDS?

We should be!

HAVE YOU “LIKED” THE USMC FITNESS BOOT CAMP FACEBOOK PAGE?

You should totally do that!

—————————————–

A ROSE BY ANY OTHER NAME

This is just a gentle reminder that we all have different tolerances to smells and fragrances.

While B.O. might be bad (wash those nasty workout clothes!) strong perfume or cologne can be worse!

I once quit dating a girl in high school because she wore Secret Powder deodorant. I should have just told her that her deodorant was the most horrible thing ever and that it made me gag. But I was young and it just seemed easier to break up with her than to hurt her feelings about her deodorant. What? I know. I was young and all. But to this day, Secret Powder is a deal breaker!

I’ve run races before where I’ve literally sped up to pass someone simply because their perfume or cologne made it hard for me to breathe running behind them.

What smells nice to one person, won’t smell nice to another. So may I remind everyone that the Quarterdeck is a “fragrance free zone.” Soap and water are great, but perfume and cologne are going to be too overpowering for the lungs of people exercising and breathing heavy.

Thanks everyone!

———————————–

WIND CHILL AND INCLEMENT WEATHER POLICY

When the wind chill (what I feels like) is 29 or lower in the 38117 zip code, we’ll go inside at 0530, 0830, and 5:45 PM. The 0645 class is inside from now until August. hahaha.

Check with weather.com or The Weather Channel app for your smart phone. I’ll post it on my Facebook page and the Boot Camp website Blog page (http://usmcfitnessbootcamp.com/blog/) if there’s a question. And if you’re not sure, you can text me at 901-644-0145.

What about inclement weather days?

We’ll follow the Memphis City Schools decision. If they close, we’ll stand-down. If they close in the morning but the streets are clear and good to go by the afternoon, the evening class will meet. I’ll post that status on Facebook and the Boot Camp Blog page.

————————————-

SPRING HALF MARATHON!

Our next training run is this Saturday at 7 AM. We’ll meet at Shelby Farms in front of the Visitor’s Center. Saturday’s weather is expected to be good! But if it’s raining or snowing we’ll go on Sunday instead.

Wanna get your one hour of continuous cardio with a group? You can join us! We’ll be going 2 hours on Saturday, passing through the Visitor’s Center parking lot every 25 to 30 minutes. You can hop on-board!

———————————–

BOGA tomorrow morning at 5:30am – No chanting. No patchouli.

M-16 Workout at CUMC next Tuesday, March 6 at 5:30am!

——————————————-

HOODIES ARE IN!!

Red, Royal Blue, and Navy Blue!

——————————————–

THE 0645 CLASS

The 0645 Class is inside for their winter hibernation until March 2012 We’ll use the “blue gym” aka “the pizza gym!”

———————————————

IN HIS STEPS 5K

Every year Christ Methodist Church conducts a 5K fundraiser called “In His Steps.” The race starts and finishes at the church and winds around the neighborhood.

This would be an excellent first 5K for those who’ve been thinking about running one. It’d be an excellent race for the veteran 5K runner too!

Save the date: March 31st at 8am!

——————————————–

NEW BOOT CAMP DISCOUNT

If you set up an automatic payment at your bank (Boot Camp mailing address is 4888 Southern, Memphis 38117) you can subtract $10 off your fee! That’s right, instead of $75, you can pay $65!

—————————————

USMC FITNESS BOOT CAMP CLASSES

0530 Monday through Friday

0645 M-W-F

0830 M-W-F

5:45 PM: Monday and Wednesday, and 5:30 PM on Friday.

THE TUESDAY AND THURSDAY EVENING CLASSES ARE ON HIATUS UNTIL THE TIME CHANGE.

————————————-

JOB OPENING – this from our own Andrew Forsdick

NTTC is looking to hire an entry level Launch Manager in Memphis. Contact me with any candidate names or details on the position. Position works with Telcos & other video operators and TV channel owners such as Discovery, Scripps, ESPN. Needs to be detail oriented, customer friendly, extremely organized, good communicator. Project management & customer service role. Opportunity for advancement.

Andrew Forsdick: aforsdick@nttc.tv

———————————–

BOOT CAMP DISCOUNTS AND FACEBOOK EXPERIMENT!

First of all, find me on Facebook and make me your friend. (Also, be sure to “like” USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP on Facebook.)

Here’s how the discount works!

It’s simple: make a Facebook status update and get a discount!

For every status update that you make that references:
“USMC Fitness Boot Camp,”
“Sgt. Tony’s Boot Camp,”
“Tony’s Boot Camp,”
or something similar, you can take $2.50 off your next reenlistment fee for each update!

You can take up to $20 off for any given month!

Your status update has to be a specific reference to USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP or to me specifically by name.

BE SURE TO TAG ME!

You can do the same thing by “checking in” at USMC Fitness Boot Camp either by using Facebook “places,” Foursquare, or any of the other “check in” apps that show up on your Facebook News Feed.

So log on and start getting your discounts now!

————————————-

FREE MONTH OF BOOT CAMP FOR YOU!

Remember that when one of your family or friends joins the program at full price because of your recruiting efforts, YOU get a free month of Boot Camp!

———————————-

THE 0830 AND THE 0645 CLASSES!!

The 0830 Class meets on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.

Don’t forget that there is child-care available at the church for this class!

The 0645 meets on MWF inside!

ATTENTION 0830 CLASS MEMBERS: please remember that no cell phone usage is allowed while you drive your car on the campus. So when you pull onto the campus, no cell phones please!

———————————————-

PARKING AT CHRIST METHODIST

No change for the 0530 class.

0645: If you could park on the side of the building – not in the handicapped spaces, that would be great.

Evening Class: On Wednesday evening, if you could park west of the Quarterdeck in between the Quarterdeck and the ball field, that would be great.

———————————————-

WANT TO LOSE 20 POUNDS BY THE END OF NEXT MONTH?

Take Shape For Life is the BEST weight loss program I know of. If you’d like to lose weight talk to me. This is the program I used to lose the almost 30 pounds I gained after knee surgery. Let me help you!

You can also go to www.combatchallenge.tsfl.com/

——————————————-

TUESDAY & THURSDAY EVENING CLASSES ARE ON HIATUS

The Tuesday and Thursday evening classes are standing down until the end of next month.

———————————————-

CALENDAR

A calendar has been added to the official USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP website.
http://www.usmcfitnessbootcamp.com/calendar.html

For you visual learners, you’ll find this an easy way to glance at the week or month and see where the workouts will be, if there’s a venue change.

—————————————————

What would you do if money was not an issue, fear was not a factor, and failure was not an option?

To your optimum health and fitness!

SEE YOU ON THE QUARTERDECK!

Tony

Sergeant Major Tony Ludlow

USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP, Commanding
Mailing address: 4888 Southern Ave., Memphis, TN 38117
Cell Phone: 901-644-0145

Posted by Tony Ludlow | in Uncategorized | No Comments »


Let’s Fight! — Sgt. Tony Ludlow’s Newsletter for 2/22/2012

Feb. 22nd 2012

My older brother, Jack, was a fight promoter.

He wasn’t like Don King or nuthin. I don’t know if he made any money or not. And as far as I know, he only had one fighter in his stable.

He roamed the neighborhood arraigning fights for his one scrapper. Jack didn’t seem to have any qualms about putting together fights even if the opponent was bigger or older than his fighter. I don’t think he always had his fighter’s best interest at heart. In fact, I think he sucked as a fight promoter. Oh, it wasn’t that he didn’t book plenty of fights. His young pugilist sometimes fought as many as three or four times a day. It’s just that he seemed to have such little regard for his fighter’s well-being. And I ought to know. I was his only fighter.

I didn’t ask for his services, mind you. I didn’t go in search of fights. Jack just thought I needed to be tough and be able to defend myself. “Hey, wanna fight my little brother?” he’d ask older bigger boys.

So, he taught me how to fight and then started arranging bouts in the neighborhood starting when I was about 5 years old. I had a steady diet of bloody noses, bruises, knots on my head, and all kinds of scraps and scratches over the next few years. Being able to fight and defend yourself was an important thing for a boy to know, according to the rules of a boy’s life when I was a kid.

In recent conversations with some of you ladies I learned that most of you didn’t grow up that way. What most boys learn growing up is that there are consequences to saying things, to being rude, to name-calling, and being mean. If a boy said something rude or disrespectful to another boy, there’d be a fight. No question. Over time, you learned to watch your words. You learned that discretion was the better part of valor. You learned that there were consequences to running your mouth and slandering another. You learned that there were consequences to being mean. There would be quick and painful repercussions and retributions. Heads would roll. You’d get jumped. Noses would get bloodied.

When I got involved in organized sports and martial arts at 8 years old, the teacher or coach would just have us square off to settle a slight or slander. Coaches would pull out the boxing gloves and the two angry boys would go at it.

Consequences to being mean and rewards for being kind are important lessons for kids to learn. Kindness is such a wonderful thing. Kindness isn’t weakness. It’s a decision to be nice because it’s the right or noble thing to do. It’s the highroad. It’s an attribute of royalty.

Learning that life has consequences is both bitter and necessary. Some bitter lessons are worse than others.

Consequences of taking care of yourself or mistreating yourself are pretty evident too. Years of eating right and exercising usually result in looking years younger and having a better quality of life. Years of abuse through unhealthy and unwise life choices and life management usually lead to people looking like hell and living an invalid’s lifestyle by middle age. Awesomeness.

It’s mid-February and some of you made a commitment 6 weeks ago to lose weight, live a healthy lifestyle, and take charge of your life for 2012. How’s that going?

——————————————

ARE WE FACEBOOK FRIENDS?

We should be!

HAVE YOU “LIKED” THE USMC FITNESS BOOT CAMP FACEBOOK PAGE?

You should totally do that!

—————————————–

WOMEN’S DISCOUNT FOR FEBRUARY!

For the month of February, all new female recruits can join for only $75! And women who join now will get the rest of February and ALL OF MARCH for that price!!

In fact, TWO can join for that price! Tell your cheap, and or frugal, girlfriends that it’s the best time to join USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP!

——————————-

A ROSE BY ANY OTHER NAME

This is just a gentle reminder that we all have different tolerances to smells and fragrances.

While B.O. might be bad (wash those nasty workout clothes!) strong perfume or cologne can be worse!

I once quit dating a girl in high school because she wore Secret Powder deodorant. I should have just told her that her deodorant was the most horrible thing ever and that it made me gag. But I was young and it just seemed easier to break up with her than to hurt her feelings about her deodorant. What? I know. I was young and all. But to this day, Secret Powder is a deal breaker!

I’ve run races before where I’ve literally sped up to pass someone simply because their perfume or cologne made it hard for me to breathe running behind them.

What smells nice to one person, won’t smell nice to another. So may I remind everyone that the Quarterdeck is a “fragrance free zone.” Soap and water are great, but perfume and cologne are going to be too overpowering for the lungs of people exercising and breathing heavy.

Thanks everyone!

———————————–

WIND CHILL AND INCLEMENT WEATHER POLICY

When the wind chill (what I feels like) is 29 or lower in the 38117 zip code, we’ll go inside at 0530, 0830, and 5:45 PM. The 0645 class is inside from now until August. hahaha.

Check with weather.com or The Weather Channel app for your smart phone. I’ll post it on my Facebook page and the Boot Camp website Blog page (http://usmcfitnessbootcamp.com/blog/) if there’s a question. And if you’re not sure, you can text me at 901-644-0145.

What about inclement weather days?

We’ll follow the Memphis City Schools decision. If they close, we’ll stand-down. If they close in the morning but the streets are clear and good to go by the afternoon, the evening class will meet. I’ll post that status on Facebook and the Boot Camp Blog page.

————————————-

SPRING HALF MARATHON!

Spring Half Marathon Training is underway and it’s been exciting and fun! Last Saturday the wind-chill was 13 degrees, the wind was blowing the driving snow sideways, and … no one whined! hahahaha

And it’s not too late for you to get in on the fun!

Our next training run is this Saturday at 7 AM. We’ll meet at Shelby Farms in front of the Visitor’s Center. Saturday’s weather is expected to be good! But if it’s raining or snowing we’ll go on Sunday instead.

Prerequisites for the training: be able to run 3 miles in 36 minutes or less.

Cost for the three month training: $75 for active duty Boot Campers, $125 for “Friends of Boot Camp.” All are welcome to join in the fun.

There are at least five half marathons in the spring! There’s one in Nashville, Louisville, St. Louis, Fayetteville, AR and Oklahoma City! The Germantown Half Marathon is also in March. And the new one here in Memphis, the Dash for Dad’s Half Marathon debuts this April!

———————————–

BOGA tomorrow morning at 5:30am

Mt. Fuji Workout at the U of M next Tuesday, February 28 at 5:30am!

————————————

HOODIES ARE IN!!

Red, Royal Blue, and Navy Blue!

——————————————–

THE 0645 CLASS

The 0645 Class is inside for their winter hibernation until March 2012 We’ll use the “blue gym” aka “the pizza gym!”

———————————————

IN HIS STEPS 5K

Every year Christ Methodist Church conducts a 5K fundraiser called “In His Steps.” The race starts and finishes at the church and winds around the neighborhood.

This would be an excellent first 5K for those who’ve been thinking about running one. It’d be an excellent race for the veteran 5K runner too!

Save the date: March 31st at 8am!

——————————————–

NEW BOOT CAMP DISCOUNT

If you set up an automatic payment at your bank (Boot Camp mailing address is 4888 Southern, Memphis 38117) you can subtract $10 off your fee! That’s right, instead of $75, you can pay $65!

—————————————

USMC FITNESS BOOT CAMP CLASSES

0530 Monday through Friday

0645 M-W-F

0830 M-W-F

5:45 PM: Monday and Wednesday, and 5:30 PM on Friday.

THE TUESDAY AND THURSDAY EVENING CLASSES ARE ON HIATUS UNTIL THE TIME CHANGE.

————————————-

JOB OPENING – this from our own Andrew Forsdick

NTTC is looking to hire an entry level Launch Manager in Memphis. Contact me with any candidate names or details on the position. Position works with Telcos & other video operators and TV channel owners such as Discovery, Scripps, ESPN. Needs to be detail oriented, customer friendly, extremely organized, good communicator. Project management & customer service role. Opportunity for advancement.

Andrew Forsdick: aforsdick@nttc.tv

———————————–

BOOT CAMP DISCOUNTS AND FACEBOOK EXPERIMENT!

First of all, find me on Facebook and make me your friend. (Also, be sure to “like” USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP on Facebook.)

Here’s how the discount works!

It’s simple: make a Facebook status update and get a discount!

For every status update that you make that references:
“USMC Fitness Boot Camp,”
“Sgt. Tony’s Boot Camp,”
“Tony’s Boot Camp,”
or something similar, you can take $2.50 off your next reenlistment fee for each update!

You can take up to $20 off for any given month!

Your status update has to be a specific reference to USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP or to me specifically by name.

BE SURE TO TAG ME!

You can do the same thing by “checking in” at USMC Fitness Boot Camp either by using Facebook “places,” Foursquare, or any of the other “check in” apps that show up on your Facebook News Feed.

So log on and start getting your discounts now!

————————————-

PERSONAL TRAINING!

I’ve got a few prime hours open during the week if you know someone looking for a trainer. I use the facilities at Christ Methodist and the hourly rates are standard for Memphis. Over-all fitness training, boot camp style workouts, strength training, sports specific conditioning and agility (tennis, soccer, basketball, etc.)

TonyLudlow@aol.com or 901-644-0145

———————————-

FREE MONTH OF BOOT CAMP FOR YOU!

Remember that when one of your family or friends joins the program at full price because of your recruiting efforts, YOU get a free month of Boot Camp!

———————————-

THE 0830 AND THE 0645 CLASSES!!

The 0830 Class meets on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.

Don’t forget that there is child-care available at the church for this class!

The 0645 meets on MWF inside!

ATTENTION 0830 CLASS MEMBERS: please remember that no cell phone usage is allowed while you drive your car on the campus. So when you pull onto the campus, no cell phones please!

——————————————–

NEW PRICING FOR FAMILIES AND COUPLES

If you’re a part of a family (usually husband and wife) that does USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP together, ask me about it! I think you’ll like it!

———————————————-

PARKING AT CHRIST METHODIST

No change for the 0530 class.

0645: If you could park on the side of the building – not in the handicapped spaces, that would be great.

Evening Class: On Wednesday evening, if you could park west of the Quarterdeck in between the Quarterdeck and the ball field, that would be great.

———————————————-

WANT TO LOSE 20 POUNDS BY THE END OF NEXT MONTH?

Take Shape For Life is the BEST weight loss program I know of. If you’d like to lose weight talk to me. This is the program I used to lose the almost 30 pounds I gained after knee surgery. Let me help you!

You can also go to www.combatchallenge.tsfl.com/

——————————————-

TUESDAY & THURSDAY EVENING CLASSES ARE ON HIATUS

The Tuesday and Thursday evening classes are standing down until the end of next month.

———————————————-

CALENDAR

A calendar has been added to the official USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP website.
http://www.usmcfitnessbootcamp.com/calendar.html

For you visual learners, you’ll find this an easy way to glance at the week or month and see where the workouts will be, if there’s a venue change.

—————————————————

What would you do if money was not an issue, fear was not a factor, and failure was not an option?

To your optimum health and fitness!

SEE YOU ON THE QUARTERDECK!

Tony

Sergeant Major Tony Ludlow

USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP, Commanding
Mailing address: 4888 Southern Ave., Memphis, TN 38117
Cell Phone: 901-644-0145

Posted by Tony Ludlow | in Uncategorized | No Comments »


HALF MARATHON TRAINING FOR 2/18/2012

Feb. 17th 2012

BUFFALO RUNNERS! Half marathon training tomorrow morning at 7am! Meet me and Melvin in front of the Visitor’s Center at Shelby Farms! According to the TV weather guys the rain shouldn’t arrive until AFTER our training, so we oughta be good to go! If anything changes, I’ll pass the word!

Posted by Tony Ludlow | in Uncategorized | No Comments »


Cheap Chumps — Sgt. Tony Ludlow’s Newsletter for 2/15/2012

Feb. 15th 2012

Yumiko woke up yesterday morning at 5am like she always does.

Yumiko lives in Japan. She’s a young Japanese “office lady” who commutes an hour to work by train, bus, and subway to downtown Tokyo from her tiny apartment in western Tokyo. Her two co-worker-roommates, Noriko and Akiko, are also twenty-something-year-old office workers.

Tuesday morning the three of them took showers in turns, dressed, and grabbed a quick breakfast of toast and coffee, while getting caught up on the day’s news from the Today Show-like program blaring on the TV in the background.

The small crowded entry-way of their apartment looked like a cyclone was going through it as the three of them hustled to put on their shoes, grab their bags, get out the door, and force march to the nearby train station.

And since Tuesday was Valentine’s Day they had even more stuff to carry with them.

Because it was Valentine’s Day, Yumiko and her friends were not only loaded down with their handbags and their briefcases, but they were also carrying several gift bags. Inside each of those gift bags were several smaller gift-wrapped items to give for Valentine’s Day.

But none of these three young women — attractive and smart women – got anything for Valentine’s Day!

In fact, no Japanese woman – not one of the 43 million of them – got anything for Valentine’s Day. No flowers. No jewelry. No expensive gifts. No special dates out. Nothing. Nada. Zip.

But it was Valentine’s Day!!? Right? What’s wrong with Japanese men?? No romance? Cheap chumps?

On Valentine’s Day, Japanese women give gifts of chocolate to their male friends, male family members, male co-workers, and to their significant male-other(s). So Yumiko and her roommate’s gift bags were full of gift-wrapped chocolates for the male members of their lives.

But not all chocolates given are equal on Valentine’s Day. There’s a rank structure to the kind of chocolates Yumiko gave. And the kind, quality, and price of the chocolates told the men in Yumiko’s life where they fit in the hierarchy of her life and how she felt about each one of them.

The chocolates are divided into two categories: 1) giri-chako and 2) honmei-chako. Losely translated it means “chocolates given out of obligation” and “homemade chocolates.” Honmei-chako (homemade chocolate) is given from the heart and implies a close relationship to that male. It isn’t necessarily made at home, but the store bought “honmei-chako” is very obviously expensive and special.

Yumiko is single and has no boyfriend, but she’s got a crush on two guys she works with. The two guys she likes, Takahiro and Kenjiro, are typical of young Japanese men, both too shy to do much about it even if they also had crushes on Yumiko.

So on Tuesday, Yumiko gave most of the men in her life Snicker bars with bows tied around them, clearly giri-chako given to the lower ranking men in her life. But the more special the man, the more special the chocolate she gave.

To Takahiro she gave some chocolate that she and her roommates actually made together in one big batch in their apartment to divide up for the special men in each of their lives. To Kenjiro she gave a box of expensive chocolates that she bought at an upscale department store, like a Bloomingdale’s or Neiman Marcus.

She actually likes Taka a little more than Ken, but she’d gladly go out with either of them if they’d only ask. The chocolates were her way of giving them a little encouragement to ask her out, if they were interested.

All of Yumiko’s single girlfriends did the same thing; they gave honmei chako in an effort to send a subtle message that they’d be open to going out if the guy was interested. It’s a slight nudge, but not so overt or uncomfortable that it would create an awkward situation if the guy wasn’t interested. And since most of us guys — Japanese guys aren’t alone here — are clueless when a girl likes them, Valentine’s Day chocolate has been used in countless situations to send a message and bring people together. As one of my Japanese guy friends said, “I only wish there was a Valentine’s Day every month!” Amen, brother!

Now before you dismiss the Japanese custom as male oriented, male dominated, and sexist, you’ll be happy to know about “White Day.” On March 14, exactly one month after Valentine’s Day, the tables are turned. On White Day the guys get to do the same thing that the ladies did except they give gifts of white chocolate, silver jewelry, or anything bright, white, and/or shinny to all of the women in their lives.

Yumiko hopes that one of those guys will get the hint and either ask her out, or at least give her something special on White Day!

I loved Valentine’s Day in Japan! In the ten years I lived there, it might have been one of my favorite holidays. And since I taught school there and had lots of female students, I got tons of chocolate. TONS!!

Yes, I know what you’re thinking … I got tons of Snicker bars, giri-choco. And you’d be right.

Guys, between now and March 14, why don’t you do something for your lady’s heart.

No, don’t give her any white chocolate. Instead, insist that she get a complete physical if it’s been over a year since her last physical. February is Healthy Heart Month and since we lose more of the women we love to heart disease than anything else, let’s be jerks and insist that they get their sweet hearts checked out!

Heart disease is one of those things that can be addressed in the most effective ways through diet and exercise.

Did you ever get your annual physical and hear your doc say, “You know what … you need to start smoking … and eat more fat and red meat … and lay around on the couch and play more video games … and watch more reality TV …“

It never happens. Thank God for breast cancer research and all of the rest … but more women succumb to heart disease than breast cancer.

Wouldn’t it be great if the women we love would take better care of themselves? Forward this to them. And if you’re reading this because someone who loves you forwarded this to you, they want me to tell you that they LOVE YOU … and they want to keep loving you for a LONG time … so … would you please start eating healthy, quit smoking, start exercising, and get your weight under control? They want your heart to be healthy and strong. OK? Please? Thanks!

——————————————

ARE WE FACEBOOK FRIENDS?

We should be!

HAVE YOU “LIKED” THE USMC FITNESS BOOT CAMP FACEBOOK PAGE?

You should totally do that!

—————————————–

WOMEN’S DISCOUNT FOR FEBRUARY!

For the month of February, all new female recruits can join for only $75! And women who join now will get the rest of February and ALL OF MARCH for that price!!

In fact, TWO can join for that price! Tell your cheap, and or frugal, girlfriends that it’s the best time to join USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP!

——————————-

WIND CHILL AND INCLEMENT WEATHER POLICY

When the wind chill (what I feels like) is 29 or lower in the 38117 zip code, we’ll go inside at 0530, 0830, and 5:45 PM. The 0645 class is inside from now until August. hahaha.

Check with weather.com or The Weather Channel app for your smart phone. I’ll post it on my Facebook page and the Boot Camp website Blog page (http://usmcfitnessbootcamp.com/blog/) if there’s a question. And if you’re not sure, you can text me at 901-644-0145.

What about inclement weather days?

We’ll follow the Memphis City Schools decision. If they close, we’ll stand-down. If they close in the morning but the streets are clear and good to go by the afternoon, the evening class will meet. I’ll post that status on Facebook and the Boot Camp Blog page.

————————————-

SPRING HALF MARATHON!

Spring Half Marathon Training is underway and it’s been exciting and fun! Last Saturday the wind-chill was 13 degrees, the wind was blowing the driving snow sideways, and … no one whined! hahahaha

And it’s not too late for you to get in on the fun!

Our next training run is this Saturday at 7 AM. We’ll meet at Shelby Farms in front of the Visitor’s Center. Saturday’s weather is expected to be good! But if it’s raining or snowing we’ll go on Sunday instead.

Prerequisites for the training: be able to run 3 miles in 36 minutes or less.

Cost for the three month training: $75 for active duty Boot Campers, $125 for “Friends of Boot Camp.” All are welcome to join in the fun.

There are at least five half marathons in the spring! There’s one in Nashville, Louisville, St. Louis, Fayetteville, AR and Oklahoma City! The Germantown Half Marathon is also in March. And the new one here in Memphis, the Dash for Dad’s Half Marathon debuts this April!

———————————–

BOGA tomorrow morning at 5:30am

Mt. Fuji Workout at the U of M next Tuesday, February 21 at 5:30am!

————————————

HOODIES ARE IN!!

Red, Royal Blue, and Navy Blue!

——————————————–

THE 0645 CLASS

The 0645 Class is inside for their winter hibernation until March 2012 We’ll use the “blue gym” aka “the pizza gym!”

———————————————

NEW BOOT CAMP DISCOUNT

If you set up an automatic payment at your bank (Boot Camp mailing address is 4888 Southern, Memphis 38117) you can subtract $10 off your fee! That’s right, instead of $75, you can pay $65!

—————————————

USMC FITNESS BOOT CAMP CLASSES

0530 Monday through Friday

0645 M-W-F

0830 M-W-F

5:45 PM: Monday and Wednesday, and 5:30 PM on Friday.

THE TUESDAY AND THURSDAY EVENING CLASSES ARE ON HIATUS UNTIL THE TIME CHANGE.

————————————-

JOB OPENING – this from our own Andrew Forsdick

NTTC is looking to hire an entry level Launch Manager in Memphis. Contact me with any candidate names or details on the position. Position works with Telcos & other video operators and TV channel owners such as Discovery, Scripps, ESPN. Needs to be detail oriented, customer friendly, extremely organized, good communicator. Project management & customer service role. Opportunity for advancement.

Andrew Forsdick: aforsdick@nttc.tv

———————————–

BOOT CAMP DISCOUNTS AND FACEBOOK EXPERIMENT!

First of all, find me on Facebook and make me your friend. (Also, be sure to “like” USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP on Facebook.)

Here’s how the discount works!

It’s simple: make a Facebook status update and get a discount!

For every status update that you make that references:
“USMC Fitness Boot Camp,”
“Sgt. Tony’s Boot Camp,”
“Tony’s Boot Camp,”
or something similar, you can take $2.50 off your next reenlistment fee for each update!

You can take up to $20 off for any given month!

Your status update has to be a specific reference to USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP or to me specifically by name.

BE SURE TO TAG ME!

You can do the same thing by “checking in” at USMC Fitness Boot Camp either by using Facebook “places,” Foursquare, or any of the other “check in” apps that show up on your Facebook News Feed.

So log on and start getting your discounts now!

————————————-

PERSONAL TRAINING!

I’ve got a few prime hours open during the week if you know someone looking for a trainer. I use the facilities at Christ Methodist and the hourly rates are standard for Memphis. Over-all fitness training, boot camp style workouts, strength training, sports specific conditioning and agility (tennis, soccer, basketball, etc.)

TonyLudlow@aol.com or 901-644-0145

———————————-

FREE MONTH OF BOOT CAMP FOR YOU!

Remember that when one of your family or friends joins the program at full price because of your recruiting efforts, YOU get a free month of Boot Camp!

———————————-

THE 0830 AND THE 0645 CLASSES!!

The 0830 Class meets on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.

Don’t forget that there is child-care available at the church for this class!

The 0645 meets on MWF inside!

ATTENTION 0830 CLASS MEMBERS: please remember that no cell phone usage is allowed while you drive your car on the campus. So when you pull onto the campus, no cell phones please!

——————————————–

NEW PRICING FOR FAMILIES AND COUPLES

If you’re a part of a family (usually husband and wife) that does USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP together, ask me about it! I think you’ll like it!

———————————————-

PARKING AT CHRIST METHODIST

No change for the 0530 class.

0645: If you could park on the side of the building – not in the handicapped spaces, that would be great.

Evening Class: On Wednesday evening, if you could park west of the Quarterdeck in between the Quarterdeck and the ball field, that would be great.

———————————————-

WANT TO LOSE 20 POUNDS BY THE END OF NEXT MONTH?

Take Shape For Life is the BEST weight loss program I know of. If you’d like to lose weight talk to me. This is the program I used to lose the almost 30 pounds I gained after knee surgery. Let me help you!

You can also go to www.combatchallenge.tsfl.com/

——————————————-

TUESDAY & THURSDAY EVENING CLASSES ARE ON HIATUS

The Tuesday and Thursday evening classes are standing down until the end of next month.

———————————————-

CALENDAR

A calendar has been added to the official USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP website.
http://www.usmcfitnessbootcamp.com/calendar.html

For you visual learners, you’ll find this an easy way to glance at the week or month and see where the workouts will be, if there’s a venue change.

—————————————————

What would you do if money was not an issue, fear was not a factor, and failure was not an option?

To your optimum health and fitness!

SEE YOU ON THE QUARTERDECK!

Tony

Sergeant Major Tony Ludlow

USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP, Commanding
Mailing address: 4888 Southern Ave., Memphis, TN 38117
Cell Phone: 901-644-0145

Posted by Tony Ludlow | in Uncategorized | No Comments »


EVENING CREW: The Quarterdeck is inside tonight at 1730!

Feb. 10th 2012
Posted by Tony Ludlow | in Uncategorized | No Comments »


Curse you, Pheidippides! — Sgt. Tony Ludlow’s Newsletter for 2/8/2012

Feb. 8th 2012

Somewhere around sophomore year in high school I quit thinking that potty humor was funny.

Jokes that relied on references to flatulence, belching, common body noises, and whatnot, just seemed too, well, sophomoric. Kinda funny, don’t you think, that I was a sophomore at the time? OK, so maybe it wasn’t “that” funny that I was a sophomore at the time, but anyway the stuff I giggled at when I was 8 years old at summer camp didn’t seem very funny when I was 16 years old and trying to figure out how to be a man in the world. I never saw John Wayne put his hand in his armpit and start pumping his arm up and down trying to make a sound to amuse his buddies on Iwo Jima. I never saw Cary Grant or Steve McQueen or Lee Marvin relying on that kind of thing to be funny.

Anyway, that’s my disclaimer for telling you about a night that required a lot of unplanned and unwanted potty breaks.

This is also advice on how not to get ready for the New Orleans Marathon, or any marathon for that matter. Even if you’re not a runner I think you’ll get some illumination on some area of your own experience.

So how does a person prepare for a marathon?

Training for a marathon begins 6 months out. Pick a marathon to run, count back 6 months, and that’s when you start training. The New Orleans Marathon was run at the end of Mardi Gras in February. So I counted back 6 months and started training. So far, so good.

I was teaching high school history and was the varsity boys basketball coach at a small private school at the time. I was juggling my teaching responsibilities, coaching duties, doing boot camp, and marathon training all at the same time. Woooohooooo!!

In early November, about halfway into marathon training, and at the beginning of basketball season, I hit a snag. The snag wasn’t with the running. Everything was going pretty well with that. Mileage was increasing according to plan and injuries were few and minor. The snag wasn’t with the training, the snag was with the date of the marathon itself, still months away. The post-season basketball tournament dates had just been published and there was a slight difficulty with the schedule.

See the thing was, if my team did really really well, better than my school had ever done before, there might be a chance that we’d be playing late into the season, conflicting with me running the New Orleans Marathon. This was only a mild consideration in my thinking when I signed up for the marathon months earlier. But I was pretty sure that the chances were slim that it would become a problem for me. I mean, we’d have to win our District Championship and then advance deep into the Regional Tournament for that to even have a chance of happening. It was highly unlikely. My school had never ever advanced that far in the tournament. So I didn’t worry too much.

But as you might have guessed by now, that’s exactly what happened. We ended up having a brilliant season, won our district championship, and played better than I could have imagined! We found ourselves playing deep into the Regional Tournament the night before the New Orleans Marathon! I should have spent the night in New Orleans the night before the marathon with my friends who were running it, but instead, I was coaching a high school basketball game!

Long story made short, we lost the game by one point on a last second shot at the buzzer. It was an absolutely heartbreaking way to lose. But the game was a victory for my guys! Our school had never gotten that far in the Regionals and had never beaten that school – a much larger school than ours — in 65 plus years of school history! In the locker room after the game the guys were sad but were actually taking it all pretty well! It was bitter sweet. We finished a remarkable season with 25 wins, 6 loses.

I walked out of the gym that night floating on cloud nine, excited that we’d made school history. But I was also a little panicked. I had to quickly change gears from being a physically and emotionally exhausted high school basketball coach to become a runner in a marathon 400 miles away. I would be lining up to run 26.2 miles in less than ten hours.

I ran out of the gym, jumped into my car – already packed with my gear — and left Memphis at about 10pm. I had a sack full of sandwiches, candy bars, energy drinks, and a big thermos of coffee to get me down the road.

Unfortunately, the energy drinks and coffee ran though me like water as I drove through the night. I had to make so many unscheduled stops for “calls of nature” and the usual stops for gas, that a trip that should have taken 6 or 7 hours, ended up taking more than 8!

I pulled into New Orleans, bleary-eyed and delirious, and drove directly to the race. I arrived at the Super Dome – the start/finish line for the marathon — with about 45 minutes to spare. I picked up my race packet, ducked into a porta-potty, changed into my running clothes, and then managed to find my friends who’d arrived the day before. They were already there, rested from a good night’s sleep. One of them actually had the gall to start whining about the bed in his hotel room. It was too lumpy, he announced to me, who hadn’t slept in over 27 hours. I wanted to punch him in the face. What a little punk! He wasn’t really my friend anyway. He was the boyfriend of one of our friends.

I found my place in the corrals of runners at the start line, sleepy and hungry. But with the firing of the starting gun, I felt a surge of energy and excitement take over me as my marathon journey began. But it didn’t take long before fatigue set in for real. A lot of that race got lost in my memory, like running in a fog or in a dream. But I finished! I actually finished ahead of some of those friends who’d gotten a good night’s sleep, including the little whiny boy whose bed wasn’t “just right.” (I told his girlfriend that he probably wet that bed too.)

I saw the Kenyan who won that race. He was just about to finish as I was about to begin the second half of the race! He’d run 26.2 miles in the time that it had taken me to run 13.1! And he had run that marathon wearing wing-tip dress shoes! Seriously! Either that, or he was barefooted. Like I said, parts of that race are a blur to me and I might have been hallucinating, who knows! But that’s my story and I’m sticking to it!

After the race we all went over to some friend’s house just north of New Orleans for a huge crawfish boil that was phenomenally delicious! I think I ate my weight in crawfish! In my whole life I’d never been so hungry and so sleepy all at the very same time. I fell asleep on the living room floor with crawfish in my hand.

I would never recommend doing what I did. It was insane! I’ve never talked to anyone who’d done something like that, something that stupid. But what was I supposed to have done? I’d trained for 6 months and logged hundreds of miles to prepare to run THAT race!

Sometimes you just have to do it no matter what. Sometimes you just gotta do it even though it doesn’t make much sense. I mean, who does that? Who drives all night long and gets out of their car and starts running a marathon? My mind kept reminding my body during that race that the runner of the first marathon died at the end of it. “Curse you, Pheidippides!”

I also heard the voices of some naysayers who’d told me that there was “no way” I could do that. “NO WAY!” they said. I don’t think it’s a good idea to adopt the limitations that others put on their own lives. Just because THEY can’t doesn’t mean that YOU can’t.

But at the end of the day I had a story to tell. Like they say, bad decisions lead to interesting stories and life lessons learned.

Sometimes you just gotta do it!

Just … do … it.

Just do it.

“The day you decide to do it is your lucky day.”
– Japanese Proverb.

——————————–

WILL YOU BE A BEAST IN JUNE?

Recently we’ve been entertained by a real character who proclaimed that he’d be “a BEAST by June!”

That got me thinking. June will be here before you know it. You guys can either embarrassingly keep your shirt on in June or you can be a beast! You ladies can keep your wraps on at the pool or beach this summer too. Or …

You can be a beast!

What that’ll mean is that you’re gonna have to make working out a priority and get your butt on the Quarterdeck more than a couple of times a week. That means that you’ll really really have to get your hour of cardio on the weekends. That’ll mean you’ll have to really lose some weight. And I mean, REALLY! The muscles I help you build will still be unseen under a down comforter of unwanted fat and you’ll still be keeping your shirt on in June.

You can do it!

Get that “Myfitnesspal” app and start logging your food and calories!

Set a system of alarms to get yourself up in the morning, if you’re a morning boot camper. In 13 years of doing this job I’VE NEVER OVERSLEPT! That’s over 3,000 wake ups! My system works!

———————————–

SPRING HALF MARATHON TRAINING SATURDAY!

My 17th half marathon training session has begun!

The prerequisites for the training are simple: if you can cover 3 miles in 36 minutes or less then you’re good to go! The cost is cheap and the rewards are HUGE! Boot Campers only pay $75 for the 12 Week Course. (Non-Boot Campers: $125)

IF IT’S RAINING ON SATURDAY MORNING, WE’LL RESCHEDULE FOR SUNDAY MORNING AT 7!

Meet me at 7am this Saturday. We’ll meet in front of the Visitor’s Center at Shelby Farms.

Join the Buffalo Runners of USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP!

There are at least five half marathons in April! There is one in Nashville, Louisville, St. Louis, Oklahoma City, and a new one here in Memphis – Dash for Dads Half Marathon and 5K are on April 28th – www.s2fevents.com!

I’m running Louisville again this year!

————————————

BOGA tomorrow morning at 5:30am

M-16 Workout at CUMC next Tuesday, February 14 at 5:30am!

————————————

HOODIES ARE IN!!

Red, Royal Blue, and Navy Blue!

————————————

JOB OPENING!

Start2Finish Event Management is currently seeking part time employees to work race day events. Job duties could include but not limited to; working registration, race timing, course coning, setting up/manning water stops, loading and unloading trucks, parking vehicles and much more. Interested candidates please contact Daniel Shaffer at daniel@s2fevents.com

———————————

WIND CHILL AND INCLEMENT WEATHER POLICY

Anytime the wind-chill drops below 30 – in the 38117 zip code! — we’ll go inside. Get the Weather.com app for your phone and check to see what the temperature “feels like.” That’s the number we’ll use. What it FEELS LIKE!

The 0645 class is inside from now until March.

Check with weather.com or The Weather Channel. I’ll post it on my Facebook page and the Boot Camp website Blog page (http://usmcfitnessbootcamp.com/blog/) if there’s a question. And if you’re not sure, you can text me at 901-644-0145.

What about inclement weather days?

We’ll follow the Memphis City Schools decision. If they close, we’ll stand-down. If they close in the morning but the streets are clear and good to go by the afternoon, the evening class will meet. I’ll post that status on Facebook and the Boot Camp Blog page.

————————————-

PERSONAL TRAINING!

I’ve got a few prime hours open during the week if you know someone looking for a trainer. I use the facilities at Christ Methodist and the hourly rates are standard for Memphis. Over-all fitness training, boot camp style workouts, strength training, sports specific conditioning and agility (tennis, soccer, basketball, etc.)

TonyLudlow@aol.com or 901-644-0145

——————————————–

THE 0645 CLASS

The 0645 Class is inside for their winter hibernation until March 2012 We’ll use the “blue gym” aka “the pizza gym!”

———————————————

NEW BOOT CAMP DISCOUNT

If you set up an automatic payment at your bank (Boot Camp mailing address is 4888 Southern, Memphis 38117) you can subtract $10 off your fee! That’s right, instead of $75, you can pay $65!

—————————————

USMC FITNESS BOOT CAMP CLASSES

0530 Monday through Friday

0645 M-W-F

0830 M-W-F

5:45 PM: Monday and Wednesday, and 5:30 PM on Friday.

THE TUESDAY AND THURSDAY EVENING CLASSES ARE ON HIATUS UNTIL THE TIME CHANGE.

————————————-

BOOT CAMP DISCOUNTS!

The monthly fee of $75 can be discounted to $55!

DID YOU HEAR THAT?

THE MONTHLY FEE OF $75 CAN BE DISCOUNTED TO $55!

Here’s how …

Make a Facebook status update and get a discount!

For every status update that you make that references:

“USMC Fitness Boot Camp,”

“Sgt. Tony’s Boot Camp,”

“Tony’s Boot Camp,”

or something similar, you can take $2.50 off your reenlistment fee for each update, up to $20 off for any given month! You can go from $75 to $55 a month!!

Your status update has to be a SPECIFIC reference to USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP or to me specifically by name. (There are fake boot camps out there!!)

You can also use “Places” on Facebook or Foursquare linked to your Facebook account to “check in” and you’ll get the same discount!

Use your own wording and personality, just include the specifics.

So log on and get started today!

—————————————

UNEMPLOYED PERSON’S DISCOUNT

If you’ve been a Boot Camper in the past and you are currently unemployed, you can get a special discount. Email me for the details. Seriously! Email me! NOW! And don’t be embarrassed. I will make you an offer that you can’t refuse. Seriously.

——————————-

LAW ENFORCEMENT AND FIRE DEPARTMENT DISCOUNTS

Police Officers, Sheriff’s Deputies, and Memphis Firefighters qualify for a special discount! It’s the least I can do to ensure that our law enforcement officers and firefighters are fit for their job!! Pass the word!

—————————-

WANT TO LOSE 10 to 15 POUNDS BY THE END OF MARCH?

Take Shape For Life is the BEST weight loss program I know of. If you’d like to lose weight talk to me. This is the program I used to lose the almost 30 pounds I gained after knee surgery. Let me help you!

You can also go to www.combatchallenge.tsfl.com/

—————————-

TUESDAY & THURSDAY EVENING CLASS

The Tuesday and Thursday evening classes are standing down until March. So no Tues/Thurs evening classes until then.

—————————-

CALENDAR

A calendar has been added to the official USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP website.

http://www.usmcfitnessbootcamp.com/calendar.html

For you visual learners, you’ll find this an easy way to glance at the week or month and see where the workouts will be, if there’s a venue change.

————————————

“The only thing that scares me is a succession of ordinary days.”

Make your days extraordinary!

Tony

Sergeant Major Tony Ludlow

USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP, Commanding

4888 Southern Ave.

Memphis, TN 38117

901-644-0145

www.usmcfitnessbootcamp.com

www.combatchallenge.tsfl.com

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Protected: BUFFALO RUNNINGS — Sergeant Tony Ludlow’s Half Marathon Training — 17th Edition, Spring 2012

Feb. 4th 2012

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HALF MARATHON TRAINING — Sunday Feb 5, 2012

Feb. 3rd 2012

HALF MARATHON TRAINING … rescheduled for SUNDAY morning at 7am. The weather on Sunday is supposed to be ideal!

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Bell Bottom Blues — Sgt. Tony Ludlow’s Newsletter for 2/1/2012

Feb. 1st 2012

There are a lot of things I don’t understand or have an answer for.

This probably doesn’t come as news to you.

For example, I don’t know why the Queen carries a purse. Seriously, why does the Queen of England need to carry a purse? What’s she got stashed in it? Does she carry money for Starbucks? Does she have a cell phone in her purse? Does she have car keys? Does she have pepper spray or a Glock in there? Does she have keys to the front door of Buckingham Palace in that handbag?

I don’t know why some professional tennis players wear a watch during their matches? If you caught the finals of the Australian Open the other day, you’d have seen Rafael Nadal wearing a watch. Was he going to stop playing in the middle of the match, look at his watch, act surprised, and yell over the net to Novak Djokovic and say, “hey Novak, sorry mate, but I’ve got a dental appointment in 10 minutes … gotta roll! Cheers!”

I don’t understand why so many sharp women hook up with such dull men? And vice-versa. A recent answer I heard had to do with big bank accounts and big boobs. Apparently some men are interested in women with really big bank accounts.

I don’t know why I could easily gain 8 pounds over a weekend – Super Bowl Weekend 2003 – but why it took weeks of sacrifice and exercise to lose it.

I don’t know why people buy bigger clothes instead of losing weight. You know? A guy has a pair of 34 inch waist jeans that starts getting tight, but instead of losing weight, he goes to the store and buys bigger jeans. I don’t get that.

I don’t know why people working in the health field can be such horrible examples of living healthy lives. Doctors and nurses who are overweight, who smoke, and who abuse drugs confound me. It’d be like your dentist having a mouth full of nasty gnarly green teeth and funky stinky breath.

I don’t know why we learn some lessons so slowly, why superstition is so appealing, why racists and bigots aren’t always toothless illiterate rednecks, why misery sometimes has a strange allure, why some of the best tasting food is so bad for you, why drama queens (and kings) blame everyone else for their slow-motion-train-wreck-lives, why self-improvement requires so much self-discipline.

One of my favorite movies is “Groundhog Day.” A story about Phil Connors, played by Bill Murray, stuck in an endless loop, reliving the same February Groundhog Day over and over again. I’ve watched it annually for years. And tomorrow it’ll be time to watch it again. It’s a funny movie, it’s got a great message without being preachy, and it’s got the lovely Andie MacDowell, who plays “Rita,” one of the most attractive characters on film.

A few years ago I wondered how many Groundhog Days Phil was reliving. I could tell from the movie that there were at least 30 some-odd distinctive days on screen. But I knew that Phil had to have spent more days stuck in February 2. He had to go from hedonist, to relativist, to fatalist; to go from a man bent on suicide to a man on a mission of self-discovery and self-actualization. All of that had to take a long time. And along the way he learned to master the piano, to speak French fluently, to ice sculpt like a professional artist, and to become intimately acquainted with every resident of Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania.

He had to have been stuck there for years.

I started doing some research. By many accounts, Phil was there for 10 years. But one of the writers of the screenplay said that it was 10,000 years! In the original story, Phil measures time by going to the library and reading one page per day. He ended up reading every book in the public library!

It took Phil Connors 10,000 lifetimes to get it right. It wasn’t until his heart was pure, that he had no self-serving agenda, that he was motivated by altruism, philanthropy, compassion, caring, and kindness, that the curse was lifted and he finally woke up on February 3.

I’ve often praised REM’s music video of “Everybody Hurts” as being the single best sermon since the one delivered on The Mount. And right after those, “Groundhog Day” is more instructive about life than any lecture I’ve ever heard. Buddhists love it because of its message of selflessness and rebirth. Catholics have praised it as a portrayal of purgatory. And I like it because it’s got Andie MacDowell!

I also like it because it reminds me that the most important things in life aren’t things.

—————————————-

HELP ME, HELP YOU!!

If you’ve not “liked” the USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP
page, do so at once!! I’ve been challenged by a business buddy to get 1000 “likes” before he can get them for his business! Like it! We’re at 765!

AND … on the right side of the page, click on the “Recommendations from friends” and take a few minutes to write a recommendation and get a DISCOUNT!

Take $5 off your next enlistment when you write a recommendation of 3 sentences or more!

———————————-

WEIGHT LOSS!!

MyFitnessPal app for the iPhone!

Let me recommend an app for your smart phone that’s awesome. “MyFitnessPal” will take the dull and tediousness out of tracking your calories.

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SPRING HALF MARATHON TRAINING SATURDAY … OR MAYBE SUNDAY!

My 17th half marathon training session has begun!

The prerequisites for the training are simple: if you can cover 3 miles in 36 minutes or less then you’re good to go! The cost is cheap and the rewards are HUGE! Boot Campers only pay $75 for the 12 Week Course. (Non-Boot Campers: $125)

IF IT’S RAINING ON SATURDAY MORNING, WE’LL RESCHEDULE FOR SUNDAY MORNING AT 7!

Meet me at 7am this Saturday, February 4. We’ll meet in front of the Visitor’s Center at Shelby Farms.
Join the Buffalo Runners of USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP!

There are at least five half marathons in April! There is one in Nashville, Louisville, St. Louis, Oklahoma City, and a new one here in Memphis – Dash for Dads Half Marathon and 5K are on April 28th – www.s2fevents.com!

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BOGA tomorrow morning at 5:30am

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PHYSICAL FITNESS TEST

We had a GREAT turnout for the first Physical Fitness Test of 2012 yesterday morning! Over 50 of you took the challenge! CONGRATULATIONS EVERYONE!

Here are the overall overachievers:

Men:
1.5 Mile Run: Patrick Moore: 10:45
Push-ups: Patrick Moore: 63
Sit-ups: Frank Day: 70

Ladies:
1.5 Mile Run: Lauren Taylor: 11:00
Push-ups: Melissa “Weiner Dog” Moore: 77 *
Sit-ups: Ashley Hofeditz: 84 **

* Today is Melissa’s 7 Year Anniversary of USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP! Thank you, Melissa! Happy Anniversary!

** Ashley’s 84 sit-ups were the best overall!! Congratulations, Ashley!

NEXT TEST IS MAY 29!

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JOB OPENING!

Start2Finish Event Management is currently seeking part time employees to work race day events. Job duties could include but not limited to; working registration, race timing, course coning, setting up/manning water stops, loading and unloading trucks, parking vehicles and much more. Interested candidates please contact Daniel Shaffer at daniel@s2fevents.com

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WIND CHILL AND INCLEMENT WEATHER POLICY

Anytime the wind-chill drops below 30 – in the 38117 zip code! — we’ll go inside. Get the Weather.com app for your phone and check to see what the temperature “feels like.” That’s the number we’ll use. What it FEELS LIKE!

The 0645 class is inside from now until March.

Check with weather.com or The Weather Channel. I’ll post it on my Facebook page and the Boot Camp website Blog page (http://usmcfitnessbootcamp.com/blog/) if there’s a question. And if you’re not sure, you can text me at 901-644-0145.

What about inclement weather days?

We’ll follow the Memphis City Schools decision. If they close, we’ll stand-down. If they close in the morning but the streets are clear and good to go by the afternoon, the evening class will meet. I’ll post that status on Facebook and the Boot Camp Blog page.

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PERSONAL TRAINING!

I’ve got a few prime hours open during the week if you know someone looking for a trainer. I use the facilities at Christ Methodist and the hourly rates are standard for Memphis. Over-all fitness training, boot camp style workouts, strength training, sports specific conditioning and agility (tennis, soccer, basketball, etc.)

TonyLudlow@aol.com or 901-644-0145

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THE 0645 CLASS

The 0645 Class is inside for their winter hibernation until March 2012 We’ll use the “blue gym” aka “the pizza gym!”

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NEW BOOT CAMP DISCOUNT

If you set up an automatic payment at your bank (Boot Camp mailing address is 4888 Southern, Memphis 38117) you can subtract $10 off your fee! That’s right, instead of $75, you can pay $65!

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USMC FITNESS BOOT CAMP CLASSES

0530 Monday through Friday

0645 M-W-F

0830 M-W-F

5:45 PM: Monday and Wednesday, and 5:30 PM on Friday.

THE TUESDAY AND THURSDAY EVENING CLASSES ARE ON HIATUS UNTIL THE TIME CHANGE.

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BOOT CAMP DISCOUNTS!

The monthly fee of $75 can be discounted to $55!

DID YOU HEAR THAT?

THE MONTHLY FEE OF $75 CAN BE DISCOUNTED TO $55!

Here’s how …

Make a Facebook status update and get a discount!

For every status update that you make that references:

“USMC Fitness Boot Camp,”

“Sgt. Tony’s Boot Camp,”

“Tony’s Boot Camp,”

or something similar, you can take $2.50 off your reenlistment fee for each update, up to $20 off for any given month! You can go from $75 to $55 a month!!

Your status update has to be a SPECIFIC reference to USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP or to me specifically by n

ame. (There are fake boot camps out there!!)

You can also use “Places” on Facebook or Foursquare linked to your Facebook account to “check in” and you’ll get the same discount!

Use your own wording and personality, just include the specifics.

So log on and get started today!

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UNEMPLOYED PERSON’S DISCOUNT

If you’ve been a Boot Camper in the past and you are currently unemployed, you can get a special discount. Email me for the details. Seriously! Email me! NOW! And don’t be embarrassed. I will make you an offer that you can’t refuse. Seriously.

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LAW ENFORCEMENT AND FIRE DEPARTMENT DISCOUNTS

Police Officers, Sheriff’s Deputies, and Memphis Firefighters qualify for a special discount! It’s the least I can do to ensure that our law enforcement officers and firefighters are fit for their job!! Pass the word!

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WANT TO LOSE 10 to 15 POUNDS BY THE END OF FEBRUARY?

Take Shape For Life is the BEST weight loss program I know of. If you’d like to lose weight talk to me. This is the program I used to lose the almost 30 pounds I gained after knee surgery. Let me help you!

You can also go to www.combatchallenge.tsfl.com/

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TUESDAY & THURSDAY EVENING CLASS

The Tuesday and Thursday evening classes are standing down until March. So no Tues/Thurs evening classes until then.

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CALENDAR

A calendar has been added to the official USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP website.

http://www.usmcfitnessbootcamp.com/calendar.html

For you visual learners, you’ll find this an easy way to glance at the week or month and see where the workouts will be, if there’s a venue change.

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“The only thing that scares me is a succession of ordinary days.”

Make your days extraordinary!

Tony

Sergeant Major Tony Ludlow

USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP, Commanding

4888 Southern Ave.

Memphis, TN 38117

901-644-0145

www.usmcfitnessbootcamp.com

www.combatchallenge.tsfl.com

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