Sergeant Tony's Blog

DUCK DYNASTY — Sgt. Tony Ludlow’s blog post for 9/20/2013

Friday, Sep. 20th 2013 3:40 PM

I have a few faults.

OK, more than just a few.

I know that this won’t come as a surprise to you; not that I have faults, but that I would admit that I have them.

One of my faults is that I’m sometimes bad about holding a grudge. I know it’s wrong and that I shouldn’t do it. But it’s pretty hard. You see it’s not a failure on my part to forgive someone; I can do that. In fact, being quick to forgive hasn’t always served me well. Most of the time I’m too ready and too willing to forgive. It sometimes gives the users and the unscrupulous an opportunity to hurt me or take advantage of me a second time.

But when I’ve been slighted or insulted and the person never apologizes, I don’t do well with that. If someone tells lies about me, slanders me, betrays me, or steals from me, I’ve held that against them. I’ve justified my behavior in the past by saying that not even God forgives offenders unless and until the offender asks for forgiveness. (At least that’s the consensus view among most religious representatives.)

If I’ve been slighted, insulted, or offended, I don’t do very well with forgetting that. I’m pretty sure that the men who helped raise me taught me this. I was raised in the company of proud men who had a certain sense of honor, and respect, and conduct, and expectation for how men are to behave and respond. John Wayne, in his last movie, the 1976 “The Shootist,” had a line that solidified what I believed and had been taught. That line codified my belief system, so to speak:

“I won’t be wronged. I won’t be insulted. I won’t be laid a-hand on. I don’t do these things to other people, and I require the same from them.”

If it was good enough for The Duke, it was good enough for me, I reasoned. By the way, “The Shootist” is a great movie.

I have other faults. I have trouble being sympathetic towards people who cause trouble for themselves and others, especially when they’ve been advised, warned, counseled, and otherwise begged not to do x, y, and z and it goes south when they go on ahead and do x, y, and z. Like when you tell a friend not to date some absolute loser but they do it anyway and the “relationship” becomes toxic and harmful. Things like that.

I’ve decided to quit being passive about something that I struggle with. I struggle with the attitude that exercise is a hobby, like golf, or fishing, or NASCAR. I struggle with hearing people whine about the condition of their poor physical health and their slow-motion-train-wreck of a life when they reject the very thing – exercise – that would rescue them.

I don’t know if that’s a fault or not. But I do know that if I don’t write the following, that it would be wrong.

For my whole adult life I’ve been labeled “an exercise person” or “a health nut.” As if being healthy, living healthy, and living a disciplined healthy life was the same thing as gun collecting or gardening.

Exercise isn’t optional it’s essential!

The fact that you can choose to ignore it or choose not to participate does not mean that it isn’t necessary!

Exercise is often associated with vanity or narcissism and it’s true that you can find folks whose fitness goals aren’t exactly to be healthy, but to look good. I don’t care. If the result is health and wellness and fitness, I don’t care what the person’s reasons were.

Obesity, poor health decisions, and high-risk lifestyle choices are ruining our lives, burdening our relationships, handicapping our communities, and poisoning our country.

Military recruiters can’t find recruits – even in a down economy – who can pass the physical fitness test because the prospects are fat and unfit. This is a growing national security crisis.

Instead of sounding the national alarm, the public discussion about obesity gets toned down so as not to hurt anyone’s feelings. Instead of a call to action, we build bigger seats on airplanes and buses and accommodate our failure to take proper care of ourselves. A shirt that was labeled a “large” 10 years ago, is now a “medium” for the same rationale.

We don’t say that someone is fat, we say that they’re big boned, or sturdy, or “thick.” Or we find some other euphemism to describe obesity.

And while cigarette smoking is down nationwide, it’s up among children and teenagers. Smoking is the leading cause of preventable illness and death in the United States, killing more than 440,000 people each year. It’s responsible for the majority of lung cancer deaths and is a deadly factor in heart attacks and a variety of other illnesses.

Why should I care? I care for the same reason the state of Tennessee requires you to wear a seatbelt and to properly restrain your child.

At our core, we are communities made up into a nation. What happens to one of us has rippling effects upon all of us. A shooting in South Memphis effects me in East Memphis because South Memphis is a part of my larger community and killing one another wholesale on the streets of my community is bad for my community.

From a health care standpoint, my neighbor’s obesity and poor health don’t just affect him alone. It impacts my community through rising healthcare costs and the inordinate and unnecessary consumption of limited healthcare resources by just one person in my community.

Exercise and living a healthy lifestyle won’t keep me from dying. The legendary fitness guru, Jack LaLanne (, was my first fitness instructor. He always said that he couldn’t die because it would be bad for his reputation! Jack did die in January 2011 at the age of 96. But here’s the thing, he lived a vibrant, full, meaningful, relevant and energetic life all the way up to the end of his life.

I would suspect that Jack LaLanne cost the American healthcare system less than few hundred dollars a year.

Life is unpredictable and messy. I can’t control very much of what happens to me, but I can control my own behavior and my own habits. And so can you.

For a small investment of self-discipline and effort, people can change the quality of their lives, make their communities stronger, and reduce the costs of health care (sick care).

Healthy people are happier people, more involved in the organizations of their communities, schools, churches, and synagogues. They pay less in mental health care costs. They’re more resilient to disease and catastrophic illness. And the list of benefits goes on and on.

Here are 9 quotes from one of my favorite new philosophers. His wisdom is more than worth our attention. Ladies and gentlemen, Kid President! (Pay close attention to #5.)

1. “If there are two paths, I want to be on the one that leads to awesome”

2. “The world needs you to stop being boring”

3. “Create something that will make the world awesome”

4. “If life is a game, aren’t we all on the same team?”

5. “This is life people… you got air coming through your nose… you got a heart beat… it’s time to do something”

6. “Don’t stop believing, unless your dream is stupid… then get a better dream and keep going, keep going, keep going…”

7. “What will you create that will make the world more awesome… nothing if you’re just sitting there”

8. “You were made to be awesome”

9. “If everybody’s good, then it gives the world a reason to dance… so get to it!”

I hope one day to be as wise as Robby Novak, 10 year-old philosopher and genius.

— 30 —

Sorry, this essay had nothing to do with Duck Dynasty. I was just curious if I tricked anyone to read the whole essay looking for something about that show. Did I get you?



Buffalo Runners!

The Problem: The MRTC 10K is this Sunday at Shelby Farms. Our park will be full of 2000+ runners (and their cars) and that’ll be problematic for us.

The Solution: We’ll meet at Christ Methodist at 7am and run in the neighborhood of our USMC Fitness Boot Camp host for this Sunday.

Be sure to bring your hydration and fuel! See you Sunday!

Cost: $75 for active duty boot campers.
$125 for non-active duty boot campers or “friends of boot camp.”

If you’re running the MRTC Road Race Series, you can still train with me and you can take $30 off the above fee!


by Sergeant Ashley Hofeditz, RD LDN,
(A Registered Dietitian has a BS in Food Science, followed by a one year internship through an accredited university, and then with the recommendation of the internship program’s supervisor, a national examination is required. After that, an RD must have continuing education units annually in order to remain active and registered. RDs are experts, not hobbyists or a “food enthusiasts.”)

Chew On This

“Have you ever noticed that when you see Tony on the quarterdeck each morning or evening he has a stick of gum in his mouth? He also chews gum when he bikes and runs, as do I. We both have had the habit of chewing gum during exercise for as long as we can remember. We both know that chewing sugar free gum helps prevent tooth decay and gives us fresher breath! But another reason Tony chews gum is because it helps to keep his throat moist, which allows him to more comfortably yell out orders on the quarterdeck. Lucky us!

If you have never been a gum chewer, you may want to pick up a pack the next time you are at the store. There’s plenty of research that shows that our half-a-pack-a-day-habit may be more beneficial than we originally thought. Studies show that chewing gum may help increase focus, alertness, and concentration, reduces stress, and may even help people manage their weight.

According to the Wrigley Science Institute, research has shown that chewing gum may help improve alertness and concentration and can even improve a person’s ability to learn, retain, and retrieve information. One of the reasons that this may be true is because chewing gum appears to increase blood flow to the brain by about 25%. Some teachers are actually encouraging students to chew gum while test taking to help increase concentration.

Psychiatrists and psychologists suggest two of the reasons people chew gum are to relieve boredom and reduce tension. It can help people release nervous energy and provide an outlet for frustration and irritation. Many athletes and coaches chew gum to help reduce stress and to keep them focused. And another interesting fact is that since World War I, the U.S. Armed Forces have been putting chewing gum in field and combat rations to help increase alertness, ease tension, and improve oral health.

Popping in a stick of gum may also help you manage your weight. Chewing a 5 to 25 calorie stick of gum instead snacking on chocolate bar can save you a few hundred calories and can help prevent mindless munching. Preliminary studies show that chewing gum can suppress appetite, especially for sweets, and can reduce overall snack intake. Chewing gum can be quite a workout for your mouth, and just like real exercise, it does burn calories. Just don’t trade in your running shoes quite yet, since gum chewing only burns a whopping 11 calories an hour.”

Thank you, Ashley!


If you run with music, turn it down or use only one earbud. I recently bought an excellent single earbud (XDU Noise Isolating Earbud) from Far End Gear



College football is BACK!!! Halleluiah!

Every Friday during football season is game day t-shirt day! Wear your alma mater’s colors and paraphernalia on Fridays. If your school doesn’t have a football team or you didn’t make it to college, feel free to adopt any school you like!




Invite your friends to “like” our USMC Fitness BOOT CAMP Facebook page. You can do that directly from our boot camp page. Just go to the page and you’ll see a section on the right that will allow you to easily invite your friends to like the page. In particular, your Memphis friends!

This may be the first seed to sow in helping a friend get back into exercise and fitness! They can get exposed to what goes on, they’ll be more likely to make a change and maybe even join you on The Quarterdeck!

Encourage your friends and family to “Like” the page! It might motivate your friends and family to take charge of their lives!

Keep on checking in! Keep on tagging your friends!
Thanks, everyone!



I am asking you veterans to fill out a card – I have them – with your name, number of years of service, and preferred t-shirt size!


MAKE A $&(#&@^#!*% FACE!!!!



What you get out of the workouts is determined by you.

How much do you work? How much effort you put into trying to do all of the repetitions with proper form and how much weight you’re using will determine what you get out of each workout.


It’s time for you to go up in weights … that’s what I’m thinking!







Members of the Sub-7 Club are Boot Campers who’ve run the mile in under 7 minutes under my observation and timing.

Congratulations to the following members of the Sub Seven Club:

Corporal Lee Chase,
Corporal Chris McLelland,
Staff Sergeant Patrick Moore,
Staff Sergeant Rob Johnston,
Staff Sergeant Andrew Stolnicki,
Gunnery Sergeant Bart Thomas,
Staff Sergeant Dory Sellers,
Gunnery Sergeant Henry Kenworthy,
Master Sergeant John Winford,
First Sergeant Matt Green,
And Sergeant Major Andrew Forsdick.



Your rank insignia t-shirts look AWESOME on you! (Don’t forget to wear yours EVERY WEDNESDAY AND/OR THURSDAY, T-SHIRT DAY!

Every Wednesday is our Official BOOT CAMP T-SHIRT DAY! You can wear your rank insignia shirt anytime you‘d like, of course, but always every Wednesday!

The Rank Structure of the Quarterdeck:

Under 6 months is a Private
Six months to 1 year is a Private First Class.

Over 1 year is a Lance Corporal
– ShaWanda Upshaw 10/2011
– Tara Ingram 11/2011
– Pam Torres – meritoriously promoted 12/2012
– Rachel Phillips 2/2012
– Teresa Reed 2/2012
– Alan Compton 4/2012
– Natalie Mannon 5/2012
– Steve Havard 5/2012
– Emma Crystal 5/2012
– Megan Collins 6/2012
– Maria Wyatt 6/2012
– Beth Stengel 2/2012
– Chris Kelley 6/2102
– Susye Clark 7/2012
– Victoria Tigrett 8/2012
– Crystal Bloodworth 8/2012
– Lora Gubanov 8/2012
– Shelia Johnson 8/2012

Over 2 years is a Corporal
– Paul Bauer 11/2010
– Jeremy Harris 1/2009*
– Courtney Phillips 2/2011
– Robin Scott 3/2011
– Chris McLelland 3/2011
– JD Dombroski 4/2011
– Randal Rhea 4/2011
– Cindy King 4/2011
– Sherri Thompson 4/2011
– Becky Lawler 5/2010*
– Carrie Schule 5/2011
– Bevan Lee 5/2011
– Melissa Thompson 5/2011
– Michelle Moss 5/2011
– Mary Bauer 6/2011
– Lee Chase 7/2011
– Tait Keller 8/2011
– Heath Anderson 9/2011
– Lindsey Stanfill 9/2011

Over 3 years is a Sergeant
– Cameron Mosley 11/2009
– Karen Massey 11/2009
– Cecelia DeLacy 2/2010
– Malinda Miller 3/2010
– Ashley Hofeditz 4/2010
– Beth Mills 5/2010
– Emily Melonas 6/2010
– Keith Renard 6/2009*
– Ashley McClure 7/2010
– Falana Scott 7/2010
– Jenni Harris 8/2010
– Anne Marie Wyatt 8/2010
– Tim Romanow 8/2010

Over 4 years is a Staff Sergeant
– Jonathan Phillips 10/2008
– Scott Plunkett 10/2008
– Shena Clemons 10/2008
– Jessie Flanders 1/2009
– Andrew Stolnicki 1/2009
– Ben Killerlain 1/2009
– Paul Tronsor 3/2009
– Teresa Faulk 6/2009
– Sarah Vickers 8/2009
– Robert Hunt 8/2009

Over 5 years is a Gunnery Sergeant
– George Rose 10/2007
– Frank Jemison 10/2007
– Patty Dougherty 3/2008
– Oscar Adams 3/2008
– Patty Dougherty 3/2008
– Rob Johnston 4/2008
– Alan Schaeffer 4/2008
– Buddy Daves 5/2008
– Mike Ryan 5/2006*
– Dory Sellers 6/2006*
– Albo Carruthers 8/2008
– Anne Kenworthy 8/2008
– Patrick Moore 9/2008

Over 6 years is a Master Sergeant
– Kay Ryan 10/2006
– Jeff Lee 1/2006
– Anne Mead 2/2005*
– Michelle Dunn 3/2007
– Henry Kenworthy 5/2007
– Leslie Garey 6/2007
– Beth Rehrig 7/2007
– Matt Prince 8/2007

Over 7 years is a First Sergeant
– Gary Thompson 10/2005
– Scot Bearup 10/2005
– Kay Shelton 1/2006
– Leesa Jensen 5/2006
– Megan Warr 8/2006
– Rob Norcross 8/2006
– Ralph Braden 9/2006

Over 8 years is a Sergeant Major
– Melissa Moore 2/2005
– Louis Glazer 3/2005
– Matt Green 5/2005
– Mike Barta 6/2005*
– Anne Emmerth 6/2005*

Over 9 years is a Warrant Officer 1
– David Townsend 1/2004
– Hank Brown 3/2004
– Andrew Forsdick 9/2004

Over 10 years is a Chief Warrant Officer 2
– Pat McGhee 1/2003
– John Whittemore 1/2003
– Peter Pettit 5/2003
– Buddy Flinn 7/2003
– Amy Singer 9/2003

Battalion Executive Officer
Major Richard Bourland

* broken time



We should be!


You should totally do that!



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!

(This is not an automatic bank draft that I set up with a voided check. This an automatic payment that you yourself set up.)



0530 Monday through Friday
(First and second Tuesday of the month are M-16 Workouts at CUMC. Third and fourth Tuesdays are Mt. Fuji Workouts at the U of M)

0645 M-F

5:45 PM: Monday through Thursday, 5:30 on Friday.



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, (there are fake boot camps out there) 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.


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!



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

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.


Q. How can I get up in the morning on a consistent basis?
A. Contrary to what many think, I am NOT a morning person. I have to be “dynamited” out of the bed! Here are some tips to help you get going in the morning:
1. Use two alarm clocks. I have a snooze alarm that starts going off several minutes before I intend to get up. Then I have a “Last Call” alarm clock that is located across the room. This alarm clock is set to go off when I MUST get up.
2. Once the last call alarm goes off, the bed become OFF LIMITS! Get moving!
3. Get out of bed, turn off the alarm clock, and start turning on lights all through the house. Turn on the TV.
4. Lay out your clothes the night before. Don’t go wandering around the house in the morning trying to find your left shoe and your favorite shorts. So, have things ready the night before.

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!



Sergeant Major Tony Ludlow

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

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