Sergeant Tony's Blog

Pearl Jam — Sgt. Tony Ludlow, blog post for 10/15/2014

Wednesday, Oct. 15th 2014 7:54 PM

Some of my degenerate friends went to see Pearl Jam last night, a rock band that looks like it needs a good shower and some clean clothes. (But I do like “Evenflow.”) Given the skyrocketing costs of concert tickets these days, I’ve become more selective about the concerts I attend. I developed a very complicated algorithm to determine whether I should buy tickets to a particular concert. Here’s that algorithm in simple terms: “If I don’t have at least $10 worth of that band’s music in my iTunes Library, no tickets will be purchased.”

Pearl Jam was soooooo close, coming in at $9.90. (Sorry Eddie. Maybe next time.)

Some of my profligate friends who went to the concert last night posted an assortment of their debaucherous concert photos on Facebook for all to see. It looked dreadful, all of those unwashed hoodlums milling about pretending to understand abstract thought and grunting lyrics! But it got me to thinking about my first concert.

Driving to Tulsa, Oklahoma, spring 1975.

I lied to my mom.

I told her that I was spending the night with a buddy, but I had decided to drive to Tulsa, about two hours away, and see Leo Kottke in concert. Leo is a guitar player extraordinaire. His concerts are usually small intimate gigs. Think “New Daisy Theater,” which he’s played many times, and not FedEx Forum. He usually switches between a six string or twelve string acoustic guitar during his concerts, playing a lot of slide while seated in a plastic chair. And though he does sing some, it’s really best if he doesn’t. He’s not much of a singer. But he’s the best guitar player I’ve ever seen … well … him and Ry Cooder. I suppose that’s all debatable. But those two guys would have to be in most people’s Top 20 Guitarists list. I’m getting off point. Let me refocus.

I drove to Tulsa by myself. I’d never been that far away from home by myself on my own in my own car and I was both excited and a little worried that I might have car trouble or that my mom would discover my deception. I was 17.

I tried to get some buddies to go with me but they either had never heard of Leo or were too nervous about driving into Oklahoma with their buddy, escaping hearth and home, out on the open highway where all kinds of foolishness and mischief might lurk.

I made it to Tulsa just fine and had an excellent time at the concert. That’s actually an understatement! Up to that point, it was one of the premiere experiences of my life and I still talk about it to this day. In fact, I talked about it just this morning!

The concert was held in a small venue with open seating and I found a great spot in the second row. Leo was so close that I could hear the music coming directly from his guitar without the need for the sound system. He played most of the tunes from the only album of his that I owned at the time, entitled “Ice Water.” He played my favorite song, an instrumental called “A Good Egg.” When he started playing that song, I was transfixed! Such is the power of music, isn’t it? His hands and fingers flew. I couldn’t have been more captivated. We all were! And then in the middle of that song Leo started talking to a girl on the front row, just in front of me! She couldn’t believe that he was talking to her and was a bit surprised! He asked her questions, and was having a truly engaging conversation with her as he ignored the music he was playing, as if his hands and fingers were attached to some other person. I was caught between admiration and jealousy! The girl couldn’t have been more than twenty years old and so far out of my league I wouldn’t have been able to start a conversation with her if I’d had a year to prepare. But Leo just started talking to her as if they were old friends: “Hello there! Are you enjoying the concert? Are you from Tulsa? Is that so? And how do you like college?” And on he went while his hands and fingers appeared to be moving by direction of some unseen puppet master back stage.

I have vivid memories of that concert that I put to paper in the form of journal entries. I had started keeping a journal a couple of years before and wrote in detail about that trip and the concert. I went into detail about the events of the trip, how many miles per gallon I’d gotten, where and what I ate, and every detail about the concert itself. My mother, God rest her sweet soul, knew I kept a journal, and as far as I know, never one time violated my privacy and looked in it. Had she, I’m certain punishments and retributions would have followed because I wrote about everything!

I continued to keep journals from that time forward and by the time I was to move back to the States from Japan in the late 90’s, I’d filled stacks of them! They included my thoughts, ideas, impressions, workouts, plans, ambitions, quotes, drawings, goals, etc. I had written down the details of my workouts and my runs, my triathlon training, my experiments with different training ideas and techniques, my nutrition guidelines … everything. My adventures in Japan and the life I acquired there were described in those notebooks. If my house had caught on fire, I’d have run inside and grabbed those journals! They contained my life.

When the moving company came to my house to pack and load my shipment for my return to America, they took great care to pack all of my belongings, including my journals, into boxes. They took all of my things to their warehouse at the Port of Nagoya where they were packed into a crate and put into an overseas shipping container for transport by freighter. Two months later, the crate arrived at the Port of New Orleans where it was opened, searched, cleared through customs, and then all of my personal effects were loaded into a truck and shipped to me here in Memphis. Unfortunately, several items were missing from my shipment, including the boxes that contained my journals. I don’t have to tell you how upset I was. Inquiry was made, of course, and a trace put on those items, but they were no where to be found. No one could tell me where they were or where they’d dropped off the manifest. The claim I filed with the freight company was for a paltry sum; how do you place a monetary value on twenty years worth of life written in your own hand? My journals were gone forever.

I was hesitant to begin keeping a journal again. But a year or so later I started again. And then several years after that, I was romantically involved with a woman who, when my back was turned, helped herself to the journals I’d been writing. She also snooped in my cell phone and laptop. And though my entries and my digital life were mostly boring and innocuous, they were, nonetheless, my own private thoughts and ideas that should have remained private. But she was the jealous type who saw everything and everyone as a threat and that clouded her interpretation of the things I wrote. She tried for a long time to keep her snooping a secret from me, but when at last she was certain that she’d discovered some indiscretion I’d written about in my journal, she revealed her betrayal and went on the attack, accusing me of things beyond my imagination, but not beyond her ability to see demons where none existed. And even though all of her awful accusations were countered with innocent truths, I had never felt so violated and betrayed in my life. It brought about the end of the relationship.

I can’t discount the great value in writing things in a journal or notebook or digital diary. So many times in my life, all I needed to do was just get something written down, get it out of my system, for me to feel at ease and at peace. Many a hot and inflammatory letter was never sent because I’d simply written all of my anger and outrage into pages in a journal that never saw the light of day. I still write in journals, but because of that one experience, I’ve been less regular and hesitant to be as forthcoming as I’d been previously.

Here’s the take away: if you snoop, you lose. No matter what. The breach of trust through an act of spying changes the dynamics of every relationship in which it occurs. Even if nothing inappropriate is discovered, a foreign and infectious poison is introduced into the relationship that few survive. It’s a cancer. It creates an atmosphere of dishonesty and betrayal that are fatal to the vast majority of relationships. And if not fatal, then surely the relationship becomes heavy and dark and burdensome through suspicion and distrust.

That’s not to say that if one member of a relationship has violated that relationship through cheating or irresponsible spending or other inappropriate behavior, that every means available be sought to mend that failed trust. It might mean giving up all privacy in email accounts, text messaging, Facebook accounts, digital note taking, or journaling. When trust is broken, complete openness and transparency are probably the only ways that trust can be reestablished. But that’s pretty extreme, in my view. In a loving, committed, and healthy relationship trust and honesty are the foundation upon which that relationship lives. If you can’t trust the one you’re with, if you can’t allow that other person their own privacy, if you can’t keep yourself from spying and snooping, then you have no business in that relationship. Something(s) is bad wrong.

If you snoop, you lose. And you can write that down in your journal.

— 30 —


However, if it’s raining, we’ll do BOGA

During college football season wear your favorite team’s shirt or hat or other gear every Friday! (Or whenever your team plays!)


We’ve changed our run day to SATURDAYS! (Weather permitting.)

Our next training run will be this Saturday morning at 7am.

The cost for the 3 months of training is $75 for active duty boot campers and $125 for “friends of boot camp.” And it’s not too late to get started. Let’s talk!

If you’re not interested in half marathon training, but you’d like to get your one hour of CC (continuous cardio) with the Buffalo Runners, you’re welcome to join us at no cost!

Our goal will be to run on Saturdays, but if the weather forecast for the weekend makes it more prudent to run on Sunday instead, then we’ll run on Sunday.


by Staff Sergeant Ashley Holloway, Registered Dietitian, 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. An RD is an expert, not a hobbyist or a “food enthusiast.”)

Sweet Tooth Solutions

If you are trying to reduce the number of calories that you consume or to reduce added sugars in your diet, artificial sweeteners and other sugar substitutes may be a healthy way to have your cake and eat it too.

Artificial sweeteners and sugar substitutes are found in a variety of food and beverages marketed as “sugar-free” or “diet,” including yogurt, soft drinks, chewing gum, baked goods, candy, fruit juice, ice cream, and scores of other foods and beverages.

Sugar substitutes are loosely considered any sweetener that you use instead of regular table sugar (sucrose). But often the terminology used can be open to interpretation. For instance, some manufacturers call their sweeteners “natural” even though they’re processed or refined, as is the case with stevia preparations. And some artificial sweeteners are made from naturally occurring substances — sucralose comes from sugar, for example. Artificial sweeteners are also known as intense sweeteners because they are many times sweeter than regular sugar.

Artificial sweeteners are attractive alternatives to sugar because they add zero to just a handful of calories to your diet. In addition, you need only a fraction compared with the amount of sugar you would normally use for sweetness. A teaspoon of regular sugar has about 16 calories. One 12-ounce can of a sweetened cola contains 8 teaspoons of added sugar, or about 130 calories from sugar alone. But if you consume a diet version of the same cola, you are getting no calories, which can easily be an attractive option for those who like soda but want to avoid the extra calories.

But are artificial sweeteners and sugar substitutes safe? Unlike herbal supplements, artificial sweeteners are regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as food additives. This means that they must be reviewed and approved by the FDA before they are put on the market. Many of these products are declared by the FDA to be “generally recognized as safe” (GRAS). That means that these items are considered as being safe for their intended use, by qualified professionals based on scientific research or they have such a lengthy history of common use in food that they’re considered generally safe and don’t require FDA approval.

Luckily for consumers, the FDA has also established an acceptable daily intake (ADI) for each artificial sweetener. This is the maximum amount considered safe to consume each day over the course of your lifetime. ADIs are intended to be about 100 times less than the smallest amount that might cause health concerns. Good news for those Diet Coke drinkers out there … According to the American Cancer Society, an adult weighing 165 pounds would have to drink more than 19 cans of diet soda or consume more than 107 packets of aspartame (Equal or Nutrasweet) a day to go over the recommended level.

As you may know, artificial sweeteners have been the subject of research and intense scrutiny for years. Critics of artificial sweeteners say that they cause a variety of health problems, including cancer. Back in the 1970s linked saccharin to bladder cancer in laboratory rats. Because of those studies, saccharin once carried a warning label that it may be hazardous to your health.

But according to the National Cancer Institute, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, and other health agencies, there’s no hard scientific evidence that any of the artificial sweeteners approved for use in the U.S. cause cancer or other serious health problems. And many more research studies confirm that artificial sweeteners are generally safe in limited quantities. As a result of the newer studies, the warning label for saccharin was dropped.

When choosing sugar substitutes, it is important to be an informed consumer. While artificial sweeteners and sugar substitutes may help with weight loss and weight maintenance, they aren’t the key to weight loss and should only be used in moderation.

And remember, even though a food is labeled as sugar-free, doesn’t always mean that it is calorie free! If you eat too many sugar-free foods, that contain calories from other ingredients, you can still gain weight! It is also important to note that processed foods, which often contain sugar substitutes, usually do not offer the same health benefits as do whole foods, such as lean meats, fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.





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:

Private Sam Podesta
Private Ben Newsham x 2
PFC Tim Jacobs
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 Chief Warrant Officer 2 Andrew Forsdick.



Are you coming up on promotion? Let me know! If you’ve been in the program for 6 months straight, you should be on the roster!

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!


Under 6 months is a Private

Private First Class is more than 6 months but less than 1 year.
– “El” McCain 11/2013
– Angela Moore 12/2013
– Jenn Bonner 12/2013
– Brett Bonner 1/2014

Over 1 year is a Lance Corporal
– Pam Torres – meritoriously promoted 12/2012
– Teresa Reed 2/2012*
– Emma Crystal 5/2012
– Megan Collins 6/2012
– Maria Wyatt 6/2012
– Chuck Miller 11/2012
– Diane Gorney 12/2012
– Lexie Johnston 12/201?
– Ashley Summers 2/2014
– Ben Summers 2/2013
– Sam Lee 2/2013
– Louise Biedenharn 2/2013
– Jay Biedenharn 2/2013
– Ragan Washburn 2/2013
– Mary Holland Doan 4/2013
– Kay Barkoh 4/2013
– Melissa Campbell 4/2013
– Gina Tice 4/2013
– Jennie Lata 6/2013
– Mallory Raffensberger 8/2013
– Ashley Bowles 8/2013
– Greg Gaston 8/2013
– Steve Pike 9/2013
– Karen Tronsor 9/2013

Over 2 years is a Corporal
– Jeremy Harris 1/2009*
– Courtney Phillips 2/2011
– JD Dombroski 4/2011
– Carrie Schule 5/2011
– Bevan Lee 5/2011
– Mary Bauer 6/2011
– Lee Chase 7/2011
– Tait Keller 8/2011
– Heath Alderson 9/2011
– Lindsey Stanfill 9/2011
– ShaWanda Upshaw 10/2011
– Tara Ingram 11/2011
– Rachel Phillips 2/2012
– Jean Maskas 2/2012
– Keith Renard 4/2012
– Alan Compton 4/2012
– Steve Havard 5/2012
– Beth Stengel 2/2012
– Chris Kelley 6/2102
– Lora Gubanov 8/2012
– Susye Clark 7/2012
– Orli Weisser-Pike 9/2012
– Lindsey Leet 9/2013
– Morgan Johnson 9/2012

Over 3 years is a Sergeant
– Ashley McClure 7/2010
– Falana Scott 7/2010
– Jenni Harris 8/2010
– Anne Marie Wyatt 8/2010
– Paul Bauer 11/2010
– Robin Scott 3/2011
– Chris McLelland 3/2011
– Randal Rhea 4/2011
– Cindy King 4/2011
– Sherri Thompson 4/2011
– Melissa Thompson 5/2011
– Michelle Moss 5/2011
– Becky Lawler 5/2010*

Over 4 years is a Staff Sergeant
– Jonathan Phillips 10/2008*
– Cameron Mosley 11/2009
– Karen Massey 11/2009
– Cecelia DeLacy 2/2010
– Malinda Miller 3/2010
– Jay Mednikow 3/2010
– Ashley Holloway 4/2010
– Beth Mills 5/2010
– Emily Melonas 6/2010
– Keith Renard 6/2009*
– Tim Romanow 8/2010

Over 5 years is a Gunnery Sergeant
– Patrick Moore 9/2008*
– Jessie Flanders 1/2009
– Andrew Stolnicki 1/2009
– Paul Tronsor 3/2009
– Robert Hunt 8/2009*

Over 6 years is a Master Sergeant
– Anne Mead 2/2005*
– Beth Rehrig 7/2007
– Matt Prince 6/2007
– Frank Jemison 10/2007
– Patty Dougherty 3/2008
– Oscar Adams 3/2008
– Alan Schaeffer 5/2008
– Mike Ryan 5/2006*
– Dory Sellers 6/2006*
– Albo Carruthers 8/2008
– Anne Kenworthy 8/2008

Over 7 years is a First Sergeant
– Kay Ryan 10/2006
– Michelle Crockett 3/2007
– George Rose 5/2007
– Henry Kenworthy 5/2007
– Leslie Garey 6/2007

Over 8 years is a Sergeant Major
– Louis Glazer 3/2005
– Gary Thompson 10/2005
– Scot Bearup 10/2005
– Kay Shelton 1/2006
– Leesa Jensen 5/2006
– Megan Warr 8/2006
– Rob Norcross 8/2006

Over 9 years is a Warrant Officer 1
– Melissa Moore 2/2005
– Matt Green 5/2005
– Mike Barta 6/2005*
– Anne Emmerth 6/2005*

Over 10 years is a Chief Warrant Officer 2
– Buddy Flinn 7/2003
– David Townsend 1/2004
– Hank Brown 3/2004
– Andrew Forsdick 9/2004

Over 11 years is a Chief Warrant Officer 3
– Pat McGhee 1/2003
– John Whittemore 1/2003
– Peter Pettit 5/2003
– Amy Singer 9/2003

Battalion Executive Officer
Major Richard Bourland, 9/2003

* 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!

(This is not in conjunction with other discounts and is not an automatic bank draft that I set up with a voided check. This an automatic payment that you yourself set up yourself with your bank usually online and easy as pie!)



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)
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!


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 becomes OFF LIMITS! Get moving!
3. Get out of bed, turn off the alarm clock, and start turning on lights all through the house. Turn the TV on!
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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