For many people, the idea of prepping for disaster conjures up visions of families in hazmat suits and gas masks readying themselves for the next global virus outbreak. For others, it is the camouflaged survival group with their loaded 4 wheel drive bug out vehicles shooting their way through some random checkpoint on their route to a hidden survival retreat in the mountains. It really depends on your view of what the prepping lifestyle is as to whether or not these images are extremely distasteful or something you actively aspire to emulate.
I think by this time, the idea of prepping has come a long way and almost everyone can see the benefit on the surface at least, of taking small steps to prepare for disasters small or large that might impact your life. Like the example above, some delve more deeply into the lifestyle part than others, but I think there is a portion of the world out there who wants to take even smaller steps. They want to do something, but they aren’t ready to jump in completely and buy a years’ worth of freeze dried food, or trade in their Prius for a Toyota Tundra. They want to prepare in a way that is sensible to them, but not overboard. They are looking for Prepping Lite.
In my efforts to get everyone prepping, I wanted to illustrate a few of the key principles of prepping and compare them with how your stereotypical Prepper might view what is necessary and contrast them with what a prepping lite person can do that will still give them some benefit should a disaster visit their lives. The understanding of course is that the Prepping Lite solutions presented here will not be as robust or thorough, but should be better than nothing. If that is what it takes to get you to start prepping, then so be it.
Prepper Recommendations – Food is critical to survival and I shouldn’t have to defend this one at all. Stock up as much food as possible that your family will eat. Other factors like cooking come into play, but long-term food storage is an important aspect of food preps. Plan on raising livestock such as chickens or rabbits and hunting for wild game as possible supplements to your pantry.
Prepper Lite Recommendations – Start with 3 days’ worth of food that doesn’t need refrigeration. Simple ideas are canned soups, tuna, canned chicken, rice or beans. Have some good vitamins to help with immune strength and don’t forget the manual can opener. If you do, or you just get bored, you can use this simple trick.
Prepper Recommendations – One gallon per day per person. For a family of 4 plus pets, assume 150 gallons of water per month of survival. Living on a lake or having a well is a plus, but having backup disinfection methods and a way to gather water from other sources (rain barrels) is a priority. You can almost always find water if needed, but you have to make it safe to drink to avoid illness.
Prepper Lite Recommendations – Store 15 gallons of water in your house or apartment and purchase simple water filters like the Sawyer mini or better yet, the 4 liter Sawyer filtration system for more capacity and plan on raiding the local park, home water heater if needed or your neighbor’s Coy pond. A Water BOB is another good backup if you have the warning. Simply fill up the tub and have 100 gallons for the disaster. Prices have come back down now, but during the height of the Ebola scare, these were selling for $98. No, I am not kidding.
Prepper Lite Recommendations – Sealing off rooms will trap body heat and a good oil lantern will give you light as well as warmth. Sleeping bags and plenty of warm layers combined with keeping the cold out will keep you alive.
Prepper Recommendations – Pretty decent physical condition is what we strive for because survival will be a lot more work than sitting on your butt behind a computer (yes I am looking at myself here). A good baseline is to be able to move your own body weight. Push-ups, Sit-ups and 2 mile run/jog 3 times a week will make you healthy enough to shoulder that bug out bag into the wilderness or work in your survival garden all day.
Prepper Lite Recommendations – Get out and walk daily. If nothing else, the fresh air will be good for you and walking is a great form of exercise. If you need to lose weight, start by just trying to lose a few pounds.
Prepper Recommendations – An underground bunker or a remote cabin in the woods is the prepper dream, but out of reach for many of us. A well-stocked home location with provisions for security and a mind toward self-reliance should the grid go down, is a respectable second.
Prepper Lite Recommendations – If you live in a large city, identify structures that could be safer. These could include friends who live within a short drive (less than 2 hours) away and who would be willing to take you in should a disaster force you from your home.
Prepper Recommendations – Firearms are a personal choice, but I would say most preppers recommend some form of legal firearm protection. We recommend our top 5 firearms if you are so inclined, but at a minimum you should have a means of protecting your family. Firearms make the most sense for a lot of people.
Prepper Lite Recommendations – If you can only get one firearm, or begrudgingly accept that you need to have some protection, but refuse to buy into the whole prepper battery of arms idea, I would suggest a shotgun. Shotguns have their limitations, but if you can only have one weapon for survival and don’t want to spend a ton of money, my vote is a simple 12 gauge shotgun. Buy a few boxes of buck shot and get practice. If that isn’t your cup of tea, try the closest Krav Maga classes near you.
Do you have any prepper lite recommendations?