They’re climbing through your windows and snatching your people up — dragging or limping around town, the zombies are out to get you.
They’ve ravaged the town, not even a gym or grocery store stands (Noooooooooo!). You’ve grabbed all your essentials from home and are running for the hills. The zombie apocalypse is leaving you exhausted and sore, but you’re determined to not become the next walker. As a zombie slayer you have to be on your “A-game.”
Civilization was at its peak several months ago; there was no sign of a zombie takeover in sight. Up until the apocalypse, you were on your daily gym grind — coming close to hitting your fitness goals. Fast forward to now: the gyms are gone, the luxury of preparing your day’s worth of food is now an obsolete dream. Living off bare essentials has induced rapid weight loss and muscle loss from the lack of protein and calories. Once the Incredible Hulk in the gym, you’re now resembling Plastic Man. Don’t give up though, your nutrition plan can be restored and muscle can be built back up with simple body weight workouts.
In any emergency situation, preparation is key. From a nutritional standpoint, you will need to efficiently prepare your body. You don’t know what conditions you will run into or how much you'll have to run. With as much time as you can muster before evacuating your home, slightly up your carb intake along with your protein and fat. This will make room for more carbs in the next loading phase. During the next phase, which should be four days before you evacuate, increase your carb intake to almost 60 percent of your daily calories. While you're upping the carbs, cut back on the fats and make sure to get a substantial amount of rest. Your body will need the additional energy to keep pushing forward. Loading up on carbs is a smart strategy to increase the amount of energy that’s housed in your muscles. You don’t want to be hitting “the wall” during your first encounter with the undead.
On the go, you still need about 45 percent of your daily caloric total to come from carbs. To help maintain that, be sure to have dry cereal, granola bars, crackers, energy gels, and evaporated milk. Evaporated milk has an extremely long shelf life and eight ounces of it contains 26 grams of carbohydrates. As for energy gels, they're made with a carbohydrate blend that can be easily digested.
With grocery stores ransacked, following an organic lifestyle is the new trend — dinner awaits only a few feet away for those with a rifle or crossbow. Deer, rabbit, fish, or squirrel — you won’t get bored with the variety. Venison is lean and rich in protein, which has an array of health benefits. Four ounces of deer contains about 170 calories and 34 grams of protein, and that protein is packed with B-complex vitamins and iron. Both iron and B-complex vitamins work to help balance energy levels in the body — you won’t be too tired to fend off a menacing zombie. When your stomach is rumbling, you won’t think twice about eating wild game. Rabbit is another high protein meat that’s also abundant in B-complex vitamins, and it also has some powerful antioxidants. Squirrel is another solid choice: three ounces contains 25 grams of protein.
Your pack should also include non-perishable foods that are high in protein. While you're raiding the supermarket, look for protein powder (wishful thinking), canned beans, canned meat, nuts, protein bars, and peanut butter. Canned meat doesn’t sound pleasant, but when you’re presented with limited food options while running for your life, it’s a valuable protein source. Stock up on canned white albacore tuna, salmon, chicken, turkey, and even beef. All non-perishable food products are easily transportable and can last for several months to years until they’re opened.
You'll have a lot of running ahead of you and you'll need an adequate amount of fat stored up from your diet. 20 percent of your caloric intake should come from fat — that’s still the same amount of fat you would be consuming pre-zombie apocalypse. And you shouldn’t just limit your fat intake to the healthy fats; saturated fats can positively impact your testosterone levels. When your testosterone levels are enhanced it becomes easier to build muscle. So make sure five to ten percent of your total caloric intake comes from saturated fats.
Survival mode means "bring on the stress." Stress can greatly impact your health, making it harder to survive. It can fog your thinking; hinder your immune system; and decrease overall athletic performance when your fighting off a zombie from eating your leg. That’s why it’s important to either find food or have food that’s rich in antioxidants. Antioxidants can help counteract any free radical damage, especially any damage caused by stress. In the wild keep an eye out for the following: blackberries, blueberries, strawberries, dandelions, and asparaguses. As for your pack should have canned and dried vegetables and dried fruit. A dried vegetable is any root vegetable like a sweet potato or beet. Also, make sure to add multivitamins to your pack — they can provide that extra boost of nutrition that you need.
You can last a month without food, but only three days without water. Have a stockpile of bottled water with you and if you run out make sure to boil any water from rivers or lakes. The recommended water intake is about three liters per day. A good sign that you’re dehydrated is if you have extreme thirst and can’t shake off a headache. To prevent dehydration consider carrying electrolyte tablets, they easily dissolve in water.
To help you get started, follow this sample meal plan.
And finally, best of luck. If you start a survivors' colony, you'll be the king of the fort if you have the hunting skill, stockpile of nonperishables, and sensibility to ration among your group. Just don't sacrifice those gains.