How to Create Sandbags
So you’ve smartly decided that you want to practice rucking and prepare your shoulders, legs, and back for your upcoming event. Now you just need to create some weight that you can practice carrying around inside your ruck. Thankfully sandbags are one of the easiest and cheapest pieces of workout gear to create. Make sure to read all of the steps first and know that you will need the following items:
* Sandbags (the plastic see through kind)
* Sand (cheapest sand you can find)
* Non-black duct-tape… and lots of it
* A scale (only if you want to know how much your bags weigh)
* A permanent marker (if you have a scale)
Step One – Get the Equipment
The first thing you’ll do is find fifteen bucks and go to the hardware store to buy all the items you’ll need. You should be able to easily get sixty pounds of sand, at least 6 clear sandbags, and one large roll of duct-tape for fifteen bucks. If you can’t then you’re getting ripped off and that sucks.
Step Two – Find a Location
The second thing you need to do is find a place to make these sandbags. Unless your a construction/sand magician you’re going to spill some sand so make sure you do this in a place that you can easily vacuum or sweep afterwards. There’s a good chance your significant other is already sick of your training and other shenanigans so there’s no need to add one more item to their shit-I-hate-about-GORUCK-list (this is a real thing and they do have one.)
Step Three – Create the Bags
Open up the sand and the sandbags and start filling them one at a time. When you get to what feels like 10 pounds go grab your scale. Chances are you’re like me and have some cheap scale that doesn’t register anything under 20 pounds. Do not fear… what you need to do is weigh yourself (remember the weight) then weigh yourself holding the sandbag. If you subtract your weight from this number then you have the weight of the sandbag. Once it’s about ten pounds then seal the sandbag and write the weight on the clear bag in permanent marker. If you don’t have a scale then try and picture what dumbbell curling ten pounds feels like and guess when the weight of the bag is close to that.
Step Four – Finish the Bags
If you followed all the steps up to this point you should have 6 sandbags filled and a roll of non-black duct-tape. They may or may not have a weight written on the side of them… either way you have filled six bags and have that duct-tape. Now’s the time to reinforce those sandbags because the last thing you want is them either leaking or tearing inside (or outside) of your ruck and spilling all over. Nothing kills the mood like ten pounds of spilt sand in the living room carpet. First, if applicable, make sure to remember the number written on the bag. Then, begin the process by putting some tape over the bag’s closure seal so that no sand will be escaping. Continue applying tape over the length of the bag making sure that the tape overlaps and that when you’re done you can not see ANY of the clear bag left. If you were able to remember the weight of the bag then mark it on the outside of the bag on the duct-tape. If you bought black duct-tape because you thought that was the badass thing to do then you’re SOL. Sorry… GORUCK isn’t about having your duct-tape match your ruck color it’s about being smart and getting shit done. This is probably your first lesson in “attention to detail” because I wrote “read all of the steps first” and you clearly didn’t because you would have read this. And this. Sorry bud, put a strip of scotch tape on that sandbag pill and write the weight on that. Every time you look at that crappy piece of scotch tape recite the following “attention to detail, teamwork is key” and remember this lesson.
I usually color code my pills with a strip of duct tape
Orange = 100lbs
Just a thought vs Scotch tape tagging
That’s a great idea! All of the sandbags I made were between 10 and 15 lbs so it wasn’t as crucial but that’s a great idea to differentiate them.
I think joe’s idea to differentiate the bags with different colors of tape is great, but personally, I would use a more typical “easy to hard” (think temperature) progression of the colors. Blue is probably your lightest bag, then green, yellow orange, red, etc…..that would just be the easiest for me to remember, aside from using different size bags, which could make it pretty obvious as well.