Tam brings up a good pointer here. I often hear people say you should train like you fight. I agree. But apparently my idea of how I will need to fight and most people who proclaim this different greatly.
When somebody tells me to train like I fight they usually train with tools that I, nor I assume most people, don’t expect to have at my disposal. For the purposes of this post we’ll create a hypothetical gun owner who claims to train like he fights. Let’s call him Timmy Tactical. Timmy Tactical goes to the range every weekend to train. His training regiment is strict and to the letter. His first half hour is spent getting his MOLLE vest, drop leg holster, gloves, knee pads, elbow pads, combination infrared/night vision/4th dimension goggles, radio gear, spike toed ninja combat boots, bullet proof vest equipped with six trauma plates, and sun glasses (super tactical of course) on. He then spends the next couple of hours running drills with his M4gery carbine equipped with a flashlight, laser sight, bayonet, EOTech holographic site with accompanying magnifier, and two extra rounds stored in the pistol grip. He creates scenarios for himself based on likely situations including communist invasion, zombie outbreak, and invasion by aliens hailing from the far reaches of the Betelgeuse system.
What Timmy Tactical doesn’t train with is his concealed .38 caliber snubby revolver that is on his person the rest of the time.
This has always begged the question how do you really plan to fight? Personally the only people I know who fight like Tactical Timmy are the men and women in our military who fight as their daily job. They can fight like that because throughout their day they actually have all their on them. The reason for this should be obvious, they are in a job where extended firefights with multiple enemy combatants is not only possible but down right expected.
Those of us living the lives of sovereign individuals don’t generally have that kind of gear on our person. We don’t walk around all day decked out in combat gear. Well at least nobody I know does or have seen does. Most armed citizens have a small handgun concealed on their person and hopefully a reload in one of their pockets. That’s their fighting gear. And this fighting gear reflects the most likely confrontational scenarios that an average Joe is going to encounter. When walking the streets of a city your most likely enemy is going to be one hostile individual. You may have to defend yourself against multiple people but the number is generally not going to be above three (and before anybody says it, yes I know it can and you should always be as prepared as possible for surprise situations).
That’s why when I train like I fight it involves my carry gun in a concealed holster and a spare magazine in my back pocket. The scenarios I envision usually involve one or two combatants at close range. That’s not to say I don’t bring out my M1A SOCOM 16 every now and then and act like I’m fighting off a zombie invasion, but I don’t really consider it training. That’s just plain fun and games for me. But realistically if our fine country is ever invaded by communists hailing from Alpha Centauri I’m gathering up those I care about and heading for safe territory to hide until the shit settles down.
Likewise when it comes to home defense I train with my carry gun (the one I’m most likely to have should somebody go bump in the night) and shotgun (the gun I’ll try to get should I have the chance) assuming I’ll be in tight corridors and hallways.
Protecting yourself, like anything involving security, is all about threat profiles. I agree you should train like you fight. But how you fight should be based on threat profile. Always ask yourself what the most common situation is. For most people it’s either going to be a mugger coming at you on the street in the middle of the night or some jerk off busting into your home at a similar time frame. Due to this your should train with what equipment you will likely have at hand in those situations (and unless you sleep in your MOLLE gear it’s not going to be that). It certainly doesn’t hurt to train with your super cool combat rifle but you should be most proficient in the use of your carry and home defense gun assuming you won’t have time to gear up.