Fit to Fight: A matter of will

  • Published
  • By Maj. Michael Hilyard
  • 908th Airlift Wing
Those of us "old hats" who have been around AFRC for a while have seen the Fit to Fight Program evolve from a mile and a half run to a three mile walk, to the current program of proper aerobic conditioning, strength/flexibility training, and healthy eating.

The governing instruction regarding how the Air Force and its Reserve is to run the program is AFI 36-2903. Now with all the legal stuff being said, this is what this writer would like for you to get out of this article.

If you look at it from the Air Force perspective, you are an asset to the organization. You are a much better asset if you are physically conditioned to handle the stresses of war and conflict. And on a personal note, you just might live longer, too!

I had the pleasure of helping with the F2F testing during a UTA. As I stood at the halfway point to call out times and give some encouragement, low and behold - in the distance came the first runner. As I strained to see just who it was, I was expecting one of the young airmen to be leading the pack.

But to my amazement, it was a 50-plus-year-old leading by a large margin!

Now this person is not a marathon runner or anything close, so after the run, I went to ask him the secret for his success.

His secret: Walking every day! Plus, he works on his muscular numbers by doing 40 pushups every day. So, you don't have to be a physical fitness guru to pass the F2F, you just have to be willing to work at it more than a couple of weeks prior to the test. Trust me, you can tell the people who have done that to get ready.
Too little, too late!

Find a partner to exercise with, most people will continue to exercise when they have someone to encourage them. Try to do some fun runs in your local community, 3Ks, 5Ks and even 10Ks. No one says you have to run the whole distance; in fact even professional athletes use a run-walk routine. This is much easier on your heart, and they say their running times are even faster with a burst of energy off of the walk cycle.

As the Nike slogan says, "Just Do It!"