BCT advice/questions

Discussion in 'Air Force Academy - USAFA' started by USAFA: 2016!, Jan 22, 2015.

  1. USAFA: 2016!

    USAFA: 2016! Member

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    I thought I would start a thread for any new appointees or their parents who might have questions about Basic. Hopefully some other cadets will be around to chime in their responses as well!

    Just to get it started, one question I remember having was: If the packet says bring 8 pairs of underwear (don't remember the real number) is that what I should bring?

    Answer: YES. I think I brought one or two more sets than was recommended, but that was just more stuff to move on moving day. Bring the number they say and you'll be fine. It's that number for a reason!
     
  2. jwest182

    jwest182 USAFA Cadet C/O 2019

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    What was the best part about bct for you?

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  3. baileydb

    baileydb Member

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    And the worst?
     
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  4. USAFA: 2016!

    USAFA: 2016! Member

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    Best Part: Is finishing it an option? Kidding (sort of). BCT, surprise, is very challenging; but with large challenges come large rewards. I think the best part was proving to myself and to my classmates (the 24 standing beside me) that I could do it. Getting to know my classmates, who were incredible individuals, was also a huge plus. But the best specific part of all of it, for me, was probably finishing the Assault Course. It was a moment of pure exhaustion, joy, triumph, and celebration. That moment sticks out to me 3 years later. My answer probably would have been different if you asked me as a Doolie. Then I probably would have said bed time was the best part.

    Worst part: Honestly? For me it was running. I hate running. Please run before you get here. Altitude is not your friend. We ran a lot and I've never wanted to quit running so badly. But the kids standing next to me were motivation enough to push myself to keep going, even when the urge to quit was overwhelming. Keep in mind my answer will be different from everyone else!
     
  5. jwest182

    jwest182 USAFA Cadet C/O 2019

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    Is there anything you would have done differently? Either in bct or the ac years?

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  6. baileydb

    baileydb Member

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    For you which part of BCT did you like better? First BCT or Jacks? Which one is more physically demanding?
    Also, what do you wish you would have known going in that you could impart to us?
     
  7. BlahuKahuna

    BlahuKahuna Member

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    I liked 1st BCT because I liked my cadre more, but a lot of people like 2nd BCT more because it is more physical and less administrative-type things. I think the biggest advice I can give is not to take things personally. It'll serve you well here if you can take feedback without letting it ruin your day.
     
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  8. Gator19

    Gator19 New Member

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    How many pairs of boots do you go through throughout BCT?
     
  9. BlahuKahuna

    BlahuKahuna Member

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    2 pairs of boots. Chances are one of them will be essentially ruined after 2nd BCT. Depends on your squad whether or not you can get a different type of boot after basic.
     
  10. Grizzly

    Grizzly Member

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    How much running? I assume long runs are part of morning PT, but how far were they? Also, do you go for these same runs while in Jack's?
     
  11. BlahuKahuna

    BlahuKahuna Member

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    How much running depends on your squadron and the year-every year BCT changes somewhat. The general advice I would give is to have an AFT score (the 1.5 mile run) well below the average time, and be able to hack out 5-6 miles. If you can stay with your flight and have good endurance. Keep in mind the altitude, fatigue, and running with boots all suck so that will take take to get used to.
     
  12. clearblueskyys

    clearblueskyys Member

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    I took my cadet to Colorado two weeks in advance of bct so he could acclimate to the altitude. They are going to be deprived of sleep and engaging in the most difficult and punishing physical activity of their lives. Plane to bus to bct is not the best idea. If you can get them there at least a week early take them to the mountains! My son thanks me all the time for that gift! Even so he almost passed out a couple of times - the altitude is no joke! There is no way to over condition yourself for basic - hint-hint!
     
  13. USAFA: 2016!

    USAFA: 2016! Member

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    BCT, I would have tried to enjoy it more and not take myself so seriously. Take BCT seriously but just remember that no matter how hard you try, eventually you'll mess something up. Try to laugh it off.

    Ac year. I would have studied more and gone to more EI. I definitely did not reach my potential academically here until maybe this year. I wish I would have done so sooner.
     
  14. USAFA: 2016!

    USAFA: 2016! Member

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    I was a much bigger fan of 1st BCT, but I already knew how to march, salute, I already had ranks memorized, I could stand at attention.... so that stuff was pretty easy for me. Also, I was good at it, which boosted my confidence for obvious reasons. 2nd BCT is far more physically demanding.
     
  15. USAFA: 2016!

    USAFA: 2016! Member

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    How many pairs? You are issued 2 (I think?). Wear both, try to space them out. None of my boots were "ruined" but one pair smelled a lot better than the other. Also I bought a pair of Nike Free boots as soon as BCT ended (HIGHLY RECOMMEND).
     
  16. baileydb

    baileydb Member

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    Where did you learn how to do all of that beforehand? I am in Civil Air Patrol, so I know quite a bit of drill, and I lead drill a lot too. Will that make first BCT easier do you think? I also heard from an Academy grad NOT to mention that I was in CAP before USAFA. Do you agree with that?
     
  17. USAFA: 2016!

    USAFA: 2016! Member

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    I learned from attending New Mexico Military Institute as a Falcon Scholar the year before coming to USAFA. Should you mention CAP? I wouldn't because either it will likely be seen as you bragging or you thinking you're better than your classmates. Your cadre may already know you were in CAP, which if that's the case, roll with it when asked. Don't lie, but don't draw attention to yourself either.
     
  18. USAFA: 2016!

    USAFA: 2016! Member

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    Will it make it easier? Sure, but your cadre will probably notice you're already competent in some of this and will either expect more from you or tell you to teach some of your classmates. (Again, back to the less attention you draw to yourself, the better off you are).
     
  19. NavyHoops

    NavyHoops Moderator

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    Don't mention CAP or JROTC or whatever you did prior to arriving. Of course it comes up in conversation down the road and don't shy away from your previous, but to say you know something because you did it in CAP won't get you any friends. In fact people will probably roll their eyes. Everyone knows who the Priors and Prepsters are. Eventually that all evens out within 2 months of the academic year. Just because you learned something prior to arriving doesn't mean that is the USAFA way of doing business. Trust me, the cadre or detailers at each SA knows how to ensure every single newbie gets an ego check.
     
  20. Boozebin

    Boozebin Member

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    Very good advice. I gave my son the similar advice before going to Prep. I reminded him that just because he did JROTC not to think he knew everything and that there are enlisted guys and gals that HAVE been there done that and know more then him. He did just that and he saw the other JROTC kids that didn't get this advice and tried to act like they knew everything and their classmates resented them a bit. He thanked me the other day for this advice when someone found out he was JROTC and they told him they would have never guessed he was.

    The true lesson is go in to learn from everyone and help those with what you know, but don't go around bragging and thinking you're better than everyone else because you think you know something others don't.

    Also gave him the same advice going from Prep to Doolie!
     

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