Physical fitness

Discussion in 'ROTC' started by username22, Jul 18, 2016.

  1. username22

    username22 Member

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    Are there people who arrive to NROTC orientation physically unfit? I know it's expected of you to be capable of performing the physical standard but my fitness level isn't exactly the best. I can only manage about 30 push ups before having to rest although I'm sure if I time myself I can do more than 30 in the two minutes. For sit ups I can do about 50 and my mile time is 9:27. (17 year old girl) Does anyone have any tips on how to get fit for orientation? What kind of PT is there? Just standard running push ups and sit ups?
     
  2. LongAgoPlebe

    LongAgoPlebe Member

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    There are many, many threads on here about arriving in shape and getting in shape before arrival.

    Check out Stew Smith's page for a variety of workouts including links to YouTube videos. That's where I went when I was cleared to start PT again.
     
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  3. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    +1 with LongAgo. There are a ton of threads regarding how to get in shape.

    To be honest, and not trying to be rude, but getting in shape is not rocket science. Run in the rain, run in the heat, run at 6:00 a.m. after you went to bed at 1:00 a.m.
    ~ That is reality for your next year. You will be up to 1:00 writing a paper/studying for an exam and expected to do PT at 6:00 a.m., which means, even if you live on campus and just roll out of bed, you are rolling out at 5:15, or 4 hrs of sleep. On top of that it could be drizzling, which means your sneaks are not going to have traction like they would on a sunny day.

    My DS ran at 4-5:00 p.m. and ran 2 miles. He did this because where we live that is the height of the heat. His goal was to always be under 7 minutes. His Dad was ADAF, and the mindset was training in the extremes would help him from an endurance perspective. 2 miles at less than a 7 min. mile pace, with the heat index of over 100 and high humidity (burning his lungs with every step due to air quality), than running at 6:00 a.m. with lower temps and lower humidity would result in a faster time. Same goes for running with sleep deprivation. If you are tired, than it takes a few minutes to get out of the mental fog, and that can equate to the seconds you need to shave off your running time from a pass or fail aspect.

    DS did the entire PFA in order everyday. He had someone in the family be there to watch his form for push up and sit ups. If he did not meet the form, we didn't count it. That is a biggie. If you search these forums @ end of Aug/early Sept. you will find out scholarship cadets/mids fail because their form was wrong according to ROTC stds.
    ~ Doing 50, but only 30 are correct form, you will not only waste energy, but end up with the same cadet/mid that only could do all 30 in the correct form. Form matters.

    Every ROTC unit is different when it comes to PT. My DS was AFROTC. PT included butterfly kicks and variations of pushups. (side arm/clap) 2x a week for PT. His unit also allowed cadets that maxxed the option to skip PT and train on their own, no 2x a week PT training at 6:00 a.m.. They only had to show up for the PFA exams. Of course, that really meant 1 semester off because the next semester they were either a PT instructor, a flight instructor, etc., where they now HAD to show up for PT due to their job description.

    You can do this. You have...what...4-6 weeks before showing up. Most units do the PFT 5- 7 days after arriving. Download the PFA. ask someone in the house to read it and seriously look at the form. Let them count. No easy passing, bad form and it will not count. After you do that, don't quit. Do butterfly kicks. 2 weeks out buy a good pair of running shoes. Not the time to go cheap. Two weeks out because you want to break them in. If you don't break them in, your feet may feel the pain and your run time will be slower.
     
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  4. Sled

    Sled Member

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    Exactly what Pima said, make it your life. If should come to the point where if the weather is bad you will freak out because you don't know when you are going to get your run in (at least that's what I do lol). What I do is run in the middle of the afternoon here in Minnesota so that I can get the most heat which can also help when the PFA comes in that it will feel like a much easier run. For pushups just drop down and do them in sets of 10 throughout the day. If 10 is easy for you go up to 15 or 20. Randomly do them so that you can do 100+ per day easily and you'll get there. All of this is about dedication though.
     
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  5. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    Going to add on to Sled.

    Unless a tropical storm or hurricane is coming, expect to run in rain. Wiping raindrops off your face can slow you down. I am from VA, and DS went to UMD. In January when it was 28 degrees at 6 a.m. they did the run. Just like in August when it was 80 degrees and 95% humidity they did the PFA run.

    In the 4 yrs of ROTC he ran 3-4X a week during every break from school, regardless of weather. He would do the full up PFA 1x a week. He would do a mix up of butterfly kicks and different push ups the other days.

    The PFA is the one aspect you have total control over regarding your OML.

    PS: As a female, I would buy a pull up bar for your door. Everytime you exit and enter your bedroom do a pull up or hang time. Increase with each week. You will be amazed how fast you will increase if you stay true to it....you probably enter and exit at least 10 times a day.
    ~ Doing this will build upper body strength, thus help you for push ups.
    ~~ Further along you can do leg raises while you hang, and that will help with your abdominal muscles like butterfly kicks, which in turn helps you for sit ups.

    If you live in a community with a pool, go to it. Throw your legs over the ledge and do sit ups against the wall in the pool. Use a water noodle over your stomach as you are on your back and kick, kick, kick. or bend over to do a pseudo sit up. Swim laps doing the butterfly (arms) and back stroke. Different muscles for each, but still building upper arm strength. Try to swim the length of the pool with only coming up 1x each way. (lungs). Do Yoga or pilates. Put weights on your wrists when you do push ups.

    In other words, you can get in shape in multiple ways. It doesn't have to be doing the same thing over and over again. It can be unique. Mix it up. My last paragraph shows how each aspect will build endurance and muscle. Just make sure that at least 1x a week you do the full up PFA.
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2016
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  6. KeyzCat

    KeyzCat Member

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    To get your running speeds up stop thinking about the one mile times; run every day for at least an hour. You want to go at a sustainable pace since we are at about a month you may want to actually run 6 miles vs time. Your first couple days are going to be figuring out the speed that is sustainable. A shuffle-step speed is about 4.5mph use a program there are a lot of free ones for androids that show your mph speed/ distance and split speeds we have a Garmin for my CatTrike so I ride along with my son letting him know when to slow it down so he isn't doing the sprint then walk sprint then walk that people that have never trained to run end up doing. You can't just jump in and try to build speed. You MUST build endurance first after you are able to sustain 6 miles at 4.5 mph then you can ask a military person (if live near a college with a ROTC unit ask them) to give you a timed test since they will know all regulations which not only include how much time of events there is also an order of test and rest times between events. For push ups and sit ups look at places like the one posted just searches for exercises on youtube. My DS uses a subscription program that has 10 or 11 exercise brands that are part of the company's brands so he is able to look up arms and core for that day and have a whole list of 10min - 1 hour workouts that target that area then the next day he may do legs and core. He does Yoga/stretching workout then 20 mins each of sit ups and push-ups then does his 6 mile run comes back in and does 3 - 6 hours of the workouts with breaks for lunch and snacks. Is it a lot of work? Yes but he waited till Summer to decide to really take his regime seriously and so when you wait you are going to have to work longer and harder to catch up to those that already had their endurance at peak and could start doing more targeted for speed trainings into the endurance training cause they started taking it seriously last year or even year before. Mine is also lucky that we have family near his college so he is able to go up day after tomorrow so has a month about there before school starts because there are pretty significant differences in ; altitude, temperature, humidity, types of pollen producers, and even running surfaces. A few of those will be positive changes like humidity and temps lol but others could effect him seriously and with only a 2.5 month serious training regime he needs to make dang sure he is ready for the test THERE not here. If there are differences in where you are going vs where you live you could need to be training so that you are well inside the Go-No Go line in case one of those factors affects your abilities. Good luck and make sure to keep up your regiment on breaks and holidays cause a long break can put you back to go. You are training for a career that requires you to be physically fit at all times. A career where you are a leader and motivator of troops that are looking at you as an example. I just asked DS if he was getting endorphin kicks yet he looked at me like I was crazy lol You may never love working out but find something about it that can give you enjoyment. When I was in I I would use that running time to mentally write letters home lol
     
  7. Sled

    Sled Member

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    Just confirming what KeyzCat said, you need to build endurance first. If you go too hard with your runs right away overtraining injuries are likely to happen. There is nothing that will set you back further than 2 weeks into your running program and having an injury. For the first couple weeks running should be fun and at a pace that will keep you in the game for the long run.
     
  8. Pima

    Pima Parent

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    I will add one last thing. Many will fail the PFA that 1st week, even scholarship cadets/mids fail. It is important to DUST YOURSELF OFF if you fail.

    Passing or failing is only a small aspect when it comes to how they view you as a new ROTC member. How you behave after is going to be huge.
    ~ Fail it, do you crumble or do you keep training? Or do you come out fighting?
    ~ Max it, do you brag or do help that other member flailing?

    Yes, being physically fit matters. However, it is a big picture aspect. If you curl up in a ball when you bust the PFA, than you hurt yourself. If you bluster about regarding your scores (think bullying) than you hurt yourself too. POCs (Jr/Srs) are eyes and ears, and they are a liaison between the corps and the cadre.
    ~ In AFROTC, they mimic ADAF wings. They have a CWC (Cadet Wing Commander), CVWC (Vice Wing). CFC (flight Commander). These cadets meet with the Cadre during the week and discuss the progress of every cadet. They write reviews aka OPRs in the ADAF world.
    ~~ The Cadre in the beginning have very limited exposure to every cadet, especially in large units.

    Hence, my point above about crumbling. They get the stress, many did bust and now are 9 months away from commissioning. They are not your enemy. They are your MENTOR.

    This is a very long haul. In 4 years from now you will look back and say I made it because I was part of the team. I took the words me, myself and I out of the equation and replaced it with WE.

    That is ROTC. It is about understanding that not being fit impacts everyone, not just you and your scholarship. You will get it, it will click, because running a mile is no longer about running a mile in a certain time, it is about running fast enough to put out a fire on a ship, or getting everyone out fast enough.

    These PT exams do not end when you commission. Even if you decide to walk out the door after 4 years, you will take these tests semi-annually for 8 years (4 yrs ROTC/4 yrs AD). Just saying, WELCOME to the military.
     
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  9. Sled

    Sled Member

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    That right there, if anything should keep you training it is this.
     

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