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Corps Strength – PT Your Attitude

In my present job as an instructor at the U.S. Navy’s International Training Center here in Pensacola, we have different levels of physical training for our different courses. Each is specifically designed for each course goals and student makeup. Some are very tough (Marine TBS, Dive school, EOD and BUDS Preparatory). While on the other end are easy entry level stuff, mostly to demonstrate how to set up and conduct basic unit PT, and give the students a chance to workout. As you might guess the physical condition of the students attending also has a wide variance. Some are in serious condition, while others are in very poor shape. While they may not have the high speed PT training programs that we sometimes take for granted in the U.S military, they often surprise me with their unfiltered take on things.

Recently I recently had a student from Antigua (now a Navy Ensign who started out first in their Army) had already been to OCS in the Coast Guard Academy, Army Ranger School, the U.S. Army’s Infantry Officer course and also attended a (brutal) six month Jungle Warfare training school in Guyana. Tall and thin he’s in pretty good shape, but not really the PT stud you would think. I’ve had many conversations with him about all different training he’s been through, and I was (of course) very curious to what he thought about the PT that he had to deal with at these different schools. Some of his answers surprised me. His overall opinion was that 99% of all this PT was mental. He’s observation was that if you have a basic level of fitness, the rest was mental. He witnessed many people in these schools that seemed to be in awesome physical shape, drop out after only a few weeks, or even days. They just didn’t have it attitude wise. I agree totally and this leads me back to where I always go with getting in shape, its all about the way you think about it. You have to get your head screwed on right, or all the special diets, workout routines and supplements won’t matter. I talk about this a lot in my book Corps Strength. If fact I’ve often been accused of harping on it TOO much? I don’t think so, as I think its importance cannot be over stressed, IMO much more important than any specific workout routine.

The bottom line is you’ve got come to terms with the simple fact that getting in good shape and maintaining a healthy bodyweight is work. Its not easy, never was and never will be. But get a grip, its not torture and its not impossible. It just requires some effort, a little discipline AND above all else the right thought process. Put the right thoughts in your “brain housing group” and your on your way, after that all you need is the PT and diet routine that work for your lifestyle and goals. Don’t get too fancy, don’t start out to fast, always think long term and you’ll get there. I’ve seen it hundreds, if not thousands of times. By the way my student thought that Coast Guard OCS was the toughest school. Huh?? Coast Guard OCS tougher than Ranger School, Why? Not because of the PT but because of the tough swim requirements, he isn’t a great swimmer. Again its all about the way you look at it. Good luck and be safe.

Semper Fi
MGunz

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4 Responses to “Corps Strength – PT Your Attitude”

  1. 2lt F**Knutz says:

    To be fair, foreign officers literally can’t fail Ranger School. Unless they LOM I’m pretty sure they just need to sit in the back of patrols playing with themselves and eating MRE’s for 61 days and they will pass. But yeah, I hate the water so Coast Guard OCS would be really shitty for me too.

  2. Jaydoc says:

    What course is the first photo?

  3. JSHjr says:

    I think you are missing the point of the young Ensign.

    It is your heart that will see you through. Conditioning is important, but if one does not have the motivation or heart, then it is for naught.