There is a false attitude out there that husband's need to do their own thing and wives do theirs. When it comes to the military, that is simply not true. The military life takes the both of you for it to work. I am my husband's biggest support! He can't do as well without me cheering him on, taking the journey WITH him.
I am going to honest with you, as far as the Army and Air Force go (I don't know about the other branches), there are some serious cut backs being made. And it's going on RIGHT NOW. With troops being pulled out over seas and the national dept going crazy, lots of soldiers and their families are getting the boot. There are several deciding factors in who goes, but for the Army these are the main two:
1. Can't pass the PT test.
2. Haven't been promoted in a while.
Now, I think this is the best advice I can give anyone who is getting ready to join, already joined and is waiting for training, or even seasoned soldiers who are a little worried about their place in the military in the future. Don't just ride the rope when it comes to being in shape. Don't settle for just barely passing the PT or not at all. Get as far away from that line as you can! And wives, YOU can help! You want your soldiers to be in the best shape of their lives! Not only will being in shape help them keep their PT scores up, being in top notch condition can ultimately save their lives and the lives of others. Being in the military isn't a game, it's life and death out there in the field, and I think it is a responsibility of the wives to help keep their soldiers safe in the ways we can.
Here's some of my ideas on how to accomplish this, hopefully some of the other wives out there have some too!
For those of you who are getting ready to send their soldier to Basic:
One of the goals of basic training is getting the soldiers to pass the PT test at the END of the 10 weeks. However, you can get your soldier WAY ahead if he can pass a mock PT test BEFORE he leaves. A lot of wives tell their husbands to just go workout... this is ineffective. They need to go out with a plan, and you wives are the best tools to come up with workout plans. There are LOTS of workout plans out there to help your soldier get ready, just google it! And one of the best ways to help him, is to get out there and do it with them!
For those of you whose soldier just got back from training:
Lots of guys coming home think that now they can take it easy... WRONGO BONGO! If they want a career in the military or even just do it part-time, it is VITAL that they keep up their training.
|Ben doing sit-ups in the snow for Ranger Challenge|
|Ben doing push ups for the Ranger Challenge PT test|
Moral of the story: Work hard and you will be amazed at what you can do!!
For those of you who have a soldier having a hard time passing his PT:
Since Ben has been helping guys pass or improve their PT tests for a while now, I asked him what his best advice would be. He told me the key to upping and passing the PT is going for Rucksack Runs. Rucksack runs, with the right weight are complete body work outs that will up your push-ups, sit-ups, and 2 mile run like nothing else. He said you should start out weighing you ruck down with weight: 20 pounds of weight for every 100 pounds that you weigh. So if you are a 200 pound guy, pack it with 40. If you are a slimmer guy at say 150, your ruck should start at 30 or so. Then you can up it as you go along. Ben said his PT score shot up 10 points after training with a 40 pound ruck for 2 weeks.
For those of you who have a soldier that is accident prone:
When Ben was in Basic, he fractured his hip. This kind of screwed up everything, including his back. So he went to a chiropractor who worked wonders. But the problem was the chiropractor could only do so much and then Ben was on his own. Soon his back started bugging him again, that's when we did P90X and it actually FIXED him back up! The key was:
1. Weight lifting. Strengthening those muscles will help your body like nothing else!
2. Extensive Stretching: Flexibility is the key to keeping yourself safe. Those who are flexible are a LOT less likely to get hurt, ever.
3. Yoga: Ben and I were super skeptical about this at first, but it works wonder with flexibility and balance. It's fantastic for your body and mind. There are things we can do that we couldn't before because of Yoga.
In conclusion, being physically fit is no joke in the military. Your soldier's life and others may depend on it! Those that are fit are more likely to survive bombings, freak accidents, shootings, explosions, and many other things that happen in war. Take it seriously, and help your soldier to as well. There are many that don't, and it's what's holding them back and may well be the end of their career. So get pumped up and help them out, they NEED you!!