Are you 'Fit to Fight?'
By Chief Master Sgt. Wayne Raymondo, 102nd Intelligence Wing command chief
/ Published January 08, 2009
OTIS AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, Mass. -- Physical fitness standards have evolved over the years from the old walk/run days. Back then it seemed if you started and finished (if you were tested at all) you passed. AFI 10-248 and ANGI 10-248 are the governing instructions for the current Air Force fitness program. These instructions, currently under review, establish the minimum standards applicable to all Airmen. It is your responsibility to become familiar with these standards to ensure that you are fit to fight. If you need more information, contact your unit fitness monitor or First Sergeant for guidance.
I recently had the opportunity to visit Lackland AFB, Texas. During my five-day class I had the pleasure of sitting down for lunch with a basic trainee. I asked him what advice he would offer to future trainees preparing for Basic Military Training and without hesitation he said, "be in shape." He went on to say that most of the problems encountered by trainees relate to their fitness level; minor injuries, fatigue, dehydration to name a few.
Later that day I met with a military training instructor. I explained to him that our wing has recently started a student flight program designed to prepare our future Airmen for basic training. He quickly pointed out that any pre-basic training completed at the wing level should focus on physical fitness. A trainee showing up in good physical condition can more effectively cope with the physical and mental demands of Air Force Basic Training.
Chief Master Sgt. Joan Peters, Air National Guard liaison at Lackland, repeated the same message in her briefing to our class. From a week five trainee to a seasoned chief master sergeant the message is clear: be in shape.
Airmen are being called upon in record numbers to deploy overseas and into hostile environments. Imagine being in the AOR, suffering from sleep, food and water deprivation. Your fitness level will directly affect your ability to perform your mission.
It doesn't matter if you are full time or a drill status guardsman; the standard is the same. Your fitness goal shouldn't be to meet the minimum standard. Don't cram for your test, strive to maintain a healthy lifestyle and be in the best shape possible. You've seen the Airmen's Creed, our "mission is to fly, fight and win." Are you fit to fight?
As of this writing I'm wrapping up my first year as your command chief. I can tell you without reservation, this is the best job in the Air Force.
During this holiday season take time to remember there are thousands of service men and women deployed away from their families. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers. Finally, from my family to your family have a happy and safe holiday season. Thank you for answering our nation's call!