Military Fitness II: For Civilians

Following on from Part I Military Fitness; Not Just Gym Training, aside from gym circuits, it is the whole lifestyle and ethos of the military that encourages and develops a very high level of fitness, and an overall dedication to a healthy lifestyle.

After making the conscious decision for change, and deciding to whole hearted embrace a lifestyle that incorporates greater levels of fitness, small but subtle changes to the average civilian lifestyle can be introduced to gently start an increasingly fitter and healthier lifestyle. Civilians can take that gentle start mentioned in the previous post further by joining a parkrun, local running club, local outdoor activities club or similar.

It is not just activities out of work that can begin to foster that lifestyle change. If working in an office, take the opportunity to be more active. Stand up from time to time, and walk around for a while. Instead of taking the elevator, take the stairs. Instead of emailing someone in the same building – go and see them. Indeed, that can be more helpful and productive in the workplace; a five minute face to face conversation can often be more productive than a week long chain of emails.

If a freelancer or contractor, take advantage of the constantly changing workplace and work schedules to find more time and scope for physical activities, even if just those as simple as walking outdoors for a while. For those who frequently travel for work, again take advantage of the little things such as utilising a hotel gym or pool, or even stepping out of the hotel for a walk to enjoy new and different surroundings.

From such small starts your lifestyle, over time, can be changed to embrace more and more physical activity, making you fitter and healthier.

A final point is that – such things take time. In the military, so many people are gathered in basic training with varying levels of physical fitness, coming from wildly varying levels of prior healthy and active lifestyles. Basic Training lasts for ten weeks or so. It is only by the end of those ten weeks that the recruits are near the levels of fitness required to take up their duties.

After basic training, recruits are still treated like trainee idiots for a good while whilst in their specialist or role training. That means compulsory gym training, regular sports and similar. It is only at the end of that, that such levels of fitness have been truly accomplished and the recruits have had that change in attitude and lifestyle to fully want and desire to maintain such levels of fitness.

Fitness and lifestyle change, takes time, even in a military regime; it will take the average civilian similar lengths of time as well. The key thing is not to give up, and not to despair – but rather to keep on persevering.



James Monroe

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