Monday, May 29, 2006

As the heat rises so do our spirits

Team Porky

The base I'm stationed at held a marathon race about a week ago. I found out about this event from the duatholon event and I became inspired to share this experience with some of my fellow soldiers at headquaters. After messing with Mr. McMuffin about how he was going to be on the team, I managed to draw together 12 people for two marathon teams.

I had a rough weekend to say the least. Prior to turning in for the night, I requested a soldier on the night shift to wake me up at the crack of dawn to prepare for this race.

That night I managed about 4 hours of sleep but, as it turns out, the solider kept to my request and I was up before the sun.

I made it to the competition about 5 minutes before they started letting teams an individuals sign up for the event. No one I knew showed up for forty some odd minutes.

When they did arrive, only three soldiers from my unit showed up and we were able to pick up another two from a swimming group that I am now share membership in.

I ran leg 4 and, to be quite frank, my legs were very tight up and until the 3rd mile of my 4.something-or-other leg of the race. Hearing encouragement like "way to go man, you've got 2 more hours left!" did do much for my motivational level but, we did finish the race and I was pretty excited with the experience.

I managed a photo after our teams run and a t-shirt.

Pre PT Test Run

We were warned about 4 months ago that we would have to run as a group three times before our PT test. No one thought that our leadership would wait until the week of the PT test to call us out.

The first run was a distance event, which wasn't too horrible. Two something miles. No sweat.

The second event was for "speed". That consisted of eight laps around the local track/field and then a 100 meter dash resulting in one casualty.

After the eight laps, our leadership said something about how we'll be doing 100 meter dashes until someone beats him. Needless to say that the "speed" training he had been doing for the past couple months wasn't enough to withstand the speed of one officer in our group. So, we did one of those but, not before our fifty-something supply officer tore his calf muscle after 6 paces down the run-way.

After completing that we did some stair sprints and everyone vanished from the scene. Our supply guy was hobbling his way to the medical clinic and I was a bit ashamed that no one was helping the poor guy. So, I joined him in his waltz and managed to get both a vehicle for him and breakfast.

The Mourning Of...

I spent the rest of the week swimming with my new "collective". I managed to survive about 3 workouts with them, one of which was a very humbling experience.

We held our fitness test and I managed to do exceptionally well on all events. One soldier was pacing off me in the run and managed to pass me at the last 200 meter marker bringing me to "second place" in the run.

I was humbled again to find out that I've only maintained my weight and I've yet to actually drop the pounds I've spent the past couple months working so hard to lose. It's obnoxious. I've altered my diet and I've increased my exericse - even cut back on serious weight training - only to find that I'm "stuck".

In any event, the chaplain approached me after the fitness test and convinced me that running a 5K road race about an hour after the fitness test was a great idea! So, I nabbed about ten bucks for registration and we knocked out the 5K. The registration fee was to support a YMCA back in Oklahoma.

Slow Daze

It's been very slow out here this week. Not much expectation wise besides running coax-cable into a bunch of buildings for AFN television service. I met with some people conducting the installation project on post and will be attending a meeting with them sometime soon. I hope it's worth while.

The heat is picking up to 106F-110F daily now. The nights cool off to a balmy 80F. You feel the heat coming off of every surface. The day time heat is oppressive and sweating out the litres of water consumed in doors is not a problem. The nights are steamy and usually at 4-5 am, things are back to "normal", preparing to cook for the next day.

We've had a couple of power issues but, new gear has come into town so, that's no longer an issue.

I've about 2-3 weeks until I go home on R&R. I'm pretty excited, to get the heck out of here for a little while, even if it's for two weeks.

Well, time to return to the grind.



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