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If they're motivated enough to join then they'll loose it on their own.
I weighed in at 320lbs in my sophomore year in high school (No ****). I knew I wanted to join and was smart enough to know the weight had to go. By my senior year of high school I was a solid 170lbs at 72" and easily putting down 6-10miles 5-6 times a week without breaking a sweat.
Here's the problem with today's military: When I was in a unit I put back on about 40lbs to weigh in at 210-220 at 72inches. Most of it was muscle but some was fat of course. Thing is, I could never pass tape even though I consistently got 300+ PT scores. I wasn't the fastest runner in my unit but I never fell out of a run regardless of distance. Nor did I run anything higher than a 13min 2 mile. As for humping I pretty much had everyone beat in that category.
I can remember standing in the platoon CP with other thicker NCOs. Some of them were absolute monsters coming in at 240lbs with chiseled features. Yet they'd come in at 25% BF. WTF? Same thing happened to me at around 15-18%. We had washboard abs along with 36-38inch waists. Didn't make any sense and was embarrasing as hell at times. Especially when I was a PVT.
Doesn't this type of system belong in the 50's? Next thing you know they'll be handing out cigarettes before PT tests.
So let me just present an easy solution for the chubby. Pass the PT test with a minimum score and you're in! We’ll forge your body in basic. I wonder how many potential recruits are told to walk when they’re capable of performing? On the other hand, If you're clinically obese then you'll need to loose some before enlisting. Sorry but that’s a given...
Why are we putting appearance in uniform above performance? Are we going to win this war on good looks?
Remember, most people discharged for failure to maintain weight standards needed to go anyway. It's just the easiest excuse for a CO to use, along with PT failures. Also, most soldiers who aren't meeting the requirements aren't high-speed, low-drag 11Bs who don't break a sweat until their 5th mile of the morning. Most are in logistical or CS units, and aren't as motivated as you were.
Well that is true in my case. I was administratively booted from the Marines. I had a decent PFT, second class, did 13 pull-ups, I always ran fast though. Also they tape you right across your navel, where my love handles did me in. I did excellent in my MOS, had all the letters of appreciation and was on my way to sergeant. I was sent to a command for some **** duty for a month, I ended up working in the mailroom. the company commander there was a complete dick and called me a **** bag Marine for being overweight, even though I could reach over his desk and break him in two. I would also beat him in company runs on purpose to make a point, and say things like "c'mon sir, don't get beat by the ****bag Marine". I got page 11 after page 11, reduced through the ranks to private within 6 months, and was booted. It didn't help that I got pretty depressed from the whole thing, and was ready to get the **** out of there when I did. It is really hard what you are put through, on weight control, how you are treated. I am not playing a violin, I deserved to be kicked out, I was out of regulation, but I was a good hard working Marine. When I was finally reduced to Private, ( a rank I had never been because I came out of bootcamp PFC meritoriously), our CO said that if I wanted to stay in, all I had to do was say that I wanted to, but by then I was like **** it. Discharged General under Honorable conditions. Oh well, should have went in the infantry.
It is really hard what you are put through, on weight control, how you are treated. I am not playing a violin, I deserved to be kicked out, I was out of regulation, but I was a good hard working Marine.
But you passed the PFT, right? If what you say is true (and the entire story) then you did not deserve to be kicked out. The problem falls within the "fitness" and uniform regulation (mostly uniform for Marines I bet).
This is exactly the problem I’m trying to address and what I want to know. Are we putting appearance above performance in a time when our forces are wearing thin? Are superficial regulations damning our recruitment numbers? If so then why?
Image if being homosexual meant your skin turned pink. Would we turn away capable men because of sexual preference if the proof of such preference was on the surface? I knowingly served with two highspeed homosexuals. I just told them that I wanted to know nothing about their lifestyle out of uniform.
BTW, did they give you the water density BMI test?
Well what I have posted is 100% the truth, and I couldn't agree more with what you said. This is why I just chose to give up and not just lose the weight. I didn't understand why if I could pass the PFT, with a second class, better than half of the battalion I was in, that they were on my case. I never looked bad in uniform either, it was crazy. Just to dime them out, I was in 1st Radio Battalion in Kaneohe Bay, HI, and it was H&S company that gave me the boot. Captain Shepard, I hope to see you someday in a dark alley!!!
And no, they never gave me the water density test, they said that "taping" was the means of getting their figure, and that if I wanted to go to Tripler (Army hospital), that it could only be used for my personal information, or when pleading my case to the CO, but like I said, by that point I wanted to get out, and was tired of all of the isht.
What I want to know is how many very willing, very capable, stout men are being turned away because they fail to meet the requirements of a plug-in-play fitness equation from the 1950's?
Late with the reply, but here goes anyway.
It's hard to say how many are turned away (although I would say not many- the size of the medical detachment at my Basic and AIT posts were proof enough. Most were there trying to lose weight to continue with their training) but more importantly, almost nobody is seperated from service strictly on weight standards, and to a lesser extent on PT scores. I myself came damn close several times to being seperated on PT scores, and lost a promotion and AAM in AIT due to them ( I was top of my class in every respect; then failed the final PT test on first attempt, and it was all wiped away. ) However, my chain of command never seriously wanted to be rid of me because I was good at my job and a pretty good soldier too. Salty, you've met me. If I tell you that I scored in the 260s 4 times on the PT test (all 4 times I took it in Korea) can you guess how my score broke down? Yep, 100/100/60. Think you can guess my weak event? :-p I have issues with how the fitness standards are set that comes from a bit different perspective than yours.
Anyways, it's kind of hard for me to decide which part of people being denied enlistments is worse- the DoD for setting outdated standards, or the average volunteer having difficulty meeting them?