Q/A from SEP 19 2018

Nutrition and physical training questions should be individualized and specific. If you have general questions about nutrition and physical training you should be reading within the AFSWDEV Forum under Nutrition. If those documents don’t answer your questions, then ask specific questions to your developer. Candidates need to be vested in their training and their body, learning and understanding as you move forward with fitness and your career. Learn, understand, and ask questions along the way.   

Non-physical improvements –There is really no such thing as a non-physical improvement in my book. Your brain is physical tissue, that is flexible and capable of immense changes just like a muscle. Train your brain. Under the AFSWDEV Forumthere is a reading listof books and documents about SW lifestyle and missions. There is a list of knotsyou can learn to tie and recognize.

Meditation –This can and most likely will be its own blog post in the future, however to answer it briefly; I think you can define meditation as a moment where you are focused on a single task. Your thoughts, breaths, and focus is aligned towards a simple goal. Often people use visualization to accomplish this focus. I look forward to expanding on this in the future. 

What were instructors like? – The answer to this question is going to change from person to person. I feel the best way to answer this question is to give candidates tools for their own future experiences with cadre (instructors). Trust your cadre. Trust they will push you beyond any breaking point you have ever imagined. Trust that their goal is to mold you into a team member they want to work with. Trust that if your safety is genuinely at risk they have the skill, training and fortitude to save you. 

Setting Goals –Your goals need to be specific and concise. Goals need to be in the positive tense. Goals need to have realistic timelines. When establishing goals it is important to know where you before you can determine where you want to go. Write your goals down and share them with people close to you for accountability. 

Example of improving generic goals:  

“I want to pass the PAST” – This goal is not specific, and there is no timeline connected. A better way to write that goal would be “I want to pass the PAST for Pararescue standards in the next 45 days” – Specific, positive tense, and has a timeline. However this goal is not concise, this goal may not be realistic. 

“After passing both underwaters, scoring a 9:38 on the freestyle swim, 10:24 on the 1.5 mile run, 11 pull ups 51 situps and 44 pushups on the Pararescue PAST (today), it is my goal to improve my run time by 15 seconds, improve my pushups and situps by 10 reps while maintaining my swimming and pullup ability. I will achieve this goal by, date, which is 45 days from now.” This goal is clear concise and based on the scores has a very realistic timeline. 

Common failures in dep/pipeline– Lack of attention to detail. Lack of communication. Candidates lack a sense of urgency. Candidates/applicants have poor work ethic. Inability to work as a team member or leader. Lack of personal accountability/responsibility. This are just a few examples but can apply to almost every failure we see in the DEP or training pipeline.  

Provide constructive comments and feedback back to further explore these topics within the comments.

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