'Fit, Focused, Ready'

INCIRLIK AIR BASE, Turkey -- We all know at least one of them, and we all despise them for it to one degree or another. That's right, I'm talking about those people who can eat however much of whatever they want and still look like the fittest person around.

There are also those people out there (many of whom are in the first category as well) who can run a six-minute mile anytime they please. They can bust out a 90+ on their physical fitness assessment without breaking a sweat, and then not do another pushup or a crunch until their test comes due the following year and end up with the same score.

Well, that's simply not the case for the majority of us. I don't know about you, but if I overindulge at a couple of meals and miss a workout or two I find the weight-creep doesn't creep as much as it does strike. As such, watching what I eat and making sure I exercise enough is an integral part of my lifestyle as I strive to be "fit to fight" and set a positive example for others.
The wing commander here at Incirlik AB, Col. Chris Craige, encourages us to "move more, eat right" and reminds us that physical fitness is a lifestyle, not an occasional two-mile "wing run." I find this advice, though not especially profound in concept, to have a profound impact when heeded.

As I thought more about Col. Craige's words and about the wing motto - Fit, Focused, Ready - while I was about four miles into a run around the flightline perimeter, the following poem began to form in my mind:

The distance, my destination
Moving forward, no hesitation
My heart, I feel it pounding
Rhythmic beat of my feet resounding

Excellence, my motivation
Service, my inspiration
In the sun, the wind, the rain
Conquering any and all terrain

In the morning or the night
I train to be fit to fight
I am an Airman, prepared for the call
Fit, focused and ready to give my all

The key line in that poem, I believe, is "I am an Airman, prepared for the call." Being physically fit and exemplifying good Airmanship are inseparable. Besides the various proven health benefits of being fit, being prepared for whatever physical demands might present themselves while fulfilling our role as Airmen is of foremost importance.

Whether or not you are a member of Team Incirlik, "Fit, Focused, Ready" is a great motto to live by. I hope you will join me in striving to be prepared for the call, whatever it may be.