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08-27-06, 09:18 PM #1
A little about me, and a question I have...
First off, let me start off by saying that a year ago, I didn't give a damn about the Corps. Sorry, but my dream was to be one thing. An officer in the United States...Army. I will get to "why" in a second, but let me continue.
Yes, heck, even 6 months ago I didn't care about the Corps, didn't know anything they had done (except major stuff like in WWII). Yes, I knew they were better than all the other branches. Yes, I knew they were more "elite" and had a better esprit de corps among their servicemen. But why did I want to be in the Army?
The thing was, I didn't think I could make it in the Corps. No seriously, I'd heard so much (and seen so much i.e. Full Metal Jacket) that the Corps seemed impossible to me. I was 6'4" 145 lbs. No way I'd make it. Every Marine I'd seen had been lean, mean, and a fighting machine. (Totally just scored rhyming points there, awesome) I had tried lifting and getting bigger, but only casually, nothing "intense". I just never considered working hard. I knew I could make it in the Army, especially after taking a tour of the ROTC program at the University of South Florida.
I had everything I needed to get a 4 year scholarship for Army ROTC, the grades (4.5 gpa, German Honor Society, Social Studies Honor Society, National Honor Society, etc etc), extra curricular activities, (I'm a Retail Parts Pro at Advance Auto Parts [second only to the assistant manager and I'm only 17] and editor in chief of the yearbook, I also played varsity basketball and football) in fact, the Army liason officer is still calling me asking if I've changed my mind.
That paragraph wasn't to brag, just to let you know where I'm coming from.
So about a year ago, a guy on this forum named Accord (John) told me he'd joined the Marines DEP.
I looked into it, talked to a recruiter, but I still didn't think I could make it. Besides, I was 16 at the time and she couldn't really work with me anyways. So I started lifting again, but nothing to serious.
And then about 3 months ago, I met a guy I worked with. I never talked to him, which was odd considering we only have about 10 employees, so everyone knows everyone. He's very quiet, very humble. But I noticed something about him, the way he walked. He was always up right, walked perfectly. Like, I can't explain it. He'd always do what he was told with speed and he'd do it perfect too. He was around 20, so he was around my age and I couldn't see why he was so "into" his work. He also never once stole anything. Where as most of us would take candy now and then, the bosses even said we could have them if we wanted "in moderation." He never did. He'd take twenty coins out of his pocket so that he could have M&Ms. Why'd he do this?
Finally I saw him in the break room at work one day reading "The Marine Book", we got to talking, and I casually asked him if he was in, just curious, you know? He said nah, he wasn't a Marine, he just enjoyed reading. Okay, that's believable. But after getting to know him better and telling him my Army plans he admitted he was in the Marine Corps Reserves, but he's very shy and doesn't like people to know.
I could write a book about this guy and how quiet and alone he lives. He literally is the dude that "Marines Christmas" poem was written after. Lives in an apartment, has no friends except his platoon/roomates (Lives with people in his Platoon).
We hang out all the time now, and I'd like to consider myself his good and only friend, although he denies it because "he doesn't have any friends." I don't know why he's like that, he just says he was born like that.
This man, I believe, is as "perfect" a Marine as anyone can get. He's true to his Christian values. (Not saying you have to be a Christian, but just saying he doesn't steal, doesn't cheat etc). He PTs EVERY night. Yes, I'm not kidding. This man, forces himself no matter what to PT. Why? Because the Marines want him to. His roommates make fun of him for this all the time, but they can't do 40 pull ups, run 3 miles in a little under 17 minutes, and do 150 situps in 2 minutes. The man runs four days a week, for over 3 hours, at a speed of 10 minutes an hour. Consistently. I've clocked him. Is he brainwashed? No. He just wants to be the best Marine he can be. And I look up to him for that. The biggest mistake he's ever made he said, is not going active duty. He said that's the one thing he wishes he could do, be a machine gunner on active duty in Iraq. (He's Motor T)
He's the one who made me realize that if I put my body (and all of my heart) into it I can do anything. So I started talking to my recruiter (I was 17 now) and I DEP'd in July 25th.
I've started PTing as often as he does. And this is where my question arises.
Lately I've noticed I'll be blowing off hanging out with friends to go PT. I do it all the time. It's like an addiction. I go straight from practice to the gym to max out on pull ups. I'll get home, eat as much as I can, then max out on push ups. Then I'll run the IST. Even on weekends, and when I get home from work at like 10pm (like right now) I'll be PTing. If my GF or friends want to hang out I tell them I'm sick so I have the time to PT.
Is this bad? I mean, I'll only be in high school once but I really want to get progress. I'm dead set on being a Marine now and I'm dedicated as I can be. I've gained 15 lbs and I can do a heck of alot more pushups now (pull ups seem to have gotten weaker in though???) I also can run alot longer.
What should I do? Right now I would definitely rather PT than ANYTHING else. It's like an annoying addiction. Run, lift weights, do push ups, the daily 16, ANYTHING. I just want to get stronger and tougher. I don't want to get all the way to Parris Island, only to end up a statistic of attrition
Thanks to all of you guys too. I hope to be one of the Few and the Proud, and I'm so glad I'll be wearing that Eagle, Globe, and Anchor rather than that gay French Beret.
08-27-06, 09:37 PM #2
To be honest, at first when I saw this post I didn't really know if it was worth reading all of it. But it was. I've talked to accord before also, great guy. I'm not really sure if there's any advice that I can give you...except for the fact that I don't believe you're doing anything wrong at all. You're taking the initiative to do what is necessary to achieve your dream. Stay moto you're doing great!
08-27-06, 10:10 PM #3
I always want to caution young hard chargers against making the Marine Corps your whole life. Its great that you're motivated and want to be the best Marine you can be. But, high school is one of the best times in life, take time to enjoy it while you can. The miles can be run after graduation, but you can't go back and have the memories you miss out on.
08-27-06, 11:52 PM #4
I would hope 20 years from now a highschool memory doesnt even enter my brain, seeing as how it was so bad. No offense Echo, but i do agree to slow it down some.. take your time with the pt, or ur gunna end up burning out, you dont have to have your own little boot camp before the real thing, it seems if u continue like this youll be sleeping in class
08-28-06, 05:31 AM #5
I hear you on the PT'ing 'addiction.'
I can't go 1-2 days without it, rolling with it again!
Don't worry, as Echo said, enjoy your High School years, as well. You can still fit your friends in your schedule. Try having them join you in PT'ing, might find some people might make the same 'self-discovery' and decide they want to try and earn that Eagle, Globe, and Anchor as well!
P.S : Brother, you're post was VERY MOTIVATING to me, thank YOU!
08-29-06, 12:44 AM #6
Absolutely, very motivating. I can kinda understand where everyone's coming from. I, like Erik hated high school... while I was there, but when it was over I kinda missed it and had a lot of regrets. I wasn't involved at all in school. I was on the golf and swimming team for one year but that was it. I didn't even want to go to Prom, and the only reason I did was because my GF wanted to. I hated the idea at the time, but looking back I'm glad she made me go. I wish I would have been more involved, ya know, played football and baseball, but I didn't because I had the "F*** school" mentality I guess. I didn't realize I'd miss high school until graduation day. I totally hear ya on the PT addiction thing. It's hard to work it around everything, but it's possible. I usually PT early morning or late at night. And a little more on the weekend. But listen, you got a little under a year before you ship, you're still in high school, and you got your whole life ahead of ya. I think it's awesome that you've decided to become a Marine, and are working so hard for your goal, but if you are too busy trying to grow up, you'll miss out on being a kid. I'm not saying stop PTing, just tone it down a little. Make sure you can pass the IST with ease, but you don't need to get a perfect 300 on it either. Save some time for your friends and family. Make memories before you go to boot. Cause once you get there it'll be all business.
08-29-06, 02:08 AM #7
As I read the wannabes statements I wish to give you a favorite quote of mine think about it ok
I spent the sunrise of my life trying to be a man
I spend the sunset of my life trying to be a boy
Don't be so impatient to grow up remain a kid as long as you can for once you cross the line to adulthood there is no going back ever.
The PT in boot camp is hard but there are a lot more to being a Marine than PT'ing. Most of you will pass the tests with no sweat.
When I went into the Corps it took about 3 days from walking into the recruiters office to getting off the bus at MCRD I had no idea what was going to happen to me but I made it just as all of you will.
Achped don't worry about your height or weight as they will put it on as needed or take it off.
To all you wannabes take it easy and don't worry so much half the fun of boot camp is the unknown. The DI's would have a empty slate to fill properly than to have to erase it then refill it .
08-29-06, 05:32 AM #8
Thank you for the very insightful, and quite frankly, good advice.
Sometimes you neee to take a step back and look. Definitely PT.. but don't rule out your years as a "little punk."
Originally Posted by iamcloudlander
08-29-06, 07:45 AM #9
And the Corps won't be ALL business - it will be the next phase of your life and you're gonna make memories that will last the rest of your life. Hell, I don't even think I could get rid of some of mine with Alzheimers, you know?
08-29-06, 04:20 PM #10
But you guys don't understand....I feel as if....if I don't get enough PT time in now, I'll end up having to call my parents to come pick me up from Parris Island as a failure. I don't want to do that.
It's not like I'm not athletic or anything, but I just feel like there will be something I won't be able to do that everyone else will once I get there and I'll just get dropped.
Do DI's drop you if you're obviously trying, but you're just taking a while?
Maybe I'm just "paranoid". Today I showed my yearbook class the trailer to "Ears Open, Eyeballs Click", the documentary about USMC Boot camp, half the class was like "Matt, that looks crazy, I don't think you'll make it."
Not that I mind them saying that, it's just more motivation for me to work harder. However stuff like that is the reason why I'm trying to hard. I can't fail. I won't fail, and I'm going to make sure of it even if it means skipping a few trips to the beach (not all of them) here and there or not making as much money at work so I can spend time at our RS PT sessions.
08-29-06, 04:44 PM #11
Being dedicated to PT is not bad, but my no means go to the point of injuring yourself!
Make sure you give yourself 1-2 days a week to allow your body to recover, and actually when I say recover.. I mean GROW from the stress you're putting it under.
Stay Motivated, PT, ENJOY YOUR CIVILIAN LIFE as you have it now, and you'll do it. Just keep your heart where it needs to be, to defend this BLESSED COUNTRY, and with Motivation and the mind-set, giving all you got.. you WILL earn that Title.
No one else matters what they have to say, you WILL succeed.
Originally Posted by Achped
08-29-06, 05:30 PM #12Originally Posted by Achped
I spent 8 years in the Marine Corps, what do you mean "I don't understand". I was a skinny 130 lb brat who didn't know squat about life, at age 17, when I joined the Corps. If an out of shape kid like me made it, I am quite sure you can with all the work you are putting in to it.
Relax, ENJOY your time as a young man in high school, and don't overdo anything at this point in your life. Things will fall in place and be just fine for you.
This really isn't a superman contest. Good physical conditioning is desirable and obviously the better condition you are in the more choices you may have, however it is not going to be the end of the world if you don't get perfect 300 PFT's...
08-29-06, 05:40 PM #13
You're being paranoid! The attitude you showed in the previous post will be what makes you make it through bootcamp. What do you think the Corps wants, nobody but athletes to show up? That would take all the fun out of it for them. It's like Camper said - there was a lot of us that weren't athletic at all and we made it through.................relax, you will too.
OH! And tell your friends to get bent when they tell you that you won't make it. Tell them you'll be home right after bootcamp to stamp that Eagle, Globe and Anchor on their butts!
08-29-06, 05:49 PM #14
You Keep Doing What Your Doing. There Is Nothing Wrong With Being Motivated At All, And Adding Pt To Your Everyday Life Is Healthy Even If You Hadn't Joined The Corps. The Things You Are Doing Right Now Will Take You A Long Way, Stay Motivated, And Always Remember The Title Is Earned Not Given Away.....
08-29-06, 07:25 PM #15
I'll let you in on a secret. Anyone that is allowed to enlist can physically do all of the things you need to do in boot camp. If you haven't prepared it may mean a trip to PCP, but even then you can do it. Remember, you don't have to be a 300 PFT person to be a great Marine. You don't have to be able to bench press 400 pounds to be a great Marine.
We don't know where you're at now. But, if you can run three miles in under 23:00 minutes or so, do 10 pull ups, and all 100 crunches you'll be just fine. You should never strive for anything buy perfect scores, but that doesn't mean you need to freak out if you don't get them. If you aren't at that level yet, make a plan to get there by the time you're ready to go to boot camp. Many of the people in your platoon won't have prepared much if at all. You'll be ahead of them and ready to be a great Marine upon graduation.
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