Fleet of foot; Pft’er leads by example after 50th consecutive 300
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    Exclamation Fleet of foot; Pft’er leads by example after 50th consecutive 300

    Only a handful of men and women break a sweat at the French Creek Fitness Center aboard Camp Lejeune, N.C., before the sun rises Sept. 2, 2009.

    One Marine in particular sets a harsh pace for himself, as he sprints in place at full speed. His long legs stretch from one end of the treadmill to the other as he widens his stride in order to maintain his momentum over the next hour.

    This personal discipline may have been what led Maj. Dean Keck, the executive officer for 2nd Maintenance Battalion, Combat Logistics Regiment 25, 2nd Marine Logistics Group, to recently complete his 50th consecutive physical fitness test with a perfect score of 300. For every fitness test, Keck achieved the maximum score by running three miles in less than 18 minutes and completing 20 pull-ups and 100 crunches. His best run time to date being 14 minutes, 56 seconds.

    However, according to Keck, his motivation and drive doesn’t come from a desire to compete or collect perfect PFTs, but rather to set an example for his junior Marines.

    “It was never my goal to get perfect scores on my PFT, just a desire to lead Marines from the front and set an example to follow,” said Keck, who has deployed twice to Iraq, Afghanistan once, and is preparing to deploy again in the coming months as the company commander of Combat Logistics Company 252, Combat Logistics Regiment 25.

    Keck said, working out and pushing yourself routinely keeps you mentally and physically in shape. He added that it requires a great deal of discipline, which itself, is something to strive for.

    He enlisted in the Marine Corps, Jan. 3, 1984, and meritoriously advanced up the ladder, becoming a staff sergeant before being appointed a warrant officer and eventually making the leap to limited duty officer ranks in 2001.

    Physical fitness is imperative to success on the battlefield, Keck said and to him, the implementation of the Combat Fitness Test provides Marines with a way to realistically gauge their stamina and endurance and prepare them for what awaits on deployment.

    “The Combat Fitness Test focuses on more than just being able to run or do pull-ups, it requires you to be able to conduct a fireman’s carry, sprint abruptly at full speed and requires stamina,” Keck said.

    For many, working out is a therapeutic experience, but for Keck it’s a means to an end – being physically fit and setting an example that junior Marines can follow.

    For more information on the II Marine Expeditionary Force, visit the unit’s web site at www.iimefpublic.usmc.mil.

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