RAFairman's Blog

An RAF Airman's Blog

Thank You…

I know I’ve been banging on about it for a while, but today was the culmination of a bit of work.

As you may know today (Friday) was the day I took my RAFFT – the RAF Fitness Test. And nowadays it’s got to be a bit of a big deal.  You see the policy on people who fail the RAFFT has changed recently and those people who don’t meet the standard can now be given a “formal warning” which – if their performance doesn’t improve can lead to an administrative discharge from the RAF.

How do I feel about this – well, actually I support it. After all we are a fighting force and to fight effectively we need to be physically fit.  And being physically fit has proven positive health benefits too…so its kind of a double win.  The nation, you dear reader, expects us – expects me – to be fit enough to do my job…and I expect the RAF to provide me with the facilities to let me be so. And they do – in spades – I mean, those of you who are members of a civilian gym…how much do you pay a month? Me? Nothing. I get a top spec gym provided – open (via a swipe card system) when I want for the princely sum of £10 a year – for the swipecard. I mean that is an unreal bargain. Duncan Bannatyne wouldn’t have made his millions charging that little…

And if we are not able to meet the standards set for us – well, unless there is a pretty good medical reason for me not to be able to do so, then I expect there to be some sort of sanction against me…something that will put me into gear and change my lifestyle to ensure I do pass it.

Here’s a funny thing. I have just seen a Twitter post that almost made me delete all the above and start writing again…it said something like “Our debt to them and all our Armed Services is never ending.” But on reflection I think it sort of fits in with what I have written. Sort of, but then it only shows one side of it…You see, I have a debt – as a member of the armed forces – to all you too.

You guys expect me to be fit. To be fit enough to do my job. And my job is to be fit. So actually, I shouldn’t be “happy” that I have passed my fitness test today. I shouldn’t be banging on about it….

Instead, I should be saying, “Yes good people. I am fit enough to do my job, and I want to be fitter so I can do it better.”

Instead of me saying thank you for the congratulations I got over on Twitter today, I should instead be saying…thank YOU, for your investment in me is safe today – and you know what, next week when I start back down the gym after a relaxing weekend I will be working doubly hard so that for the NEXT fitness test that I do in October, I will get to a higher level and will be even fitter and better able to do whatever job you – and citizens of the UK – expect me to do.

And I will be. You can hold me to that in October.

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One thought on “Thank You…

  1. I am glad you passed your fitness test & also hope you continue to do so. Provided as you say that time is allotted in the working day for all Ranks & all Branches & Trades to attend the Gym. In other words that all have a level playing field to attain their goal. And the same of Formal Warnings and Admin discharge, provided they apply from Air Officer to Airman/woman then fine, if not then I would urge caution by the MOD as I fear Civil litigation in some cases may follow. This is not something I know of from my time in the RAF, but welcome it as a positive step forward. The caution I am noting is more along the lines probably of my cynical views of irregularities during my service like everyone had annual GDT, well I say everyone, everyone except an Airwoman who was dating the NCO RAF Regiment and she got an annual stamp on her green card without ever setting foot in the Regiment Trg Flt! But then we also had Admin discharge, a large number of which compiled on the grounds of an individuals sexuality and look at the Money the MOD had to pay out on that years later! In conclusion, my point is such monies these days whilst even with the state of the economy would still be forthcoming, could be better spent elsewhere, save for an all inclusive plan, which who knows, the RAF may have in place already.

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