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BMT Family PT Challenge: Week Two

Today was test day for week two of my BMT Family PT challenge. Boy oh boy do I have some work to do on my running. I actually didn’t think I could do worse than last week, but here I was slower. To be fair, I ran more this week than last week. However, some may say my new “running pace” was stationary. Perhaps I need to adjust my strategy to include more walk/run intervals to improve my time.

In all due seriousness, the run may have technically been slower, but it went well. I’m using Couch25K to get back in running shape. Today’s run called for five minute warmup followed by running for eight minutes, walking for five, running for eight and a five minute cool down. Since I wanted to get a good time on 1.5 miles, I ran through part of the walking portion. That may not have been the best plan. Clearly, I don’t run like a gazelle.

As for the pushups and sit-ups, they both still suck. Nonetheless, I did make so good headway on the sit-ups. Today’s effort resulted in 26 sit-ups an improvement over last week’s 21. The pushups were a complete struggle, but I still made the cut with 14. Hopefully, I will hit the sit-up standard in next week’s BMT family PT challenge test. Importantly, there are only 24 days until we’ll see our Airman! I can’t wait!

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BMT Family PT Challenge

Since Jake’s in BMT and I’m missing him, I thought it would be fun to do a BMT Family PT Challenge. The only issue thus far is that I’m the only one in the family doing it, but don’t fear the others will soon join the fun. My yoga teacher Monica is joining me as well, so if you’re interested let me k ow. It will be a fun way to get fit for the new year.

Here are the standards (male is first, but not labeled.)

As you can see, the bar is set (by my standards) quite high, but I was hopeful that I retained a decent level of fitness. Spoiler alert: I didn’t. Fortunately, I have four weeks before his graduation to master this stuff. I’ll be posting an update to my PT test challenge every Tuesday.

So here’s how my test broke down today

1.5 mile run: 16:56 – bad enough to get me booted from BMT.

Pushups: 28 – my one bright spot! Yay!

Sit-ups: 21 – disappointing result.

To be fair, I had nobody to hold my feet while attempting the sit-up feet. I should, perhaps, add an asterisk to the push-up total as there was nobody to judge the quality of said pushups. Can we talk about the run though? At least my sit-up performance was good enough to keep me in boot, but man did I suck wind literally and figuratively on the run.

Naturally, I had devise a plan of attack or improve these results. Action one, find somebody to hold my feet during sit-ups. Action two, train using Couch to 5k to regain stamina and speed. Of course I’ll be missing my running partner. For motivation, I’ll ruminate on the 5K we ran through the zoo, which is one of my favorite races. Action 3, suck less on both sit-ups and the run. Action 4, continue to work on my pushups and ensure they meet the Air Force PT standards. Lastly, document the hell out of the journey, so I can share it with my Airman after graduation.

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WOT 3 is Underway

WOT 3 is underway at JBSA Lackland! This week Jake will take his second official PT test of basic training. While he’s already at the prescribed standard, he and his flight are working towards Warhawk status. This means they have to exceed the PT standards substantially. In his letter we received today, he mentioned that he’s closing in on the number of pushups needed for Warhawk status.

WOT 6, or week of training six, will bring the official PT test. This is the one that will determine whether or not they graduate and if they graduate with Thunderbolt or Warhawk status. For recruits starting after January 1, 20202, their final PT will be in week three. The Air Force made the change because too many recruits were coming into BMT ill prepared. To go from no physical activity to the level of fitness required at BMT is a massive leap. Jacob spent months working out in the gym and running in preparation for his departure.

WOT 3 also brings some changes to the uniform. Excitingly, this week brings the issuance of the dress blues. During WOT 5, they’ll be taking their graduation photos in their new dress uniforms. Additionally, this week they’ll get their names on their ABUs/OCPs. I can’t wait to see my airman in his uniform!

In the classroom, they’re continuing to learn about the Air Force and it’s culture. They’re also continuing to practice disassembling and reassembling their M-4s. Additionally, they discuss cyber awareness, basic leadership and character, and warrior role. And of course, the trainees are continuing to drill. Lastly, the best part of WOT 3 is that he should be able to call us this week! We cannot wait!
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Meanwhile at the homestead, I knocked out my BBG workout this morning before heading to yoga. Can I tell you how much I needed yoga after sitting in a stadium and a car for hours yesterday? Maria’s class was the perfect anecdote. Sadly, I’ll be missing yoga tomorrow due to the hockey schedule.

Post yoga, I headed to Boca to meet Mel’s mom T for lunch. We met at First Watch, which is an awesome breakfast and lunch place here in South Florida. I had a deconstructed breakfast burritos and home fried potatoes with coffee. It was yummy and super filling. We had the best time chatting and sharing in our mutual love of J and M. Jake is lucky that his girlfriend’s family is amazing and loves him dearly. Finally, Jake is loving the letters and asks that we spam him with them. Please consider dropping him a note! His address is below.

Previous Training Weeks:
Week 0
Week 1
Week 2

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2019 is Coming to An End

2019 is coming to an end. After the insanity of the year, I’m not quite sure how to classify it. Was it good, bad or a mixed bag? I started the year with an incredibly hyper thyroid – thanks RAI. By the time mid February arrived, my thyroid and the associated hormones were dead and gone. Therein started the process of bringing my thyroxine levels back to normal.

In November, my last appointment, my levels had stabilized and were within the normal range. Victory was mine or at least partially. It will still take one to three years for the Graves symptoms to abate. Meanwhile, my antibodies are high, so the disease is still active. My goal is to find remission in 2020. Nevertheless, partial victory or not, it is still a victory. Mark one for good year.

In July, I transitioned from working mom to stay at home mom after nine years three hundred and sixty two days with the firm. It was a decade of achievement, change and philanthropy with some of the of the best people I know. Obviously, I was sad to leave the friends and relationships behind, but it had become untenable. I guess initially this could be marked as bad except for….

My oldest decided in June that he wanted to join the Air Force. We were thrilled he had a roadmap for his future, but sad that he may be moving away. As you know, he’s now left for the Air Force and is kicking ass at basic training. If I had been working, I would have regretted every day I didn’t spend with him. Fortunately, I wasn’t working so I got to spend my time with him.

One of my favorite memories from this year is the trip we took home, aka Jake’s Farewell tour, in October. The sole focus of the trip was to connect with our family, especially the grandparents, before he left for basic. Our grandparents, including Jake’s great great Grandma, are getting old. There is no telling when Jake will be able to return to Minnesota to see them.

This trip was soul nourishing. Words cannot describe the emotions I felt as my Great Grandma held Jake’s hand and told him she loved him and was so proud oh him. Or the emotions I felt when Luke’s grandfather afflicted with Alzheimer’s beamed with pride and remembered Jake as Steve (my FIL) told him Jake was joining the military. Unquestionably, these moments will reside forever in my heart.

Jake and I had so much fun with his cousins, aunts and uncles and grandparents in Minnesota. It really would have been hard for it to be a better trip. We got to see my a Uncle Craig and even his new grandson Grayson, who is just the cutest. Additionally, we were able to spend a lot of time with Grandma T and uncle Mark. Jake has always had a very special relationship with his great Grandma T as she babysat him while I was in college and throughout my early career. Their bond is special.

The trip ended too soon and we were soon faced with the Thanksgiving holiday and his impending departure. My whole family had already plan to come to Florida for Thanksgiving, which was perfect. We celebrated all the big holidays in one weekend and even got family pictures.

No matter what else happened this year, Jake leaving for BMT was a seminal moment. The days leading up to his departure flew by while the days after have dragged. We’ve cried copious tears of happiness, pride, sadness and longing. Sometimes the tears combine all of the above emotions. Our family will never be quite the same, but Jake is on his way to a bright future and we couldn’t be prouder.

I’d be remiss if I didn’t give mention to our newest family member. Our dear friends John and Hanh has their beautiful, sweet Ava on the 15th of December. She has brought so much love and light into all of our lives. We’re blessed to be a part of all of their lives. Meanwhile, Ava and I are best buddies. She’s in Tampa visiting her auntie until January, but her beautiful mama sends me pics so I can see her.

As 2020 begins, Jake’s career with the Air Force will figure heavily in the happenings. Of course, there will be several hockey tournaments and games interspersed in there as well. 2020 will bring graduation from BMT, tech school and FDS. FDS you ask – it’s final duty station. Later this spring we should find out where Jake will be stationed.

2019 is coming to an end. This year there’s no grandiose resolution. Instead, I’ll be focused on getting my health back on track, staying fit and being the best damn hockey/Air Force mom that I can be. As for 2019 being good or bad, I’d have to say it’s been challenging yet stellar! Happy New Year from our family to yours!

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Week 2

Week 2, WOT 2, is coming to an end today. For us, week two brought a Christmas Day call that was simply the best. Of course, their are mixed feelings of joy and missing him, but we’re grateful that he is doing so well. Ordinarily, the trainees don’t get to call home to week 3. Hopefully, we will get another call in the coming week. This call can come any day before lights out. Needless to say, I will be carrying my phone everywhere next week.

In week 2, airman are given their weapons and they start learning to assemble and dissemble them. Jake said it was relatively easy save for some rust on the weapon. Their practice weapons are fake m-4s and are kept in their forms. Next week they’ll start going to the range to practice with their M-16. They’re also learning to march and working on drill. Here’s a video on week 2: WOT2

This week they spent their classroom time learning about the core values of the Air Force, history of the Air Force, human relations and the organization of the Air Force. Additionally, the ABs have started their BMT jobs. Jake’s job is chaplain guide. He is responsible for marching the “baby flights” to chapels and helping the chaplain as needed. He loves it!

As for us, the Air Force Mom BMT group continues to be a saving grace. It’s nice for us to understand what he’s experiencing week by week and on a daily basis. Finally, tomorrow will usher in WOT3 and bring us one week closer to graduation!  We love you Jake!

Term guide:

AB: airman basic, his rank during basic training.

BMT: basic military training

MTI: military training instructor aka drill sgt.

WOT: week of training

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Weekend One

Weekend one without Jake was, thankfully, super busy. I can’t get over the fact that I can’t speak to him or that he doesn’t come home at night. Both the hubby and I keep expecting him to come home. Needless to say, I’m glad that our schedules were full from morning til night. This way my mind was distracted from missing Jake. Also, I posting his updated address as I discovered a few errors in it – thank you Air Force Moms BMT group.

Friday night Colin went out with his friends from school, so we ordered pizza from Nicoletta’s. Nicoletta’s is a neighborhood owned restaurant in the shopping plaza, so we’re anxious to support it. Our neighborhood group is full of restaurant killers. These jerks feel the need to complain and urge folks not to patronize a restaurant after they’ve had a poor experience. Perhaps they haven’t realized that they can keep their opinions to themselves. Seriously, given the level of complaining from these individuals, it wouldn’t be a leap of logic to conclude that they may be the problem. Nevertheless, the gluten free pizza form Nicoletta’s was divine. The only other local gluten free option is Domino’s, which is a hard no.

Saturday morning Goalielocks and I headed south to Kendall for practice. The practice days are long, but they’re also a lot of fun. I love the parents on his team and he truly adores his team. In between sessions, J and I grabbed a Publix salad and ate at the rink. We then indulged in my addiction (Dunkin) before watching the second practice. Meanwhile the Mayor and his team were volunteering at Feeding South Florida.

Post practice we made the trek home, so I could get ready for the Mayor’s holiday party. We’re so fortunate that both boys are on teams with great kids and family. It makes the season so much better and more meaningful. We had a blast and I ate way too many cookies, which I shouldn’t be eating. Santa even made an appearance. I spent the majority of night chilling with the moms, which was fabulous. Being surrounded by good friends from morning to night was exactly what I needed.

Sunday we were back at the rink for Goalielocks’ games. It was another early start to the day, which sucked. The boys didn’t have their best effort, but Goalielocks had a blast. We also got to see some of our favorite hockey families, which is always a great time.

We did another scary moment after one of our players was checked from behind headfirst into the boards. The check was finished with the defenders stick on our center’s next that never ends well. It’s that kind of bullshit plays that cause serious injuries and make the game look bad. I understand people get hit on clean checks, but this wasn’t that scenario. I was worried that he had been knocked out in addition to the neck injuries.  Anyway, I digress.

Afterwards, Goalielocks went to lunch with friends and we headed home to check on our friends’ kids. As we had driven to the rink that morning, we got the call that our friend was in labor and en route to the hospital!! So exciting!?! Can you think of a better distraction for a sad mom? I don’t think so!

The hubby ran over to check on the kids, while I did laundry, ordered groceries and did the dishes. He ran down some items to the hospital for our friends. By the time he got home, Goalielocks and his friends were back from lunch. We had a bonus of three hockey players in the house. They’re a bit loud, so they made Athena nervous. Consequently, she may have pooped on one of their shoes and right in front of the front door! Sweet Piggie was stressed.

We spent most of the evening anxiously awaiting the arrival of our newest niece. I was a bit worried when our friend had been pushing for over two hours. Thankfully, she was able to deliver the baby without needing a c-section. When I got the text that she was here, my eyes were musty with tears a joy and gratitude.

Upon receiving the text, I was ready to rock and roll. My hubby, who was a bit calmer, told me to simmer down and check with John. So I did and we were out the door in minutes. We picked up his daughters and took them down to see their beautiful baby sister.

It was the first time, I was back at the West Boca Birth pavilion since the Mayor had been born. Needless to say, it brought back many great memories. We checked in at security and quickly headed back to see the new arrival.

Man let me tell you, the new addition, Ava Deborah, to the family is beautiful. She’s petite with the cutest cheeks and that sweet newborn cry. I can say sweet since it’s not my newborn. I think we all know the sweetness of that newborn cry is short lived as the fatigue set in.

The most beautiful part of the evening being present for one of the happiest moments of their lives. If ever there were people deserved to be happy, it is them. At any rate, sweet little Ava stole my heart. I can’t wait to hold that sweet angel again!

As we hung out in the hospital room, I was filled with gratitude for all the changes the last week had brought: Jake embarked on the path to his future and our dear friends brought a beautiful life into this world. So many tears this past week have been sad and mournful, to cry tears of joy and gratitude last night for the gifts this year has brought was everything. All in all, we survived weekend one, but I wish Jake was here to share it with us. Meanwhile Jake started WOT1 yesterday – more on that tomorrow!  Weekend one is in the books!

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Time is Ticking

Time is ticking away. We’re less than four days away from Jake leaving for Basic training. We’re so excited for Jake and all that he will achieve in the Air Force. After all this is the natural order of things. You raise kids, hope they turn out ok and send them out into the world. Only it hurts. It’s hurts to let go and acknowledge that this phase of his life and ours will soon be over.

Inside a myriad of emotions swirl about at a million miles an hour (thank you Graves) that it’s hard to make sense of it all sometimes. At its core is the immense pride and joy in seeing our eldest son leave the nest with a great plan for success. In that core is also sadness and regret that it’s time for us to let go and let him fly.

Needless to say, if you see me and Luke in a rink this weekend (because that’s where we’ll be,) we’ll definitely be in need of all the love, hugs, encouragement, prayers and coffee one can find because time keeps ticking away.

 

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Congratulations Jake!

Congratulations Jake!   He killed his ASVAB today!  His recruiter was absolutely thrilled with his performance on the ASVAB. He scored above where he needed to for the jobs he’s interested and high enough on the general score to have several great options for him.

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As you may recall from my Transitions post, Jake is slated to go into the Air Force later this fall. Today was the day he took the ASVAB to see what job he’d qualify for in the Air Force.  He’s been studying the ASVAB for the last several months  as the jobs that he’s interested in required a very high electrical and general score.  Fortunately, I was insistent that he take the ASVAB before going to MEPs, so he know what he qualifies for and have less to worry about at MEPs.

So now the countdown to MEPS (Military Entrance Processing Station) and BMT (basic military training) has now begun.  On Monday he’ll go back to his recruiter to start putting together a list of the jobs and duty stations he’d like.  While it’s a wish list, hopefully with his score he’ll get one of his top choices.  As a side note, he used Kaplan Test Prep’s ASVAB test preparation and it helped tremendously.  If you or your child are planning to take the ASVAB, make sure you pick up the test prep.

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Meanwhile, the younger two are still living their best lives up in Minny nary missing us for a moment.  The hubby is busy working away on a nice manse on the water up in Jupiter. While he works his tail off, I’ve been spending my days at the dentist/doctor.   I am trying to get everything done this week my FSA ends on 7/31.  Consequently, my face feels like it’s going to be numb for days.  Anyway back to what this post is all about:  congratulations Jake!