Top performers gives Grissom Airmen incentive to maintain year-round fitness

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Katrina Heikkinen
  • 434th ARW Public Affairs
To beat a record, you must know it exists. For runners at Grissom, that motivation now exists.

With a goal of increasing the 434th Air Refueling Wing’s fitness program initiatives, Grissom’s new exercise physiologist hopes to improve Airmen readiness as a whole – with healthy competition through recognition.

“We are looking to show more incentive toward the fitness program,” said Dustin Fulkerson, 434th Force Support Squadron exercise physiologist. “Where we saw these two areas meeting is highlighting top performers/times from people involved in runs and fitness testing.”

According to Fulkerson, the board will display fastest times in the 1.5-mile run, 5K and 8K run categories.

“There’s a possibility of seeing a lot of names that are familiar up on the board,” he added. “I think it might hold interested for people who want to see their names on the board and see that people and leaders care and want to promote healthy competition and ultimately readiness for the Air Force.”

While health benefits from an active lifestyle will increase productivity, optimize health, and decrease absenteeism while maintaining a higher level of readiness, Fulkerson says ensuring traditional reservists maintain a healthy lifestyle year-round can be a challenge.

“I think the top PT performance board might hold interest for people that a want to see their name on the board and that people actually care and want to promote these kind of activities,” he said. “Competition is good. Individuals that come through here and perform in their test – I think for many of them – see that no one cares about how they perform. If there’s a care, I think it can be shown by a tracking of times and a recognition of performance and that individuals are actually being noticed for working hard.”

Fulkerson said the board will also include members who are part of the sub nine-10-and 11-minute time for the 1.5-mile run.

“I think overall what we’re trying to do is show that we care about readiness,” he said. “Unit fitness program managers are also recognizing them in their squadrons so that other people see that it’s important.

“My goal is to improve the readiness of Grissom as a whole, so we can continue to fly, fight and win,” he concluded.

The 434th ARW is the largest KC-135R Stratotanker unit in the Air Force Reserve Command. The Citizen Airmen from the Hoosier Wing routinely deploy around the world in support of the Air Force mission.

Stay connected with the 434th ARW on Facebook and Twitter.