ASVAB – Basic Training – Boot Camp – ROTC – Leadership – Study Guides – Office Candidate School
You’ll report back to the MEPS to prepare to leave for Basic Training. If you’ve been in the Delayed Entry Program, you’ll get a last-minute, mini-physical to make sure your conditions is still up to par. You’ll also be asked about any changes that might affect your eligibility since the last time you were at MEPS. If you’ve been arrested or have any medical problems, now is the time to speak up.
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Your orders and records will be completed at MEPS, and then you’re on your way to Basic, by plane, bus, or car-it’ll be at military expense. Where you train will depend on the branch of service. The Air Force and Navy each have only one training facility. The Marines have two, and the Army has quite a few because where the Army sends you will depend on the specialized training you signed up for at MEPS.
Basic Training is demanding. Prepare yourself for Boot Camp, mentally and physically. Set yourself up for success, train before you go!
No matter which branch of service you join, the first few days of Basic are pretty much the same. You’ll spend time at an intake facility, where you’ll be assigned to a basic training unit and undergo a quick-paced introduction to your branch of the service. Your days will include:
- Orientation briefings
- Uniform distribution
- Records processing
- I.D. card preparation
- Barracks upkeep training
- Drill and ceremony instruction
- Physical training (PT)
You’ll be assigned to a group of recruits ranging from 35 to 80 people. The Navy calls this training group a “company,” the Army and Marine Corps call it a “platoon,” and the Air Force calls it a “flight.” The drill instructor is your “supervisor” for these early days of your military career.
Lieutenant Campbell takes this opportunity to provide the reader a front row seat into the daily struggles of his platoon. It would have been easy for him to shed the spotlight directly upon himself in this story; in order to boost his own ego. But to the contrary, Campbell highlights the extraordinary camaraderie of the men under his charge. Instead of highlighting his successes, he focuses on the successes of his men and points out his errors in judgment. He continually second guesses the split-second decisions he was forced to make. If only I had done X rather than Y, things might have been different; is the common theme of his thought process.
Joker One reads like an action packed Major Motion Picture. I had to constantly remind myself that I was reading a true story and not a piece of fiction dreamed up by some overly imaginative author hammering away at the keys of his or her word processor.
From the intake facility, you’ll go to your Basic Training site. You can expect your training day to start around 5 a.m. and officially end around 9 p.m. Most Saturdays and Sundays are light training days. You won’t have much free time, and your ability to travel away from your unit on weekends will be very limited, if you get this privilege at all. In most cases you will not be eligible to take leave (vacation time) until after Basic Training, although exceptions can sometimes be made in case of family emergency.
The subjects you learn in Basic Training include:
- Military courtesy
- Military regulations
- Military rules of conduct
- Hygiene and sanitation
- Organization and mission
- Handling and care of weapons
- Tactics and training related specifically to your service
While you are in Basic Training, you can expect plenty of physical training. Physical fitness is critical for trainees (“Trainee” is your new first name), and your drill instructor will keep tabs on your progress throughout Basic Training by giving you tests periodically. Your best bet is to start a running and weight lifting program the instant you make your decision to join the military. Recruits in all branches of the service run mile after mile, perform hundreds of sit-ups and push-ups, and become closely acquainted with obstacle courses. Theses courses differ in appearance from facility to facility, but they all require the same things: plenty of upper body strength and overall endurance, as well the will to succeed.
The Ultimate Basic Training Guidebook
This book will prepare a recruit, mentally and physically, for basic training in the U.S. Army. It offers practical and unique solutions to challenges encountered by new recruits. Inside you’ll find an 8-week fitness program specifically designed to improve your fitness test scores, study guides, an instructional “How to…” chapter, a list of what to bring (and not to bring) to basic training, tips for success, and much more.
This book pretty much tells you everything you need to know to prepare for Basic Training. There are a couple other books out there but they don’t offer a fitness program like this one. The fitness program really whips you into shape too. Also, the book has a helpful packing list which includes EVERYTHING you need to bring to basic training, down to the last pair of socks. I highly recommend this book for anyone entering any branch of the military.