154 Troop Diary – Week 9
Week 9 of Royal Marine training was looking to be a big week for 154 Troop due to the fact that Friday would be the Gym Passout; the final assessment in all the gym work that we had done over the last 8 weeks. This is a big milestone in training and the nerves were starting to creep in. During our time in the gymnasium our fitness ability has been strong, though our discipline and movement around the floor and some of our rope climbing has been lacking at times so we were all keen to pull it out of the bag on the day.
The week has been non-stop with lots of phys, first the Basic Fitness Test (BFT) which is a 1.5 Mile run out as a troop followed by a 1.5 Mile run back best effort as individuals. It was the first time doing it in boots however, everyone was confident they could equal their previous time which was done in trainers. This was followed on Tuesday by the Royal Marine Fitness Assessment (RMFA) which consists of a bleep test, 2 mins of press-ups and sit-ups and lastly as many pull-up as you can do. Nearly all of us improved on our previous scores from week 1 and we were pleased to be showing progress. We also had a number of hard gym sessions so that the 7 strongest blokes could be picked to be gym superiors during Friday’s passout.
We also focussed on First Aid this week with theory lessons Monday and Tuesday getting us ready for a practical assessment on Thursday which we would have to pass to show we had learned all the techniques of administering first aid. Spare time in the evenings consisted of more practice runs to square away our discipline and movement in the gymnasium and by Thursday night it looked like we were nearly there and the Troop was hoping that we would be able to do enough to pass on the day.
Friday arrived and we were all confident about the day ahead. The passout included everything we had done so far, climbing ropes, Swedish PT movements, team games, sit-ups, beam circuits and camp circuits to name a few. It was by far the hardest hour and a half we had spent in the gymnasium with all of us exhausted by the end. The passout went well, the whole Troop did three rope climbs, two camp circuits and the superiors did a further climb and another circuit. We felt we had done well but did not know if it was enough.
Back at the accommodation we were told how we did, and our performance was only enough to earn a pass. Further to this, unfortunately two of the Troop had not performed well enough to pass and would now be leaving the Troop. This hit us all hard and we were disappointed not to get a distinguished or superior pass as we knew we were all capable of it and will know to put even more effort in to our next physical assessment. However, we were all happy to pass the first big milestone and we put it behind us and looked forward to Exercise Hunters Moon next week.