T Nation

Joining the Air Force


#1

I have finally decided to move on with my life and join the Air Force. I am actually extremely excited to see new places, new people, and to move out on my own. The entire package looks great to me; the benefits, the pay, the living, the travel, everything. However, from your experiences, are there any good reasons not to join? (besides the inevitable deployments.)

Also, I am trying to be as prepared as possible physically for boot camp. If any of you know a good workout that includes bodyweight excercises and lots of running, please link it to me or let me know the info behind it. I would be very grateful for any help or input you are willing to share.


#2

The deployments are the main reason people get out. In many ways it's a great "job"

But it's not just a job... you can't call in sick, you can't give your 2 weeks notice, and you can't kick your boss' ass.

LA - 20 yrs, glad I did it, glad I'm almost done.


#3

The reason that I didnt join the defence force was because I would have no control over where I live. This is not too much of a problem for me, but I couldnt expect my wife to pack up her life and move in an instant.

Obviuosly this would not have been such an issue if I had considered joining before I got married.


#4

Good choice.

If I had it to do over again, I would have chosen the Air Force instead of the Navy.

As far as being prepared for bootcamp, I'm sure you're already prepared physically.

The Navy and the Air Force don't have it nearly as physically challenging as the Army or Marines.

A lot of it is mentally challenging; getting up early with little sleep, people yelling at you for every little thing...

It's all just a mind game.

In bootcamp, you do tons of marching everywhere. I forgot the exact schedule, but we had group PT (physical training) every so often and would run around in circles in a gym for a set amount of time. I don't remember how long we ran, but I think it was about a mile and a half.

Then again, the Air Force is different than the Navy, and we'd tease them about how easy their physical fitness test is.


#5

I graduated on June 5th 1960. On June 14 I was in Texas at USAF basic training. It turned out to be one of the best things I ever did. The service experience will give you an edge in every thing you do for the rest of your life. It is fun to quietly enjoy real life confrontations with those that did not serve, and have no idea why GI"s keep winning. Real men serve, sign the papers!


#6

If you want to love your job and see places definitely go for aircrew as a flyer. Flyers deploy and see the world, not to mention they are often glorified for their efforts.

If you don't go flyer though there is a good chance you'll end up somewhere like Oklahoma, Texas, or New Mexico.

Another good option though, is to go overseas. Japan, Italy and Rota, Spain are definitely the best places to go.


#7

First I want to say congrats on making a decision like that. I was a tank gunner for awhile and loved it.

Start running and pushing HIIT to the max. Do benches and push-ups sit-ups etc. You want to be ready for anything they throw at you.:Remember: no matter how hard you train it won't seem like enough when you're there. Time yourself on the push-ups,sit-ups. See how many you can do correctly in three minutes. In the Army we were timed for two minutes. For instance, I was up to 86 push-ups and 78 sit-ups. If you can do each of those in two minute times you are more than ready. I sucked at sit-ups.

Good luck man and let us know what you are going to do.


#8

Check out the PT charts at
http://www.af.mil/news/USAF_Fitness_Charts.pdf

I'm sure you'll be fine. You didn't mention your AFSC, but it doesn't sound like you're doing CCT or Pararescue, which would be an entirely different animal.

Decent article with some good links. Hopefully you'll get the full Lackland experience in the pleasant summer months!


#9

Joined up Aug 20, 2002
So I haven't been in too long, as far as branch of service goes, you made the right choice. Bootcamp for me was 6 weeks, but they're changing it to 8 weeks soon, I think an extra week for warrior week which makes it two. (sleeping in tents, carrying a rubber rifle)

If I can offer any advice, it would be to get a job that you can get on the outside as well. If you don't see yourself retiring in 20 yrs or more, and want to get out earlier, you'll have background experience to get a good job. Plus you get college credits for most technical schools you'll go to, so you'll have a good chance to get your associates/bachelors and maybe even become an officer.

I made the mistake of becoming an armament systems technician, basically loading missiles on jets and fixing the aircraft weapon systems(LOAD TOAD), which does nothing for me if I decide not to re-enlist, but does great things for my shoulders :wink:

Try to steer clear from CE (Civil Engineering) or security forces/security police- they do many 12 hour shifts.

As far as bootcamp goes, the run is only like a mile and a half to two miles, and you have like 15 min so it's pretty much cake. pushups and situps are between 55-62.

From what I can remember PT was 3 times a week. You do a lot of marching and go through many boring lectures that you don't really have to pay attention to-the only challenge with that is staying awake, if you dose off you get an ass chewing.

Study the material that is given to you, you'll have to remember ranks, names in the government (secretary of the airforce, commander of the base, the president, duh) stuff like that. Most TI's just stop you in your tracks and quiz you on them.

Just don't be a knuckle head, listen to things the first time it's said- and follow it to a T. The whole goal in bootcamp is to break you down, and build you back up again, so they're going to say a lot of things that sound stupid, just swallow your pride and do them.

One more thing, don't listen to a word of your recruiter, they are so full of shit. they're all buddy buddy with you and lie to your face-all they want is your signature on the contract.

Feel free to PM me if you have any specific questions and I'll do my best to answer them. Good luck and welcome to the family.