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Fausto last won the day on June 6

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  1. These problems are complex without perfect solutions right now. I'm glad smart people are working on them. Hopefully what everyone at all levels (to include Congressional) starts to realize is that there isn't enough capacity in any fleet. We are ready to start strapping fires capability on to airlift platforms, who knows, maybe we can sling some under the wings of tankers and big wing ISR after that. Because this will help solve the capacity problem inherent in the CAF world. But then we run in to the loss of airlift capacity available to the Joint force which has a follow on effect of affecting logistics capacity to enable Joint fires. Some of us who are weary about the idea of dedicating airlift (especially strat airlift like a C-17) to fires missions is because we've sat in too many discussions where when operating at 100% efficiency, we are still only able to present 50% (+/- 10%) of required airlift to the JFACC. And so lots of things are already cut and delayed which would enable maneuvers and fires. In theater level exercises this is always hand-waived with magic fairy dust, "Well, white cell has allowed us to move those pieces where we need them to be so we can move towards the next objective." Sometimes I fear that our leaders who grew up in that world have actually learned that there is indeed infinite airlift and air refueling capacity. It would be nice to return to a world where we have 550 C-130s, 200 C-5s, 400 C-17s, and the CRAF available. The ever increasing march towards efficiency and minimizing excess peacetime capacity has left us all hoping to rob Peter to pay Paul. But then we walk in to the room with the Army and they object because it doesn't work with their scheme of maneuver. Luckily this is all exercise and design problems right now.
  2. Part of the problem is that the "training" between MAF deployments is normally operational requirements. You can't say no to an HHQ order to move a fighter squadron's DDF to their exercise or moving some broke MRAPs back stateside. So you might be leaving end of August on a deployment, you are required to get your Vol 1 beans prior to departure, you also want to take some family leave prior to deployment, and you have to fly tasked lines. The only one you have a choice in is choosing to give up your family time for a week to head out to a Flag exercise. For a long time I was an advocate for crewdogs to do exactly that. "It'll be your pink butt on the line in that fight..." But now that I'm approaching 20, the Lt Cols who were Lts when I told them that have flown their entire career in CENTCOM and AFRICOM against low end threats. And along the way we've been out on the ramp to admire the small arm holes in our airframes, or watched the SIPR porn of unsuccessful SA-7 shots due to our tactics. And it gets harder and harder to convince guys that they need to give up their family time to focus on the high end fight even though not one of us has ever been looked at in anger by a near peer. Instead they've seen the only "danger" come from shots in CENTCOM and AFRICOM. And that's what our local training focuses on the most. We'd all love to reduce our CENTCOM and AFRICOM commitments to focus on EUCOM and INDOPACOM. But the Pentagon actively fights back against that. So it gets very hard to say with a straight face to the young guys that "No, I promise, this will save your life in the next major conflict. When you receive a laydown with double digit threats in it are you going to be happy you skipped a Flag to see a few tee ball games?" Especially when they ask if myself or anyone who was an FGO when I was a CGO ever flew in that scenario. And if the Flag is going to help them on their next deployment to Africa this fall. I've also signed up for COCOM exercises and taken a group of young copilots along to get them some "OPLAN integration experience". Only to fly an uncontested airdrop on the first day because no one wanted to take away from the partner flying to provide a scenario for the airdroppers. And the Army didn't want anything complicated because they just wanted troops and equipment on the ground ASAP with 100% success so they could begin the maneuvers portion of the exercise. Then the rest of the "exercise" is just moving DDFs and JMRS around theater. We were only invited to shuffle equipment around major airfields with 10,000'+ runways. And the host nations won't allow you to do more than high altitude IFR to an IFR approach and landing. Nobody in leadership within 3 levels of a flying squadron has the ability to push back against COCOM taskings. So until you actually see Pentagon and COCOM leadership commit to EUCOM and INDOPACOM, you will continue to see people focusing on what will realistically get them killed or their wings taken during their 20 year careers. And that'll be in CENTCOM and AFRICOM until we are allowed to actually retrograde. Not just reposition it to another corner. Which of course increases airlift demand building new bases to get out of a named country without actually leaving the theater.
  3. Can anyone who was involved in this process speak to the reason a C-130 is included with a U-28 as not needing multi-engine time? I think it can be argued that a C-130 is probably the top multi-engine aircraft for difficulty flying in engine out operations. Between blown lift/flaps/ailerons and changing p-factor on top of asymmetric operations, a strong foundation in multi-engine operations seems fundamental to flying a C-130 far more than a C-5 or KC-135. It might even be argued that the T-1 formation low level is most analogous to a C-130J and C-17 than any other MAF aircraft in terms of mission management.
  4. I guess that's the rub with some who train for other sports. You're right that PFT specific workouts will give you a better score. But do you think someone with a goal 9-hour at Leadville or 4h30m century is less fit because they might only run an 11 minute? The Air Force seems to think so. I bet someone who focuses on that 1.5 mile time wouldn't do well beyond 10 miles running or beyond 50 miles on the bike. But that doesn't mean that one is more fit than the other. Or is a greater risk for cardiovascular disease than the other. Especially since the best any of us could do to lower our risk is to sleep more, lower stress, and eat healthier. But the USAF would never allow a good enough work-life balance for that. In fact, to get those workouts in to improve fitness, you're probably sacrificing all 3 of those other metrics that are probably more important to heart health than speed endurance.
  5. If they are worried about that then they need to move it to the clinic and have it part of your annual PHA. Because you can't outrun your diet. Lots of dudes out there draining a Monster, running a 10 minute mile and a half, and then celebrating with Tornadoes and more energy drinks from the shoppette followed by a full pizza for dinner. If it's cardiovascular risk they want to lower then it's time to discuss it in context of lowering stress, eating better, and getting an appropriate amount of exercise.
  6. I just want to point out that this isn't what VO2max is. You're talking about a pulse oximeter which measures the current oxygen saturation in the blood stream. VO2max is measured through gas exchange to determine maximum oxygen uptake. The bigger the number, the harder you can go. VO2max is measured in mL of oxygen/(kg*min) and is measured in a lab. It's the photos you see of professional cyclists on a bike with the sleep apnea looking mask and sensors attached all over them. It has to be measured in a very controlled setting and is individual. VO2max is a great "gee whiz" number to know while training for endurance sports, but in the end it doesn't give useful information without context. There are professionals like Greg LeMond or Julian Alaphillipe had VO2max numbers in the mid 80s to low 90s. Others have actually measured out in only the high 60s. Your local endurance sport enthusiasts probably have a VO2max in the mid to upper 50s and your average USAF officer probably resides in the mid-40s. All of that to say. Measuring VO2max without context is stupid and there's no correlation with ability or fitness. The greatest percentage of it is genetics and you can only change it probably +/- 10% from there with serious training. And then all it's telling you is the potential you have to be elite in power endurance sports like cycling, cross country skiing, rowing, and so on. Building a test around that metric for non-athletes who don't have specific time goals is dumb. You can have a VO2max of 45, be perfectly healthy, and it doesn't mean you're out of shape. It just means you aren't going to run a 15 minute 5K or ride a sub-4.5 hour century. And that's ok, because who cares?
  7. That's the problem. You get to the point that you need speed training. I spend most of the year trying to improve my fitness in the sweet spot/upper threshold range so that I can increase my speed over 100 miles. The problem is, when I break out to do speed training for the PT tests, it hurts my time on the bike. It adds a ton of impact and anaerobic work which then kills my 2 or 3 hour work out rides the next day. So I actually have to lose total fitness in order to speed up my time on the PT test before returning to a plan where I can increase my fitness. I go out and run my 10:30 and then spend 6 weeks trying to get back to where I was before I detoured to my PT test regimen. I would prefer a "choose your own adventure" test. Pick 1 of 3 for each component Upper Body: Push Ups, Pull Ups, or Dips; Core: Planks, Crunches, or Dead Lifts; Endurance: Mile and a half run, 10k run, or 30 mile bike ride. Or something like that. I can prove my fitness any day they want by my Watts/Kg and HR variability. So maybe we should just have an "eye test" or a "submit your own data for consideration". I show them the 5,000 miles I rode this year and they just check "complete".
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