The test…is underway.
The dreaded opening line that struck fear into the hearts and minds of fat kids in every high school across the country if not the world. Today was day 1 of training my Multi Stage Fitness Test, or as we all knew it growing up, the Beep Test. The reason for it: I not only need to up my cardio game and the Beep Test is great for that, not only improving but showing a steady rate of easily trackable improvement. Second reason, and most importantly, is because a Stage 7 result is required to pass the Physical Readiness Evaluation for Policing. The PREP test. A required component for the Applicant Testing System in order to apply for other law enforcement jobs.
So I have always sucked at this test. I think my highest result ever was a 5. I’m starting on the treadmill because it won’t let me quit or slow down. It is quite a bit different from running it on pavement but I’ll get to that point soon enough.
I start today thinking if I can just get a good base number to start with I can improve as I go along. Many many beeps later, I find myself holding on to the edge of the machine, my legs still moving, still trying to hold on and push forward.
I pass stage 3. I keep pressing on. I just need to get to a half stage more and I’m at the half way point. Not bad to start. It beeps. Stage 3 and one half. I still have energy. Fuck it. Keep going.
Another stage goes by. And another. I’m about to die, I think to myself. Fuck it. Keep going. My heart is pounding, my lungs are at least 75% so that ain’t bad…legs are in good shape. Fuck it. Keep going.
I push past my old record. Getting a little harder to breathe. I hold on to the rails for a bit, my legs still moving. Fuck it. Keep going.
I hear a beep and a voice. Can’t make out what the tape is saying. Something something half. OK I can make it to the end of this stage. Fuck it. Keep going. Finally I hear it go off again. One last time for the day. Day 1 of many. The first time I’ve trained this test in years and I hear it. I can make out that heavenly voice as clear as day.
“BEEP! BEEP!!!! Stage…seven.”
Stage seven. The point I have to be at for this test. A goal accomplished. Sorta. Next goal is to do it without holding on for dear life. Then take it to the streets and make it count. I’m excited though. A new record, and a great starting point for my training.
Remember my friends. When life is pushing you back and giving you the run around, when you feel like giving up…fuck it. Keep going.