If you’re thinking about joining the United States Army, you’ll need to prepare yourself for the 2-mile run. All recruits must pass the Army Physical Fitness Test (APFT), and every active soldier must complete it twice a year. While there are several parts of the APFT, among the most challenging is the 2-mile run.
Granted, most recruits can probably run 2 miles with little effort. For the APFT, however, you’ll be scored based on how fast you run the 2 miles. The faster you run, the higher your score. 60 is the lowest score you can earn for the 2-mile rune, while 100 is the highest. It’s important to note, however, that scoring varies depending on the recruit’s gender and age. So, what steps can you take to better prepare yourself for the APFT 2-mile.
Buy New Running Shoes
There’s no better time than the present to treat yourself to a new pair of running shoes, especially if you’re preparing for the APFT 2-mile run. Endurance training experts recommend replacing your running shoes every 300 to 500 miles. If you wear them for any longer, they won’t have the proper amount of support needed to absorb shock; thus, causing greater fatigue during the 2-mile run.
Get Into a Training Routine
As the saying goes, “Practice makes perfect,” holds true when speaking about the 2-mile run. You can’t expect to dominate the APFT 2-mile run if you haven’t been training. To better prepare yourself, find a running track around your area and go running for at least three days per week. Ideally, you should run for 2 miles during these practices, simply because this is the distance you’ll need to run for the APFT.
Use a Stopwatch
Of course, you should also use a stopwatch — either a standalone stopwatch, a fitness tracker, or your smartphone — to measure your time. Is your time improving? If not, you’ll need to pick up the pace to better prepare for the APFT.
Focus on Speed
2 miles isn’t very far to run, so you don’t have to worry about pacing yourself. Granted, you shouldn’t sprint from the start to finish, but rather maintain a fast, consistent pace throughout the 2 miles.
Many recruits overlook the importance of nutrition, believing it has little-to-no effect on their ability to run the 2 miles. However, nutrition can and will affect your performance. Focus on lean meats with fresh fruit and vegetables for maximum performance.