By Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Derien C. Luce, Officer Coaching Command Public Affairs
NEWPORT, R.I. – A Phillipsburg, New Jersey native and a Craig, Nebraska native, two current college students at Officer Coaching Command in Newport, Rhode Island (OTCN) began unbiased weight reduction journeys months earlier than Officer Candidate Faculty (OCS) even started in an effort to qualify for choice.
Ensign Michelle Buchanan, who graduated OCS on Dec. 18, and Officer Candidate Jeremiah Dixon, scheduled to graduate Jan. 29, each spent the final 12 months coaching and weight-reduction plan on their very own to qualify for OCS. Earlier than arriving to OCS, they stated they every misplaced greater than 100 kilos.
“I knew my weight was an issue, however I wasn’t actually taking massive steps to make a change,” stated Buchanan. Earlier than she made the choice to affix the Navy, she was seeking to begin a profession in legislation enforcement, however was unable to depart her present safety job. “My grandmother really recommended once I began the safety job and I wasn’t stepping into legislation enforcement to take a look at the navy, and so I began my analysis and I made a decision I’m going to lose all this weight and I’m going to affix the Navy.”
As soon as Buchanan made the choice, she instantly made a number of way of life modifications.
“The following day, I ended consuming the rubbish that I used to eat and I began consuming more healthy,” stated Buchanan. “I began to train at residence, joined a excessive depth interval coaching (HIIT) program and stored pushing myself. …finally I used to be in a position to begin operating 5Ks on my own with out struggling.”
Dixon started his weight reduction journey with a want to journey whereas pursuing his profession and finally determined to affix the Navy. Based on him, weighing 293 kilos stored him from assembly his objective.
“I needed to affix the [Navy’s] civil engineering corps and needed the chance to discover the world whereas I’m nonetheless younger,” stated Dixon. “After leaving the recruiting workplace, I began getting cellphone calls from officers who had info on how I can lose the burden.”
Buchanan credit her motivation primarily to her want to affix the Navy, however there was one other factor pushing her to achieve her objective.
“It was additionally for my very own total well being,” stated Buchanan. “Being 280 kilos shouldn’t be good in your joints, clearly, and you end up winded simply going up a flight of stairs. I needed to achieve my objective of becoming a member of the Navy however it’s additionally for my very own well-being.”
Dixon is already seeing how these kinds of advantages from his weight reduction will help him in OCS.
“I used to be chubby in grad college, always sleepy behind the desk… I wasn’t actually motivated to tackle new duties or assist out different colleagues,” stated Dixon. “Now I really feel extra energized as a result of I’m in a extra bodily match physique, I’m extra energetic and awake, and I see myself finishing duties I’d have thought have been overbearing at the moment final yr.”
One useful resource Dixon used to assist him with the diet portion of his weight reduction was the Navy Operational Health and Fueling Sequence (NOFFS) software on his cellular phone.
“I used the [smartphone application] as a tracker and it was nice to observe how a lot I ought to be consuming to satisfy my objective,” stated Dixon. “I’d undoubtedly suggest it to others.”
The NOFFS app offers the Navy with “finest in school” bodily health and diet info for Sailors, permitting the Navy to keep up peak bodily readiness, which is a high precedence of the twenty first Century Sailor and Marine initiative. This system might be tailor-made to any setting or health stage, permitting all Sailors to profit from this system.
Buchanan and Dixon attribute their successes to additionally having a gaggle of pals or household to encourage and help them.
“I’m fortunate I’ve a really supportive household and an excellent community of people that have been supportive of my determination, not solely to affix the navy, however to attempt to tackle that massive process of dropping all that weight,” stated Buchanan. “I’ve been blessed with having that actually good help construction from the very starting.”
“The most important battle for me was that as I bought nearer to my objective the burden began coming off slower,” stated Dixon. “To start with, I used to be dropping about 10 kilos every month. As soon as I bought to about 230 kilos, I solely misplaced two or three kilos a month. That’s when my household’s motivation was most essential for reminding me of my objectives.”
Each Sailors reached their weight reduction objectives due to their dedication.
“Don’t ever assume you could’t do one thing,” stated Buchanan. “Nothing goes to be handed to you, put your thoughts to it and put within the work.”
“There have been occasions once I needed to remind myself to simply maintain working at it,” stated Dixon. “The important thing factor I would like folks to consider when listening to my story is to maintain on believing in themselves, as a result of success will come to you, it should work.”
Chief Boatswain’s Mate Gary McCoy, command health chief for Officer Coaching Command in Newport, Rhode Island, stated it is not uncommon for in any other case certified officer candidates to battle to start with of their health program due to a scarcity of bodily coaching preparation.
“The bodily coaching at OTCN is excessive depth,” stated McCoy. “Should you come to this system unprepared, you’ll battle. The high-risk coaching evolutions might be harmful for an unhealthy individual. We guarantee all candidates conduct correct workout routines and stretches, whereas receiving the right diet.”
OTCN morally, mentally and bodily develops future leaders of character and competence – imbuing them with the best beliefs of honor, braveness and dedication in an effort to function skilled Naval officers worthy of particular belief and confidence.