A fierce competition. The reigning champ. Punishing conditions. Danger. This is why we came.
Wait! Don’t click away!
Why would you want to read this post?
- To know a story of toughness and determination.
- To be treated to enthralling images of tropical southern California.
- To take a 5-minute vacation in your mind. 🙂
Come along with me as I set the stage…
Fierce competition: The most fit United States Marine from each base around the world, the best of the best, 17 males and 16 females, came to take the challenge.
Reigning champ: Calie. She won last year after training for 3 months for each specific event with the HITT trainers. This year she did NOT train as her body was too beat up from passing the Martial Arts Instructor course the month before. (Bruised and swollen elbow, sore knees and back, etc.)
Punishing conditions: Back-breaking events and the HOT weather (official attire: longs pants and boots!)
Danger: A challenging swim. I won’t spoil it here. Details later.
Seven grueling events were planned for the week to determine who would be crowned champion. Certainly enough to put a mother on edge!
You know the feeling, seeing your child give his/her all. Volleyball, music, soccer, dance, football, gymnastics. Pushing, straining, in pain, never quitting. Or perhaps it was you on that field, in that gym. Recall.
Well, that’s what Rick and I experienced watching Calie defend her title last summer through unbelievably demanding challenges. Exciting, yes, but oh so tough on the nerves! Today’s post will chronicle 2 of the 4 days of the competition.
This was the HITT (high-intensity tactical training) challenge which took place at Camp Pendleton in California last summer. Each morning there would be an event at the Fieldhouse. The afternoon would see us elsewhere.
Bright and beautiful, the sunny morning oozed with anticipation.
1st event: Make 8 trips across the width of the football field (50 yards), each time doing something different, sprinting, push-ups, rope maneuvers, etc. That’s 400 yards as fast as you can go!
As the champ, Calie went first for event #1, but for all the other events she went last.
Oh boy, here we go!
There was MUCH more, this is just a small sampling of what the athletes accomplished during their first event.
Calie placed 2nd in this event, 3.38 seconds behind 1st place.
Scoring was based on the completion time for the entire course.
The last-place girl took over 10 minutes to complete the course. Calie took a little over 5 mins. How they do so much in that small amount of time is incredible!
A reward well-earned! Massages were available for the competitors. See her swollen elbow?
What an adrenaline-producing day! Calie did well. 🙂
With the competition done for the day, Rick and I tarried at the Pier and
later enjoyed a simple, beautiful evening with dinner on our balcony.
Welcome to day 2 of the HITT Challenge. Another gorgeous morning to start the events.
(I wish I was there right now!)
Picture perfect day
The morning’s event consisted of 8 trips back and forth again, but with different components than yesterday.
The competition was tough!
Calie placed 2nd by 1.39 seconds in the morning’s event!
After lunch, as the temperature climbed fiercely, we set out for a place called Engineers Hill. Brush, rocks, barely any trees; basically the desert.
We baked in the 100-degree shade as canopies offered meager protection.
The Tactical Hill climb was on tap. Picture this:
Travel 200 yards up the hill; pick up a rubber rifle with no sling. (I believe it weighed 8 lbs.)
Travel 200 more yards continuing up the hill with the rifle and pick up a 30-lb ammo can.
Continue on another 200 yards (uphill) with the rifle and ammo can and put on a 40-lb pack.
Travel the final 200 yards up the hill with the rifle, ammo can, and pack to cross the finish line!
In the desperate heat each (female) Marine wore a cami, t-shirt, long pants, tall socks, and boots, as she ran 800 yards uphill! 😳
I WOULD’VE PASSED OUT!
One female Marine did suffer heat exhaustion.
Calie finished 1st, coming in 32.07 seconds ahead of 2nd place!
WHOA and WHEW!
The amazing Oceanside Pier
Finally, sunny blue skies greeted us at the pier.
We took in more sights and after we consumed burgers and fries, we waited for the sunset to put on its show.
Enjoying sundown at the pier!
Stunning and serene images captured my attention that night.
Calie “introduced” me to the Pacific Ocean as we waded in together. It was surreal!
Glad you’re here!