Over here in Singapore, guys not only have to serve a 2-year compulsory military service, but they also need to follow that up with annual training for the next 10 years. Part of that annual training includes a physical test known as the Individual Physical Proficiency Test (aka the IPPT).
The IPPT consists of 5 stations like chin-ups and sit-ups, but the one that kicks my ass every time is the 2.4km run. I can pretty much ace all the other stations, but the run is where I always falter. I mean, the last time I completed that run within the passing time is when I was still a teenager.
The passing time gets more lenient as you get older, but it seems like my lack of stamina is always one step ahead of it. I’m currently running more regularly in my free time and that has helped me from that slump in fitness in my late 20s, but I’m still behind.
People always tell me that it’s a shame that I can’t just pass the test and avoid all this. And when I tell them that it’s the 2.4km run that kills me, the advice they give is invariably the same:
“Oh that’s easy. You just have to run faster!”
Like… thanks, Captain Obvious! Why didn’t I think of that myself?
You’d think that maybe someone could give me some constructive advice like “take more medium-sized strides instead of fewer long strides” or “train your core muscles”, but no… they always just tell me to run faster.