August 25, 2016 –
Baranek showed common grocery items to the class which most people would classify as healthy choices. As he explained they are not all created equal, “I think this is something we are all doing really wrong”.
“What I found a lot of interest in teaching when this course began in 2014 was nutrition and the use of supplements. An old saying goes ‘You can’t out-train a bad diet’ According to the U.S. Surgeon General two out of three deaths are a direct result from bad nutrition,” Baranek explained. Heart disease, cancer, and obesity rank as the top three causes for death in the U.S. and are largely preventable.
Baranek spoke to students about how sugar consumption and inactivity have contributed to a “quadruple increase in obesity for kids 10 to 19 years old in the last 30 years. Every year since 1997 American obesity has risen, with only 30% of America currently achieving body mass index weight standards”. In a powerful demonstration, Baranek held up two clear bags of sugar cubes and said that while the American Heart Association recommends a maximum daily intake of 35 grams of sugar for men and 28.5 grams for women we actually consume around 200 grams daily through added sugar food and drinks.”
Over two years ago, Baranek set a goal to become a U.S. Army Reserve master fitness instructor to make a positive impact on the U.S. Army team and create unit level experts to further the program. “The biggest impact these students will have especially within the Army Reserve community is in program design. We teach them to create personal plans for each of their Soldiers that are gym based, civilian based, nutrition based and that can continue during the week.”
Master fitness training student Staff Sgt. Saugat Brookshire, an Active Guard Reserve recruiter from Manassas, Va. mentioned that she has been in the Army for 12 years but would still like to learn more about caloric intake and improving her fitness performance. “As a recruiter we don’t perform physical readiness training everyday due to our various schedules. What I plan to do with this training is to put the master fitness instruction into our unit training schedule to teach my fellow non-commissioned officers and Soldiers what good PRT looks like, how to improve our nutrition and what we need to do to improve our physical fitness.”
The master fitness course held this August 2016 will be the last class at Fort Knox, Ky. before the class moves to Fort Dix, N.J. to resume in 2017. For more information, prospective students can review the master fitness Facebook page by searching “USAR MFTC” and consult their unit schools representative.