Staying fit can be a challenge when you are stuck on a mountaintop.

U.S. Soldiers at Combat Outpost Bari Alai in eastern Afghanistan’s Kunar province do not have access to a gym, a treadmill or even a running track, but they are not sitting idle.

In fact, a group of Soldiers with 2nd Platoon, Troop C, 3rd Squadron, 61st Cavalry Regiment, Task Force Destroyer, are following a new program to improve their physical fitness.

Their tactical fitness workout, which is modeled after the Task Force Mountain Warrior CrossFit program, uses a repetitive circuit of exercises to focus on core muscle groups and increase cardio fitness.

“It doesn’t make me great at anything, [but] it makes me good at everything,” said Sgt. 1st Class Michael A. Donnelly, of Coconut Creek, Fla. “Everything I do as a Soldier has gotten better.”

Donnelly, the unit platoon sergeant, has been involved with CrossFit for five years and started the tactical fitness program partly as a way to prepare for the unit’s return to Fort Carson, Colo.

The day after their first workout was a painful education for many of the Soldiers.

“I couldn’t move my arms for a couple of days,” Sgt. Joshuah C. Koboldt, of Beavertown, Mich., said.

Koboldt, a squad leader, said he nonetheless began seeing improvements just a couple of weeks after starting the program.

“I’m trying to learn more about it so I can do it with my squad,” he said.

A typical tactical workout for one day – after a warmup – included five rounds of the following exercises for time: 30 squats, 25 pushups, 20 situps, 15 kettlebell swings, 10 burpees, five deadlifts and one rope climb.

Source: Staff Sgt. Gary A. Witte for CJTF101.

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