Col. Marc Hoffmeister changed command of the 20th Engineer Brigade with Col. Patrick Sullivan. Before he handed over the reins to Sullivan, he left the brigade with the tools for a sustainable fitness program.

Col. Marc Hoffmeister changed command of the 20th Engineer Brigade with Col. Patrick Sullivan. Before he handed over the reins to Sullivan, he left the brigade with the tools for a sustainable fitness program.

Hoffmeister describes the relationship between fitness and the Army as a passion.

As part of the brigade’s Castle Total Fitness program, established when Hoffmeister took command two years ago, retired Air Force Capt. Jerrod Moon was asked to give a professional development seminar at the JFK Auditorium, July 11 from 1 to 5 p.m.

Hoffmeister hopes the seminar and the Castle Total Fitness program will prevent future injuries for Soldiers.

The Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research published a 2015 review by the U.S. Army Institute of Public Health (AIPH) which stated that 2 million clinic visits are conducted each year due to injuries across the U.S. military services. Moreover, the report said, “Almost 50 percent of military service members experience an injury each year and half of those injuries are caused by physical training (PT), exercise, or sports.”

According to 2nd Lt. Brittany Leach, the 20th Eng. Bde. had several assets – like its in-house nutritionist, but was unable to utilize the person properly.

Through the Castle Total Fitness program, Hoffmeister sought to change that dynamic, and as a result, change the culture of fitness within the brigade.

Hoffmeister particularly noticed ineffectual tactics in serving the brigade’s formation and leadership for fitness. He wanted to build a program that would enhance the brigade’s operational tempo in field exercises and Combat Training Center (CTC) rotations.

Moon is the founder and CEO of End of Three Fitness, a barbell-centric fitness regimen for “the other guy.” By “other guy,” Moon refers to the fitness athlete.

Moon was involved with the Air Force Special Operations Command (AFSOC) Physical Training Program pipeline. He spent years as the AFSOC’s physical training leader and fitness program manager.

“I have built a business that has helped thousands become better versions of themselves,” said Moon. “We exist only because we relentlessly serve those in our community.”

At the seminar, Moon introduced his system of block programming that addresses issues across multiple components of fitness and energy systems like the glycolytic and aerobic cycles. Block programming refers to breaking down an hour of given time into 10-minute blocks.

“He gets into the science a bit, but he turns it around and makes it simple, so everyone understands it,” said Hoffmeister.

Hoffmeister also asked Moon to speak to the brigade about the role mental toughness plays in physical fitness.

“We all have a whole lot more in us than we tend to allow ourselves to believe, and he’s got a couple of methodologies or approaches that I’ve found very effective in how to integrate stress inoculation into your training so that you can push beyond these perceived limitations,” said Hoffmeister.

For Hoffmeister, the seminar was an initiative to kick-start educating Soldiers about their health and well-being before they train or deploy.

“I deem success as a Soldier, after 20-plus years in service, retiring still with physical ability and stamina and enjoying the quality of life,” said Hoffmeister. “If we keep that, that means they’ve been deployable and ready throughout the period of their careers.”