THE PENTAGON — Army leaders announced the introduction of a new physical fitness test that measures resilience and muscular endurance by testing how much pain a soldier can feel over 20 years.
“For decades we’ve been using imprecise metrics,” said Sgt. Maj. of the Army Michael Grinston. “The APFT measures physical endurance for 20 minutes or so. The ACFT measures bursts of strength and power. But after we studied the problem further, we realized that the most accurate measure of success in the Army is how much pain you can endure over 20 years.”
Thousands of senior officers and NCOs lauded the change at a recent town hall meeting, amplifying the applause by cracking their knees, stretching out their backs, asking their docs for Voltaren because they don’t have enough of a stomach lining to take Motrin anymore, and yelling over the ringing in their ears
“Oh, that’s great, you can run fast,” said Maj. Alex Jackson, watching a match as it burned down to his fingertips. “The more important question is: Can you reformat this PowerPoint slide? Even if it means you forget to pick up your child from swim practice? Again? After you promised your wife that you’d prioritize them? Those are the kinds of people I need on my team.”
“The winning team.”
A research panel team assembled by the Army found that physical tests such as a weighted medicine ball throw were average indicators of combat performance, but building an increasing load of constant physical pain was the best way to determining effective senior NCO and general officer leadership.
“If you think that pushing yourself to the absolute physical breaking point during the last minute of a PT test is hard, try pushing yourself to the absolute physical breaking point to get out of bed and walk to the coffeemaker on the crusty, shattered shells of what you used to call your knees,” said Sgt. 1st Class Josh Banks. “The only thing that can district me from my physical anguish is my mental anguish after three divorces, undiagnosed PTSD, and a sense of ungrounded placelessness from constant PCS moves. Hot damn. I am getting a perfect score on this test. Promotion here I come!”