Slow and steady wins the race—the six-mile road march not only tests physical strength and stamina, but mental toughness as well.
It is hard for most people to go for a walk in general, let alone walk six-miles with something weighing them down. On 13 June 2021, two groups, consisting of the entire second regiment, took off for their six-mile road march. One group at 3:30am and the other at 4:10am. The Cadets, still tired from the day before woke up and still had a good attitude.
“We spent all day at the range and that was pretty exhausting mentally and physically and then we had to stay up and pack our rucks,” said Cadet Jamar Carlisle, a student from at Georgia State University. “That kind of played a toll, but overall I think everybody is pretty excited to get this six-miler down.”
This is the only ruck march out of the three the Cadets have to experience at Advanced Camp that they must complete.
“The six-miler is timed and it goes towards their accessions and it’s also counted towards recondo,” said Ltc. Michael Davidson, the regimental executive officer for second regiment.
This is not exactly like a walk in the park for the Cadets, it requires pace and a little strategy to get them to the end.
“Most people will run or trot down the hills and lean forward going up the hills and some people will jog a distance and walk a distance, for me I just keep a steady pace the whole way,” said Davidson.
Either way the Cadets decide to conduct their ruck, six miles is a long time to be focused on the ruck itself.
“I like to talk to people it’s a good distraction. I try to zone out because if I think too much, I think about how much my back hurts, I think about my shins being sore and it just makes it miserable,” said Cadet Olivia Grommers, a student at New York University. “So, it’s always nice to have like a battle buddy to talk to.”
Her battle buddy Bryanna Ortiz, a student at Weidner University talked about how she thinks about all the things she plans to do once camp is over.
“It makes it so much more rewarding versus thinking about this sucks the entire time,” said Ortiz.
Carlisle talked about how he likes to pass the time by singing songs in his head.
“I sing one of my favorite albums. So sometimes I’ll sing a J.Cole album sometimes or I’ll sing a Kendrick Lamar album in my head,” said Carlisle. “By the time I’m finished with the album I’m about two-thirds the way finished, so it works.”
There are roughly 650 Cadets in the second regiment and they all finished the ruck in the allotted time. A little advice from the Regimental Executive Officer Davidson was pace yourself.
“Stay hydrated, do your best and help lift up the others around you to do their best as well,” said Davidson.