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News > McChord Annex reopens for fitness
Fitness Annex Reopening
The McChord Field Fitness Center Annex reopened Nov. 16 at McChord Field, Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash. The $ 1.2 million upgraded facility includes remodeled locker rooms, new exercise equipment and an elevated indoor track. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman Leah Young)
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McChord Annex reopens for fitness

Posted 11/23/2010   Updated 11/23/2010 Email story   Print story


by Airman Leah Young
62nd Airlift Wing Public Affairs

11/23/2010 - JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD, Wash. -- The McChord Field Fitness Center Annex reopened Nov. 16 with several new and improved fitness resources for the JBLM community.

After 10 months of restorations and refurbishment, some of the biggest differences gym goers will notice include remodeled locker rooms, new exercise equipment and an elevated indoor track.

"The renovations were made to provide Airmen the opportunity to meet the new fitness standards and maintain their healthy 'fit to fight' lifestyles all year round," said Thomas Ward, McChord Field Fitness Center and Fitness Center Annex Facility Manager.

According to Mr. Ward, this $1.2 million project was conducted to create a more resourceful environment for people to establish convenient exercising routines during the cold winter months.

"It will directly contribute to the goals of the newly established Comprehensive Airman Fitness program by providing an indoor facility and lots of space for guests to exercise and implement their own individual routine," said Mr. Ward.

Some other improvements include the removal of the juice bar, which allows more room for cardiovascular equipment. The sauna has also been extracted, creating space to expand both the male and female locker rooms.

"The extra equipment and larger locker rooms will be able to facilitate more people at once," said Senior Master Sgt. Cleofas Trejo, 627th Force Support Squadron Sustainment Services Flight Superintendent. "These improvements will help introduce more Airmen to a healthy lifestyle."

Also, the fitness center offers aerobic exercise classes, which will resume at the newly reopened annex at their regularly scheduled times. Kum Jones, a retired Army spouse and frequenter of the McChord Field Fitness Center, said she enjoys the aerobic classes and is looking forward to utilizing the indoor track.

"I love coming to the gym as often as I can," said Mrs. Jones. "I love running, but I don't like treadmills. I can't wait to use that new track!"

The new indoor track, with its 12-inch corner banks and state of the art cushion turf, provides servicemembers a resource to train for their physical fitness test. Although, accomplishing 1.5 miles takes 28 laps, the new track gives JBLM community members an alternative when choosing how to stay fit.

"The best part about the new track is promoting indoor running for people who don't like cardio equipment," said Senior Airman Mallory Paul, 62nd Force Support Squadron Fitness Specialist. "Not everyone likes to run on a treadmill. The track also gives them an alternative when it gets cold outside."

In addition to providing guests with an alternative indoor running facility, the track may also be used to conduct physical training tests.

"They are considering potentially utilizing the indoor track for physical training tests during the winter months," said Mr. Ward. "According to the new fitness Air Force Instruction, if it's 15 degrees or colder, or any rain at all, we can't conduct fitness testing. There needs to be an alternate testing location, and hopefully, that location will be the fitness annex."

The goal of the Comprehensive Airman Fitness program is to help JBLM community members become more resilient and better-equipped to deal with the rigors of military life. While the McChord Field Fitness Annex will continue to undergo small projects and add finishing touches, guests are able to improve their fitness and resiliency in an indoor environment that encourages them to maintain their health year round.

"Everyone involved in this project really did a fantastic job," said Col. Kevin Kilb, 62nd Airlift Wing Commander. "This is a great resource for our community."

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