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3/2 Marines stay fit at Mojave Viper

13 Apr 2006 | Lance Cpl. Ray Lewis

As the old Asian proverb says, “The more you sweat in peace time, the less you bleed in war.”This old adage is being redefined by Marines here as they embark in a month long pre-deployment desert training called Mojave Viper.The Marines, from 3rd Battalion, 2nd Marine Regiment, are ‘sweating it out’ to maintain their physical fitness, despite the swift operational tempo of their training evolutions.“Marines should stay fit whether they’re between deployments or in garrison,” said Lance Cpl. Idoroenyin O. Etokakpan, a motor transport operator with Headquarters and Service Company, 3rd Bn., 2nd Marines.Around the training grounds, Marines can be seen using anything they can get their hands on to work out with.Some Marines do pull-ups on doorways, while others play football in the sand or throw around a Frisbee.“Working out is fun, it gives you something to do,” said Lance Cpl. Robert C. Bustamante, a motor transportation operator with Headquarters and Service Co., after doing pull ups on his doorway. “It gets your mind off of what ever is going on… like deployment.” “The best thing about physical fitness is, the more physically fit you are, the stronger your (unit) becomes,” said Petty Officer 3rd Class Eulston O. Hodge, a corpsman with Weapons Platoon, Company L, 3rd Bn., 2nd Marines, and one of the many Sailors who joined Marines in working out. “(This) can help you conquer your enemy in battle.” A Sailor attached to 3/2 for the pre-deployment training says physical fitness is top priority for service members, whether deployed or not.“Physical fitness is probably the most important thing for service members,” said Petty Officer 3rd Class Vahan Manoogian, a combatant corpsman with Massachusetts-based reserve unit 1st Battalion, 25th Marine Regiment. “When you’re physically fit, you’re mentally fit and, in combat, can sometimes make the difference between life and death.”