Junior Soldier (JS) Field is a new recruit at the Army Technical Foundation College, Winchester (ATFC(W)). In his first blog, he recalls his experiences of the first two weeks of Junior Entry Phase 1 Training.
I arrived with my parents at ATFC Winchester on Sunday afternoon and as I got out of the car and walked up to the gate, a mix of emotions began to fly through my body. I was excited to be starting a new career and the opportunities and adventures that would bring, but I was also nervous about meeting new people and leaving the comforts of home behind.
Throughout the first week administration seemed to be the word of the moment – filling out paperwork and completing medicals. But as the week progressed we were marching around everywhere and had our military uniforms issued, and I started to feel more and more like a soldier. We completed the military swimming test which I quite enjoyed, but some of the others found it difficult. We also completed a basic fitness assessment. My run was OK, but I think I am going to have to work on my press ups and sit ups.
At the end of the first week, we deployed into the field for Exercise ICE BREAKER. I found it really exciting and it gave me a small glimpse of what sleeping in the field is like. It also provided me with the perfect opportunity to get to know the other lads in my Troop properly. The first week of Basic Training seemed to go on forever, but as time went on it got better and better. I know I have made the right decision to join the Army.
Finally week one finished I woke up on Monday morning to start the second week of my Army training. I was looking forward to it because I knew we were going to start getting to grips with the SA80 rifle. For me this was very exciting moment, the opportunity to handle the weapon and take in the responsibility that comes with it. It didn’t disappoint. Week 2 also saw the introduction of PT sessions. I enjoyed these, as I’m active and joined the Army to get fit. We worked hard on all sessions and felt good as a result.
We started doing a lot more locker inspections in the mornings and seemed to clean everything continuously. Discipline started to be the word of the moment and I felt that I was becoming more and more a part of the Army. The drill lessons came thick and fast but for me it is not the most exciting part of training. That said, I am starting to settle in and the week seemed to fly by. I’m looking forward to what week 3 has in store!