H2F: The Army’s Holistic Health and Fitness System

H2F: The Army’s Holistic Health and Fitness System:


Hey everyone! In a recent episode of Causes or Cures, I chatted with Col Michael McGurk (Ret), Director of Research for the US Army’s Center for Initial Military Training, about the Army’s Holistic Health and Fitness System, or H2F. Col McGurk was instrumental in the development of the system and directs test implementation, standards and evaluation of H2F components for the US Army. He’s also a friend of mine, and I was so glad he was willing to do this podcast.  If you want to learn more about him, you can read his bio here.

In the podcast he will discuss what H2F is, describe its components (physical, mental, sleep, nutritional and spiritual readiness) and link each component to the broader picture of holistic health. He’ll explain why there was a need for H2F and relate it to soldier health and readiness. He’ll tell us about H2F Human Performance Teams and plans for the Soldier Performance Readiness Center.

In the podcast, Col McGurk will also discuss the Army Combat Fitness Test (ACFT), one component of H2F, why it replaced the Army’s Physical Fitness Test (APFT), some of its initial challenges, and how the Army is overcoming those challenges. Finally, he’ll discuss how they are measuring outcomes and success rates for each of the H2F components, as well as  ongoing and future research.

You can listen to the episode here!  

Having gone to a military academy for college where you often heard “sleep is a crutch” or “sleep is for the dead”, and where the mess hall often served high-fat/high-carb food, I was intrigued to do this podcast and learn more about how the Army was “going holistic.” In the world of health and wellness, sometimes the word “holistic” gets associated with things that are fringe or with things like essential oils, detox formulas or crystals…, even though it really means viewing a person’s health as a summation of interactive factors, including diet, spiritual wellbeing and sleep hygiene. Seeing a person’s physical and mental wellbeing in a holistic light is, in my view, the first step towards optimal health and disease prevention.

Hope you guys tune in to this episode! February was a super busy podcast month for me, meaning I recorded a lot of episodes. I will do my best to edit them and get them posted in a timely manner, and in between work hours. Thanks again for all your support with the podcast.


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