Running and Smoking Cigarettes – must be an Army thing


I’m thoroughly confused. Where I work puts me in contact with a variety of people in a variety of jobs among these people are Military people. Today and once again I witnessed another US Army person standing in his physical fitness (PT) uniform smoking a cigarette, the last time I was at a 5K race, a US Army person who was in the race (in his Army PT uniform) sucked down two cigarettes just before the start of the race. I also know two people in the Army personally that love to run, run every day but you will find them out smoking every couple hours.

Okay I get the fact that morning PT is mandatory for people in the Army; but the people I’ve been seeing are smoking when the running is not even related to PT time. I’ve asked the two people I know why they smoke and run and they couldn’t give me a ‘real’ answer. Spouted off something about ‘that’s what Army people do” Come to think of it; I don’t see this happening on the Navy and Marine Corps side so it must be an Army thing….

On that subject…..

Since the days have been getting shorter and I rarely get home before dark; I’ve taken to running on the compound right after work. Two laps around the fence line will get me 3.26 miles. It’s a great route to run as its near sea level and flat. However, along the backside I have to run past three designated smoking areas. As I come up on them I look at the brush and trees so I can gauge the wind direction so I can estimate at what point I will hit the smoke plumes. Normally I’m pretty good at it and I’m able to hold my breath though the worst of it and when I miss I cough and gag.

I’m not the only one who runs here and it’s the PT route as well. I’m really not sure why they didn’t put the smoking areas down wind and in a corner someplace or even between the buildings. You know what’s even more scary? Electronic cigarettes who knows what uncontrolled chemicals lurk in those vapor plumes. I’ve seen more and more people using these things as a matter of fact since they’ve come out there are more people in the smoking areas than ever before. Makes a person wonder.

Rethinking where I run.

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