U.S. Army Medical Department
Weed Army Community Hospital
Patient Feedback (ICE)
Phone Numbers
Appointment Line
(866)957-9224 (WACH)

Directory Assistance

Nurse Advice Line
(800)TRICARE(874-2273) Option 1

Pharmacy Refill

Patient Advocacy
(866) 957-9224 Option 4

WACH Fit For Life
Physical Address:
Weed Army Community Hospital
390 North Loop Road
Fort Irwin, CA, 92310
Business Hours:
Monday-Friday 7:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Contact Information:
24/7 Hospital Main Desk:
(COM) 866-957-9224 or
(DSN) 470-5555

Appointments: (COM) 1-866-460-5305
or (DSN) 971-866-460-5305

24/7 Tricare: 800-874-2273
Army fitness and nutrition - living up to a higher standard
Because a Soldier's level of physical fitness has a direct impact on his or her combat readiness, a Soldier in the U.S. Army must be mentally and physically fit. Not only are physically fit Soldiers essential to the Army, they are also more likely to have enjoyable, productive lives. The renewed nationwide interest in fitness is accompanied by several research studies on the effects of regular participation in sound physical fitness programs. The overwhelming conclusion is that proper exercise programs enhance a person's quality of life, improve productivity, and bring about positive physical and mental changes.

Physical fitnessis defined as the ability to function effectively in physical work, training, and other activities, while still having enough energy left over to handle any emergencies that may arise. To improve your level of fitnesS you should focus on the following components of physical fitness; Cardio Respiratory Endurance (CR), Muscular Strength and Endurance, Flexibility, and Body Composition.

Cardio - Reaching your target heart rate
CR is the efficiency with which the body delivers oxygen and nutrients needed for muscular activity and eliminates waste products from the cells. In order to improve fitness it is important to reach your bodies Target Heart Rate, or training heart rate. The THR is a desired range of heart rate reached during aerobic exercise, which enables your heart and lungs to receive the most benefit from a workout. In turn, this will improve your endurance. Experts recommend that you monitor your heart rate during your exercise routine—the goal is to stay in the zone of 50 to 85 percent of your THR.

Strength and endurance
Muscular Strength and Endurance means how hard a muscle or muscle group can work in a single effort, and the ability of a muscle or muscle group to perform repeated movements for extended periods of time.
On today's battlefield, in addition to CR fitness, Soldiers need a high level of muscular endurance and strength. Although muscular endurance and strength are separate fitness components, they are closely related. Progressively working against resistance will produce gains in both of these areas. Before starting a resistance-training program, you should choose exercises that work several muscle groups and try to avoid those that isolate single muscle groups. This will help train a greater number of muscles in a given time, help balance the body's development, and avoid injury. For example, weightlifting is one way to train muscle groups but injuries will occur when improper lifting techniques are combined with lifting too much weight. You should understand how to do each lift correctly before starting a strength training program.

Flexibility - helping to prevent injury
Flexibility is the range of movement of a joint, or series of joints, and their associated muscles. Good flexibility can help you efficiently accomplish physical tasks like lifting, loading, climbing, parachuting, running, and rappelling with less risk of injury. Stretching during your warm-up and cool-down helps you maintain overall flexibility—it should not be painful but should cause some discomfort because the muscles are being stretched beyond their normal length. Because people differ in their physical make-up, you shouldn't compare one person's flexibility with another's. If you have poor flexibility, trying to stretch as far as someone else could cause an injury.

Body composition
Body Composition is the amount of body fat a Soldier has in comparison to their total body mass. To be eligible to enlist in the Army, you must meet the height and weight requirements for your age and height. If you are over the prescribed weight for your height, you can still qualify by being below the specified body fat composition for your age. A recruiter can help you with determining your body fat percentage, but you can also monitor your progress with the Body Mass Index calculator provided.
Improving your CR and muscle stamina will have a positive impact on your body's composition and will result in less fat. Excessive body fat detracts from the other fitness components, reduces performance, and negatively affects your health. But a person's body fat depends on many factors, including body type, and you should not compare your body fat to someone else's.
Good body composition is best gained through proper diet and exercise. Examples of poor body composition are underdeveloped muscle groups, or excessive body fat. Poor body composition causes problems for the Army and the individual Soldier. For example, Soldiers with inadequate muscle development cannot perform as well as those with proper development. When a Soldier is overweight, his or her physical ability to perform declines and the risk of developing disease and injury increases. Also, Soldiers with high percentages of body fat often have lower APFT scores than those with lower percentages. Poor body composition, especially obesity, has a negative effect on appearance, self-esteem, and negatively influences attitude and morale.

Useful links:


Making the most of your workouts
Physical activity is more than just “exercise” or "working out"- it's living an active lifestyle. Whether it's walking the dog, doing yard work, or playing with your kids, regular movement throughout the day inspires positive health outcomes over time.

How does physical activity improve health?
- Lowers risk of some chronic diseases and conditions such as type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, stroke, and cancer (e.g. breast, colon)
- Aids in weight loss and prevents weight gain
- Helps manage stress and may reduce depression
- Strengthens bones, muscles, and joints
- Boosts confidence and self-esteem

How much physical activity do I need?
To receive positive health outcomes strive for at least:
- 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity per week
- 2 days of muscle strengthening activities (e.g. weight/resistance band training, calisthenics, yoga)
- 10,000 steps during your everyday routine
- Save time by bumping up the intensity. Do 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity activities per week (e.g. jogging, swimming laps, or hiking uphill).

How can I build activity into my day?
- Divide it up your way. 150 minutes is also: 2 hours & 30 minutes per week OR 30 minutes a day for 5 days OR 10 minutes of activity 3 times a day for 5 days
- Pick activities you enjoy. Moderate-intensity activities include: brisk walking, doubles tennis, golf, and leisure biking - Invite family, friends, and fellow Soldiers to join you. Take a fitness class, join a recreation league, sign-up for a 5K run/walk, or start a walking group in your neighborhood
- Save time by bumping up the intensity. Do 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity activities 2 times per week (e.g. running, swimming laps, basketball, or hiking uphill)

Be a good role model.
- Your health is critical to the wellbeing of your family.
- The more active you are, the more likely your kids will follow suit.
- Children and adolescents (ages 6-17) need at least: 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity each day
- 11,000 steps for girls and 13,000 steps for boys each day
- 3 days of muscle strengthening physical activity per week

Try to avoid sitting for long periods of time. Prolonged sitting increases the risk of blood clots, obesity, and heart disease. Move at least 10 minutes of every hour.

You can make small changes in your daily routine to increase your physical activity. The American College of Sports Medicine suggests taking the stairs whenever you can, walking to a co-workers desk instead of emailing or calling him/her, picking up a new active hobby (ex. cycling), standing or moving when talking on your cell phone - just to name a few.

Don't let chronic conditions prevent you from being active. Even low intensity activity is good for your health. Remaining physically active can help you maintain your physique, mobility, flexibility, and coordination. Talk to your health care provider about what activities would suit you best.

Useful fitness information links and resources:

The Army Performance Triad Program

"Choose My Plate" Informational Campaign

Academy of Dieticians "Eat Right" Program

The HRC Operation Supplement Safety Campaign

What Army Health Looks Like: The Pocket Guide