NEWS | June 22, 2021

Profiles in Professionalism: PSC Eddie Boeve

By Chief Mass Communication Specialist Scott Wichmann, Commander, Navy Reserve Forces Command Public Affairs

NORFOLK — Two years ago, Chief Personnel Specialist Eddie Boeve felt as though he’d climbed a mountain. 

Pinned as a chief petty officer after a physically demanding chief initiation season at Navy Personnel Command in Millington, Tennessee, Boeve decided to give himself a brief respite from the grind of his regular physical training regimen before reporting to his next duty station.

Yet, after assuming duties as the leading chief petty officer managing enlisted bonuses at Commander, Navy Reserve Forces Command, in Norfolk, Boeve realized he’d lost some of the fitness discipline he’d cultivated in Millington.

Worse yet, after a month of leave enroute to his new assignment, he began to notice the length of his hiatus from a regular workout routine was beginning to show up as a kind of ‘caloric calendar’ around his waistline. 

“When you’ve got to put the khakis back on and they don’t fit properly, that’s when you know you have to start doing things a little differently,” he said.

Boeve decided to do something about it, but COVID-19 precautions had placed strict restrictions on both group PT and base gym access. 

So, on June 11, 2020, the Lowell, Michigan native decided to run the Navy Physical Readiness Test (PRT) on his own, simply to assess his fitness level. 

The next day, Boeve ran the PRT again — and again the next day. Two days turned into three.

Soon, he’d completed seven consecutive days’ worth of PRTs.

Boeve hasn’t missed a day since, and he’s still going strong.

“I started with the intention of just doing it a few times a week — maybe three times a week at least,” said Boeve. “It turned into this streak. First seven days in a row, then ten days in a row, and I didn’t want to let up — so here we are, over 365 days later.”

Boeve, an avid reader, said his re-focused mindset was shaped, in part, by reading books and listening to podcasts by former Navy SEALs, most notably retired Lt. Cmdr. Jocko Willink and retired Chief Special Warfare Operator David Goggins.

“Goggins always talks about doing something that sucks every day,” said Boeve. “I can’t say working out is always a fun thing to do. I like playing basketball or flag football but running the Navy PRT is not something fun for me.” 

Boeve said he chose the PRT because it offered him a sense of immediate professional feedback. 

“I thought, ‘hey, this is the Navy standard, so if I need to do something every day it might as well be something the Navy requires from me,’” he said. “I may as well work toward that standard every day and use it to measure where I’m at physically.”

While Boeve was never out of standards, the married father of two said the challenges of balancing a job, family and relocation were all factors contributing to the dulling of a once-sharpened sense of physical discipline.

“I’d transferred from Tennessee to Virginia, took 30 days of leave and then started focusing on learning a brand-new job and all of that was kind of stressful,” said Boeve. “I just stopped eating right and lost the fitness focus I had before.”

He said the difference between his current streak and previous bursts of fitness motivation boils down to a deep desire to cultivate an overall lifestyle of wellness instead of just reaching for specific performance numbers. 

“I really needed to make some changes,” said Boeve. “Not just for a single season or a single goal — I need to do something for the rest of my life.”

Boeve said on day one, he initially started out with one goal in mind.

“My only goal was just to do it,” he said. “The action of doing the push-ups, the sit-ups — now the planks — and the run, really was the only objective.”

As a single day turned into 365 consecutive days, Boeve said the true benefits have revealed themselves in a gradual, yet profound way.

“I’ve lost about thirty pounds and I’m back in the uniform I got pinned in,” he said. “So that accomplishment alone feels really, really good.”

Boeve has advice for anyone hesitant to take the first step toward a better fitness future.

“Don’t think about instant results,” he said. “At first, it’s not about hitting some target number, it’s about making a commitment to getting out there and just doing it. The rest of that stuff will take care of itself.”

When asked if he plans to continue his routine indefinitely, Boeve said keeping his personal PRT streak alive takes a backseat to his main objective: cultivating a healthy lifestyle that will endure for the long haul.

“We need to take care of ourselves,” he said. “Not just for a season or a short period of time, but for life. After our careers in the Navy are over, no matter how far away that is, we should want to be healthy and want to stay as fit as we can.”
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