Leading the charge for physical fitness

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Physical fitness, a component of operational success, can be difficult to maintain at sea, but aboard HMCS Winnipeg, the command team lead by example with their healthy lifestyles.

To keep fit, the captain equipped his cabin with a stationary bicycle trainer and a heavy bag set-up.

“Being fit keeps us in control of our physical and mental well-being,” says Commander Pascal Belhumeur, HMCS Winnipeg Commanding Officer.

“Canadian Armed Forces members are fortunate to have the support of Personnel Support Programs (PSP) and our personal trainer has been a great asset to the crew,” says Lieutenant-Commander Kevin Whiteside, the ship’s Executive Officer.

The ship’s PSP staff, Sylvain Verrier, held four fitness classes a day while at sea, and provided the crew with daily workout programs and nutrition advice.

“I am proud to be a part of a Command Team that is so focused on fitness,” says Chief Petty Officer, 1st Class Michel Vincelette, Winnipeg’s Coxswain. “The crew sees it and is inspired; we have the most actively fit crew that I have ever seen.”

Not only did Mr. Verrier have an effect on life at sea, but also alongside by organizing multinational sporting events with NATO allies and monthly five kilometre runs in port.

On the ship’s long deployment, the crew of HMCS Winnipeg continued to use physical fitness to maintain mission focus and, like many initiatives in the Royal Canadian Navy, this initiative was driven by the ship’s leadership.

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