PJFT Diary


This is something I posted a few months ago on the RM Forum, thought I would drop it here as it is relevant to the RN recruitment process.

Okay so I ran my PJFT on the 23/02/2017. I'm going to tell you my prep, what happened on the day blah blah blah

So I passed my medical, received a phone call from the AFCO saying I have a letter in the post & it should arrive in the next few days & it reads I have 28 days to book my PJFT with a Nuffield fitness centre in Edinburgh (Potential Officers get 28days, I am not sure if ORs have to book the test themselves but I know they don't get as much time). So I called them & got it booked giving myself as much time as possible (27 days to be exact).

My prep involved doing the warm up 2.4km at 11.9kph then I would rest for a few minutes and usually run at 14.5kph for around 5 mins then rest a minute then run 15kph for 2 minutes then rest a minute and repeat 2mins on & 1 min off and make sure I have been running at least a total of 10mins for the return. As I became fitter I changed my sets to 16kph and then for my last set I would usually rest for 2mins and try and run two minutes at 20kph (for these 4 weeks I dropped all other exercise and focused on the PJFT).

Confession to be made, before the PJFT I actually never completed two 2.4km runs with a 1 min rest in the allocated time frame on a treadmill (At around 7mins on the return I would hit a mental wall, but when I hit this wall I would walk for a minute and do 1min running 1 min walking till I couldn't anymore).

Three days before the PJFT I did a best effort on the tread mill & ran myself in to the ground with sets, two days before I went a 3miler outdoors running fairly fast. Then the day before I went a very slow 3mile run with the dog.

On the day I had the PJFT booked for 3pm and I lived around 40mins away.

I woke up around 8am, ate a large bowl of porridge, orange juice and an orange about 9am, then I started to stretch, due to the running I had done leading up to this my calfs were a little tight.

About half twelve I set off in the car & I took with me a lot of water, Lucazade sport for placebo & I also took a Lucozade Glucose tablet packet. About 1pm (2 hours before the PJFT) I ate a oats cereal bar & a glucose tablet. Got in walked on the treadmill for about an hour & just was semi active whilst I waited for 3pm (Do not do anything that will increase your heart rate as you will fail the blood pressure test).

Might get slagged for this but I like to rub Vicks VapoRub on my chest before a run. I also just before going on the treadmill ate another glucose tablet.

Had a conversation with the PTIs who would be monitoring the test and one of them was an ex royal marine who recently left and he told me he was in the recce troop (I had two monitoring me cause the ex royal was being trained). They told me the test would take an hour, took me in to a room, measured my blood pressure, height & weight then took me through some warm ups and asked if I was good to go.

The guy explained he'll set the 1st 2.4km to 12kph & the gradient to 2% but they have to stand back as they are not allowed to give encouragement (I was told I can adjust as I please). Then he will come back & do the same for the second set after my 1min rest, but he'll set the treadmill to 15kph. He also explained that due to the wind up of the belt any time I achieve he will deduct 20 seconds from it, so instead of having 12.30 seconds to do the 1st 2.4km I have 12.50mins and 10.20mins for the return.

1st set was done in 11.48min out, during my one minute rest I drunk more water and ate half a glucose tablet, then I started the return, hit the same wall at 6/7mins, pushed through to 8mins but had to slow down to 14.5kph, then the moment I hit 2km I bumped the speed up to 16kph and seen it out and got a 9.12min return.

http://imgur.com/qE0z1o6 here's a picture of the treadmill.


I know what you mean about the mental block.
I am training for my PJFT next week and after about 6 min I am soooo bored on that treadmill. I dont mind running outside and will often run 10km or along the beach with my dog for 1 hour but on a treadmill....god its horrible.

I pushed myself today to get through this mental block and did it in 10:30 but could knock off an extra min there if i pushed myself, I am going for just RN officer so only need to do it once and has to be under 11:33 so I should be fine.


The treadmill is horrible. I think because nothing else is happening apart from you are bouncing on a belt you feel every ache and pain, and each minute feels like an hour.

The way I learned to master the beast was to literally do nothing except the treadmill whilst going for the PJFT. Now it is out the way I would proudly like to never set foot on one again.