Fit to fight, competition ready

1st Lt. Jamielynn Hart, 2nd Space Warning Squadron deputy flight commander and space operations center commander, stands with her Fitness America fourth place trophy Jan. 11, 2016, on Buckley Air Force Base, Colo. Fitness America, an international fitness competition, in which Hart placed fourth in the 18 to 30, tall bikini competition. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Gabrielle Spradling/Released)

1st Lt. Jamielynn Hart, 2nd Space Warning Squadron deputy flight commander and space operations center commander, stands with her Fitness America fourth place trophy Jan. 11, 2016, on Buckley Air Force Base, Colo. Fitness America, an international fitness competition, in which Hart placed fourth in the 18 to 30, tall bikini competition. (U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Gabrielle Spradling/Released)

1st Lt. Jamielynn Hart, 2nd Space Warning Squadron deputy flight commander and space operations center commander, poses with her Fitness America fourth place trophy Nov. 19, 2016, in Las Vegas, Nevada. Hart incorporated her preparation for a physical assessment with her Fitness America training to maintain not only Air Force but also personal standards. (Courtesy photo/Released)

1st Lt. Jamielynn Hart, 2nd Space Warning Squadron deputy flight commander and space operations center commander, poses with her Fitness America fourth place trophy Nov. 19, 2016, in Las Vegas, Nevada. Hart incorporated her preparation for a physical assessment with her Fitness America training to maintain not only Air Force but also personal standards. (Courtesy photo/Released)

1st Lt. Jamielynn Hart, 2nd Space Warning Squadron deputy flight commander and space operations center commander, poses with members of her fitness competition team, Team Progress over Perfection, Nov. 19, 2016, after competing in Fitness America in Las Vegas, Nevada. Team PoP currently consists of all female, Air Force officers, but is looking to include women from all branches of service and ranks. (Courtesy photo/Released)

1st Lt. Jamielynn Hart, 2nd Space Warning Squadron deputy flight commander and space operations center commander, poses with members of her fitness competition team, Team Progress over Perfection, Nov. 19, 2016, after competing in Fitness America in Las Vegas, Nevada. Team PoP currently consists of all female, Air Force officers, but is looking to include women from all branches of service and ranks. (Courtesy photo/Released)

BUCKLEY AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. --

The military lifestyle typically makes fitness a priority, but in some cases, members make personal physical fitness an individual goal to better themselves. 1st Lt. Jamielynn, 2nd Space Warning Squadron deputy flight commander and space operations center commander, is one of those people.

Hart combined her personal goal of participating in fitness competitions and the Air Force physical assessment standards to achieve both personal and military goals.

“We have standards that most civilians don’t have, such as physical fitness requirements, so not only do you want to be fit to fight, but you want to be fit for the competition as well,” said Jamielynn. “They go hand in hand.”

On November 18 and 19, 2016, Hart competed in an international fitness competition, Fitness America, and placed fourth among more than 30 females age 18 to 30 in the tall division of the bikini portion.

However Jamielynn did not go through the competition alone; she competed with Team Progress over Perfection.

“Team PoP is a group of Air Force women, right now all of us are officers, but it is open to all military women,” said Jamielynn. “We train together, we are a good support group and we compete together.”

The team is spread across the country from Ohio and Florida all way to Buckley Air Force Base, Colorado.

“My goal for Team PoP is to spread the message that anything is possible and to never give up,” said Capt. Allanna Anstaett, Special Assistant to the Director of Staff HQ Air Force Materiel Command.

With a serious message that they want to spread, Team PoP also wants to make sure that training and competition are as fun as they can be.

“It was a ton of fun, not just doing the competition itself, but also the preparation and work,” said Jamielynn. “The fitness competition is only a small part at the end of the fitness journey. Most of it is training and being disciplined with your meal plan. For me it worked out nicely because my fitness test was a couple of weeks before the competition, so I was ready for it!”

While trying to merge the military and civilian fitness worlds, Jamielynn did experience some difficulties.

“It’s definitely a culture change going from being in uniform to all of a sudden being covered in makeup and flexing on stage,” said Jamielynn.

Jamielynn has used her competition training to not only help her physical assessment score, but to improve her work center and help those around her.

“I think this has had a positive impact on her military career,” said Anstaett. “Being able to show others that she can stay physically fit and healthy, while also accomplishing the mission, will motivate others to take their health seriously.”

Jamielynn wants people to understand the amount of effort required when living a healthy lifestyle, but that your job and personal life don’t have to suffer for it.

“Fitness isn’t just looking good, it’s functional fitness as well,” said Jamielynn. “There’s no magic behind it, there is a lot of hard work, dedication and putting forth the effort to make a lifestyle change. It’s about making fitness and healthy living a part of your everyday.”

The best part of the process for Jamielynn is the training and personal preparation leading up to the competition, yet stepping on the stage and proving to herself that she can do it means just as much.

“It’s such a rush getting on stage and working so hard for it,” said Jamielynn. “You get up there and don’t even really care what the judges say because you’re proud of everything you’ve done, especially helping towards your fitness test. I mean, everyone wants to do well on their fitness test.”

Through their time together as part of Team PoP, Hart has bettered not only her own life, but has impacted those around her including Anstaett.
“Lt. Hart is helping me accomplish my personal goals and dreams through her own personal success,” said Anstaett.

Jamielynn not only works to inspire others, but she relies on the support of her team to push and motivate her.

“It’s a lot harder to compete as an individual versus with a team, because of that support system,” said Jamielynn. “Similar to that of active duty Air Force, they’re always the ones who pick you up when you’re down and help keep pushing you to get through. They always share in your victories.”

The ultimate prize for Jamielynn wasn’t placing fourth, it was the ability to improve herself, all while working towards a goal and achieving it.

“It’s not always about winning the medal,” said Jamielynn. “Personally being able to score a 97 on my fitness test is something that I’m very proud of, even more so than having a trophy. I worked really hard to get that score and I know with people who struggle with fitness or even people who are really good at fitness, there’s always room to improve. That’s the biggest piece of healthy living.”

Jamielynn and the rest of Team PoP have no plans of slowing down. They hope to continue growing their network of teammates, while proving that you can accomplish the mission, be fit to fight and be a fitness competitor all at the same time.

“Team PoP members will be competing individually throughout 2017 all over the United States and internationally but will come together as a team once again in November for Fitness America Weekend in Las Vegas,” said Anstaett.