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Cox throws medicine balls during a morning physical training session in the 22nd Chemical Battalion holistic health and fitness training facility.

FORT BLISS  — Maj. Timothy Cox, the executive officer for the 22nd Chemical Battalion, set a new standard by obtaining a 600 – the highest score ever recorded – on the Army Combat Fitness Test.

Back in December 2018, Cox took the ACFT for the first time and earned a 587, but he wasn’t satisfied with that score. After the test, he wrote down 600, on a white board in his office, setting a personal goal for himself. In January he began training for the next time he would have to take the ACFT. He improved his score to 595 then 598, until finally he hit 600 in mid-July.

To train, he used the strength coaches from the holistic health and fitness team and the training facility within the battalion. The H2F Lite is a pilot program being initiated in certain battalions across the Army. The gold standard battalions are given the full team of health professionals, which include a physical therapist, nutritionist and sports trainers to boost readiness, considering the ACFT will be implemented this upcoming fiscal year.

His training didn’t stop when PT was over – in his free time he did extra training. On the weekends you could find Cox doing 400 or 600 meter repeats, on a track, to maintain the speed he wanted on the test. He also did Tabata push-ups to increase his reps of hand release push up, which in his opinion, is the most difficult part of the ACFT. Exercise is only one part of being a full athlete, diet is integral.

He explains his diet isn’t anything extreme. He rarely eats fast food or drinks containing large amounts of sugar and most of the time he eats home-cooked meals provided by his wife, which he credits for pushing him to eat clean.

“My physical readiness has been an asset to me. (It) has helped and assisted me. I’m not oblivious to that,” said Cox. “Being physically ready is a priority for me, and for us here in the Guardian Battalion, we fully embrace it.”

He wants Soldiers who might be worried about the new test to “embrace the change, because like it or not, it’s coming.”

He believes Soldiers should  empower themselves by doing research, such as training apps and conducting a self-assessment to see where they are physically to be prepared for the ACFT.