Aerobatic & Fitness

If you want to be the best, safest, and oldest aerobatic pilot around, you should work out. I have been flying F-16's for about six years now. That means six years of flying in a nine +G environment. That's not just squaring the corner to show a nice vertical upline in the front crowd, that's sustaining nine G's for 15 seconds or more, followed by another seven to eight G turn only moments later. 

Of course, eating healthy is very important. The only piece of advice I will give here is to vary your diet. I never narrow my appetite to just a couple types of food. I have tried high protein, low carb eating programs and they are effective in losing weight. However, be careful as some of them reduce your muscle strength and energy level during the weight loss phase. I recommend moderation. Whatever you do, take one day a week and eat what you want, within reason. And, as always, stay hydrated with plenty of water.

Next, I ride a stationary bike a couple times a week for about 25-30 minutes. I feel it is important to have at least a couple aerobic workouts during the week. However, longer aerobic workouts can sometimes lower you tolerance to positive G's, so I keep mine short. (that's my story and I'm sticking to it).

Now for the most important part of increasing you ability to combat G forces over a long period of time-the anaerobic workouts. Lifting weights or using nautilus. I lift weights about three four times a week. I usually concentrate on higher weights and less reps. This helps build your strength and ability to strain against positive G forces. If you want specifics, one day I do back and biceps, next I do chest and triceps, and third I do legs and abdominals.  

Living the Dream,
Ed Hamill