How do you make a Warship 300kg lighter?

The Royal Navy’s newest warship, HMS Duncan, leads the way in a show of her physical prowess as her sailors continue their Healthy Lifestyle Trial.

HMS Duncan’s sailors and marines are staying in shape on their current deployment to the Mediterranean and Middle East.

The Ship’s Company have had their body measurements taken at the pre-deployment and mid-deployment points with more weigh-ins to come.

The Healthy Lifestyle Trial involves the whole ship: Catering Services, Physical Training Development and Health Promotion.  

A total of 413.3 cm and a huge 306.5 kg has been lost so far.

The hard work over the first four months has paid off and the mid-deployment point results reveal a decrease to 64% of participants at risk by BMI.

How has this been achieved? The Unit Health Committee holds regular meetings to discuss interventions.

Each mess deck has a Healthy Lifestyle Representative and nutritional advice from the Institute of Naval Medicine (INM) is broadcast through the Ship’s Daily Orders.

“With the hard work of the Ship’s Company and the support of the INM team this trial has made a significant difference to the health of those in HMS Duncan and our war-fighting capability.” said Executive Officer, Lt Cdr Jamie Wells.

Changes have been made to daily menus.  The Chefs offer carrot sticks and hummus as a healthy mid-afternoon snack and the menus designed by the Defence Nutrition Advisory Service have proven to be very successful.

 The food has been described as “tastier and healthier, with a good variety of options”.

The daily circuits have been augmented by four Fleet competitions led by Sergeant Chris Abrams, the Ship’s Royal Marine Physical Training Instructor, including the Top of the Rock Race at Gibraltar; a Row the Suez race; the Montague Cup 50x1 km row and the Mike Till trophy 50x1 mile treadmill relay.

124 of the Ship’s Company signed up to take part in the Royal Navy Royal Marines Charity ‘Road to Twickenham’ Challenge.

An unorthodox route from Bahrain to Twickenham was chosen to include HMS Duncan’s numerous Battle Honours, a total distance of 13,816km.

The distance was completed just in time for the kick off of the Army vs Navy match and a total of £1180 was raised.

HMS Duncan has participated in 11 sports fixtures in five countries including football, netball, rugby and a very hot cricket match in Dubai.

Mountain biking, hiking, paddle boarding, diving and adventurous training have also been offered. Writer Bengu Dupuy, said: “Undertaking adventurous training in Bahrain has helped people both mentally and physically.

“After being deployed for several months, AT in Bahrain was a great opportunity for people to do something different.”

To keep track of the effects of the Healthy Lifestyle Trial the ship holds a weekly ‘Duncan’s Biggest Loser’ clinic. 60 Ship’s Company are now regularly having their waist circumference and weight measured.

A total of 413.3 cm and a huge 306.5 kg has been lost so far. 

The ship’s company will continue their hard work over the coming months, with a seven day physical challenge planned and hopefully achieving a first place in a Fleet competition. It looks like there will be a lot of baggy uniforms on the voyage home!