The Physical Fitness Test is administered every six months. All Marines are provided time to train and are expected to maintain an adequate degree of physical fitness. The standard physical fitness test consists of three events that measure cardiovascular endurance, muscular strength and endurance and mobility.
The Initial Strength Test (IST) for Recruits
If you are thinking about joining the USMC, you will have to pass the IST – Initial Strength Test. The IST is a shortened version of the USMC PFT, a recruit only has to do pull-ups, sit-ups, and a 1.5 mile run. The minimum standards for passing the Initial Strength Test are as follows:
In Accordance with Marine Corps Order (MCO) P1100.72B – page 148 discusses IST fitness and weight standards. MILITARY PERSONNEL ROCUREMENT MANUAL, VOLUME 2, ENLISTED PROCUREMENT, paragraph 3274, all Marine Corps recruits, male and female, requiring recruit training (boot camp) are required to pass the IST prior to shipping to recruit training.
The USMC Physical Fitness Test (PFT)
Male Marines will perform "dead-hang” pull-ups, abdominal crunches, and a 3.0-mile run. Female Marines will complete the "flexed-arm" hang, abdominal crunches, and a 3.0 - mile run with a pull-up option.
Check out this USMC PFT grading chart below to figure out where your fitness level stands compared to a U.S. Marine.
* Round up all values (e.g., 18:01 to 18:09 equals 99 points)
In order to pass the semi-annual fitness test, Marines must perform the minimum acceptable performance requirements shown in the chart below. Additionally, they must have enough overall points to meet the 3rd class fitness requirements (see below).
USMC is a challenging profession and more information can be found at the StewSmith.com Article Archive
For more specific info on the USMC PFT read the following related articles:
Pullups - Start here is you cannot get any or too few under the required minimum
Pullup Push Program - Start here if you goal is to max the pullup test (20) and can do 5-10 reps already.
Crunches - Learn to pace yourself with a two minute crunch test to easily max the test
Running Plans - Start here if a beginner
Running to ace the test - Max the Run Program phase 1
Running fast for 3 miles - Max the Run Program phase 2