SF45 Charlie


  • 7 Week, 6 Day/Week Training Plan designed for tactical and other high impact athletes ages 45-55 years old.
  • Plan concurrently trains gym-based heavy strength, chassis integrity, endurance, work capacity and chassis integrity.
  • This training plan is one of the 190+ Plans included with an Athlete’s Subscription.


“SF45” is an acronym for “Strength and Fitness 45” and this programming is designed for older tactical and other high impact athletes in the 45-55 age range.

SF45 Charlie is the third of a series of 4 training plans in this collection – Alpha and Bravo and Delta are the the other 3 plans in this series.All four plans can be purchased together in a packet, HERE

SF45 Charlie is a 7-week, 6 day/week balanced training plan. Week 7 in the plan is an unload/re-assessment week.

This is the first version of this plan, published June 2017.

SF45 Programming has the following general characteristics:

Heavy, Low Volume Strength – think heavy barbel and 1-4 reps per set. The goal is to increase or maintain relative strength (strength per bodyweight) in the most efficient manner possible. Some SF45 cycles will feature bodyweight strength training, but none will include moderately loaded free weight strength training in the 5-12 reps per set range. This is to avoid unnecessary joint impact.

Endurance – Recreationally, most activities for athletes in this age range are outside and have a strong endurance component – biking, hunting, trail running, hiking, alpine climbing, etc. As well, for experienced athletes who’ve spent decades throwing iron around in gyms, the appeal of training inside wanes. Endurance programming includes assessment based intervals at a threshold pace, long distance intervals at an easy pace, and gym-based endurance training. This programming may include rucking and ruck running, as well as loaded step ups. Specific to this plan, SF45 Bravo, the athlete will be able to chose between running and biking.

Chassis Integrity – MTI’s mid-section training methodology aims at building transferable mid-section strength and strength endurance. Four movements are emphasized: Rotation, Anti-Rotation, Total Body and Extension. Chassis Integrity can be trained in focused circuits, as well as in complementary gym-based endurance events.

Non-high Impact Work Capacity – In this age group, gone are the days of hard, intense, high impact multi-modal gym-based work capacity programming. For day to day training, the interest and need for this type of fitness is not worth the joint impact. Work capacity training is limited to lower impact gym exercises and shuttle sprints.

Deep Squat Avoidance – For our over-40 lab rats, it’s nearly impossible to do heavy back or front squats without limited joint pain. Lower body strength training in these cycles will focus on lunges, hinge lifts and bodyweight or lightly loaded complexes.

Here is the weekly schedule for SF45 Charlie:

• Mon: Heavy Barbell Strength Following MTI’s TLU Progression, Chassis Integrity
• Tue: 1.5 Mile Run Assessment or 800m Interval Repeats
• Wed: Heavy Barbell Strength Following MTI’s TLU Progression, Short Work Capacity
• Thu: Gym-Based Endurance (40-60 minutes)
• Fri: Heavy Barbell Strength Following MTI’s TLU Progression, Chassis Integrity
• Sat: Long, Easy Run out to 10 miles

Common Questions:

Who is this plan appropriate for?
Experienced tactical and other high-impact athletes age 45-55. This plan includes olympic and functional fitness exercises and knowing your way around a weight room will easy your learning curve for the programming. 

How long with the Training Sessions take?
60-120 Minutes. Gym work is designed to take 60-70 minutes. Saturday’s long run may extend to 120 minutes. 

What does “4/8x” mean? How about “15/25#”?
First number is for women, second is for men, both for reps, and loading. Examples:
4/8x Chin Ups = Women do 4x, Men do 8x
15/25# = Women us 15#, Men us 25#.

What does “Grind” mean?
We use this term to describe the pace for your Chassis Integrity circuit and gym-based endurance efforts. Work through these efforts steadily, not frantically. Effort is moderate, not threshold.

What Equipment is Required?

• Fully-equipped functional fitness gym including barbells/dumbells, plates, bumpers, rack, bench, plyo boxes, sandbag (40/60/80 pound)
• Stop watch with countdown interval timer.
• Optional – GPS running watch to make finding running/biking distance easy

What if I miss a training day?
Ideally, you will train 6 days in a row, and take 1 full days off for rest. If for some reason miss a session,  do not skip ahead. Start again where you left off and complete the sessions in order throughout the plan.

Where do I find unfamiliar exercises?
See our Exercise Library HERE. The Run Calculator is listed as an exercise.

What about nutrition?
See our Nutritional Guidelines HERE.

Can I see sample training?
Click the “Sample Training” tab to see the entire first week of programming.

Required Equipment

What Equipment is Required?

• Fully-equipped functional fitness gym including barbells/dumbells, plates, bumpers, rack, bench, plyo boxes, sandbag (40/60/80 pound)
• Stop watch with countdown interval timer.
• Optional - GPS running watch to make finding running/biking distance easy

Sample Training

Obj: Strength, Chassis Integrity

Warm Up:

3 Rounds

  • Barbell Complex @ 45/65

  • 6x Push Ups

  • Instep Stretch


(1) Work up to 1RM Power Clean

(2) 5 Rounds

  • 2x Power Clean @ 85% 1RM

  • Hip Flexor Stretch

(3) 6 Rounds

  • 4x Walking Lunge - increase load each round until 4x is hard, but doable

  • 4x Bench Press - increase load each round until 4x is hard, but doable

  • 5x Shoulder Dislocate

(4) 15 Minute Grind

  • 5x 1-Sided Dead Lift @ 15/25#

  • 5x Keg Lift @ 40/60# Sandbag

  • 5x Sandbag Burpee @ 40/60#

(5) Foam Roll Legs, Low Back


Obj: Endurance Assessment

Warm up:

4 Rounds

  • Run 100m

  • 10x Squats

  • 10x Push Ups

  • Instep Stretch


(1) Run 1.5 Miles for Time



Obj: Strength, Work Capacity

Warm Up:

3 Rounds

  • Barbell Complex @ 45/65

  • 6x Push Ups

  • Instep Stretch


(1) Work up to 1RM Hinge Lift

(2) 6 Rounds

  • 2x Hinge Lift @ 85% 1RM

  • Hip Flexor Stretch

(3) 6 Rounds

  • 4x Bench Press - increase load each round until 4x is hard, but doable

  • 4x Dumbbell Hang Power Clean - increase load each round until 4x is hard, but doable

  • 5x Shoulder Dislocate

(4) 4 Rounds

  • 300m Shuttle every 2:30

(5) Foam Roll Legs, Low Back


Obj: Gym Based Endurance


(1) 40 Minute Grind

  • 3x Sandbag Getup & Run @ 40/60#

  • 6x Sandbag Power Clean + Push Press @ 40/60#

  • 20x Step Ups @ 20"

  • (2) Foam Roll Legs, Low Back


Obj: Strength, Chassis Integrity

Warm Up:

3 Rounds

  • Barbell Complex @ 45/65

  • 6x Push Ups

  • Instep Stretch


(1) Work up to 1RM Incline Bench Press

(2) 6 Rounds

  • 2x Incline Bench Press @ 85% 1RM

  • Lat + Pec Stretch

(3) 6 Rounds

  • 3x Power Clean - increase load each round until 3x is hard, but doable, then immediately

  • 2x Broad Jump

  • Pigeon Stretch

(4) 15 Minute Grind

  • 15/15 Standing Founder

  • 8x Hinge Lift @ 65/95#

  • 15/15 Kneeling Founder

  • 8x Swings @ 20/24kg

(5) Foam Roll Legs, Low Back


Obj: Endurance


(1) Run 7 Miles at a Easy Pace

Easy pace. Easy = you can speak in full sentences

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1)  Mission Direct

Gym numbers mean nothing. All that matters is mission performance. 

To this end, MTI's fitness solutions and programming are not boxed in by convention, tradition, orthodoxy, public opinion or any other artificial constraint driven by inside or outside forces.

We begin with the raw fitness demands of the mission and build a fitness solution which directly prepares the athlete for those demands.


2) Fitness Solutions Built from the Ground Up

MTI's programming is not "re-tread" bodybuilding, football, CrossFit, kettlebell, strength or general fitness programming. We've built our fitness programming for mountain and tactical athletes from the ground up.

The Fluid Periodization methodology we deploy to concurrently train multiple fitness attributes is completely original and has continued to evolve and improve over the years.

Our mid-section training methodology, Chassis Integrity, is also original, as is our endurance programming, 7 strength training progressions, tactical agility, and work capacity programming.

Our mountain sports pre-season training plans, tactical PFT, selection, school, course, and fitness improvement training plans across military, LE and Fire Rescue are MTI-developed, tested and athlete-proven.

Over the years hundreds of athletes and coaches have taken our advanced programming and unit fitness leader programming courses and MTI is widely recognized within the mountain and tactical professions and fitness media as a thought leader in fitness programming for military and tactical athletes.


3) The MTI Method

→ Research: MTI begins program design with extensive research of the fitness demands of the mission, sport or event, identifies the exercises and progressions which sport-specifically meet those demands, chose end-of-cycle goals, and program backward to design the training plan.

→ Deploy & Assess: We deploy the training plan "Lab Rats" at our Wyoming facility. Training session and cycle issues are identified and fixed as we work through the training plan. Post cycle we assess the programming's effectiveness and efficiency. We keep the stuff that works, and fix or toss the stuff that doesn't.

→ Publish & Assess Again: Plan is published for purchase as an individual training plan and made available to our subscribers. Feedback/results are assessed.

→ Iterate: We take what we learn from lab rats and athletes, re-visit, update and improve already published training plans. Several of our individual training plans are on their 4th or 5th version.


4) Mission-Direct Research

MTI exists to "Improve Mountain and Tactical Athletes mission performance and keep them safe." To that end, we have developed a unique research methodology aimed at identifying real world areas of improvement and identifying immediately deployable mission-direct solutions. Click HERE to learn more about MTI's Mission-Direct Research methodology, and Here to read about just few of our research efforts.

5) Field Proven

Our stuff works. Weekly we receive unsolicited reviews of our programming and testimonials to its effectiveness.


6) Programming Breadth

MTI's library of 200+ sport-specific fitness plans for mountain and tactical athletes is unmatched. Resources range from specific programming for tactical special forces selections, to specific plans for climbing Rainier and Denali, to general fitness solutions such as running improvement, to post-rehab from injury.

Over the past decade, MTI has partnered with hundreds of athletes throughout their individual mountain and tactical careers, and provided fitness solutions as they face new mountain objectives, tactical schools, selections, PFTs and deployments, and came back from injury.


7) Worldwide Influence

Our work is not limited to US Athletes.

We've developed selection-specific training plans for Canadian, UK, Australian and German Special Forces Selections and worked with individual military personnel from Scandinavia, South, and Central America.

Canadian, Australian, UK and western European law enforcement and fire/rescue athletes have used MTI programming for mission-direct fitness.

On the mountain side, Alpinists from Japan to Slovakia have consulted with MTI and used MTI's programming to prepare for mountain objectives.


8) Mission Performance beyond Fitness

MTI’s exists is to improve Mission Performance for mountain and tactical athletes and keep them safe. 

This focus on “mission direct” solutions, enhancements and improvements drives our work and research and extends beyond fitness solutions to include training, leadership, gear, team culture, and safety. 

Fitness is just one area of our work.

Our non-fitness research has included tactical cultures, combat uniforms, and gore-tex performance, and effect of stress on marksmanship.

Our work on defining what it means to be a Quiet Professional has had penetrating influence and driven healthy conversations with both mountain and tactical professionals.


9) Direct, Honest, Clear Answers

Since 2007 we've taken and answered dozens of questions weekly from mountain and tactical athletes. We've saved these individual Q&A's and now thousands are archived on our site.

We're not salesmen, and our answers are noted for their directness, honesty, and clarity. Our stuff isn't for everyone. If we can help, we'll let you know. If we can't, we'll let you know that, too.

- Rob Shaul, Founder


All of the Above is Backed Up By Our Promise: Our Stuff Works. Guaranteed.


Our Stuff Works. Guaranteed.

By Rob Shaul

I received notes frequently from athletes hesitant to purchase a subscription or training plans asking me to sell them on why they should make the purchase.

While I understand the question, I’m not a salesman - so I can't put a hard sale on anyone for our programming.

I can tell them the process we go through to design our programming.

We begin with extensive research on the fitness demands of the event, identify the exercises and progressions which sport specifically meet those demands, chose end-of-cycle goals, and program backward to design the plan.

Then we test the cycle on ourselves and our lab rats here in Wyoming. We document, note what works and doesn’t work, re-assess, and make changes and modifications.

Then we publish the programming in the form of one of our plans or as part of our subscription daily training sessions for tactical and mountain athletes.
We don’t stop there - our daily programming is the “tip of the spear” for our programming evolution. We use these sessions to learn and make continuous improvement.

As we learn more and improve, we go back, and update the sport-specific training plans on the website. For example, we’re currently on Version 5 of our Ruck Based Selection Training Plan and Version 3 of our Dryland Ski Training Plan and Version 4 of our Big Game Back Country Hunting Training Plan.

We understand our programing isn’t cheap, but we believe it’s a great value. The $79 for the Ruck Based Selection Training Plan, and $39 for the Dryland Ski Training Plan reflect the, research, work, innovative theory, iteration, testing and feedback we've put in and received to make these plans effective.

All that matters for us is outside performance, and we feel strongly that Our Stuff Works in the real world.

Here’s our guarantee:

1) Individual Training Plan Purchase:
If you purchase an individual training plan, follow it as prescribed before your season/event/pft/selection, and if you don’t feel you were physically ready for your season/event/pft/selection, and/or didn’t see dramatic improvements in your early season performance, we’ll refund your money, no questions asked.

2) Athlete’s Subscription
If you purchase an Athletes’ Subscription, follow the training sessions as prescribed, and are not satisfied with the quality of the programming, notify us within 30 days of purchase, and we’ll refund your money, no questions asked.

Email: rob@mtntactical.com

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