Top 5 Exercises for Military Athletes Training Plan

$29.00

  • 5- Week Training Plan, 5 Days/Week
  • Uses our most recommended exercises for the Military Athlete – Craig Special, Push Press, Sandbag Get Up, Rope Climb, and Ruck Run
  • Total Body Strength & Conditioning Program – Strength, Work Capacity, Endurance, Chassis Integrity
  • This training plan is one of the 130+ Plans included with an Athlete’s Subscription. CLICK HERE for more info.

Description

One of our most popular articles over the years has been ‘Rob’s Top 5 Exercises for Military Athletes’. We’ve decided to utilize only these exercises in this 5-week training program. Each exercise trains the fundamental aspects of military fitness attributes – strength, work capacity, endurance, and chassis integrity.

This training plan is straight forward, no-brainer solution for Military Athletes looking to improve their overall fitness. It includes an initial assessment in Week 1, and percentage based progressions in the following weeks to immediately scale to the athlete’s fitness levels. Week 5 is a reassessment to record your improved scores.

The 5 exercises are as follows:

  • Sandbag Get Ups –  the best overall exercise to train a military athlete’s “Combat Chassis” – leg, core, and lungs. With each rep, the athlete works core flexion, rotation, and extension. He or she also must do a loaded lunge or squat to stand up, and finally, at high reps, his heart and lungs will be burning through the work capacity hit.
  • Craig Special – 1x Craig Special is a Hang Squat Clean + Front Squat and is my favorite total body exercise. Technique issues can quickly crop up with Olympic movements, and I’ve found the hang squat clean to be the easiest for athletes to master. The clean trains explosive power, and catching the heavy barbell in the squat helps train the athlete to take impact – a valuable attribute for a military athlete. Finally, with each rep, the athlete gets in 2x front squats – my favorite squatting movement.
  • Rope Climb – My original lab rat, Josh, called the rope climb the “sled push for the upper body” – and it’s my favorite pulling movement – even when using the feet. I find the rope climb more functional than the traditional pull up – plus it’s a 3-for-one exercise …. pulling strength, grip strength, mid-section strength, and when loaded (weight vest or IBA) all of the above plus leg work. The Rope Climb is a great total body exercise
  • Three Mile Ruck Run for Time @ 45# ruck, plus 10# sledge, hammer, dumbbell or rubber rifle – Rucking is a huge fitness demand for military athletes and the best way to improve rucking is to ruck. The mid-distance 3-mile ruck run is long enough for fitness to transfer to longer efforts, but short enough that the athlete can ruck run the entire distance and train overall rucking speed. Finally, ruck running with this load further trains the “Combat Chassis” – legs, core and lungs.
  • Push Press – While the old meathead in me lusts over the Bench Press, the Push Press is the top upper body pressing exercise for military athletes because of its total body element and simple, mission-direct transferability. Strength Coach Pat O’Shea called the Push Press the “King” of upper body exercises. A vertical pressing movement to balance the vertical pull in the Rope Climb, the Push Press is really a total body exercise with an upper body finisher. Everything gets worked – legs, core, chest, and shoulders. Even better, this exercise can be completed with just about anything heavy – sandbags, dumbbells, kettlebells, big rock, barbell, girlfriend….

Strength Progression
The strength work will be based on your 1 Rep Max (1RM), conducted in the first training session. The following strength sessions in the training plan use a percentage based, linear progression to immediately scale to your strength numbers.

For example, Session 3 calls for:

(1) 8 Rounds
2x Craig Special @ 80% 1RM from SESSION 1
3rd World Stretch

So, if your SESSION 1 1RM was 185#, find 80% of that load by multiplying your 1RM by 80% (185 x .80 = 148. Round up to 150.) 150# is your working weight. Use the first three rounds to work up to 2x 150#. Rounds 4-8 should be conducted at the working weight, or in this example, 150#.

The strength circuits each include a stretch or durability exercise. Consider the stretch or mobility exercise your rest between rounds. There is no more rest between circuits more than what is required to change equipment and load barbells. Understand the strength circuits are not mini CrossFit-like WODs. Work briskly, not frantically.

How to find your 1 Rep Max
Craig Special- After the warm up, load up the barbell with a weight you can lift 3x. Then add weight, and complete 2x reps. Then add weight and start doing singles, adding weight rapidly until you reach your 1 Rep Max (1RM). Record your 1RM.

Push Press – After the warm up, load up the barbell with a weight you can lift 5x. Then add weight, and complete 3x reps. Then add weight and start doing singles, adding weight rapidly until you reach your 1 Rep Max (1RM). Record your 1RM.

Use Common Sense working up to your 1RM – Be smart and safe while working up to your 1RM. Don’t risk injury. Be smart and safe. And don’t linger – you need to complete each session in 45-60 minutes.

Ruck Run Progression
This training plan deploys a 3-mile ruck run assessment and uses assessment performance for the follow-on progressions. In this way, the plan automatically “scales” to the incoming rucking fitness and speed of each individual athlete.

Once you have completed the 3-mile ruck run assessment, you will utilize the MTI Ruck Calculator to find your interval pace for follow on sessions.

For example, Session 4 calls for:

(1) 2 Rounds
1-mile Ruck Run @ per mile Interval Pace using results from SESSION 2 Ruck Assessment and the MTI Ruck Calculator
Rest 8 minutes

CLICK HERE for the MTI Ruck Calculator. Set the assessment distance to 3-miles, and input your final time. The calculator will then provide you with your ‘per mile’ interval time. This is your goal time for each interval. Complete the mile ruck run, rest for 8 minutes, then complete the second ruck run interval.

Weekly Schedule

  • Mon: Strength (Craig Special, Push Press, Rope Climb)
  • Tues: Ruck Run Intervals
  • Wed: Strength / Work Capacity (Craig Special, Push Press, Sandbag Get Ups)
  • Thurs: Ruck Run Intervals
  • Fri: Work Capacity (Sandbag Get Ups/Rope Climb, Power Clean + Push Press)

Required Equipment

  • Fully Equipped Functional Fitness Gym (Barbells, Bumpers, Climbing Rope, etc.)
  • Sandbag @ 60# (Women) or 80# (Men)
  • Ruck with 45# of Filler + 10# sledge, hammer, dumbbell or rubber rifle
  • Track or course of known distance for Rucking
  • Timer or Stopwatch

COMMON QUESTIONS

How Long do the Sessions Last?
45-60 min.

What if I miss a day?
If you miss a day, make up the session you missed the next day and follow the programming as prescribed. The programming is progressive – it builds upon itself. Don’t skip ahead.

Where do I find unfamiliar exercises?
See our Exercise Library HERE. The Ruck 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.

Questions? Email coach@mtntactical.com

Required Equipment

Required Equipment

  • Fully Equipped Functional Fitness Gym (Barbells, Bumpers, Climbing Rope, etc.)

  • Sandbag @ 60# (Women) or 80# (Men)

  • Ruck with 45# of Filler + 10# sledge, hammer, dumbbell or rubber rifle

  • Track or course of known distance for Rucking

  • Timer or Stopwatch

Sample Training

MONDAY
SESSION 1

Obj: Assessment

Warm Up:
3 Rounds
Barbell Complex @ 45/65#
Instep + Hip Flexor Stretch

Training:

(1) Find 1RM Craig Special

RECORD FINAL LOAD

(2) Find 1RM Push Press

RECORD FINAL LOAD

(3) Max Sandbag Get Ups in 10 Min. @ 60/80#

RECORD TOTAL REPS

::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

TUESDAY
SESSION 2
Obj: Assessment

Training:

(1) Ruck Run 3-miles for time @ 45# Ruck + 10# Sledge or Dumbbell

RECORD FINAL TIME

::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

WEDNESDAY
SESSION 3
Obj: Strength, Work Capacity

Warm Up:
3 Rounds
Barbell Complex @ 45/65#
Instep + Hip Flexor Stretch

Training:

(1) 8 Rounds
2x Craig Special @ 80% 1RM from SESSION 1
3rd World Stretch

(2) 8 Rounds
3x Push Press @ 80% 1RM from SESSION 1
Lat + Pec Stretch

(3) 10 Rounds
10% Sandbag Get Ups from SESSION 1 Assessment
30 sec. Rest

Example:
If you completed 50x Sandbag Get Ups during the SESSION 1 Asessment, you will do 5x Sandbag Get Ups (50 x .10 = 5), then rest 30 seconds. Repeat for 10 rounds total.

::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

THURSDAY
SESSION 4
Obj: Ruck Run Intervals

Training:

(1) 2 Rounds
1-mile Ruck Run @ per mile Interval Pace using results from SESSION 2 Ruck Assessment and the MTI Ruck Calculator
Rest 8 min.

Load: 45# Ruck + 10# Sledge or Dumbbell

CLICK HERE for the MTI Ruck Calculator

::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

FRIDAY
SESSION 5
Obj: Work Capacity

Warm Up:

4 Rounds
3x Sandbag Get Up @ 60/80#
5x Hang Squat Clean @ 45/65#
5x Push Press @ 45/65#

Lat + Pec Stretch

Training:

(1) 5 Rounds
7x Sandbag Get Ups @ 60/80#
1x Rope Climb
Rest 30 sec.

Rest 2-3 minutes, then…

(2) 5 Rounds
5x Power Clean + Push Press @ 95/115#
Rest 30 sec.

(3) Foam Roll Low Back
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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.

Questions?
Email: rob@mtntactical.com

COMMON QUESTIONS:

Do you have any reviews or testimonials from athletes who have used your Athlete’s Subscription
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Is it true you guarantee your stuff works?
Yes. 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.

How is MTI programming different than CrossFit?
This is a common question. Read our answer HERE.

You have a lot of competitors. Why should I chose MTI?
MTI is driven to improve mountain and tactical athletes’ mission performance and keep them safe. This emphasis and focus on mission performance sets us apart. Read about more that sets us apart HERE.

If I purchase a subscription, how do I access the programming?
All programming is online. Access is via a username and password.

Do you have downloadable .pdf’s of the training plans?
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If I purchase a subscription and have questions about where to start or what plans(s) to use for my goals, will you help?
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If you add new plans or update existing plans after I subscribe will I have access to them?
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What Equipment is Required?
Click the “Required Equipment” tab to find out what equipment is required for the specific plan you are interested in.

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.
You are encouraged to do it before purchasing.

What if I have more questions?
Email rob@mtntactical.com

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