Q&A 12.29.22

QUESTION

Do you have a program that is solely (only) for strength building? I’m looking for that because I already have a conditioning program that I’m working through.

ANSWER

Big 24 Strength has strength 4 days/week. You can rest Wednesday and/or do your conditioning.
The Big 24 progression is super intense, and one of our most successful programms.
– Rob

QUESTION

I’m currently going through the Busy Dad Limited Equipment plans, but I have an elk hunt next year and will be switching over to the hunting packet plans in preparation for that.  I don’t have access to a full gym but it looks like the only things I’m not able to do are the back squats and chest presses in Hunting Build 1 and the hinge lifts in Hunting Build 2.  Can you suggest dumbbell based alternatives for those movements?  Really loving the programming so far; keep up the great work.

ANSWER

Increase the rep scheme to 10 reps and do dumbbell front squats, dumbbell bench presses and dumbbell hinge lifts.
– Rob

QUESTION

Are there ideal weights to start with for the lifts and presses for the hypertrophy program? Or is just based on a percentage of body weight?

Thanks your time in answering my question.

ANSWER

The programming is “increase load rapidly until the rep count is hard, but doable” …. in this way it automatically “scales” to your upcoming fitness.
For example, below is one of the circuits from the plan, and following is the load I’d personally likely use for the bench press and renegade row:

(1) 6 Rounds

8x Bench Press – Increase load rapidly each round until 8x is hard, but doable.

8x Renegade Row – Increase load rapidly each round until 8x is hard, but doable.

5x Shoulder Dislocate

Round        Bench Press          Renegade Row

1                95                           25

2                115                         30

3                135                        30

4-6             155                        35

– Rob


QUESTION

I have always respected and followed your plans. Recently I have had a bunch of health issues that have enabled me from working out. I previously had been following the SF45 plans. Do you have any suggestions as to what I can be doing in the meantime while I work on getting my strength up?

ANSWER

Glad you’re feeling better.
Start back with Bodyweight Beginner.
– Rob

QUESTION

I am doing the FBI SA training program. I am struggling with the 300m sprint- I lose gas at 150m/200m. When I do finish the sprint, I get zero points or barely 1.
I am two weeks into the program, but I’ve been training for the last 1.5yrs. Running is my weakest. Any specific tips?
Thanks!

ANSWER

Stick with the programming. There’s no shortcut or trick. Make sure your mind isn’t beating you. Continue to push.
– Rob

QUESTION

I have had tremendous success with these programs. I am about to start Apollo in the next few weeks  and am planning on doing a cleanse/ detox prior to starting. I rarely drink and am relatively supplement free at the moment. The intent is to prime my system to “ hit it again “.
Do U have any recommendations or updates with regards to nutrition guidance. I am in the Army and the low/ no carb just is not sustainable for me. Do you have any recommendations or best practices? Thanks again for taking the time.

ANSWER

Vegetables are carbs and you can eat as many as you like. If you’re saying you can’t give up bread/rice, potatoes, pasta, etc, and all sugar and most fruit until your weekly cheat day,  …. my answer is, yes you can.  Eat more veggies.
– Rob

QUESTION

I am in the final stages of the USMS process so I don’t know when I am headed to the academy but I want to set myself up for success either way. What do you recommend? Just go with this program? I am in very good shape as I am I just want to give myself an edge physically and mentally.

ANSWER

I’d recommend starting with the Bodyweight Beginner Plan, then proceeding to the Academy Plan.
– Rob

QUESTION

I’m getting ready to head to FLETC for CITP. I’m a Special Agent Candidate with the Diplomatic Security Service. CITP is more of a “gentleman’s” course for us than some agencies and we are on our own for PT.

We have our DS specific PRT at the start of our follow on training after FLETC (3 months). I’d like to score as high as possible on this. I successfully used your DS PRT plan in the application process. Would you recommend doing that plan twice back to back while at FLETC or something else?

ANSWER

No. At CITP I’d recommend Whiskey, then the DS PRT in the weeks direcly before your assessment.
– Rob

QUESTION

I have some questions and some baseline information.
I’m 53, 5’8”-285.
Just got a total hip replacement left hip.
Have bilateral total knee replacement.
Two hernias that still need repair.
I have built in limitations due to these issues.
Which program(s) do you recommend for me?

ANSWER

Also – fix you’re diet. Loosing 100lbs will help everything. Here are our recommendations.
– Rob

QUESTION

I am considering signing up for the athlete subscription and had a few questions on which training plans you would recommend for me. I have been doing a number of Spartan OCR races the last few years just following training plans I have come up with. Most of these races have been 20K in distance but recently I did my first 50K. I completed that race in 9:07 which I was happy with but felt I could have performed better. The second half was limited to power walking due to lower body cramping. I am looking at signing up for another 50k in May and possibly the Killington Ultra in September. I have a couple of options for the May events, one is in Montana where there will be anywhere from 8k-10K’ of elevation gain/descent and the other is in NC and is pretty flat, ~2-3k’ gain. Killington is the hardest Ultra Spartan has and is anywhere from 14k-18k in elevation gain. I did the 20k this year which had  ~8k of gain/descent. That race wrecked my quads after the first two miles so even though I had trained a lot of weighted lunges/stadium stairs/ sandbag carries I felt under trained for that type of prolonged climbing. I live in Dallas TX so I don’t have good trail running options that give me elevation training.
I am looking at your various training plans and was curious how you would recommend I stage them for those two events. I am leaning towards signing up for the Montana race over the NC one as that could be a good test for my fitness as it is roughly half the gain/descent I’ll see in Killington. This is where I am stuck. Do I focus more on Alpine training and time on feet vs Ultra training or do I do a mix of both? Love to get your advice so I can start planning for these events.

ANSWER

If I understand correctly, you’re asking how to train for the vertical gain/loss in a 50K Obstacle Race – when you don’t have the vertical nearby for your long training runs.
I’d recommend the Tuesday and Thursday vertical strength sessions from the Mountain Marathon Training Plan. These sessions train eccentric leg strength (for the downhills) and concentric leg strength (for the uphills) and the plan is designed for flatlanders who’ve entered themselves in mountain marathon.
It’s likely the downhills that got your legs at the race you describe – running/hiking downhill works eccentric strength, which is much more intense than concentric strength.
The Mountain Marathon Plan also includes running … but you’d want to increase the long run distances to match that for a 50K.
I have a 50K Ultra Plan and a Long Distance OCR Training Plan, but I don’t have a 50K OCR plan.
– Rob

QUESTION

I’m training for a 50K that has over 4k feet of elevation gain. I’ve been using the 50K Ultra training plan off MTI and got through about 6 weeks before I started to feel some pain in my hip flexor. I suspect it’s a mild hip flexor strain that I got from all the elevation training I’ve been incorporating into the program’s runs. I’ve been stretching and icing every day since I’ve felt the pain but it hasn’t improved much (granted it’s only been a week).
The pain is manageable and I can still run, but I want to take it easy so that it doesn’t progress into something that’ll force me to pull out of the race. Looking for advice on what to do to still adequately prepare for the 50K, while preventing my injury from getting worse. I have access to a full gym with bikes, rowing machines, step-up boxes, weights, etc.

ANSWER

You could try spinning …. but you’d want to double the prescribed mileage – and I’m not sure the transfer would be good. At some point early on, you’ll only improve at spinning and it won’t transfer to running.
I’m sorry, there’s no shortcut or good answer for these mode-specific, long endurance events.
In general, I expect athletes to train injured, but not hurt. Injured = training won’t make it worse. Hurt = training will make it worse.
– Rob

QUESTION

I am doing your psyops selection training and tomorrow I have a 200m run with a sandbag. For that could I row 200m instead?

ANSWER

Not if you’re going to Psyops selection. There’s no rowing at selection.  Plus, carrying a sandbag on a 200m run is a hell of a lot different than rowing 200m.
Follow the programming as prescribed. It’s supposed to be hard.
– Rob

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