Q&A 6.14.18

QUESTION

I am trying to pick the right plan for me out of the options provided. I have the Athlete’s Subscription. I am having a hard time picking out the right plan do to the training I am already doing. I am currently in the military and I am in a training cycle where we do intense workouts every morning and on every Thursday afternoon we get smoked from anywhere from 2 – 6 hours. The morning workouts are generally a 5 mile run one day, a ruck another, or some sort of workout like Murph, and the smoke session every Thursday. To give you an idea of the workouts we do here is one from a few days ago; 10 rounds of: One lap around 1/4 mile track in under 1 min 37 sec., 20 push ups, 30 sit-ups. Thursdays its  usually the same 1/4 lap in under 1 min 37 sec., bear crawls 100m down and back, buddy carry 100m down and back, flutter kicks for 30+ min, all done for an undetermined amount of rounds and time.I need something to do in the afternoons and weekends that will help supplement my work capacity and strength without being so worked that I can’t perform. I appreciate any advice that you can give me.

ANSWER

Best would be to stop your current training and do one of our plans in isolation. To begin, I’d recommend Fortitude.
If you’re determined to continue with your current stuff, it lacks strength training, and I’d recommend one of our strength plans to supplement, specifically the MTI Relative Strength Assessment Training Plan.
– Rob

QUESTION

Long story short, I look at lots of stuff on your website and direct other tactical athletes – fire and LE to your site for programming. I have used various programs as well (older programs that you have since updated or replaced, it seems, back when you were sending out password protected pdf’s).

I am an LEO for the USFS. As a side gig I struggle to bring to Law Enforcement and Investigations “Comprehensive Well-Being and Resiliency” (I’ve read your opinion piece on merging “wellness” and “fitness” and believe some open discussion and debate on this would change both our minds). The group is a hard one to convince on this stuff. Most are sold on physical fitness – or at least give lip service to the importance – but can’t or don’t want to grasp the “soft skills” of resiliency, mindfulness, stress management and the like.

Fitness is my gateway. Since I have my days filled with regular work and I aim to – in your words – not stray too far from the mission, I don’t have much time to program. That’s where your site comes in. Since I have found your programming effective and “simple but not easy,” I can evaluate people’s fitness levels, strengths, weaknesses, and goals, and then point them towards you for solutions. So, for all those that have benefitted, I’ll say thanks for what you are doing.

On a personal note, I’m curious how you would program – an annual (periodized?) program for different “land management law enforcement officers?” There are several different types – BLM, NPS, USFS, USF&W and each has some varied fitness needs based on a few differences in duties. USFS for example does law enforcement in remote rural environments and may have to travel relatively long distances on patrol (hunting, fishing, marijuana cultivation enforcement, fire origin and cause investigations), also have the urban cop problem of long stints of little to no activity in a patrol car with the possibility of a fight for your life with every traffic stop or violator contact. NPS performs law enforcement in semi-urban environments (Yosemite Valley) or full urban environments (Golden Gate National Recreation area) or remote rural environments (wilderness patrol of Denali or Yellowstone by foot or horseback), they also do structural and wildland fire, technical search and rescue… These jobs are, at their most basic, a blending of various levels of LE, Fire (structural and wildland), EMS/SAR, and wilderness skill sets. How would you program for all of it? Multi-modal, sure but certainly not as simple as doing 4-8 weeks of a wildland firefighter plan, then 4-8 weeks of an LE plan, then 4-8 weeks of a rock climbing or hunting or skiing or ? plan, right??

A complex problem – at least to me. Would love to hear your thoughts,

ANSWER

The driving issue from a programming perspective on my side is the endurance demand – primarily determined by the rucking/hiking mission sets for the athletes.
For context, I’d refer you back to our break down of the 5 Types of Tactical Athletes and Their Fitness Demands.
If there is a significant and frequent rucking mission set, I’d recommend officers deploy our “Green” programming – which is also recommended for Infantry, Military SOF, and Wildland Fire.
If not, I’d recommend officers deploy our Gray programming – for full-time SWAT/SRT – this programming also includes some endurance training, – not as much as the Green programming, but more than the Black – which is for LE Patrol/Detective.
I’ll consider a packet of plans for Land Management LE if I can determine there’s a need which can’t fit well into our existing programming.
– Rob

QUESTION

I have Achilles tendonitis in both legs, so use of my legs during works is severely limited while it heals.  I’m working with a physical therapist for my legs, but I was wondering if you had a without program that was either upper body and core only or could be modified to that?

ANSWER

– Rob

QUESTION

I’m a 24-year-old guy about to start a career as a paramedic. I’m hoping to spend a few years in the British military and was wondering what plan would be good for me? My fitness is about a 3/10 (shocking, I know) and I’m 177cm weighing in at 77 Kg.
My goals are really to improve my cardiovascular capacity (run/march for longer distances) as well as develop strength.

ANSWER

Start our stuff with the Bodyweight Foundation Training Plan.
– Rob

QUESTION

I was completing the Ruck Based Selection Plan at 56 days out from my 18X ship date, which would have put me right on the mark to finish exactly on time, but only four days into it, I tore a ligament in my foot while doing some light BJJ sparring. The doc said no running, jumping, or rucking for at least a couple of weeks until it heals, and it’s painful to walk on it right now, which blows a big hole through my preparation plan and timeline. My running and rucking times have always been solidly above average, and I’m not too worried about retaining my ability there, however I do seriously need work on my push up numbers. I was planning on working on the Push Up Improvement Packet or a similar upper body strength packet while my foot heals, and then picking up on the Ruck Based Selection Plan where I left off and completing as much as I can until I ship out. What do you recommend? Should I also look to do some non-foot-strenuous cardio plan as well?

ANSWER

I’d recommend our Training Plan for Athletes Suffering Leg Injury until your foot heals.
– Rob

QUESTION

SWAT Selection Plan: Where in the plan do you start if you don’t have a full 7 weeks before the selection test? Thanks!

ANSWER

Still at the beginning of the plan. Get as far as you can, but for your final week before selection skip ahead in the plan and complete it’s final week.
– Rob

QUESTION

I used to be a personal trainer and was looking at your programming. I have a selection coming up in a year and a half. I will be 42ish. I bounced off a plane during a jump and that cracked a vertebrae. I also have a couple torn rotators.

That hasn’t kept me down too much. I was using info from Supple Leopard and focusing on mobility drills.

In addition to looking at your programming training, I had checked out your older operator training.

I was considering doing the lower back training as a precursor and prep to begin building up to the other, more advanced training programs.

ANSWER

Yes – start with the  Low Back Fitness Training Plan, then move to the plans/order in the Greek Hero Packet. Directly prior to selection, you’ll want to drop out of the Greek Hero plans and complete the appropriate selection plan.
– Rob

QUESTION

I wanted to give you feedback on your Peakbagger as a prep tool for hiking the Grand Canyon rim to rim to rim in a single day (45 miles).  Actually we did it in 17 hrs, including test, with a 12 pound running pack.

The program kicked ass in preparation for the base of the canyon and the downhills off of the North and South rims. We flew down the declines and had no pain at all when done. We actually ran down the North Rim. Thumbs up!

Next, I am from NJ, sleeping at 1000ft. The South rim is at about 7000 ft and the North Rim is at ~8600 ft. In both cases the ascents are full of endless switchbacks at very high incline. Needless to say, the last part of the ascent, especially on the North Rim, kicked my ass. It was tough and I had to really slow down to reach the top of the North Rim without excessively suffering.  My brother, who sleeps at 7000 ft fared better.  Clearly, acclimation is key. But let’s say I have limited vacation days!

So, next year (my brother lives in Flagstaff), I would like to try again. Is there a way to adapt Peak Bagger, or is there another plan in your quiver that may better prepare for the uphills and the altitude?  Also, a second question, what you recommend for training for the 40-50 weeks before peak bagger, etc. ?

ANSWER
Thanks for the feedback, and congrats!!
There’s no way I’ve seen to short cut the impact of altitude other than purchasing and sleeping in one of those expensive chambers. If not that, the best you can do is be a sport-specifically fit as possible.
You could try the Alpine Running Plan in preparation next year.
Between now and then work through the plans and order in the Greek Heroine Packet of Mountain Base plans.
– Rob

QUESTION

I am currently in the process for the New Mexico State Police, and the academy starts in July. I am a former US Army Infantryman; I did that for 13 years. My workout plans are similar to the ones I conducted while in the military and for the most part are the same as the ones I did to prepare for schools like Air Assualt, Ranger, and Mountian Warfare. Those plans were great, but my heavy rucking days are over for the most part. What would you suggest for a fitness/nutrition plan for the last 7 weeks prior to 6 month academy? Ia currently doing 73 push ups in 1-minute and running my 1.5 mile in 10:00.

ANSWER

I’d recommend our LE Academy Training Plan.
– Rob

QUESTION

Just had a quick question regarding which plan I should do next. I am a pilot and currently deployed. I would consider myself in great shape. I just finished the UBRR program and had good results. I am looking for a plan that has 60-90 minute sessions that requires minimal equipment and focuses heavily on muscular endurance and work capacity. Any advice is greatly appreciated. Thanks for your time.

ANSWER

I’d recommend Humility.
– Rob

QUESTION

I’ve been a lurker for quite a while, and have scoured your site for knowledge and greatly admire your work. I haven’t bought anything — yet — but have slowly been working (and saving!) my way to that point.
I am a Marine intelligence officer and will be going to an infantry unit this summer. I am 72″, 177#, and am decently strong for my weight (365# BS, 315# FS, 430# DL, 255# BP, 270# power clean, 175# strict press, +120# weighted pull-ups). I am also a relatively fast sprinter (sub-12 second 100 meters). I lack pretty much everything else, especially running, work capacity, and rucking; as an example, my three-mile run time for the PFT is around 24 minutes. I’d like to improve rucking, work capacity, and running, in that order, while maintaining or improving my strength in all lifts. I know that your programs are designed to improve relative strength, and that you view it as a key element of durability, but I’ve historically been a hard gainer and lose strength very quickly if I sideline strength training. I also have secondary personal goals of 405# BS, 295# BP, and 475# DL. I’m content enough with my current strength to let those gains come slowly — as long as they do keep coming.
Given this background, I’m stuck between purchasing the some (or all) of the Virtue or some of the Greek Hero series of plans. I’ve read the FAQ differences between the two many times, and am leaning towards the Virtue plans, but your weekly Q&A seems to recommend the Greek Hero more often, which gives me pause. Fortitude and Gratitude caught my eye because of their endurance focus. Bottom line — which plans, of either series, would you recommend?

ANSWER

For your specific goals, I’d recommend Valor, followed by Fortitude.
Understand that my programming is built around relative strength, and my guess is based on you’re weight you’re relative strength is far above “good” based on our Relative Strength Assessment. What this means is unless you are a serious mutant, you’re going to lose strength when you start training endurance and work capacity. I’m being direct with you here with the reality of fitness programming.
– Rob

QUESTION

I need advise on the best approach for SF45Alpha.

I have athletic attributes, upper body strength isn’t my biggest virtue. I’ve always struggle in the gym, just don’t have the strength and then desire lacked to keep with it. I had to get a waiver to get into the Air Force, I was too skinny.

Now at 50 I’m determined to slowly reach my goals. I love your expertise plans and what it did for me skiing. I know they work.

Challenge with SF45, load/duration/sets are just too much for me. Will the plan be effective if I modify the loads so that I push myslelf, as well adjust duration/sets? The goal would be to push myself, but within my fitness level. Additionally, I would increase load/duration/set proportionately as the plan moves alone.

My end goal is improve my strength and endurance.

ANSWER

SF45 programming and loading is designed for older, but still active, tactical athletes. The programming is no joke, and I’ve often recommended individual SF45 plans or much younger athletes who were looking to train specific fitness attributes.
Certainly, you can adjust loading and programming as needed to be safe and smart.
– Rob

QUESTION

This week I finish Humility and am looking for a program/series to continue my progress. I looking to work on total body strength and saw the TLU program. I like to swim and run and am looking for a program that will allow to continue this morning cardio routine. Would the TLU be a good suggestion or do you have a couple of programs that I could combine that would give me this same sort of effect. Anything that can be done in a commercial type gym would be best but I can figure out ways around that for certain training sessions. Thank you for the help and the great programing.

ANSWER

I’d recommend Barbossa – from our series of plans designed for military SOF with water-based mission sets. This plan concurrently trains strength (TLU progression), endurance (swim, run), work capacity, chassis integrity and tactical agility.
– Rob

QUESTION

In the program “Bodyweight Foundation” under assessment there is some running.
What kind of running do you recommend, track, terrain or?

ANSWER

Bodyweight Foundation includes running assessments, fast, short, progressed intervals based on the assessment pace, and longer “easy” runs..
Use a track if possible for the assessments and hard, fast intervals, and terrain, or just the regular road for the easy-paced longer runs.
– Rob

QUESTION

A mentor recommended I check you guys out!  Have been creating my own training plans, and could use some guidance.
I’m applying for BUDS on the O side.  Currently a USMCR 1stLt.  Still working on PST scores (passing but barely: 8:42 500 yd swim, 55 push, 104 sit, 12 pull, 10:28 1.5 mi run).  Looks like the BUDS package is only for guys already contracted / 8 weeks out.
Any advice on which program to follow?  Appreciate the help!

ANSWER

Follow the plans an progression in our Pirate Packet of plans. These are designed as day to day training for Military SOF and LE SRT with water based mission sets and concurrently train strength, work capacity, endurance (run, ruck, swim), chassis integrity and tactical agility. Start with Barbossa.
– Rob

QUESTION

3 Questions:

  1. On the “Hybrid Push-up Improvement Plan” how much rest should I take between the bench press sets?
  2. How long should I be holding the stretches? (ex.  Hip Flexor + Instep Stretch + Pigeon Stretch)
  3. I’m close to meeting (or have met) my goals for Pushups (75 in 2 mins) Situps (82 in 2 mins) and pull-ups (23). What, and how many, workouts do you recommend  I perform each week to maintain these numbers? Note: I’m only interested in the minimum/most efficient workouts to maintain these numbers, not increasing them further. I would rather dedicate my time to improving other areas of my fitness.
Lastly, Thank you guys for your excellent programming and responsiveness! I always recommend your site to my Soldiers.

ANSWER

1. 60-90 seconds
2. 60 seconds total
3. l-2x week.
– Rob

QUESTION

Good afternoon! First of all, I’m loving the site and all the programs. I am preparing to take the FBI PFT around early mid July. I have spent the winter/spring hitting the weights and have put on some nice muscle just in time for my upcoming beach vacation! Lots of olympic lifting so I’m feeling strong and explosive.

My question to you is this: looking at the PFT program you have, I know it’ll get me ready for my PFT -no question. However, I’m afraid that because its mostly bodyweight and running, I’m going to lose some of my muscle. How can I minimize that loss? The PFT program looks pretty comprehensive so I’m hesitant to add weightlifting to it. Any thoughts or ideas how I can maintain the muscle gains I’ve worked so hard over the last 6 months? Lift on the run days perhaps? Would that be too much? Thanks and I look forward to hearing from you!

ANSWER

Best to do the plan in isolation – 6 weeks out from your assessment. You can do what you want between now and starting this plan.
If you’re stubborn and want to continue lifting – lift high weight, low reps , in the evenings, after doing the FBI plan session. If you stop making the progressions in the FBI plan, stop the extra work.
– Rob

QUESTION

Is there a point of soreness where it is not beneficial to work out a sore muscle, and should instead let it rest? Or am I able to still get results by working through the extreme soreness?

ANSWER

Everyone is different in terms of their tolerance for soreness. Push yourself, but also be smart. Soreness will decrease as your fitness improves.
– Rob

QUESTION

I hope this message finds you well. I have what seems to be a simple yet perplexing question in regards to the Big 24 plan. How much rest do you recommend taking between sets and should this rest period progress as the weight progresses? Thank you!

ANSWER

Each circuit includes a mobility stretch – this is your “working rest” between sets. By the time you stretch, re-chalk, etc – it’s 60-90 seconds or less, usually – at the beginning of the progression.
As the cycle progresses, it gets super intense, and you’ll need more rest. At the beginning of the cycle, we would finish a session in 50-60 minutes. At the end of the progression, we were finishing at around 75 minutes … we needed that much more rest to make the prescribed reps.
– Rob

QUESTION

I’m currently on week 5 of Humility in the SFOD-D Selection Packet. I have roughly 18-20 weeks left before I leave. If I can cut out any weeks//programs, where do you suggest I focus in this short time frame?
Thank you so much for your help and all that you and your team are doing!

ANSWER

Here’s what I recommend.
Weeks  Plan
1-2        Humility Weeks 6-7
3-9        Resilience
10-11    Valor – Weeks 1-2
12         Total Rest
13-20    SFOD-D Selection Training Plan
– Rob

 

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