Q&A 8.1.19

QUESTION

I just wanted to drop a quick update with a question that follows. I employed your APFT training packet for my recent testing.

Six weeks prior, my beginning assessment was:

Pushups: 50
Situps: 55
2 Mile: 19:03
BW: 235lbs
I tested yesterday and my results are:
Pushups: 68
Situps: 70
2 Mile: 16:30
BW: 221lbs
I am very pleased with the progress/results. Thank you for solid programming.
What might you recommend to maintain my newly earned level of fitness. I recently began regular jiu jitsu / boxing training. Attritbutes i am most concerned with are as follows: agility, high strength to bw ratio, good work capacity and moderate distance running capabilities and chasis integrity.

ANSWER

Thanks for the note – glad the plan worked for you!
Next? Actaeon from our Green Hero packet of plans for military athletes.
– Rob

QUESTION

I’m feeling super discouraged. I’ve followed your program precisely and just cannot get over the 1.5mi hurdle. I crush the sit-up, 300m, and push-up but I am stalled on the 1.5 at 12:49-12:52 each mock test. Any other regimen I should follow?

ANSWER

Couple things could be going wrong ….
– The run programming/progression doesn’t work for you. It works for 99% of the athletes we work with, but not for everyone.
– You simply hate running or this run assessment and mentally are holding back your performance. This happens.
– Your running form sucks  …. and work on your running form will help push your performance and make you enjoy running. Investigate/google “Chi Running” or “POSE Running”
No other plan I can suggest for you for this specific assessment. You could do a longer running assessment/plan and see if extra volume helps, but the 1.5 mile run is really just an extended sprint.
– Rob

QUESTION

I’m looking into buying one of your fitness plans. I am just having trouble deciding on what would be best for me. I am a 2nd Lt. in the United States Marine Corps. I have finished The Basic School and I am at my first duty station in Okinawa, Japan. I’ve always loved being in the gym. I played football in college (tight end) so I’m obviously not your typical Marine Corps body type. It took all I had and partly starving myself to get down to my allowed weight for OCS. Here’s some background on some training I’ve done the last couple of years; I’ve done CrossFit, I’ve done strength and conditioning programs for college football, and I’ve ran a few half marathons. I’m not naturally great at the USMC PFT so I have to incorporate it into my training plans.

My goals are to lose about 10 pounds, get my 3 mile time close to the 20 minute mark (currently about 22 minutes), and I still want to incorporate strength training. Any suggestions would be appreciated.

ANSWER

The plans in the Greek Hero packet are designed as day to day programming for military infantry and SOF (without water-based mission sets) – and these are the plans I’d recommend for you.
These are multi-modal training plans which concurrently train strength, work capacity, military endurance (run, ruck), chassis integrity (core) and tactical agility.
Start with Hector – the first plan in the packet.
Email questions.
– Rob

QUESTION

I have recently started Hank and have Sand bag Toss and Chase programmed into a forthcoming workout.

I train at home in an undercover area attached the house, early o’clock before my wife and kids are awake. Given the SB t&c is very likely to wake the household, I’m thinking to sub for a 40k Power clean and press. So rather than a 10min grind with the sandbag, I would complete a 10 minute EMOM of 5 Pwr Clean and Press @ 40k.

Grateful for your views on this or an alternative sub

Cheers and my continued thanks for your awesome programming

ANSWER

You’re sub will work but drop the load to 65 pounds .
– Rob

QUESTION

I am headed to SFAS in October and have been following some of your workouts for the last two months. I finally bought the Ruck Based Selection program and noted that it is only two months. I have a little over 3 months before selection. Do you recommend repeating the first 5 weeks in order to get the taper at the right time? I am in pretty good shape right now and want to capitalize on time but avoid injury by over stressing the body and joints.

ANSWER

No – don’t extend the plan … it’s too intense. Do 4 weeks of Fortitude, then take a full weeks rest before starting the RBSTP.
– Rob

QUESTION

First want to say thank you for all the info and quality product you put out on the web and your site. Question for you..
I did a DNA test recently and found out 60% of my DNA comes from Scandinavia..doing more research since then and on Vikings, etc..I’ve come to be fascinated on how men, warriors back in those times would train to be “mission specfic” to go on a raid? With the weapons they had to carry back then, row for miles, walk for miles, etc do you have any programs of yours that you can recommend to me towards that? Or if not would you consider designing a program based on that?
Thank you for your help and time sir

ANSWER

Sorry – I can’t design a specific training plan for you. From what we do have, I’d recommend the Urban Conflict Training Plan – which will cover the fitness attributes you describe with the exception of the rowing.
This is an intense training plan designed for military athletes to complete directly prior to deployment to downrange to places like Iraq and Syria.
– Rob

QUESTION

Hi, I was interested in purchasing an Athlete Subscription package. Having a multitude of plans seems like a great fit for me. However, I was wondering how to structure the available plans to continuously progress my fitness. I was considering starting with Bodyweight Foundation followed by Bodyweight Build. That makes sense as the website specifies that order, but where should I go from there? I was thinking of doing Humility and then Military-on-Ramp so that way I would have a great overall base of fitness to do any of the plans. I am just someone looking to get fit and do not have any specific goals or events to prep for so would this be a good plan of action? I am not a professional tactical athlete. However I plan on volunteering for my local Search and Rescue team sometime in December or January. So I would have about 6 months to train until then. I only have a doorframe pull-up bar at the moment, which is why I wanted to start with bodyweight work. I understand most of your plans require either a professional gym or well-equipped garage gym and I can get equipment as need be. I have been doing bodyweight training since January, but have not been doing any cardio. My bodyweight training has consisted of pull-ups, push-ups, dips and squats. I have been trying to do it three times a week, with my routine being 3 sets of 6-8 reps per exercise.

ANSWER

Yes on Bodyweight Foundation to Bodyweight Build. After look at Humility …. you’ll need some limited equipment for this plan, but the gains and intensity are progressed from the bodyweight-only plans.
– Rob

QUESTION

I just finished the Body Weight Foundation. I liked it and thinking about the next plan. I don’t have a home gym or the time to go to a gym. I stick with mostly body weight routines. I can get some equipment (i.e. dumb bell and sandbag. I also have a ruck sack with plates and weight)
I am considering the Limited Equipment Packet. But I had one question.
Does it have a good strength component in any of the plans? I mean where I can build muscle and strength not just strength endurance.
I’ve done a body weight strength program from someone else and seen some good muscle growth and strength improvement. If one of these plans has a good strength component then I would rather transition to just these.

ANSWER

The only way to ramp up strength is to increase load …. which is difficult to do with just bodyweight training. For example, at some point doing bodyweight pull ups, you’ll stop building max effort strength, and continue building strength endurance. The way to build strength is to add a backpack with load, and continue from there with weighted pull ups.
To that end, the Sandbag/Dumbbell/Weight Vest Training Plan, Humility and Courage all include limited equipment … and would all increase your strength over a bodyweight only plan. Humility is intense, and one you could jump to now.
– Rob

QUESTION

I am a new subscriber and will be taking a PT test similar to the APFT (1.5 mile run instead of 2) in about 7 weeks as part of an LE academy.
I currently hit the 75-80% performance on the test (65 push-ups, 80 sit-ups, 10:50 1.5 Mile Run). My primary goal is to exceed at the test, but I am also interested in strength training. I have seen you recommend the APFT with the MTI Relative Strength Assessment Training Plan to those who want to continue strength training. Would you recommend this training plan for someone who scores around a 4.0 on the MTI test? My main concern is that the 1RM strength focus of the MTI plan may diminish the endurance aspect of the APFT training plan. What would you recommend? Thank you for what you do.
Additional Info:
Age: 30
WT: 165
Bench: 205
Front Squat: 175
Power Clean: 145
Pullups: 12
I am 5′ 9″

ANSWER

You could certainly double up with two-a-days. Do the APFT Plan sessions in the AM, and the Monday/Wed/Friday sessions from the MTI Relative Strength Assessment in the evenings. Skip the Tuesday and Thursday sessions from the relative strength plan.
But know this may impede all the benefits you’d get from doing the APFT Plan in isolation. How much? I’m not sure … we’ve never tested it. It will somewhat depend upon your fitness  …. but several athletes do this or something similar.
Try it, and if you find you’re not making the progressions in the APFT Plan, pull back from the two-a-days.
– Rob

QUESTION

I’ve recently decided to attend SFAS within the next year, starting with SFRE and the guards try one contract. I havnt re enlisted yet mainly because of the shape I’m in. I’ve been focused on strength training the last 2 years being a police officer and let my cardiovascular conditioning suffer greatly.
I’ve looked at both your SFRE plan and the Ruck based plan and was wondering if you had a scaled back suggestion I could purchase. I havnt run 6 miles in over two years and considering that’s one of the first workouts, doubt I could complete most of the workouts given the shape I’m in. I was thinking of purchasing the SFRE plan first, running it once with all the workouts cut in half. Then doing it again as prescribed for another 7 weeks. Just seeing what yall suggested. Thanks.

ANSWER

Your plan would work. Another Option would be to start with the Military OnRamp Training Plan, then rolling into the SFRE Training Plan.
– Rob

QUESTION

I climbed The Grand a couple weeks ago. Thanks for stuck in a motel and peak bagger plans—definitely would have slowed the group down without those two plans. It was still a blood bath though with all the snow and wind on a summer’s solstice day but had the time of my life.
I started the backpacker preseason and pull up improvement plans yesterday. I may do an early September trip (75 miles, 13,500’ elevation gain, 6 days) on high Sierra trail that culminates with Mt. Whitney summit.
Any advice on plan selection for next 8-9 weeks? Definitely want overall general/chassis fitness while being ready for potential upcoming trip of 15-20 miles/day with a 30-35# pack and up to 5,000’ elevation gain. Also would like something that incorporates strength for beginner level climbing (arm, wrist, finger strength) hence the pull up plan.

ANSWER

15-20x miles/day for 5-6 days is no joke. You can add programming while you’re training for this event, but you can’t do general fitness and not train for this and expect to do well.
I’d recommend our Rucking Improvement Training Plan, beginning at week 6. This plan has you in the gym 2 days/week training leg strength, upper body strength and chassis integrity, and rucking 4 days/week.You can add pull ups to the gym days.  Drop the prescribed load in the plan down to 35#.
– Rob

QUESTION

I am looking to get back into shape, with the end goal of testing for law enforcement( not the FBI, but it’s the Same pt test). Which program should I start with? I’m coming off of an injury, I haven’t been active in really over a year. I have the FBI pft program, and the army apft program.  Which one should I start with,or which program? I would like to be able to start testing out for the law enforcement physical testing in Jan 2020.

ANSWER

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

QUESTION

I’ve decided to start training for The Tactical Games in March 2020 (think CrossFit Games + Shooting 5.56/.223 and pistol). I’m prior service and have used MTI’s programs in the past for selection and wildfire training on the civilian side. Wondering what you would recommend for this competition or should I follow a series of training plans on the road to March 2020? I’m in “decent” shape but not putting up the 13 minute 2 mile times I used 6 years ago. Definitely room for improvement across the board (strength, stamina/cardio, flexibility). Also how should I integrate my range time? I’ve never shot competitively outside the Army. Thanks for all your help and keep up the good work!

ANSWER

Fitness? Greek Hero Packet of plans.
Range Time? Depends on your easy access to a range and how much money you have as .223 runs about $.30/round last time I looked. Our Range Fitness system is designed to use around 100x rounds per training session, but that’s still $30/day in ammo. You would want to be doing airsoft/dry fire work several times per week and this far out, perhaps a 90 minute range session for each weapon system, 1 day/week. As you get closer to the event, you’d want to increase your range time to 3 sessions/week per weapons system, would be my guess.
I’m not super familiar with these events, but deep diving into scoring would be advised, My guess is that marksmanship would be weighted heavier than fitness, but I’m not sure.
We’ve found that when it comes down to marksmanship under stress, trigger control is everything!
– Rob

QUESTION

Hey guys, love your plans and have used them in the past for military applications to awesome results.

I’m transitioning careers fields to climbing towers as a tower tech and I was wondering if you had any recommendations as to what plan would best suit this field.

ANSWER

Without knowing much about the actual fitness demands beyond the obvious, I’d recommend the Notorious Prison Packet of Plans designed for correctional officers … These train strength, work capacity, chassis integrity and some endurance, but also have a significant grip strength component – which I feel would transfer.
Another option would by our Country Singer Packet of plans which apply MTI methodology to general fitness programming.
– Rob

QUESTION

I’ve been looking into your plans with my goal being to apply for an be admitted to my local Mountain SAR team. There is an assessment but it isn’t posted online.

I do not believe there is a swimming portion. Not much water in Colorado.

I was wondering what you might suggest as training program/package to consider?

ANSWER

I’d recommend the training plans/order in the Wilderness Packet of plans, which are designed for Wilderness Professionals including rangers, and concurrently train strength, work capacity, mountain endurance (run, uphill hike under load) and chassis integrity.
Not sure the technical rope system climbing responsibility on your team, but if there is any I’d recommend a V-Sum once per week to keep your finger strength fit.
– Rob

QUESTION

I got a test coming up next year wich consist of a 8km ruck run carrying 22kg. basically 5 miles with 50lbs ruck. this is a standard test for alot of selection courses in the norwegian army. the requirment is 52 minutes, i got 50:31 on my last test and would like to get sub 40 next year, this would mean i would need to keep a pace of 12km/hour in fairly hilly course. im basically curious what you would recommend someone with my goal in mind. i think running 50-60 miles per week of speedwork and long slow runs combined with some weightlifting would be the best approach. i would love to hear your opinion on this.

ANSWER

Best to train sport specifically for the event … which means rucking.

If you’re fit for rucking now, I’d recommend the 5-Mile Run Training Plan, but do the entire plan ruck running with your 22kg ruck. The run progression will work and the plan includes leg strength work.
If you’re not fit for rucking, do the Rucking Improvement Training Plan, Weeks 1-10. Weeks 1-5 deploy a 3-mile assessment and progressions, and weeks 6-10 deploy a 6-mile assessment and progressions. The plan includes strength work. Use a 22kg ruck for all the ruck runs in the sessions.
– Rob

QUESTION

I am currently on week four of the TLU strength program, which I am really enjoying.  I am going camping for five days, when I get back I will pick up where I left off but what sort of training do you recommend while I am in the woods?  I don’t want to stop working out while I’m gone but obviously I wont have access to my typical gym equipment.  Just rocks, logs, tree branches for pullups, and bodyweight.  Thanks in advance for any help you can provide.

ANSWER

Best: Do nothing and just enjoy your vacation.
Next Best: Get up at 0-dark 30 every morning and take a trail run and/or hike a nearby hill/peak.
– Rob

QUESTION

I wanted to start training again to do Mt Rainer next year.
I’m 47 yr old female, 5’2” weight 145 lbs.
I cannot run anymore due to knee issue. Very little cartilage. I can however hike with a pack and can do stadium steps with little pain and swelling.
Can you recommend a training ?
I’m hoping to do Rainer next year Kine July

ANSWER

SF45 Packet. Sub biking (2x the prescribed running distance) or rucking/hiking with a 15 pound pack (1/2 the prescribed run distance) with a  for the prescribed running in the plans.
6 months out complete the Rainier Training Plan, then drop back into the SF45 Plans.
7 weeks directly before your trip, re-do the Rainier Training Plan.
– Rob

QUESTION

Really appreciate all the information you put out there. Your packets are excellent.
I’m looking for a plan that primarily focuses on strength/hypertrophy first, secondary focus being short work capacity efforts (similar to an AMRAP) and third a running effort.

ANSWER

This fits the bill almost perfectly for our LE Programming. I’d recommend Whiskey– which trains strength, work capacity, upper hypertrophy, chassis integrity plus you get to run 1x/week!
I just updated this plan in March, 2019. Solid.
– Rob

QUESTION

I graduate ABOLC soon and have a been slotted to begin ARC on 12AUG2019. I’ve spent the last month in the field with little to no PT. I know I could pass an APFT with around 270, but I feel like I’m out of shape. I have roughly five weeks to prepare for the physical demands of ARC.
Below is the physical fitness overview provided by the ARC website (https://www.benning.army.mil/Armor/316thCav/ARC/PT.html). My friends in the classes before me have told me that the FTXs are composed of 25-30 mile movements over the course of three days, with minimal to no sleep. What plan would you recommend?

ANSWER

I don’t have a plan specifically for this course. From what I do have I’d recommend the Sapper Leaders Course Training Plan.
– Rob

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