Q&A 9.10.20

QUESTION

I am getting set to tryout for HRT in March, so I have time. Unfortunately, I just had surgery yesterday so I am out of anything /everything for six weeks. So, I am taking this time to plan/get ahead in other ways.

I have the prescribed training plans provided by my organization, which are about 4 months as opposed to the 9 weeks your company offers. I wanted to know, what set yours apart from that and other companies. Also, I wanted to see what you would recommend for the time leading up to the tryout…in total I should have approximately 6 months once I am recovered. Thanks in advance.

ANSWER

Unless you had back surgery, you should continue training through your recovery. We have training plans for injured leg and injured arm which train around your injury while it recovers.
If you are completely down for 6 weeks here’s what I recommend. There are currently 29 weeks until March, 2021, minus six weeks = 23 weeks:
Weeks.       Plan
1-4              First 4 Weeks  of the MTI Relative Strength Assessment Training Plan
5-11            Fortitude
12-15          Valor (First 4 weeks)
15-23          FBI HRT Selection Training Plan (9 weeks directly before Selection)
If your selection is mid-March, extend Valor as appropriate.
I can’t speak to other HRT prep plans or what you’re unit provided. I built ours several years ago and updated it in December, 2019. Our process to develop selection and all event plans is direct: We learn all we can about the event demands from published reports/videos, etc. then we ask our community for feedback/input, then we design the program to specifically prepare the athlete for the fitness demands he/she will face at the event. We’ve had several guys use our program for your selection and prior to the December update, we asked for andy feedback/input they could provide in terms of the existing plan’s effectiveness and recommended changes. As you know, specific selection details can’t be shared and we were careful not to ask for anything that would break rules. What feedback we received was incorporated into the plan update.
Good luck.
– Rob

QUESTION
I’ve been having some hip flexor issues lately and they are exacerbated by lunges. Do you have substitutes in the leg blaster?  I was thinking of just increasing the squats and jumping squats until it heals up.
ANSWER
Yes on increasing the squats and squat jumps to make up for the missed reps.
– Rob

QUESTION
I am going backpack elk hunting in just over 8 weeks, in NW Colorado, on 10/10/20.

I just finished Backpack Preseason V-2 and just started Big Game Preseason V5 today.
I have a pretty full home gym with all of the main “gym stuff” and weights available at my house.
I am 49 years old, 6’3”, 225#, played college football, work out consistently, I’m in pretty good shape and have mountain hunted quite a bit.
My question is…Since I have other equipment available, should I add in other weights (cleans, squats, etc) on top of the sandbag work or should I just stick to the main program?
Your material and programs are great.
ANSWER
Stick with the programming in the plan. It’s intense … and good luck on your hunt!
– Rob

QUESTION

What program would you suggest for someone in Security Forces?

ANSWER
Plans/order in the Spirits Packet of plans, beginning with Whiskey.
These plans concurrently train strength, work capacity (sprint emphasis), upper body hypertrophy, chassis integrity (core) and short endurance.
– Rob

QUESTION
Was wondering if I could train using the Stooges plan when all I have is a set of 30, 20, 15, and 10, lb dumbbells in addition to some resistance bands.
Let me know. Open to suggestions.
ANSWER
Issue is how strong you are. The Three Stooges Plans are designed around the ability to go heavy with dumbbells/kettlebells, and for most men, 30-pound dumbbells wouldn’t be heavy enough.
If you’re fit, I’d recommend Humility, and using your 20 or 30# dumbbells, and a 25# backpack (wrap up your 20# dumbbell in a towel).
If you’re not super fit, start with the Bodyweight Foundation Training Plan, and follow it up with Humility.
– Rob

QUESTION
Two years ago I competed in the Arkansas Best Warrior Competition through the Army National Guard. Using your Fortitude V2 and SFRE plans I was able to make it all the way to the state level, earning second place. I’m competing again this year, but due to Covid, I don’t have access to a gym. What plan/plans would you recommend?
The first competition is Oct 17 and the next phase is Nov 1st. I’m unsure after that.
The competition usually involves a lot of rucking. A typical competition will have an APFT/ACFT, Land Navigation Course, and a 4-8 mile ruck for time.
ANSWER
I’d again recommend the SFRE Training Plan. This is a limited equipment plan – you’ll need a 60# sandbag and a pair if 25# dumbbells.
It sounds like you’ll be doing both the APFT and the ACFT … The assessment in the plan is the APFT, but for this, I’d change the events – do hand release push ups instead of regular push ups, and leg tucks instead of sit ups. Use these exercises for the progressions as well.
– Rob

QUESTION
I’m currently doing the APFT improvement plan, but wanted to get your input on the best way to incorporate endurance weight training around the program. I want to make sure I don’t negate the benefits of this program. Thanks in advance.
ANSWER
Totally depends on your fitness. If you’re fit, you could work in some heavy lifts – i.e. 6×3 sets of squats, bench, hinge, wtd Pull ups, 2-3 days/week as 2-a-days. But … if you aren’t making the progressions in the plan – esp. the push ups and running intervals, you’ll need to pull back on the lifting.
To get the best results from the plan, only do the programming in the plan.
– Rob

QUESTION
I’ve worked through a cycle and a half of the DEA PTT plan and have had significant improvement in all areas except for the 300 meter sprint. My 300m time decreased from 58 sec to 53, but it’s been stalled there for several weeks. My goal is to get the time down to 50s before taking the official PTT.
Do you have any recommendations for focusing training on the 300m? Run 100m intervals twice a week, or do two days focusing on 100m intervals?
ANSWER
Replace Wednesdays long run with intervals – and instead of 100m repeats, run 4x 300m efforts, with 5 min rest between each one.
This way you’ll be doing 100m repeats on Mondays, 300m repeats on Wednesdays.
– Rob

QUESTION
I just finished the gym closure training plan, and was wondering if it was possible to extend the quarantine training plan beyond 2 1/2 weeks. I’m not quarantined, but gyms are still closed in my area.
ANSWER
You could repeat the plan as it’s assessment based – or you could complete the Gym Closure II Training Plan if you haven’t already.
– Rob

QUESTION
If I wanted to do a 4 mile timed run in Valor just for grins instead of the 3 mile timed one, would I do training intervals of 1 mile or 2 mile runs in the following weeks?
ANSWER
Go with 2x, 2-mile intervals. Rest 12 minutes between.
– Rob

QUESTION
I am currently about a month and a half out from shipping to Army Basic Training. I am looking for a solid plan to help me boost my running/endurance along with keeping my strength solid. I have been lifting for years now and have been incorporating rucks and runs weekly for the last couple of months without much sign of improvement so far. Just looking to take the next step and kick ass. Any recommendations from your plans that you may have will be greatly appreciated. Thank you for your time it is much appreciated.
ANSWER

QUESTION
I was looking at using your swimming program in the coming months to prepare for my school’s water polo club, which will resume practices and games sometime in January. I’d also like to keep training general strength consistently in addition to running this program. With that background in mind:

1. Which of your lifting programs would be ideal to run alongside this program? (Or, also, what type of lifting schedule would work best here: 3x a week full body sessions, 2x a week full body sessions, some kind of split schedule, etc)
2. Would it be advisable to eliminate the weekly 1500m fin in the interest of recovery and specificity (less applicable to polo than the interval and tread sessions)?
3. Are there any modifications you would recommend to the program if I am trying to use it specifically to prepare for water polo?
4. Can this program be run back to back multiple times?
ANSWER
I’m not much help in terms of a swim program for water polo – I’m not familiar with the swimming demands of the sport and so don’t have a plan for it. Will our program transfer? I imagine so, but not nearly as well as a polo specific program.
Answers …
1. MTI Relative Strength Assessment Training Plan – the Mon/Wed/Fri sessions as 2-a-days with your swimming.
2. No idea …. so I’d leave it in just to build swimming aerobic base.
3. Can’t help here.
4. Sure … but your improvement will ultimately plateau as you accommodate.
– Rob

QUESTION
Background: I worked through the RBSTP, and got injured during the last week before de-loading. I pulled a hamstring, and I’ve been rehabbing it since. All of my APFT/run/ruck times were within parameters for my age group, at the time I was injured, I just never got to complete the 18 mile ruck at the end.

My question is this: I’ve been told we will have personal time at the end of each day to work out during OSUT, and I wondered if there was a plan or scheme you’d suggest to use during that time. I probably won’t have much equipment, but I for damn sure am going to stay on top of my fitness. My initial thoughts involved APFT work, and work capacity/core work and then running the stairs with my ruck as I’m able to. I’ve trusted you for my programming since I was an LE athlete before all this, so I’d love to hear what you think.

Also wanted to give you a shout out. The programming I’ve followed from you has turned me into a BEAST, and I get everyone on to it that I possibly can. I think it’s the best option out there for job related fitness, there really is no comparison.

ANSWER
Thanks for the note and glad the plan worked for you.
Training during OSUT? Because it’s so random, I’d recommend a 3 day rotation:
Day 1 – Strength: leg blasters, push ups, pull ups, leg tucks or pull up bar heel taps, EO’s, Back Ext.
1) 10 Rounds:
Mini Leg Blaster
15 Hand Release Push Ups
6x Pull Ups
2) 15 Minute Grind
10x Leg Tucks or Pull Up Bar Heel Taps
10x EOs
10x Face Down Back Extensions or Hip Bridges
Day 2 – Run: 60 minutes at moderate pace
Day 3: Ruck: 60 Minutes at a moderate pace @ 45-60 pounds
– Rob

QUESTION

Thanks for all your hard work over the years. I attend Army Training Regiment (ATR) Pirbright on 23/09 I need to do the following.

  • The Mid-Thigh Pull: Standing in front of a bar set to mid-thigh height, you’ll be asked to pull the bar upwards for 5 seconds, then rest and repeat.
  • Medicine Ball Throw: Sitting with your back against a wall, you’ll throw a 4kg medicine ball as far as you can.
  • 2km (1.2 mile) Run: Start with an 800m warm-up jog before your timed run of a further 2km (1.2 mile).

    Source: HTTPs://apply.army.mod.uk/how-to-join/joining-process/soldier-recruitment-steps/soldier-assessment#

    I would like to ace all tests and I would like to get my 2k at 8:15 or under. What would you recommend?

ANSWER
Closest I’d have is the ACFT Training Plan, or the ACFT Limited Equipment Training Plan if you don’t have any equipment.
– Rob

QUESTION

I’m a big fan of your work, I have completed several of your programs by now with good results (i.e. TLU, Gladiator, GymClosure, Ruger…), but now I seem to be stuck.

I’m currently doing ApolloV2, and for the first time in your programming I can’t handle the volume. I’m not able to complete the required 5 sets of 4 reps@ 90%Max in Week 3 for Hingelifts and Bench Presses (Muscle failure, shoulder pain afterwards). I repeated the week, with only minor improvements.

Now I’m not sure how to proceed. Just push through, take the required reassessment in Week 4 and see how it works out? Repeat Week 3 until I’m able to do the required reps in the prescribed time? Or should I maybe take a step back and use the „Hypertrophy for skinny guys“ to gain some muscle to better handle the loading (I’m rather on the skinny side at 6‘1/ 175 pounds)? What’s your recommendation?

Thanks in advance and best wishes from Germany.

ANSWER
It’s not unusual – 90% of 1RM is a lot, and as your training age increases it gets harder. Keep the load the same, and drop the reps as needed to get them unbroken each set. All that matters is (hopefully) an increase in 1RM strength at the re-assessments.
– Rob

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