Q&A 9.5.19

QUESTION

I have a question on what plan might be best for me. I enjoy doing the basic lifts with some sort of METCON at the end. However, I’m open to anything new and exciting. My biggest limiting factor is the squadron gym I workout at. It’s essentially an oversized garage gym. I do get some serious workout boredom if I’m doing the same workout 6 weeks in a row. I’m not training for anything specific besides just overall health. I’m an F16 pilot so being physical fit is important. Back in 2015 I did the daily MTI workouts for awhile but pilot training took the majority of my time.  Any advice to point me in the right direction would be greatly appreciated. Please feel free to ask me any questions.

ANSWER

I built Busy Operator V last week, and it’s what I’d recommend for you. This is a balanced training plan which concurrently trains strength, work capacity, chassis integrity and endurance. This plan has lots of variety, including two different methodologies for strength training, a 2-mile run assessment and follow-on intervals, multiple work capacity events, and a variety of chassis integrity circuits. Sessions are designed to last 35-45 minutes.
– Rob

QUESTION

What would be the best plan route for me?

I’m planning on becoming a firefighter within a year, and I also want to do (and pass) a GORUCK Selection and be SFAS fit. I’m guessing training for SFAS would be more intense than and cover FF, but I don’t know.

I’m not completely out of shape physically and have worked out before, but I think I’m starting more from the floor level since it’s been a while (doing more than 10 push-ups isn’t easy and I don’t think I can do 20 in a row).

ANSWER

I’d recommend the plans and order in the Virtue Packet. This begins with the Military OnRamp Training Plan, which will jumpstart your fitness, and lay a great foundation for all of these events. As you get closer to the next big event, email back and I’ll recommend one of our event-specific training plans.
– Rob

QUESTION

I’m just getting out of OSUT. Currently in hold over with gym access for this week and some of next.

Then starting airborne school and then to pre selection and selection.

I had purchased the programs to find something to train as a double for some of the weeks in airborne. Rucking isn’t a big limiter for me right now. Mainly push ups.

I’ve been a competitive CrossFit athlete for a long time and own four facilities. I was trying to mesh my program along with any extra that I could narrow down but I had trouble finding something for that. I would like to add in some training specifics to my current program.  Mainly for push ups, running, and a small amount of rucking.  The problem I’m having is inserting anything and not doing to much currently with mandatory training days.

ANSWER

I don’t have a plan which covers just those three events – but you could modify the Army IBOLC Training Plan.
Do the push up assessment and 2 mile run assessment from Session 1, and then the pushup and run progression on the Mondays in the plan.
Do the 6 Mile Ruck Assessment from SESSION 5 in the plan, then the follow on Friday Ruck progressions. If 6 miles is further than you need, do a 3-mile Ruck Assessment, and 3x 1-mile intervals for the progression.
– Rob

QUESTION

I saw your FBI SPECIAL AGENT PFT TRAINING PROGRAM Course and have some questions regarding that. Do you happen to have trainers that can train the clients instead of the clients reading and doing everything on their own?

ANSWER

Sorry, no. Our only location is here in Wyoming and we don’t do any personal training.

But the programming is simple, and over 500 aspiring FBI agents have used this programming to prepare for the FBI SA PFT.
– Rob

QUESTION

I was just wondering on how you decided on 800 meters being the distance chosen as the “speed over ground”?

ANSWER

The distance for the SOG intervals are determined by the distance of the assessment. They are 25-50% of the assessment distance, with 1/3 the assessment distance being the most common.
How did I determine these and the paces? A decade of hard work and trial an error.
– Rob

QUESTION

Thanks for the earlier recommendation of the Riker Program and the simple snacks for weight gain.  Improved Bench-press to 215 up from 205 and am closing in on 225.  Gained 6-8 lbs so up to about 178 from about 170.

On the 10lbs bottom sample drills for Barbossa, I was curious what depth is intended for the drill.  A lot of triathletes in my area so felt like working to improve my swimming this next cycle.

ANSWER

No set depth as most won’t have a choice of pools. Use whatever is easiest for you in terms of pool access – but it should be 10+ feet if possible.
– Rob

QUESTION

I am retired Army with 30 years of service mostly in Army Special Forces and other parts of the Army Special Operations community.  I am 65 years old and have continued physical fitness training since my retirement in 2006.  I, like most older active people, am prone to joint injuries related to the wear and tear of military service.  Without going into a laundry list of my injuries (back, shoulder, knee, elbow, hand) that periodically pop up, I would like to know if you have any fitness programs for older folks other than those that I see geared for the 45-55 demographic?  My overall fitness goals are basically to maintain strength, cardio fitness, flexibility, and balance.

ANSWER

Several in their 60s and even 70s have completed our event/season specific plans on the mountainside – dryland ski, etc. with modifications for range of movement, impact, etc., but I haven’t any personal experience coaching athletes in your age group for day to day fitness.
Much of our programming automatically “scales” to the incoming strength/fitness of the athlete – for example, strength progressions based your 1RM or running progressions based on a timed 1.5 mile run. My concern is impact from some of our work capacity events and recovery overall .. i.e. you may very well need more rest between sessions.
Given all that, from what I’ve read, strength training can really benefit athletes in your age group. I’m assuming you know your way around the weight room … and from our stuff, I’d recommend you begin with the Big 3 + Run Plan.
This plan is focused on raw strength and running endurance. The strength work focuses on the back squat, hinge lift, bench press and pull ups, and the endurance work focuses on a 2-mile run. Both the strength and endurance work begin with assessments … so the plan “scales” to your incoming fitness.
If running is an issue, you could replace the 2-mile run effort with a spin or cycle. Rather than an assessment, I’d have you go for 30-60 minute efforts at a moderate pace (comfortable but not easy).
As designed this is a 6 day/week plan, but you can stretch it out take extra rest days. Just follow the programming in order.
– Rob

QUESTION

I’ve been training for about a year going for an SO contract. My PST numbers are as follows…
Swim-8:30-9:00
Push-75-80
Sit-70-75
Pull-14-16
Run-10:27-11:00
Obviously my run is very weak. I’ve been stuck at this time for months now. My athletic background includes baseball and some hockey, but neither of those really require a great deal of endurance. Would you suggest going straight to a PST specific program such as the PST or BUD/S program? Or start with something like the Run Improvement plan? My next PST is October or November I plan on getting in touch w/ a recruiter.

ANSWER

I’d recommend working though Captain Morgan from our Pirate Plans until you’re 6 weeks out from the official PST, then completing the Navy PST Training Plan directly before your test.
Captain Morgan has a strong endurance emphasis, including long swims and a progression built around a 6-mile run to improve running fitness. The Pirate Plans are designed as day to day programming for tactical units with water-based mission sets.
– Rob

QUESTION

I was hoping for some guidance. I have been looking at your site for awhile now as well as reading your articles. I am about to start back at a fully equipped gym after doing garage wods for the past few years, (crossfit style).

I am looking for something more specific to my needs and my hobbies. I am currently employed as a Correctional Officer but am about to start the process of hopefully transitioning to a Firefighter. I am hoping for a plan that is geared toward firefighters but also my hobbies include Trail running and Snowboarding, so I am hoping for something that compliments all 3.

Thank you for your time, I look forward to the workouts!

ANSWER

I’d recommend you train for your tactical job first, and use 2-a-days or the weeks prior to your sport season to train up for your sport.
To that end, since you’re currently a corrections officer, I’d recommend training for that now – much of it will transfer to our programming for firefighters. Our Notorious Prison packet of plans are designed as day-to-day programming for correctional officers and concurrently train strength, work capacity, chassis integrity (core), upper body hypertrophy and grip strength. Start with Rikers.
You could also complete our Fire/Rescue Programming, found in the Big Cat series of plans. These concurrently train strength, work capacity, chassis integrity, tactical agility, and overall stamina. Start with Jaguar.
Trail Running? Not sure your weekly mileage now, but look to increase overall mileage 10-20% week to build.
Snowboarding? Seven weeks prior to your season drop out of the tactical programming and complete our Dryland Ski Preseason Training Plan. Our pro snowboarders train alongside our pro skiers – doing this programming. It’s intense and will prepare you sport-specifically for the season. Once the season starts, drop back into the tactical programming.
– Rob

QUESTION

I am very interested in the LE Spirits Plan for $137.   I was wondering if this plan has a lot of “clean and jerk” or “snatch” movements in it.  I have a frontal ligament tear on my left shoulder and those specific movements, with a barbell, will cause a catastrophic shoulder dislocation.
If so, perhaps you could recommend a different plan.  I am LEO and needing a long term strength and conditioning plan at the intermediate level.
Thanks for all you do!

ANSWER

None of the plans in those packets include snatches or clean and jerks. You should be good.

– Rob

QUESTION

Do you have a program you’d recommend that incorporates primary strength (DL, Squat, Bench, Press) with work capacity and….arms.

I’ve done a ton of your programming, but was wondering if you have one in mind that meets mid way with those attributes.

ANSWER

Big 3 + Run Training Plan with one change and one addition:
Change: Replace the pull ups in the plan with a 1RM Press and follow the same progression as the bench press.
Addition: Add the 4 Rounds of the Gorilla Complex – increasing weight each round until it’s hard but doable – at the end of every strength session.
– Rob

QUESTION

I’m reaching out today to get your opinion on the program I should go with in preparation for CBP academy.  I have time to prep but want to pick a program that I can really focus on to enable mission success.  Your guidance will be greatly appreciated.  Thanks in advance.

ANSWER

Good luck!
– Rob

QUESTION

I am 53 and reasonably fit and reasonably strong. Do a little bit of everything. Looking for a hybrid strength run row general fitness program. Have done spartan triathlons. Not training for anything specific. Looking for a suggested intro plan to try for a month. Like to be ready to sign up for events on short notice. Ordered an athletes subscription.

ANSWER

SF45 Bravo – plan concurrently train strength, endurance, chassis integrity (functional core) and work capacity.
The SF45 Plans are designed for mountain and tactical athletes ages 45-55.
– Rob

QUESTION

I recently subscribed and have been looking through the different programs. It can be a little overwhelming and I’m hoping you can help.
I am currently in the National Guard and I recently became full-time. I have a future goal of becoming a Warrant Officer. At the moment I have become slightly out of shape. My fitness background is in power-lifting. I am pretty strong but I don’t have much endurance.

I need to start focusing more on military appropriate training which isn’t just lifting heavy and gorging on food. I have this fear of losing all of my strength (which will come with dieting and fat loss, I understand this). I want to continue to lift but I need to prioritize on conditioning.

Any suggestions. Five days a week is best for my schedule but I can make six days work.

ANSWER

Best Option: Military OnRamp Training Plan – initial focus is on bodyweight strength training and endurance (run, ruck), and later in the plan, free weight strength is included.
Next Best: Big 3 + Run Plan – Bench, Squat, Dead and Pull Ups, plus a running progression.
– Rob

QUESTION

Do you do any direct arm work ie curls, triceps extensions etc? Or are your swole biceps and triceps due strictly to the MTI workouts?

ANSWER

Not since I was in my 20s!
– Rob

QUESTION

I was trying to find a program you were working on for the older tactical athlete. Do you still have it? I am 48 years old and still active duty.

ANSWER

– Rob

QUESTION

I was looking at the USAF Phase II CRO/STO program, and it looks like something I want to subscribe to. I’m currently AD USAF, and I’m planning on attending the AF SpecWar Phase II early next year. I’m currently working through some of Jeff Nichols’s strength (then power/speed, then PJ prep) programming; perhaps you’ve heard of him.
What program would you recommend as a stepping stone to your Phase II program? I’ve been doing some short distance work with the majority of my training focused on high volume strength work. I’m currently enlisted, but I want to stand out AND be harder than any of these other dudes I’ll be competing with.
I appreciate your work and it has helped me immensely in the past!
Thanks for your time!

ANSWER

I’d recommend you roll right into the USAF CRO/STO Phase II Selection Training Plan now. Doing it now will give you direct feedback about your weaknesses – which are likely endurance and swimming based on your note.
After, roll into the plans/order in the Pirates Package of Plans which are designed as day to day programming for SOF with water-based mission sets. They will maintain your fitness while not overtraining you. These plans concurrently train strength, work capacity, chassis integrity (core), tactical agility and endurance (run/ruck/swim).
Eight weeks out, re-do the  USAF CRO/STO Phase II Selection Training Plan.
– Rob

QUESTION

First thank you for the amazing and constantly adapting fitness programs and information. Your programs are top notch.
My background: I’m a mid 30’s former collegiate athlete with some military experience. I’ve had neck, low back injuries, as well as a full cartilage tear – and arthroscopic surgery- for my knee (thanks football). Your low back programming and the founders have significantly helped me. To give additional info, my previously hurt knee is only at around 70% of my good knee (even after PT) but slowly progressing. Recently I’m about midway through your “Operator Achilles” program and it’s exceeded my expectations. Definitely a great mental grinder with the sandbags.
My question: Just was given an amazing opportunity to go to SFRE with SF group in my area… but it’s in less than 5 weeks. Mentally I’m all in, but physically given my previously injured back and knee – and limited rucking – I have a bit of work to get prepared in short notice. * I’ve gone through SOF selections before* My question is should I begin your ruck based (I purchased your GR selection plan a few years ago and still have it) programming for week 1 or jump ahead to the correct week leading up to my Sept date? How should I incorporate the tapering period the week before?

ANSWER

Thanks for the kind words and congrats on getting the SFRE slot.

SFRE Selection Training Plan – beginning at week 1. The plan is progressive … so you can’t jump ahead.
One week before attending, skip ahead to week 7 in the plan – which is an unload/taper week.
Good luck!
– Rob

QUESTION

I first wanted to say thank you for always responding to my emails about your programming suggestions!  It has been super helpful.

I have been working with a high school male athlete who just completed the super squat strength program with great success. He is going into golf season this fall but wants to continue to build for winter hockey.  He was hoping to change things up a bit.  Do you have recommendations on which of your programs would be a good transition for him?
Thank you!

ANSWER

Our hockey players train alongside our skiers for their pre-season work. The transfer has worked well for both pro and semi-pro hockey players.
– Rob

QUESTION

I’m currently deployed and to complete one of your programs. I’m finishing up with TLU strength, next week is my last week. I have a few questions;

1 – should I take any time off between programs for rest or jump right into the next

2 – I’m looking for a good plan that combines cardio and strength training. Due to a recent ankle surgery, I’m trying to run as minimal as possible, especially with the terrain where I am now.  I do have a stationary bike and a concept 2 rower at my disposal here, as well as a ruck with as much weight as I can put into it.  Any recommendations?

Thanks for everything. I love the gains I have seen off of the program I am wrapping up. While I hate the way my legs feel… I love it at the same time.

ANSWER

1. The last week in our “Base Fitness” plans are an unload week, so no need to take any more time off before the next. However, TLU Strength is a strength plan and not an “base fitness” plan – so yes, you’ll want to take a week off before starting another.
2. Big 3 Plus Run Training Plan … Ruck @ 45# instead of the prescribed runs in the plan.
– Rob

 

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