Wanted to share some kudos and pictures with you. Last week my unit did a Competition for the TACPs currently deployed in Kuwait. I had the fortunate opportunity to run the 3 day event. I wanted to pass along our PT testing we did. Day one I started everyone with Operator Ugly, slightly modified due to equipment and time constraints (details below), the next morning they had to do a 6 mile ruck @ 55#, the final morning they had to conduct the Air Force PT test and pass. Everyone enjoyed Operator Ugly. Like I said before I had to slightly modify it for a couple of reasons: (1) we didn’t have Sand Bags so I substituted with 62# kettlebells, which I found to be equally difficult on the core and legs but some added upper body while holding the KB to the chest. (2) due to time constraints, space available and heat I removed the 3 mile run. (3) each event had to be worth a total maximum of 100 points. So I put caps on the exercises: Bench, Squat and Deadlift were worth 1pt/rep max of 15pts; Sprints were worth 1/2pt/length max of 20pts; pull ups were worth 1pt/rep max of 15; Kettlebell Get Ups were worth 1/2pt/rep max of 20pts. Nobody was able to get 100% on the test, there was a 97 & 96 though. My operators averaged a 79%.

We all just wanted to send you our thanks for the awesome PT session! There is a group of us here that have been doing the operator sessions for the past 5 months of our 9 month deployment. We plan to conduct the full Op Ugly before we depart back home. Please find some attached pictures of the 82 EASOS TACPs doing Operator Ugly last week Wednesday 31 July 2013 (pictures will be broken up over several e-mails do to size)

Thanks for the sessions!


– J.


I was a member of Military Athlete for about a year. However as my unit began the training cyle to deploy to Afghanistan, I simply did not have the time to do the operator sessionss like I had been doing. Now that I am over here, there is plenty of time to workout and I get in shape and I was wondering if you have any specific programs that can be completed with the limited gym equipment we have here. Specifically we have a few sets of weights, a few bars with plates a couple of kettlebells, and some tires to flip. We can get ordinary stuff like chains, sledge hammers, and sandbags also to help workout.

A lot of guys in my platoon have been asking about good workout programs, and I would love to refer them to Military Athlete if there are workouts they can actually do with the limited equipement. Thanks in advance for any help.

– W.

We have several plans W. – 

1) Bodyweight Training Plan:

2) Sandbag/Weight Vest (IBA)/Dumbbell Training Plan:

3) Running Improvement Plan:

4) Afghanistan Pre-Deployment Training Plan – this plan is free to guys deploying to Afghanistan:

– Please stay safe.

– Rob

  I was first introduced to mountain athlete in the Army.  Unfortunately everyone
started with the big mountain program, not base fitness.  Trevor & christian went to
your coaching certification over a year ago.  When tow got back he squared us away.  I left the ARMY over three months ago & my knees aren’t improving.  The doc at the VA is super jaded, & very conventional.  What would you recommend to an athlete you train with Runners knees.  Any info would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks for all your efforts Rob.  Mountain Athlete reigns supreme . . .

– J

I’m sorry – I’m not a doctor and can’t offer any specific advice. 

The most obvious cure is to stay off it – i.e. stop running and squats. That leaves upper body work and swimming/bike riding. 

We’re developing a swimming improvement training plan which should be out soon. One option for you would be to do the upper body lifting and core circuits in the Ultimate Meathead Cycle – and bike or swim along with them. Here’s the link to UMC:

– Rob



I just e-mailed you recently from my civilian e-mail on my phone but I noticed you accept military e-mails only for the Afghanistan Program. Like I said before I’m getting deployed in a few months (Feb 2014) but not to Afghanistan. I’m not exactly allowed to say where but I can tell you it’s to all over Africa for a 4-5 month deployment. I need to get in great shape for this deployment but also want to build on my APFT score. Our standards for "our" PT test is at the 75% percent range and we have to ruck rather quickly as well. I want to get in excellent shape for this deployment and be able to go through missions with ease. I’ve seen great reviews about your Afghan Program. I need an intense workout plan, I’ve become bored with my workout and our squad workouts. I feel this will accomplish what I’m trying to get ready for in this deployment managing the rough terrain that we are anticipating. Thank you!

– B.

I’m sorry B. – the Afghan plan is available for free only to guys deploying to Afghanistan – same rules for everyone. You can purchase the plan from the site here:

We also have an APFT Plan:

– Rob


I am currently applying for Army OCS. My end goal is to be in the special operations community. I was wondering if you could recommend a workout for me right now as I go through the application process and prepare for my upcoming military career.

I ran a APFT this morning and did 82 push ups, 74 sit ups and 2 mile run in 12:36. I am 22 years old, 5’9" and 180lbs.

Thanks for taking the time to read this.

– A.

Couple great places to start:

1) Sandbag/Weight vest/Dumbbell Training Plan:

2) Bodyweight Training Plan:

Following either of these, I’d recommend you complete one of our strength training plans – specifically Rat 6:

– Rob


Good morning!  I wanted to know what you would suggest to prepare for
the Marine Corps’ CFT.  Here is a link to the test if you aren’t
I would appreciate any insight on this and just to give you a time
frame will be taking one in October.  Have a good one and thanks in

– N.

We don’t have a train up plan for the CFT, but a good general plan would be the Sandbag/Weight Vest or IBA/Dumbbell training plan:

– Rob

You should do the Ruck Based Selection Plan Marcellus:

– Rob

I am a Lt 14N in the USAF currently deployed to Afghanistan. I have some experience with olympic lifts from playing sports in high school and college, so I thought I was in good shape. A friend of mine recently introduced me to your programs, and I am thouorghly impressed with with your sessions! after just one day I realized that you guys are the way to go in regards to fitness. I have a selection coming up for a sepcial operations program associated with the army next september  that has the following requirements:
– Achieve an 80% or higher on the APFT for my age group (I am 25)
– Run five miles in 40 mins or less 
– Ruck over 13 miles with a 50 pound ruck.
They have been pretty mum with any of the other details in regards to other fitness requirements, but I definitely think I need some improvement on these areas, especially the ruck march and the run. I am currently going through the on-ramp program that you guys provide, and I am just looking for some advice on where to go next. thanks again!
– M.


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