ATF Physical Task Test (PTT)


  • 6-Week, 5 day/week training program designed to prepare athletes for the United States Marshall Service (USMS) Physical Fitness Test.
  • Includes multiple assessments, and automatically “scales” to the incoming fitness and speed of each individual athlete.
  • This training plan is one of the 450+ Plans included with an Athlete’s Subscription.


This 6-week training program is sport-specifically designed to improve scores on the ATF PTT:

  1. Maximum number of sit-ups in one minute
  2. Maximum number of continuous push-ups in one minute
  3. Timed 1.5 mile  run

Before beginning this program, read and understand the ATF PTT protocols. This will give you the best idea of how the test is administered:

This program is designed to be completed during the 6 weeks directly prior to you taking the official PTT.

This is Version 1 of this training plan, Feb 2024


The program will follow a basic 5-day per week, format. The Final (6th) week is an unload or “taper” week, with reduced volume to allow recovery before taking the PTT

You’ll take the complete PTT three times … at the beginning, in the middle, and at the end. Each time the program uses your most recent PTT scores for the follow-on progressions. In this way the program automatically “scales” the incoming, and improving fitness of each individual athlete.

No matter your incoming fitness, this plan will push you.

The training sessions are designed to around an hour.

Here is the Training Week:

  • Monday: ATF PTT or Push-Ups, Sit-Ups, Pull Ups, Long Run
  • Tuesday: 800m Repeats
  • Wednesday: Push-Ups, Sit-Ups, Pull Ups, Long Run
  • Thursday: 800m Repeats
  • Friday: Push-Ups, Sit-Ups, Pull Ups, 800m Repeats


During this program, every number of calisthenics repetitions you perform is based on the number of repetitions you completed at your most recent ATF PTT. We utilize MTI’s proprietary density progression to develop your calisthenic performance.


This training plan improves your run performance via two primary methods:

  • Speed Over Ground: Hard repeat interval efforts
  • Aerobic Endurance: A linear progression to increase your aerobic capacity, building over the course of the training plan


What if I miss a day?
If you miss a day, make up the session you missed the next day and follow the programming as prescribed. Don’t skip ahead. If needed, train on a Saturday to stay on schedule.

What if I can’t do the whole session?
If you don’t have enough time to complete the whole session, you can split the session into two.

I can’t make all my rounds of sit ups, push ups or pull ups unbroken. It it okay to break the prescribed reps into sets?
Yes for the sit ups. Break as necessary to complete your reps, but don’t extend the 75 second interval.

Push ups – rather than breaking the reps into sets, if you are having trouble completing the prescribed reps, go to your knees and try to complete them on your knees before breaking to rest. Don’t extend the 75 second interval. This is a difficult progression … don’t be surprised or embarrassed if you have to go to your knees.

Pull Ups – if needed to complete all your reps, you can do negative pull ups.

What if I’m having trouble completing the running repeats/intervals?
Extend the rest period by 60 seconds, and try again. Keep fighting. Expect to be pushed.

What about Diet?
Here are our dietary recommendations:

How much rest should I take between finishing this program and taking the official PFT?
2-3 days total rest. Week 6 of the training plan tapers back the intensity.

How far out from my PFT should I complete this plan?
Complete this training plan the six weeks (plus 2-3 days for rest) before your official PFT.

Can I repeat this program?
Yes, but we recommend you take at least a week full rest if you plan to complete it back to back.

How much improvement should I see?
10-20% in overall score depending upon your incoming fitness. Fitter athletes will see less overall improvement. Less fit athletes will see greater overall improvement.

What if I have more questions?


Good Luck! – Rob Shaul


Before beginning any exercise program, consult with your physician to ensure that you are in proper health. Physical training contains inherent risks including, but not limited to, muscle strains, tears, physical and bodily injury up to and including death. This training program is not meant to provide medical advice; you should obtain medical advice from your private health care practitioner. If you are unable to assume these risks then you should not engage in this training program. No liability is assumed by Mountain Tactical Institute, Inc, its owners or employees, and you train at your own risk. Mountain Tactical Institute makes no warranty, express or implied, of any kind in connection with this training program.

Required Equipment


• Stopwatch, preferably one which also has a repeating countdown timer. (Timex Ironman is best)

• Running area (track or other) with known 400m, 800m and 1 mile distances.

• Pull Up Bar

Sample Training

Obj: ATF PTT No. 1

Warm up:
4 Rounds
Run 100m
5x Push Ups
5x Sit Ups
Instep Stretch

Rest 5 Minutes before PTT

• 1 Minute Max Sit-Ups
• 1 Minute Max Push-Ups
• 1.5 Mile Run (timed)


Rest 5-7 Minutes, then...

• Max Pull Ups


Obj: Push Ups, Sit Ups, Long Run

Warm up:
4 Rounds
Run 100m
5x Push Ups
5x Sit Ups
Instep Stretch

(1) 6 Rounds
Push-Ups 30% of your Max Reps Scored on PTT No. 1 Every 75 Seconds

(2) 6 Rounds
Sit-Ups 30% of your Max Reps Scored on PTT No. 1 Every 75 Seconds

(3) 6 Rounds
Pull Ups 30% of your Max Reps Scored on PTT No. 1 Every 75 Seconds

(4) 2.5 Mile Run @ Moderate pace

(5) 3 Rounds
Pigeon Stretch
Lat + Pec Stretch

To find your "moderate pace" for today’s run, use your 1.5 mile assessment time from PTT No. 1 and MTI Running Calculator

Obj: 800m Repeats

Warm up:
4 Rounds
Run 100m
5x Walking Lunges
5x Burpees
Instep Stretch

(1) 3 Rounds
800m Run @ designated PTT No. 1 run time pace
Rest 4 Minutes between efforts

(2) 2 Rounds
Instep Stretch
Hip Flexor Stretch
Pigeon Stretch

To find your interval time for today’s 800m repeats, use your 1.5 mile assessment time from PTT No. 1 and the MTI Running Calculator

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1)  Mission Direct

Gym numbers mean nothing. All that matters is mission performance. 

To this end, MTI’s fitness solutions and programming are not boxed in by convention, tradition, orthodoxy, public opinion or any other artificial constraint driven by inside or outside forces.

We begin with the raw fitness demands of the mission and build a fitness solution which directly prepares the athlete for those demands.


2) Fitness Solutions Built from the Ground Up

MTI’s programming is not “re-tread” bodybuilding, football, CrossFit, kettlebell, strength or general fitness programming. We’ve built our fitness programming for mountain and tactical athletes from the ground up.

The Fluid Periodization methodology we deploy to concurrently train multiple fitness attributes is completely original and has continued to evolve and improve over the years.

Our mid-section training methodology, Chassis Integrity, is also original, as is our endurance programming, 7 strength training progressions, tactical agility, and work capacity programming.

Our mountain sports pre-season training plans, tactical PFT, selection, school, course, and fitness improvement training plans across military, LE and Fire Rescue are MTI-developed, tested and athlete-proven.

Over the years hundreds of athletes and coaches have taken our advanced programming and unit fitness leader programming courses and MTI is widely recognized within the mountain and tactical professions and fitness media as a thought leader in fitness programming for military and tactical athletes.


3) The MTI Method

→ Research: MTI begins program design with extensive research of the fitness demands of the mission, sport or event, identifies the exercises and progressions which sport-specifically meet those demands, chose end-of-cycle goals, and program backward to design the training plan.

→ Deploy & Assess: We deploy the training plan “Lab Rats” at our Wyoming facility. Training session and cycle issues are identified and fixed as we work through the training plan. Post cycle we assess the programming’s effectiveness and efficiency. We keep the stuff that works, and fix or toss the stuff that doesn’t.

→ Publish & Assess Again: Plan is published for purchase as an individual training plan and made available to our subscribers. Feedback/results are assessed.

→ Iterate: We take what we learn from lab rats and athletes, re-visit, update and improve already published training plans. Several of our individual training plans are on their 4th or 5th version.


4) Mission-Direct Research

MTI exists to “Improve Mountain and Tactical Athletes mission performance and keep them safe.” To that end, we have developed a unique research methodology aimed at identifying real world areas of improvement and identifying immediately deployable mission-direct solutions. Click HERE to learn more about MTI’s Mission-Direct Research methodology, and Here to read about just few of our research efforts.

5) Field Proven

Our stuff works. Weekly we receive unsolicited reviews of our programming and testimonials to its effectiveness.


6) Programming Breadth

MTI’s library of 200+ sport-specific fitness plans for mountain and tactical athletes is unmatched. Resources range from specific programming for tactical special forces selections, to specific plans for climbing Rainier and Denali, to general fitness solutions such as running improvement, to post-rehab from injury.

Over the past decade, MTI has partnered with hundreds of athletes throughout their individual mountain and tactical careers, and provided fitness solutions as they face new mountain objectives, tactical schools, selections, PFTs and deployments, and came back from injury.


7) Worldwide Influence

Our work is not limited to US Athletes.

We’ve developed selection-specific training plans for Canadian, UK, Australian and German Special Forces Selections and worked with individual military personnel from Scandinavia, South, and Central America.

Canadian, Australian, UK and western European law enforcement and fire/rescue athletes have used MTI programming for mission-direct fitness.

On the mountain side, Alpinists from Japan to Slovakia have consulted with MTI and used MTI’s programming to prepare for mountain objectives.


8) Mission Performance beyond Fitness

MTI’s exists is to improve Mission Performance for mountain and tactical athletes and keep them safe. 

This focus on “mission direct” solutions, enhancements and improvements drives our work and research and extends beyond fitness solutions to include training, leadership, gear, team culture, and safety. 

Fitness is just one area of our work.

Our non-fitness research has included tactical cultures, combat uniforms, and gore-tex performance, and effect of stress on marksmanship.

Our work on defining what it means to be a Quiet Professional has had penetrating influence and driven healthy conversations with both mountain and tactical professionals.


9) Direct, Honest, Clear Answers

Since 2007 we’ve taken and answered dozens of questions weekly from mountain and tactical athletes. We’ve saved these individual Q&A’s and now thousands are archived on our site.

We’re not salesmen, and our answers are noted for their directness, honesty, and clarity. Our stuff isn’t for everyone. If we can help, we’ll let you know. If we can’t, we’ll let you know that, too.

– Rob Shaul, Founder


All of the Above is Backed Up By Our Promise: Our Stuff Works. Guaranteed.

Our Stuff Works. Guaranteed.

By Rob Shaul

I received notes frequently from athletes hesitant to purchase a subscription or training plans asking me to sell them on why they should make the purchase.

While I understand the question, I’m not a salesman – so I can’t put a hard sale on anyone for our programming.

I can tell them the process we go through to design our programming.

We begin with extensive research on the fitness demands of the event, identify the exercises and progressions which sport specifically meet those demands, chose end-of-cycle goals, and program backward to design the plan.

Then we test the cycle on ourselves and our lab rats here in Wyoming. We document, note what works and doesn’t work, re-assess, and make changes and modifications.

Then we publish the programming in the form of one of our plans or as part of our subscription daily training sessions for tactical and mountain athletes.
We don’t stop there – our daily programming is the “tip of the spear” for our programming evolution. We use these sessions to learn and make continuous improvement.

As we learn more and improve, we go back, and update the sport-specific training plans on the website. For example, we’re currently on Version 5 of our Ruck Based Selection Training Plan and Version 3 of our Dryland Ski Training Plan and Version 4 of our Big Game Back Country Hunting Training Plan.

We understand our programing isn’t cheap, but we believe it’s a great value. The $79 for the Ruck Based Selection Training Plan, and $39 for the Dryland Ski Training Plan reflect the, research, work, innovative theory, iteration, testing and feedback we’ve put in and received to make these plans effective.

All that matters for us is outside performance, and we feel strongly that Our Stuff Works in the real world.

Here’s our guarantee:

1) Individual Training Plan Purchase:
If you purchase an individual training plan, follow it as prescribed before your season/event/pft/selection, and if you don’t feel you were physically ready for your season/event/pft/selection, and/or didn’t see dramatic improvements in your early season performance, we’ll refund your money, no questions asked.

2) Athlete’s Subscription
If you purchase an Athletes’ Subscription, follow the training sessions as prescribed, and are not satisfied with the quality of the programming, notify us within 30 days of purchase, and we’ll refund your money, no questions asked.



Do you have any reviews or testimonials from athletes who have used your Athlete’s Subscription
Yes. Click HERE.

Is it true you guarantee your stuff works?
Yes. If you purchase an Athletes’ Subscription, follow the training sessions as prescribed, and are not satisfied with the quality of the programming, notify us within 30 days of purchase, and we’ll refund your money, no questions asked.

How is MTI programming different than CrossFit?
This is a common question. Read our answer HERE.

You have a lot of competitors. Why should I choose MTI?
MTI is driven to improve mountain and tactical athletes’ mission performance and keep them safe. This emphasis and focus on mission performance sets us apart. Read about more that sets us apart HERE.

If I purchase a plan or subscription, how do I access the programming?
All of our plans are online, accessible via username and password.
You can log in through our →Website  or Mobile App →IOS and Android.

Do you have downloadable .pdf’s of the training plans?
No. But you can print the programming, by week, from your browser. You access individual training plans online via a username and password.

Do you have a mobile app?
Yes, we do. Available for IOS and Android.

What is the difference between purchasing an individual training plan, packet of plans or an Athlete’s Subscription?

  • Plan – Like purchasing the DVD of the first Star Wars movie. You own it forever, including any updates we make to the plan.
  • Packet – Like purchasing the DVD’s of all the Star Wars movies. You own them forever, including any updates we make to the plans.
  • Athlete’s Subscription – Like subscribing to Netflix. You get access to all 200+ plan in our library, but lose access if you unsubscribe.

If I purchase an Athletes Subscription Can I cancel on my own, anytime?

Do I have to contact MTI to cancel or can I do it myself?
You can do it yourself. Instructions HERE.

If I purchase a subscription and have questions about where to start or what plans(s) to use for my goals, will you help?
Yes. We answer dozens of training questions from athletes weekly. Email

If you add new plans or update existing plans after I subscribe will I have access to them?
Yes. We are continuously adding training plans and packets (2-5/month) and updating plans. With your subscription you’ll have access to all new plans, new courses and plan updates.

What Equipment is Required?
Click the “Required Equipment” tab to find out what equipment is required for the specific plan you are interested in.

Where do I find unfamiliar exercises?
See our Exercise Library HERE. The Run and Ruck Calculators are listed as exercises.

What about nutrition?
See our Nutritional Guidelines HERE.

Can I see sample training?
Click the “Sample Training” tab to see the entire first week of programming.
You are encouraged to do it before purchasing.

What if I have more questions?

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