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  • Need Advice on Getting Fit for Basic Military Qualifications

    I’ve decided to join the Canadian Army. The fitness requirements for my gender and age are as follows:
    - run 2.4 KM in 13 minutes
    - do 19 pushups
    - do 19 situps
    - squeeze 75 kilograms in a hand grip

    I have not tested myself, but as a rough ballpark, this is what I can do right now: jog 6KM in 45 minutes, and maybe five pushups and situps. Obviously, that’s pathetic.

    I want to improve. I’m quite new to this entire business and I’d surely appreciate some help and adivce. I’m willing to dedicate 1 hour per weekday in the morning and more on the weekend.

    My goals are as follows:
    - run 6 KM in 30 minutes (this is longer and faster than required for entrance)
    - do 50 proper pushups
    - do 50 proper situps
    - squeeze 100 KG in a hand grip

    What do I need to do to achieve that? Please share your personal stories, tips, recommendations -- both pre- and post-entrance fitness in the military. (I imagine the fitness requirements/training/regime is similar in the other world militaries. Am I correct in assuming this?)

    On a personal note, I haven't felt this focused and empowered in a long time. There is a real goal, a challenge, ahead of me, and I am quite aware and certain that I can match and exceed it with enough work and discipline. I'm looking forward to training.

  • #2
    Re: Need Advice on Getting Fit for Basic Military Qualifications

    You can definitely do it! The hardest part is actually getting to it. Once you get a set routine, you'll get in shape at a steady pace and in plenty of time for basic training. Good luck and thanks for serving your country.
    "Common sense is not so common." -Voltaire

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Need Advice on Getting Fit for Basic Military Qualifications

      I've been training for entering basic sometime this summer.

      2 mile run: 19:16
      1.5 mile run: 13:45
      Push-Ups: 34
      Sit-Ups: 38

      I havent been tracking how far I'm running or how fast. I'm just RUNNING without a purpose. I can easily do the sit ups and push ups. I have a few months to get up to that point.

      I just found this.

      http://usmilitary.about.com/cs/airfo...sicworkout.htm

      Maybe it can help you out too.
      Skud


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      • #4
        Re: Need Advice on Getting Fit for Basic Military Qualifications

        6k in 30 minutes is very doable. In general, your weekly workout should consist of a hard day followed by an easy one. When I was actively training for 5k races, I would run speed workouts on Mondays, a 5m slow run on Tuesdays and Thursdays, a 5m fast run on Wednesdays, a 3m slow run or a pacing exercise to recover on Fridays, and races on Saturdays. Varying your workouts like this helps protect yourself and builds both strength and endurance. Making the recovery days long, slow runs also adds more on the endurance side of things, since its much easier to make yourself run faster than it is to make yourself run farther.

        A speed workouts I really like are 400m repeats on a track. We'd do 12 of them, with a two minute break, at about 600m race pace. You'd then try and hold that pace for as many of the repeats as you could. Not only does it build muscle, it helps the body learn how to rapidly recover from strain. For someone starting out, 8 of them, with a two-minute break, as fast as you can go, would be a good way to build up speed.

        To build up distance, you'll need two kinds of runs. Long slow runs (10k sounds pretty good for a 6k race) and then runs at 6k distance to get a feel for how long you'll be running. Don't try and race the 6k, just go at it at a comfortable run (not a jog). The 10k is a good one to run with friends since you should be taking it at a jog. At the end of both, you should feel tired, but not exhausted. Maintaining the same pace throughout is key, as is learning to read your splits every kilometer. Make sure you can get signs for every km you travel and try and ensure that your pace is roughly the same. Knowing what pace you're on is very, very helpful in a race, especially if you feel yourself falling behind your goal.
        I can ADS using more than a 2x without significant stutter! This was a good patch.

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        • #5
          Re: Need Advice on Getting Fit for Basic Military Qualifications

          Here's the US Army's pre-basic fitness program (PDF), it should be sufficient to meet your requirements before you enlist. Remember, they aren't expecting you to be a PT stud, they want you to be at a minimum level so they can build you up to where they want you.
          USAR

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          • #6
            Re: Need Advice on Getting Fit for Basic Military Qualifications

            Pony up for a personal trainer at your gym. A few classes should set you straight.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Need Advice on Getting Fit for Basic Military Qualifications

              Obvious layman comment: If you are training for a 13-minute run shouldn't you be running around that time range rather than 30 minutes?

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Need Advice on Getting Fit for Basic Military Qualifications

                Originally posted by RandomGuy View Post
                Obvious layman comment: If you are training for a 13-minute run shouldn't you be running around that time range rather than 30 minutes?
                Well, in training, loooooong road marches (with packs and boots) are not uncommon, so the endurance would not hurt at all. Nothing wrong with being able to run for 30+ minutes at a steady pace.
                "Common sense is not so common." -Voltaire

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Need Advice on Getting Fit for Basic Military Qualifications

                  No random, you shouldnt.
                  You obviously have no problem running Zhohar, so running at that length is just a matter of getting you faster. Faster is easy. What you need is a combination of distance and speed training. Your run is half the distance of the races I typically run, but I'm going to give you a training regimen for a 5k. Why? Simple. If you have the endurance to run a 5k at top speed, you can run 2.4k and still have plenty of energy left for the other parts of your physical readiness test. (And before people get on my case about how I am giving advice on this, know that I have been actively running races from 5k to marathon length since I was 7 years old and have been trained by professionals. The schedule I'm about to give comes from a former Cross Country coach and olympic athelete, so I trust it) The only problem is that the schedeule is in miles, but it trains you to run 3.1 mile races (5 km) so it should still work, you'll just have to map it out.

                  Heres a very basic schedule for the first two weeks:
                  Code:
                  FIRST: Find yourself a solid running route and map it out. You need to have set 
                  landmarks for EVERY 1/4 mile! This will be very important along the way. Also make 
                  sure that your running route includes at least one water stop.
                  SECOND: Pacing - EASY pace is a nice jog. You're not pushing yourself hard, but 
                  you're not strolling either. MEDIUM pace is feeling the burn in your lungs and your 
                  legs, but not your full distance speed. FAST pace is the speed at which you would 
                  run your maximum distance, you should be completely exhausted at the end of this,
                   but it is not a sprint. SPEED pace is a full sprint (as fast as your legs can possibly go). 
                  
                  Week 1
                  Day 1 - Run 4 miles EASY pace
                  Day 2 - Run 3 miles MEDIUM pace
                  Day 3 - Run 4 miles EASY pace
                  Day 4 - FARTLEK WORKOUT: Run 1/4 mile SPEED pace followed by 1/4 mile VERY SLOW JOG 
                  (but NOT walking). Repeat this 4x for a total of 1 mile SPEED pace.
                  Day 5 - REST DAY - DO NOT RUN
                  Day 6 - Run 6 miles EASY pace
                  Day 7 - Run 2 Miles HARD pace
                  
                  Week 2
                  Day 1 - Run 3 miles EASY pace
                  Day 2 - Run 3 miles MEDIUM pace
                  Day 3 - Run 4 miles EASY pace
                  Day 4 - FARTLEK WORKOUT: Run 1/4 mile SPEED pace followed by 1/4 mile VERY SLOW JOG 
                  (but NOT walking). Repeat this 8x for a total of 2 miles SPEED pace.
                  Day 5 - REST DAY - DO NOT RUN
                  Day 6 - Run 6 miles EASY pace
                  Day 7 - Run 3 miles HARD pace
                  If you follow that schedule for two weeks, I can guarantee you that you'll notice a significant increase in your endurance and a significant decrease in your time per km. It's a HARD schedule, but if you're serious about going into the service, it will get you there. I can provide follow on schedules to that one if you'd like.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Need Advice on Getting Fit for Basic Military Qualifications

                    Originally posted by RandomGuy View Post
                    Obvious layman comment: If you are training for a 13-minute run shouldn't you be running around that time range rather than 30 minutes?
                    No, because you shouldn't be training at race pace. You run longer but slower to work on endurance and shorter but faster for speed. Running the same race over and over again isn't as good for you.
                    I can ADS using more than a 2x without significant stutter! This was a good patch.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Need Advice on Getting Fit for Basic Military Qualifications

                      Couple of things form Ireland, it's a fitness program to be an Officer Cadet (but the requirements are similar). There's a fitness program and Sit-up and push-up instructional videos.

                      http://www.military.ie/careers/officer/index.htm

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Need Advice on Getting Fit for Basic Military Qualifications

                        Many thanks to everyone. I'll run to test my limits for the next few days, so that I know what I'm starting with. After that, I'll adopt Ferris Bueller's strategy in co-ordination with an increasing number of pushups and situps.

                        Thank you all again for the advice.

                        I've also wanted to get into the sleep habit properly. I'll be sleeping from 11:00PM until 5:30 AM -- this is the same sleep schedule I'll have to follow during Basic. My new schedule as follows:
                        5:30 -- Wake up
                        5:40 -- Leave house for a run
                        6:20 -- Cool off from the run, stretch.
                        6:30 -- Pushups and situps.
                        7:00 -- Get ready for work and leave.
                        6:00 -- arrive from work, relax and have some fun.
                        11:00 -- lights out.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Need Advice on Getting Fit for Basic Military Qualifications

                          If you can spare the time, a warm-up run (3 minutes at most) followed by pre-run stretching will go a long way to improving your flexibility which will help your running a lot.
                          I can ADS using more than a 2x without significant stutter! This was a good patch.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Need Advice on Getting Fit for Basic Military Qualifications

                            What Raz said is absolutely right. Your warmup run should be a very slow jog though. Also, you might want to adjust your schedule to put your run in the evening. Some of the runs I gave you are going to take a little more than 40 minutes.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Need Advice on Getting Fit for Basic Military Qualifications

                              That schedule is a bit much for someone with absolutely no running background....
                              If you're JUST starting out on running, your first week should have at least 2 off days...

                              Be ware, shin splints are in your immediate future if you don't give yourself down time.
                              |TG|Switch

                              Better known as:
                              That noob who crashed the chopper.
                              That noob who ran over the mine.
                              That noob who TK'd me with a sniper rifle.
                              That noob who hit that APC at 300m with light AT! Our APC...

                              Comment

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