The Department of Defense is churning out real-life supersoldiers that are bigger, stronger, and faster thanks to a revamped workout philosophy that stresses progression and overload instead of randomized “bootcamp” sessions.
“Instead of overtraining with 8 or 10-mile runs multiple times per week, PT is more about being able to accelerate, change direction, get up, get down, climb under, jump over, etc.,” says Captain Tony Soika, a tactical strength and conditioning coach and company commander for the U.S. Army. In 2012 he helped rewrite the Army’s Physical Readiness Training program, nicknamed FM 7-22.
Doug Briggs , Ph.D., C.S.C.S., director of U.S. Army’s Mission Essential Fitness program at Fort Bliss, Texas, knows a thing or two about forging functional muscle.
“Life is about being able to accommodate the unpredictable, through a full range of motion, in an explosive yet controlled manner,” says Briggs.
Building tactical muscle and losing bodyfat is merely a side effect of this four-week power plan.
Perform exercises 1A, 1B, 1C and then rest 20 seconds. That is one set. Do three total sets. Repeat for 2A, 2B, 2C.
Take 2 seconds to complete the negative part of the rep, pause for 1 second, and then do a 1-second positive.
By the way, the “negative” is when your muscle gets longer and the “positive” is when your muscle gets shorter. Using a pushup as an example, the negative part of the rep is when you lower you chest to the floor. The positive part of the move occurs as you squeeze your chest and return to the start.
*Follow this tempo for the explosive moves: 2 seconds negative, 0 second pause, explosive positive.
Over the next 28 days you’ll complete 16 total tactical bodyweight workouts. Do Workout A on Mondays and Thursdays. Perform Workout B on Tuesdays and Fridays.
WORKOUT A (Monday/Thursday)
1A. Squat Jump* – 3 reps
WORKOUT B (Tuesday/Friday)
2B. Box Dip – 12 reps
2C. Rope Inverted Lat Row – 12 reps
Tactical Bodyweight Workouts is based on the teachings of tactical strength and conditioning coach, Joseph Arangio, MS, CSCS.