Trouble making a regular routine due to field time Trouble making a regular routine due to field time

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Thread: Trouble making a regular routine due to field time

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Posts
    1

    Default Trouble making a regular routine due to field time

    I'm a 1st Lieutennant in the US Army, and made it to my first active unit last march. I was given a semester long powerlifting class at West Point that practically followed your Starting Strength module. I was amazed at the progress that I made as a cadet during that semester; going from a 180 lb squat to 260 lbs, bench from 160 to 225, deadlift from 250 to 365 etc. I saw improvements in other areas of fitness that we were assessed on as well. But that was all while I had time to do it regularly, and now I'm in a unit that goes to field training exercises that are 3 days long, all the way to 2 weeks long every month, and have been since April 2013.



    My real question is, should I keep up the regular 3x a week training on the weeks that I'm home, even if it means that I may do it for one week between two long field training exercises? Or would it be pointless, with me losing the benefits of that week while I'm in the field for two weeks afterwards?



    If it's impossible to maintain the strength gained from such a sporratic "routine", what would you reccomend that I do? I want to continue to get stronger.



    I would normally do the Starting Strength program in the afternoons on monday, wednesday, and friday. As a unit we would do PT every morning, which basically is:



    Monday: Long run (>3 miles)

    Tuesday: Weighted circut training

    Wednesday: Long run (>4 miles)

    Thursday: Outdoor circut training/sprints

    Friday: 35lb Distance roadmarch

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    North Texas
    Posts
    39,080

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    Quote Originally Posted by keatingk View Post
    My real question is, should I keep up the regular 3x a week training on the weeks that I'm home, even if it means that I may do it for one week between two long field training exercises? Or would it be pointless, with me losing the benefits of that week while I'm in the field for two weeks afterwards?

    Look at it this way: What happens to your gains if you do no training at all?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Posts
    7

    Default

    For what it's worth, I ran into similar circumstances when I was a platoon commander in the Marines a few years ago. As Rip implies above, it's better to train imperfectly than not at all.

    For periods in which we were out in the field a lot, we were usually out from early Monday morning to early Friday morning, so I'd hit the "basic" Starting Strength workouts Friday and Sunday afternoons. For periods when we weren't going out to the field as much, I switched to the PPST Advanced Novice program on top of the morning PT we already did (generally similar to yours, Keating), which was a manageable amount of volume for me at the time because I was 24 years old and ate a lot. While this routine was far from optimal in terms of, say, getting ready for a powerlifting meet, I was pretty close to Rip's "man definition" in that my weight fluctuated around 200-220 (at 6'1"), I was hitting my squat 3x5's in the mid-300lb range, and I was hitting 1-rep maxes in the low 400's.

    (Incidentally, my Marine PFT scores during this time period were in the 280's…maxed out the 20 pull-ups and 100 crunches, and ran the 3 miles in 20-21 minutes…so any young butter bars reading this should not be afraid of the effect of lifting heavy on your performance on the military's "fitness" tests.)

    A few recommendations for you, Keating:
    -Your company PT schedule, when in garrison, doesn't seem too onerous for you to be doing PPST Advanced Novice programming on top of it. Remember to eat.
    -Regardless of MOS, when you go out to the field, there is heavy stuff for you to play with. The UCMJ does not prohibit impromptu strength competitions. Just don't hurt yourself, and more importantly, don't encourage your guys to do stuff that hurts them.
    -I used to get bad lower back soreness if I squatted heavy the day of / day after coming back from the field. I found that doing about 10 minutes of front planks a day when in the field largely alleviated this (hold to failure, rest 30sec, hold to failure, etc). Others' results may vary.
    -For fuck's sake, learn how to spell your current rank .

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Posts
    1,268

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    Quote Originally Posted by Heavy Drop View Post
    -For fuck's sake, learn how to spell your current rank .
    Give him a break, he's an officer.

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