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  • +9

    Fitness Standards We All Should Attain

    Fitness Standards We All Should Attain
    If you have read my articles and books in the past, you will see a common thread in all of my writings: _Surpass the minimum standards in physical fitness testing if your profession (or life) is physically demanding._ This mantra holds water with military, law enforcement, fire fighters and other public servants who daily job requirements have physical challenges that can ...
    Rated +9
  • +6

    Breathing During Exercise and Daily Activity

    This week, I received an email from an Army Soldier who was having a difficult time running a few months ago. His breathing patterns were so erratic that he was basically hyperventilating while running his two mile PFT run. Once he started breathing properly as well as exhaling FULLY, he was able to perform better in the run – not only ...
    Rated +6
  • +22

    The Importance of Breathing

    The Importance of Breathing
    Breathing – of course it is important in everything we do. From athletic performance, shooting, and relaxing, we all have had to control our breathing in some fashion. But did you know that you can speed up and slow down your central nervous system by learning some breathing techniques? Did you know you can fail a running test one day and ...
    Rated +22
  • +25

    Fitness: It's 90% Mental

    Have you ever heard of this statement? Often it refers to challenging military / law enforcement training programs. The first time I heard the saying was at SEAL training and I never quite understood what it meant at the time because it felt like 100% physical at the time. I promise you this. It does not refer to 90% mental being ...
    Rated +25
  • +14

    Mental Toughness – Do You Have It?

    After the National Geographic Channel’s Fight Science television show on Special Ops, a majority of the emails received this week discussed mental toughness, as if I had some magic solution for people to acquire it. The truth is the human body is built for survival and will adapt to better handle cold, heat, stress, pain and just about anything you can ...
    Rated +14
  • +5

    The 15 Day Plan For The PFT

    This 15 day plan was written for a military member who had two weeks to pass his fitness test of 1.5 mile run, pushups, and situps. It is not designed for those members who have not exercised in months, but for those who just need an extra push to surpass the minimums. You could also use this routine to help you ...
    Rated +5
  • +3

    Interval Training: What is It and How Do You Do It?

    Last week, I received an email asking if interval training was a good way to improve speed in your military PFT run. The answer is absolutely. “But what exactly is interval training and how do I determine what speed I should train?” the question continued. There are some general formulas that can help you determine where you should be, but I ...
    Rated +3
  • +2

    Swimming with Fins – Preparing for LEO Special Ops Training

    Swimming with Fins – Preparing for LEO Special Ops Training
    This week, I received a frequently asked question about swimming with fins. Swimming with fins during rigorous military training like BUD/S, Coast Guard HRSS, Air Force PJ, or Public Safety Divers and some law enforcement SWAT programs is required in open water tests. My philosophy with teaching swimming is “a picture is worth 1000 words, but a moving picture is worth ...
    Rated +2
  • +25

    Fitness: The Next Step After Building a Solid Foundation

    Here is an email from a military man seeking to get better at his pull-ups and pushups for an upcoming PFT for Special Ops Selection. _Thank you for the 14 day "pull up":http://policelink.monster.com/training/articles/2678-pull-up-tips and the "push up routine.":http://policelink.monster.com/training/articles/2679-stuck-on-pushups-try-the-pushup-push-workout I did it to the letter, doing on average of a 130 pull ups and 300+ pushups per work out. I went from ...
    Rated +25
  • +6

    Running: How Do You Find Your Pace?

    As with any cardiovascular activity if you are going to perform for several minutes or even a few hours you need to find a sustainable pace.  Here is an email from someone who enjoys running with a group but struggles with running alone: Hey Stew - When I run with my group of friends, I am always faster than when I ...
    Rated +6
  • +14

    Fitness For the Female Law Enforcer

    I typically group men and women into the same workouts, especially if they are applying for positions in the military, law enforcement, and fire fighting careers. My personal opinion is that women can perform on a men’s standard (they do not have to, but can) with a little extra work and proper training. I have experienced this personally throughout my years ...
    Rated +14
  • +13

    Getting Ready for Summer: Can You Hang with Two-a-Days?

    If you have been dedicated to your exercise routine and results have started to taper, it may be time to pump up your workout by adding something new - maybe even another workout in a day. Yes - good ole two a days! They worked back in high school preparing for sports. But, can you fit two workouts into your day ...
    Rated +13
  • +6

    Fitness Questions and Answers for Cops

    *Do you have any advice with changing bad habits, or advice on what kinds of food I could eat on the run at work or could take in the patrol car with me through an entire shift? Also, any other changes I could make to my workout to help increase metabolism?* "This is what I do for food.":www.stewsmith.com/foodplan.doc But when on ...
    Rated +6
  • +2

    Can You Die if You Drink too Much Water?

    This week, a concerned Army Reservist asks, “I have heard about people dieing of drinking too much water. Is this possible?” This is a great question because so many times this issue is taken out of context causing people to stop drinking water altogether. When you read about people who die or get kidney damage “from drinking too much water” you ...
    Rated +2
  • +3

    Fit to Serve? How Can I Best Serve My Country?

    The email that prompted this week’s article was from a young man contemplating on joining the police force, yet he is not quite sure to go local, state, or federal law enforcement. Arriving fit is his plan, but “how fit do you need to be a police officer”? Here is his question: What is the overall physical fitness level of the ...
    Rated +3
  • +11

    The NEW Lower Back Plan

    We all are susceptible to lower back injuries– military, law enforcement, advanced athlete, beginning exerciser, or sedentary person – we all get back injuries of some sort. The back injuries seen most in doctor’s offices and chiropractic clinics world wide involve the lower back / hip region and can occur from a variety of different causes. According to Dr. Steve Erle ...
    Rated +11
  • +2

    Mixing In Calisthenics With Lifting Weights

    Here is an email I get often from people seeking to improve calisthenics scores in PT tests. Either they ask to do pull-ups, pushups, dips, etc every day or how to mix them into a weight lifting program. Here is what I recommend: Hi Stew - I really enjoy weightlifting three times a week. I was wondering if I can do ...
    Rated +2
  • +4

    Passing Military and Special Ops Swim Test

    Many future military and law enforcement special operations team members have to learn how to be comfortable in the water.  Whether that is to SCUBA dive, swim for miles, or learn insertions and extractions from the water using boats, submarines, or helicopter, learning to swim while wearing full combat gear is a requirement in many special operations units.  Here is a ...
    Rated +4
  • +4

    Fitness For Cops Over 50

    Here is an email that is often received from men and women seeking to lose the "spare tire" or weight around their hips, help reducing their blood pressure, and overall just get healthier. It is a journey that can lead to many enjoyable future years if you can catch up with Mother Nature and Father Time before they catch you! Here ...
    Rated +4
  • Rate

    Cardio Alternatives

    This week, I had a question that comes from a frustrated exerciser who likes to swim and either cannot make the pool times or the pool is closed at the times he can reserve time in his schedule. Cross-training with other cardio options is always healthy. Runners get injured three times as much as people who cross-train with swimming, biking and ...
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