Firefighter Hybrid Workout V2

Firefighter Hybrid Workout V2

The new cycle in our workout will consist of upping the amount of strength days to three per week, and trying to get at least one, preferable two, days of metabolic / strength-endurance conditioning as well. However, the priority will be to have three strength days. This is different from our most recent cycle in that we attempted to have two days of each per week.

The reason for this is that we want to try to concentrate on strength days to see how much of a stress we can place on ourselves and see how well our bodies compensate to this stress by adapting to it! The reality is that building up ones endurance is relatively straightforward. The body adapts quickly to such stress, and the only way to be able to really up this in any significant way is by working on the weak link in the chain, which for the vast majority of people is actually their strength! Our scores and times in regards to metabolic conditioning workouts are usually in the top 5% in comparison with scores that others post elsewhere on the internet in regards to either exact or similar workouts. We are comfortable with our metabolic conditioning level and want to see how months of concentrating on strength development will take us to the next level!

The example I use for the connection between metabolic conditioning and strength is the following workout – Cindy – which consists of doing as many rounds of 5 Pull-Ups, 10 Push-Ups, and 15 Squats in 20 minutes as possible. My old score started topping out around 20-22 rounds for a couple of years until I started taking strength training more seriously. Once I literally increased my strength, I started seeing improvements every single time – eventually scoring 28 rounds the last time I did it. The reason for this is that your metabolic conditioning is only as good as your strength will let you. If your quads can only generate so much force, you can’t do as many body-squats as your ‘lungs’ will let you (which the potential us usually much greater than your strength is – this is why you can quickly adapt to running, for me it takes only a couple of weeks to top out when I return to playing ultimate, but your maximum brute strength can take years!). It’s only when you increase that strength that you can push past any road-blocks.

Our new strength-training cycle will still revolve around the basic powerlifting lifts (Squats, Press, Bench Press, Deadlifts, Power cleans) – however the emphasis will be on squats. If you’ve been squatting for at least a couple of years, your body should be able to handle multiple squatting days a week. You do, after all, use your legs on a daily basis – from the moment you get out of bed every morning to the moment you get back into the bed at night (or the bathroom floor if you’ve preceded your bedtime with a bit too much drinking)! The reason you will be able to squat more than usual, however, is that the three day cycle breaks down to ‘Heavy’, ‘Medium’, and ‘Light’. Allowing your muscles, and cells for that matter, to respond, recover, and adapt to the stress. The reason the squat is emphasized in this workout is that the squat, simply put, is the king of all exercises. The squat works nearly all your muscles, and in particular, the posterior chain (the ones responsible for your hip drive – quads/hamstrings/glutes/adductors). The hip drive is responsible for all functional movement – they need to be strong for pretty much everything you do! As a firefighter, your hips are indeed responsible for everything you do – from lifting a ladder to forcing a door open and everything in between – even CPR chest compressions!

In addition to the primary powerlifting lifts, we’ll also be doing a series of ancillary exercises – in the traditional ‘Never Do Nothing’ super-setting fashion intended to ensure you leave the gym having been challenged and covered in sweat! Ancillary exercises refer to the exercises involving the muscles responsible for supporting the movements required for the primary lifts. Basically these ancillary exercises are slightly more isolating in nature and the amount of sets and reps (5 sets / 8-10 reps) that we perform are more geared towards mass-generating than brute strength. Bigger and stronger muscles will in turn lead to larger amounts of weights used for the primary exercises. These ancillary exercises are not the focus of the workout; they are done after the more important exercises take place.

In order to incorporate the exercises we want, we’ve broken our program down into two different days – Day A and Day B. By rotating them between three days per week, we end up hitting each Day (A or B) to a heavy, medium, and light day once per two weeks.

Day A

 

Squats

Press

 

Super-Set One –  Barbell Rows

Weighted Sit-Ups

 

Super-Set Two – Weighted Dips or French Curl (alternate every Day A)

Pull-Ups – Wide-Grip

 

Weighted Back-Extensions

 

Day B

 

Squats

Bench Press

Deadlift or Power Cleans (alternate every Day B)

 

Super-Set – Barbell Shrugs (on deadlift days) or Romanian Deadlifts (on Power Clean days)

Weighted Chin-Ups

 

 

Heavy Day (first workout day of the week) 80-95% of 1RM (2.5 Minute Rest for working sets)

 

For Squats, Press, Bench Press;

 

Warm-Up 3 Sets x 3 Reps (increasing weight)

Working Sets 3 Sets x 3 Reps (increasing weight)

 

For Deadlifts;

 

Warm-Up 4 Sets x 3 Reps (increasing weight)

Working Set – 1 x 3 Reps

 

For Power Cleans;

 

Warm-Up 3 Sets x 3 Reps (increasing weight)

Working Sets 3 Sets x 3 Reps (increasing weight)

 

Medium Day (second workout day of the week) 65-80% of 1RM (2 Minute Rest for working sets)

 

For Squats, Press, Bench Press;

 

Warm-Up 2 Sets x 3 Reps (increasing weight)

Working Sets 3 Sets x 5 Reps (increasing weight)

 

For Deadlifts;

 

Warm-Up 4 Sets x 3 Reps (increasing weight)

Working Set – 1 x 5 Reps

 

For Power Cleans;

 

Warm-Up 3 Sets x 3 Reps (increasing weight)

Working Sets 5 Sets x 3 Reps

 

Light Day (third workout day of the week) 40-65% of 1RM (1.5 Minute Rest for working sets)

 

For Squats, Press, Bench Press;

 

Warm-Up 2 Sets x 3 Reps (increasing weight)

Working Sets 3 Sets x 8 Reps

 

For Deadlifts;

 

Warm-Up 4 Sets x 3 Reps (increasing weight)

Working Set – 1 x 5 Reps

 

For Power Cleans;

 

Warm-Up 3 Sets x 3 Reps (increasing weight)

Working Sets 5 Sets x 3 Reps

 

For Deadlifts, this is a truly taxing exercise if you legitimately challenge yourself with the right amount of weight and you don’t need many sets.

 

For Power Cleans, which is more of a power and speed developing exercise than it is a strength/mass exercise, you don’t need many reps.

WOD Day!!  – the day after light-day should be a WOD day – check out our WODS and do one of them. Rest a day than repeat the cycle…

Ancillary Exercises;

 

All ancillary exercises are to be done at 5 sets x 8 Reps, or maximum amount of times if 8 reps cannot be completed. 1 Minute Rest between super-sets.

 

The amount of weight to be used for both primary and ancillary exercises should go up slowly but consistently over time. This is more of an intermediate strength-training program (as opposed to a beginner program where strength gains are expected on a weekly basis). So if your maximum 3 Reps only go up by 5-10lbs per month, that is great!

 

It’s vital to keep meticulous records of all the weights you use every single workout. Keep records and take notes of every single set and exercise that you perform!

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