Preparation vs running with what you have


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PREPARATION VS RUNNING WITH WHAT YOU HAVE
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PREPARATION VS RUNNING WITH WHAT YOU HAVE

Sometimes we think we are in shape because a “test looks easy” or “you were in shape in high school”, but many people fail to prepare for a fitness test and wind up realizing they need to change their training AND thinking when it comes to fitness testing.  Check out this email:



Stew – I run all the time 4-5 days a week and usually get 25-30 miles a week, so I have a runner’s body.  I just tried out for the FBI fitness test for Special Agents and thought that the calisthenics and the run would be a joke.  Well, I was wrong.  I almost failed the 300m and the 1.5 mile runs and did fail the sit-ups.  What gives?  I thought I was in shape?

You know I get this often from people in sports – athletic shape also.  A fitness test on paper IS ALWAYS going to "look easy".  Training for a fitness test is just a different way to train. Though training for a fitness test is not going to make you a better FBI agent, it is the tool they use to allow you in the door.

Any PT Test is not any harder than other workouts you are used to doing - just different. In fact, the time you spend on running 25-30 miles a week can be utilized to run less BUT faster and learn a new mile pace.  Mixing in calisthenics is obviously the next step.  All in all - it should not be an addition to the time you already devote to training. But SPECIFICS matter. 

Basically to get better at taking fitness test, you need to practice taking fitness tests. Otherwise, you set yourself up for failure as there are strategies you can learn such as pacing, exerting on the UP repetition, building up speed every 100m of a 300m run, and building a certain amount of muscle memory to pace out the situps as well. 

The fundamentals of taking a fitness test are the following:

1-      Add speed / pace workouts to your running so you are prepared for a timed run at a faster pace than a jog.  Good goals for men and women are 7-8 minute mile pace respectively. If you can get 6-7 min mile pace - even better especially when the process is highly competitive - better is recommended.

2-      Prepare muscles by warming up prior to pushups, sit-ups, pull-ups type exercises. A run 25m jogs, dynamic stretches, and a 1-5 pyramid is a good warmup:

Run 25m, 1 pushup, Run 25m 2 pushups, run 25m 3 pushups...keep going up until warm and mix in some dynamic stretches for both arms and legs during the 25m sections. 

3-      Most importantly, prior to running / after calisthenics, get the blood back to your legs by warming up the legs by jogging, stretching upper body and legs. (transition training)



4-      Practice, practice, practice – you should take the test once a week (at the least once every 2 weeks) to mark progress and see where you need to focus your next week workouts. This will also help you with the anxiety of the test as you can honestly tell yourself, "this is just another workout day."


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