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Maj. Sam McGrath’s Para Fitness book

Hi all,
So I’m hoping to join the Paras and am pretty much fit enough to do so.
(1.2 mile time is 7:30).
I’ve been reading Major Sam McGrath’s book called ‘Para Fitness’ as naturally I want to brush up on all aspects before I start, such as strength endurance. However, I was surprised to read that all the 3 programs (low, intermediate and high levels) incorporate running of any sort only twice a week. There is also only 4 days of training per week throughout the entire program. Surely this level of running and cardio in general isn’t enough for a wannabe para? It’s a good book I’m just a bit taken a back at the seemingly low level of running/training sessions.
Intrigued to here what any serving paras/recruits (and soldiers in general) think about this.
All the best
 
This is the book you really need

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The_Duke

LE
Moderator
Hi all,
So I’m hoping to join the Paras and am pretty much fit enough to do so.
(1.2 mile time is 7:30).
I’ve been reading Major Sam McGrath’s book called ‘Para Fitness’ as naturally I want to brush up on all aspects before I start, such as strength endurance. However, I was surprised to read that all the 3 programs (low, intermediate and high levels) incorporate running of any sort only twice a week. There is also only 4 days of training per week throughout the entire program. Surely this level of running and cardio in general isn’t enough for a wannabe para? It’s a good book I’m just a bit taken a back at the seemingly low level of running/training sessions.
Intrigued to here what any serving paras/recruits (and soldiers in general) think about this.
All the best
The man was OC P Coy. He probably knows a bit more about preparation for P Coy than a load of anonymous internet people.
 
The man was OC P Coy. He probably knows a bit more about preparation for P Coy than a load of anonymous internet people.
Yeah of course he does that’s why I got the book and I do his circuits and runs but I just wanted to hear other people’s opinions. I mean two runs a week just doesn’t seem like a lot considering para recruits do phys most days (from what I heard)
 
Yeah of course he does that’s why I got the book and I do his circuits and runs but I just wanted to hear other people’s opinions. I mean two runs a week just doesn’t seem like a lot considering para recruits do phys most days (from what I heard)
The point is to arrive with a good standard of fitness, not smash yourself up.
 
Hi all,
So I’m hoping to join the Paras and am pretty much fit enough to do so.
(1.2 mile time is 7:30).
I’ve been reading Major Sam McGrath’s book called ‘Para Fitness’ as naturally I want to brush up on all aspects before I start, such as strength endurance. However, I was surprised to read that all the 3 programs (low, intermediate and high levels) incorporate running of any sort only twice a week. There is also only 4 days of training per week throughout the entire program. Surely this level of running and cardio in general isn’t enough for a wannabe para? It’s a good book I’m just a bit taken a back at the seemingly low level of running/training sessions.
Intrigued to here what any serving paras/recruits (and soldiers in general) think about this.
All the best

Your body, as young and as fit as it might be, needs time to recover between training bouts. 4 days a week is day on, day off etc etc. That gives you time to recover, build new muscle, improve cardio after each session. It also lessens your chance of injury and making it worse. Maj McGrath knows what he's on about. Do as he says and you won't go far wrong.
 
Your body, as young and as fit as it might be, needs time to recover between training bouts. 4 days a week is day on, day off etc etc. That gives you time to recover, build new muscle, improve cardio after each session. It also lessens your chance of injury and making it worse. Maj McGrath knows what he's on about. Do as he says and you won't go far wrong.
Yeah that does make sense but I’m just worried about not being prepared.
 
I've still got my copy of Fighting Fit by Adrian Weale that I got from the NAAFI, but I'll take a look at this as well, thanks.

PS: best of luck getting through mate, you're doing the right thing doing heaps on getting yourself fit as you can.
 
Yeah that does make sense but I’m just worried about not being prepared.

Understandable, but if you keep to his targets and guidelines, you'll be ok. Eat sensibly and lay off the p*ss. There will be a considerable PT element once you're in to ensure you're at an acceptable standard. If you've followed the book and met the targets, you'l be better placed than most. Good luck.
 

Auld-Yin

ADC
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
Reviews Editor
Yeah that does make sense but I’m just worried about not being prepared.
Don't worry. It does not matter how much you do - you will not be prepared for what is to come :) But stick in, do what you are asked and you will / should get through.
 

RandyLahey

Clanker
When I was at PRAC I was advised upon passing that successful candidates need only run twice a week so as to lessen impact on our legs. Maybe a 3 miler and a 6 miler don’t really bother doing 1.2 milers unless you want to practice for army assessments.

Supplement cardio with a rowing machine do 6-10 reps of 500m as a warm up or warm done after smashing your legs or something. Strong legs in every muscle and glutes are essential for Para fitness.

From what I hear and its reliable info, you get fit at depot through being beasted in the hallways. 1-2 hour sessions of burpees or push ups or waddling or whatever they want to make you do.

My advice would be run twice a week long distance as quick as you can and incorporate some hill reps at the end if you run outside or quick rolling hills sesh after a treadmill run in gym. Do your circuits and definitely learn how to squat, deadlift and hip thrust properly.

You’ll easily smash Assessment Centre and PRAC with that running time I just hope you like being cold and wet!

I wish I could tell you more but unfortunately due to kung-flu my intake date has been postponed to god knows when.

Stay hard mate.
 
Understandable, but if you keep to his targets and guidelines, you'll be ok. Eat sensibly and lay off the p*ss. There will be a considerable PT element once you're in to ensure you're at an acceptable standard. If you've followed the book and met the targets, you'l be better placed than most. Good luck.
Great to hear, thanks for the feedback mate. I’ll try to stay off the old 4 pack and box of fags for breakfast!
 
When I was at PRAC I was advised upon passing that successful candidates need only run twice a week so as to lessen impact on our legs. Maybe a 3 miler and a 6 miler don’t really bother doing 1.2 milers unless you want to practice for army assessments.

Supplement cardio with a rowing machine do 6-10 reps of 500m as a warm up or warm done after smashing your legs or something. Strong legs in every muscle and glutes are essential for Para fitness.

From what I hear and its reliable info, you get fit at depot through being beasted in the hallways. 1-2 hour sessions of burpees or push ups or waddling or whatever they want to make you do.

My advice would be run twice a week long distance as quick as you can and incorporate some hill reps at the end if you run outside or quick rolling hills sesh after a treadmill run in gym. Do your circuits and definitely learn how to squat, deadlift and hip thrust properly.

You’ll easily smash Assessment Centre and PRAC with that running time I just hope you like being cold and wet!

I wish I could tell you more but unfortunately due to kung-flu my intake date has been postponed to god knows when.

Stay hard mate.
Ah right well it’s good to hear all that. At PRAC do you still do the 1.5 miler and the pressups and situps or do you do the new fitness test instead? Or do you just do the new test at Glencourse?
 

Slime

LE
I haven’t read or seen the book mentioned, but there are other ways to help you prepare, and to be honest, many of us here are too old to have had the changes you are about to have.

When you start your training your will go without a lot of home comforts, so it would be a good idea to get used to going without them now.

The obvious candidate for a young person is to start going without using a mobile phone, tablet or social media.

Make you you have a good shave every day, or start ironing/pressing clothes every day.

Start noticing if you have dust or fluff on your clothes etc.

These are all little things, but would all add structure to your day, the military training day does contain a lot of physical work, but also lots of other things where personal admin* or attention to detail are important.

*washing, shaving, cleaning things, arriving early for classes or appointments etc.
 

Cold_Collation

LE
Book Reviewer
Overtraining will only have you knackered when you arrive. Your aim should be to arrive in a physical state ready to take on the training, not to arrive broken.

The early stages of training (Basic/Phase 1) are effectively overtraining, anyway. So arrive fit and healthy, and no more.
 

RandyLahey

Clanker
Put 30 kilos in a rucksack & start running with them in.
Don’t do this OP.

look through my post history I already posted what happened at PRAC. New fitness tests same as AC and your nan could pass them. 1.2 miler not 1.5 (your time is already good enough) though you will likely have a warm up run to familiarise you all with the route.

Don’t worry about depot or PRAC yet just smash AC and remember your CDRILS (lol)
 
Put 30 kilos in a rucksack & start running with them in.

That's a good way to knacker your spine, and likely your knees. The weight should be around the hips and resting on the webbing if you're doing that much weight. And a proper bergen, so the weight isn't bouncing all over the place.
 
I've still got my copy of Fighting Fit by Adrian Weale that I got from the NAAFI, but I'll take a look at this as well, thanks.

PS: best of luck getting through mate, you're doing the right thing doing heaps on getting yourself fit as you can.

This author is a regular and highly respected contributor to this site.
 
Don’t do this OP.

look through my post history I already posted what happened at PRAC. New fitness tests same as AC and your nan could pass them. 1.2 miler not 1.5 (your time is already good enough) though you will likely have a warm up run to familiarise you all with the route.

Don’t worry about depot or PRAC yet just smash AC and remember your CDRILS (lol)
Yeah true the new test does seem really easy even for the run time to get into the para training. That’s the fastest time out of all the roles as well and it’s pretty easy to be fair. And yeah I know running with 30kg is a pretty bad idea. I sometimes go hill walking with some weight but I’m building up slowly as to not get injured. Currently use around 10-12kg
 

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