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Physical Training/Assault Course

#1
I've had my first meeting with an Army careers advisor in Plymouth and will be meeting again next week to hand in paperwork to the Cambridge office.

I've been Thai Boxing for around 4 years and do a lot of board sports - my pushups are good and although not a fast runner, I have excellent stamina (heart rate is around 50bpm).

However, I have very over-developed legs (I’m around 13 stone 5' 9") and as such, cannot do a pull up yet! I hang on the bar, but just can't get myself up, although I am closer than I was a few months ago.

I know guys who bench-press less than I do and are considerably smaller built, but can - which is extremely irritating. I'm developed enough in the arm department to get comments made occasionally, but haven't broken this barrier yet.

As I have just finished uni, the coming months will be spent seriously eating and lifting to develop my raw strength so that my arms and back are same proportionate size as my legs. (I can only just get two hands round my calves)

I am concerned that I might be going to my first AOSB in only the next couple of months.


Like I said, my fitness, strength, push ups and sit ups are great, but I am very slow at sprinting and my pull ups/jumping are pretty appalling.

What is the assault course and standard of required fitness like?

I was told that 50 push ups in 2 minutes are one criteria – which should be fine. A Rifles NCO told me that he thought they required a ‘generally good level of fitness’, and as such if I did well in other tests they might overlook the pull ups.


How much demand for pull ups/jumping are made in the AOSB?


Many Thanks
 
#2
Why not work progressively on the pull ups? Start by using weights machines on low weights and then build up over a month or so. In no time at all, you'll be knocking out sets of ten with your body weight. At this point, you can switch to doing actual pull ups.

I can't answer the question at the end, sorry.
 
#3
I'll certainly be using a weighted pullup machine if one is available at the gym I will sign up to back home.

Regardless, I'll be ordering a pullup bar for my room back home - even if I just hang on it a few times a day and pull up halfway, it will be a good test for my weight training.

Main advantage is that I will have a fridge full of food. Training does get hampered by running out of cash for food at uni!
 
#5
Good call - I've already got a decent protein shake, but having run out of cash in my last term, I'm living on nothing but bread, shakes, peanut butter and the scraps left behind by my housemates!

I'll be looking into some decent energy boosters, as well as protein when I return - and some decent cooking!

My exercise plan will be:

- 40 minutes running 5-6 days a week (first thing in the morning, with only a protein shake in my stomach)

- A 3 day a week split-set in the gym

- Muay Thai once a week (the only class nearby when I'm home)
 
#6
Code:
I have just finished uni, the coming months will be spent seriously eating and lifting to develop my raw strength so that my arms and back are same proportionate size as my legs. 

Like I said, my fitness, strength, push ups and sit ups are great, but I am very slow at sprinting and my pull ups/jumping are pretty appalling.
As a PTI I would be looking for a good and brave run time for your age (not sprinting) press ups with the hands directly under the shoulders with the elbows tucked into the rib cage and then fully extended, sit ups knees bent, torso pulled to the vertical and then returned to the horizontal in a controlled manner with both the sit ups and press ups you need to do as many as you are able within 2 minutes, go to impress and not for the minimum pass rate and you will be absolutely fine

Note this is not just to the entry test standard, I have serving guys and girls in their 50's and mid 50's who can achieve far better!

you will be assessed as much on your enthusiasm and potential for development and drive as anything else however fitness, teamwork and competitiveness is key.

Any thoughts please PM me

with good luck

PoGs
www.pocketcomms.co.uk
 
#7
You thought of doing negatives? Use a bench to help get you up pver the bar then lower yourself slowly till younr knees touch the bench. Do this three to five times, 3 times a week. You thought of getting a rubber exercise band and tying it to a set of pull up bars? Better movement than the pull up assist machine and cheaper too. Also have look at doing pull ups on a lowered bar. One that is only waist high. It is more of a rowing movement but will help strengthen your back.
Oh and supplements will not help you do more pull ups. Only you and your determination to succeed can.
 
#8
ostvic said:
You thought of doing negatives? Use a bench to help get you up pver the bar then lower yourself slowly till younr knees touch the bench. Do this three to five times, 3 times a week. You thought of getting a rubber exercise band and tying it to a set of pull up bars? Better movement than the pull up assist machine and cheaper too. Also have look at doing pull ups on a lowered bar. One that is only waist high. It is more of a rowing movement but will help strengthen your back.
Oh and supplements will not help you do more pull ups. Only you and your determination to succeed can.
Supplements will help you get fit, and in this case fitness=pullups. Obviously it is entirely on him to get up to the standard, but judicious use of supplements will help him get there.
 
#9
jew_unit said:
ostvic said:
You thought of doing negatives? Use a bench to help get you up pver the bar then lower yourself slowly till younr knees touch the bench. Do this three to five times, 3 times a week. You thought of getting a rubber exercise band and tying it to a set of pull up bars? Better movement than the pull up assist machine and cheaper too. Also have look at doing pull ups on a lowered bar. One that is only waist high. It is more of a rowing movement but will help strengthen your back.
Oh and supplements will not help you do more pull ups. Only you and your determination to succeed can.
Supplements will help you get fit, and in this case fitness=pullups. Obviously it is entirely on him to get up to the standard, but judicious use of supplements will help him get there.
There are no short cuts

A good diet healthy and regular exercise are the only way to achieve this I certainly have never taken supplements and have managed to maintain a high standard of fitness as a soldier in my unit in the Balkans, Iraq and Afghanistan. You will most definitely not find access to these supplements in theatre where your fitness and agility will be being counted on by your mates and team members.

My advice would be to read some posts on the ARRSE website relating to this area. speak to the recruiting office dudes and take your time building a healthy balanced fitness to gain entry to the army.

Once you are in, there will be plenty of time to get up to mischief and mayhem!!

Bearing in mind to being up, sober and ready for work the following morning :wink:

Again any thoughts PM me

regards

PoGs
www.pocketcomms.co.uk
 
#10
Be careful with supplements etc trying to bulk up, 13 st at 5’9 you need to check out your Body Mass level with the recruiter, if your BMI muscle or fat is outside the range they will send you away to loss some weight. I know it sounds strange but you can be pumped up and well toned but if your BMI is too big it is still a fail.

Good luck and as always check with your recruiter before you try hard and find out you have wasted your time on the wrong thing.
 
#11
Note I'm not serving currently and I have faild my first AOSB attempt, but my background is similar if not a bit more advanced then yours due to being a mental at uni and the few years following and getting myself out on the circuit.

I'm 5 11 and slightly heavier. I would suggest not trying to bulk out but cutting some calories. You'd be surprised how much easier it is to pull 6 min miles if you lose 6-7 lbs. The same goes for pull ups. I would invest in a dip belt, but try and get 10 hanging pullups done first with just body weight before venturing into additional weight. To get to that number looked up the grease the groove method of training.
Keep the protein count high and up the carbs but try a deficit of 200-300kcal a day from diet.
Also, don't be lazy. You're sprinting after a little while with the extra leg mass should be pretty good. It's the longer distance you will be poor on (relatively, if your pad work is at a good level, you should have a high VO2 max, which probably means your wind is good but your muscular endurance specific to running in your legs isn't as good as it could be- practise running and hill sprints will help that no end).


Hope that helps
 
#12
cbgramc said:
Be careful with supplements etc trying to bulk up, 13 st at 5’9 you need to check out your Body Mass level with the recruiter, if your BMI muscle or fat is outside the range they will send you away to loss some weight. I know it sounds strange but you can be pumped up and well toned but if your BMI is too big it is still a fail.

Good luck and as always check with your recruiter before you try hard and find out you have wasted your time on the wrong thing.
If I'm wrong I'm sure someone will say, but when I had my bmi calculated I was just under the obese range. When the nurse said this she said even if I was over, they would measure my waistline and take it into account.

It might be an unoffical thing however, but that is what I was told.
 
#13
Righty ho.

Jumping/pull up requirements at main board are a bit variable. In the assualt course you will have to hurdle and do a long jump past a marker. Also with the command tasks I ended up hanging off of quite a few ropes/poles/ladders/people so you need decent upper body and grip strength. However not everyone had to do this, but its best if you can.
 
#14
Mr_Deputy said:
It's not about supplements - get on with it and pull your own body weight using your strength and the muscles in your body! For goodness sake.
Find a park and a gym with some pull up bars - some parks have them and many gyms do and just get on with it.
Obviously he needs to do the work. I'm not suggesting anabolic steriods. However, as he's having a lot of trouble with this then it would boost his improvement rate were he to take the proper care over nutrition/supplements. There is a reason why most top class athletes use nutritionists.
 
#15
" (I’m around 13 stone 5' 9") and as such, cannot do a pull up yet!"

Mate just keep trying. I'm 6ft and 15 stone, and I am doing them comfortably now. In the begining i couldn't do one, but i started using that pull down press thing at the gym, working up from 85kgs all the way to 100kgs.

Might be worth loosing some weight also, just had my letter from the medical center and they want my BMI to be under 28, i'm 28.3!
 
#16
Thanks for your responses and advice, all of which seem pretty decent:

POG: Good to hear from a PTI – could you confirm expected numbers for those sit ups and push ups? Could you also confirm if there is a pull up requirement at AOSB?

I can hang fine from things, so that shouldn’t be too much of an issue – although I can safely say my long jump will not inspire any calls to the Olympic committee!

Regarding the debate raised on supplements, I certainly will be using at least protein shakes – but their very designation of ‘supplemental’ implies they are an addition to intensive exercise and excellent diet.

I checked my BMI – it’s currently under 28, and I can get up to 13.5 stone without this being an issue.

I heard the army now take up to 32, but I feel that I could lose close to a stone of fat over the next 12 months – if I could also gain close to a stone in muscle that would be awesome.

Ian1983 seems to have hit the nail on the head, in that I have a high max v02, but my leg muscles feel stiff and cumbersome currently, as I have not been running for the past few months.

Good to hear from you Dionysus – glad you were in the same position and managed to lift your way out of it.


This is my planned routine:

- 40 minutes jogging 5-6 days a week (first thing in the morning, with only a protein shake in my stomach). I’ll start gentle to loosen my leg muscles, working towards pyramid training after a few weeks.

- 3 day a week upper body split-set in the gym

- Muay Thai once a week (the only class nearby when I'm home)

I will be eating a high protein, reasonably low-carb diet. Going for 5-7 small meals in order to keep my muscles fed but to try and shed body fat.

I would appreciate a critique of my planned regime if possible.
 
#17
I'm 5"10, 16 stone, unable to put two hands around my calves... and I'm an animal.

Forget weights, the only 'weight' you should be considering is your own bodyweight. Master working with this, and you'll be electric. Explosiveness and being able to haul ass up a rope, over an 8 foot wall and jumping a relatively short distance should be the only things on your mind as opposed to being able to bench press 500lb weights.

Pull ups should only be weighted once you can manage to pull up your own body, the same with press ups and anything else that is essential.

As far as jumping and running. Get the bleep test off the internet and get very busy with it. Compliment this training with regular 1.5 mile best times (and longer runs to get CV improvements) also pitch sprint work to help get the time down and condition the body to sprint work.

The hurdles are waist high for me and are easily attainable; practise with tennis courts as they are generally 6 inches higher than that and you'll be absolutely fine.

Success at AOSB depends on the individual, there is no 'right body shape'. Body type has little to do with it all, work with what you've got and be physically AND mentally prepared.

Just get busy right now and you'll be fine.
 
#18
alexjholland said:
Thanks for your responses and advice, all of which seem pretty decent:

POG: Good to hear from a PTI – could you confirm expected numbers for those sit ups and push ups? Could you also confirm if there is a pull up requirement at AOSB?

I can hang fine from things, so that shouldn’t be too much of an issue – although I can safely say my long jump will not inspire any calls to the Olympic committee!

Regarding the debate raised on supplements, I certainly will be using at least protein shakes – but their very designation of ‘supplemental’ implies they are an addition to intensive exercise and excellent diet.

I checked my BMI – it’s currently under 28, and I can get up to 13.5 stone without this being an issue.

I heard the army now take up to 32, but I feel that I could lose close to a stone of fat over the next 12 months – if I could also gain close to a stone in muscle that would be awesome.

Ian1983 seems to have hit the nail on the head, in that I have a high max v02, but my leg muscles feel stiff and cumbersome currently, as I have not been running for the past few months.

Good to hear from you Dionysus – glad you were in the same position and managed to lift your way out of it.


This is my planned routine:

- 40 minutes jogging 5-6 days a week (first thing in the morning, with only a protein shake in my stomach). I’ll start gentle to loosen my leg muscles, working towards pyramid training after a few weeks.

- 3 day a week upper body split-set in the gym

- Muay Thai once a week (the only class nearby when I'm home)

I will be eating a high protein, reasonably low-carb diet. Going for 5-7 small meals in order to keep my muscles fed but to try and shed body fat.

I would appreciate a critique of my planned regime if possible.
Ofcourse I'm right :wink:

Re the running. Start off with 2-3 runs a week and make up the other sessions with swimming, skipping or bag work. Ever 2-4 weeks, add a run and reduce the other work. Don't go straight into the high milage or you will develop something (I was running for about 3 months building up, everything was fine, then one week I up'd the milage by about 15% and some of that was downhill running after hill sprints, I ended up with ITB which set me back.).
Try 1-2 hill sprint sessions a week and/or 400m sprints. Might I suggest the 400m build up plan from http://www.tmuscle.com/free_online_article/sports_body_training_performance/running_man. It's horrible :twisted:

Nothing wrong with skipping, circuits, rowing or swimming. Just get the HR up (if you can get a cheap heart rate monitor and look up the karvonen method)
 

The_Duke

LE
Moderator
#19
jew_unit said:
Mr_Deputy said:
It's not about supplements - get on with it and pull your own body weight using your strength and the muscles in your body! For goodness sake.
Find a park and a gym with some pull up bars - some parks have them and many gyms do and just get on with it.
Obviously he needs to do the work. I'm not suggesting anabolic steriods. However, as he's having a lot of trouble with this then it would boost his improvement rate were he to take the proper care over nutrition/supplements. There is a reason why most top class athletes use nutritionists.
Yes - because they train for many hours per day and compete at an unbelievably high level. Nutritional balance may make the difference at the .001 of a second level they need to win.

The poster needs to be able to haul himself up to chin level from a hanging position a dozen times. Snake oil is not going to help him - weight loss, practice, assisted heaves etc will.
 
#20
The_Duke said:
jew_unit said:
Mr_Deputy said:
It's not about supplements - get on with it and pull your own body weight using your strength and the muscles in your body! For goodness sake.
Find a park and a gym with some pull up bars - some parks have them and many gyms do and just get on with it.
Obviously he needs to do the work. I'm not suggesting anabolic steriods. However, as he's having a lot of trouble with this then it would boost his improvement rate were he to take the proper care over nutrition/supplements. There is a reason why most top class athletes use nutritionists.
Yes - because they train for many hours per day and compete at an unbelievably high level. Nutritional balance may make the difference at the .001 of a second level they need to win.

The poster needs to be able to haul himself up to chin level from a hanging position a dozen times. Snake oil is not going to help him - weight loss, practice, assisted heaves etc will.
Tht may be your belief, but I really do believe that you are wrong based on personal experience of my performance gains when using supplements and a regualted diet, and what I've seen others achieve.

Being luddite about a simple way to speed up his physical improvements isn't a particularly effective way of helping him get fit. As it happens, he shows every sign of being very sensible about this and covering all the bases anyway.
 

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