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  • CPAT Prep Help

    I'm considering buying a personalized program from Mike Stefano (firefightersworkout.com). But before I do so I want to make sure that it is realistic that I be ready for my CPAT in time. This past july I weighed 185 lbs at 5 feet 7.5 inches.(I'm a professional musician, fast food on the road over a year catches up)This is about 25 pounds overweight. Since then I started working out and getting back into my athletic shape (in highschool I was a soccer player and played on the Olympic Development team) I, like everyone else on the board, have wanted to be a firefighter my whole life, its in the blood. I now weigh 158, I run 2 miles everyday, and I goto the gym 6 days a week (3 days of lower body, 3 days of upper body, 7th day rest/just cardio). I'm filing for the FDNY and I expect that to be the first CPAT I take (I'm 19 so I'm just now entering the world of testing, but I have the old man and brother who've been thru it all) The written is set to be around Jan. 20th and judging from the stuff I read in the FDNY 06 thread, it takes about 8-9 months between the written and physical so that puts the physical around September 07. I would say I'm in average shape. With this program ( Ive read a lot of you guys have done it) and the given time frame, is it realistic that I can be ready for the CPAT? The only factor for me is I'm doing one last tour for a month, Oct 23rd- Nov23rd. I can take a stepper and resistance bands/dumbells so I dont see too much a conflict. Other than that I'm not restricted to much and my work ethic is in line. I just need someone to let me know if its in the cards. Thank you very much for your time.

  • #2
    Training Plan

    Dear FLA,

    I have no idea what Mike Stefano's program includes, so I can offer no feedback on that. It sounds like you are working out quite a bit, and that's a good thing.

    2 things to think about:
    1. Set a plan for the step mill training. It's the part that knocks the most people out. Use a weight vest to train. Count back from when you need to be ready and set out a plan. (See below)
    2. Do task specific training: aimed at the exact tasks to be performed.

    Last month, I wrote an article on the ceiling breach and pull for the firehouse.com newsletter. Click here to read it:
    http://cms.firehouse.com/content/art...8&sectionId=11

    The month before, my article was about step mill training. This contains a full plan of action for the step mill portion (only) Click here:
    http://cms.firehouse.com/content/art...49&sectionId=8

    For more help on the events themselves, go to:
    www.fireagility.com/cpat_events.php

    Dr. Jen

    www.fireagility.com
    www.backsafegolf.com
    Last edited by Drjmilus; 09-23-2006, 12:30 AM.
    Dr. Jen
    www.fireagility.com

    Comment


    • #3
      I took it last month and passed and I’m twice your age. I don't know how fit you're but here is how I prepared:

      1) Jog at least 20 miles a week. (I ran either 5 miles or 3 miles increments)

      2) Train on a stair master w/ weight vest. (I used 50lbs vest plus a back pack with additional 50 lbs of plates) at least 4 times a week.

      I built up my stamina to carry 100 lbs for 5 minutes.

      3) Go to the gym or lift some weights: Day 1 Back/ bi's, Day 2 Chest/ tri's day 3 shoulders/ legs. I'm not talking heavy lifting just hit all the muscle groups.

      I trained this way for about 3 months prior to the test.

      If your mind says quit, keep going its only 10 minutes.


      Good luck...
      Fortune does not change men; it unmasks them.

      The grass ain't greener, the wine ain't sweeter!! Either side of the hill.


      IACOJ PROUD

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by RoughRider
        I took it last month and passed and I’m twice your age. I don't know how fit you're but here is how I prepared:

        1) Jog at least 20 miles a week. (I ran either 5 miles or 3 miles increments)

        2) Train on a stair master w/ weight vest. (I used 50lbs vest plus a back pack with additional 50 lbs of plates) at least 4 times a week.

        I built up my stamina to carry 100 lbs for 5 minutes.

        3) Go to the gym or lift some weights: Day 1 Back/ bi's, Day 2 Chest/ tri's day 3 shoulders/ legs. I'm not talking heavy lifting just hit all the muscle groups.

        I trained this way for about 3 months prior to the test.

        If your mind says quit, keep going its only 10 minutes.


        Good luck...
        Thanks alot for the advice man. My gym doesnt have a stepmill but they do have a stair master. Are these as effective?

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by FLA1786
          Thanks alot for the advice man. My gym doesnt have a stepmill but they do have a stair master. Are these as effective?

          Yes, I used a stair master as well. I feel it helped me with my balance.

          I would not advise starting with 100 lbs, start at 50 lbs and build up to 100lbs.
          Fortune does not change men; it unmasks them.

          The grass ain't greener, the wine ain't sweeter!! Either side of the hill.


          IACOJ PROUD

          Comment


          • #6
            Stair Master

            I think it is better to use a 6" step and step up, then backwards, down, off the back (60 step ups in 60 sec) than to use a stair master. Use a stair in the gym, or a reebok step like they use in a step class.

            Weight vest: I would start lower than 50 lbs, and build up more slowly. This guy who went up to 100 lbs is alot bigger than you are. Your spine and discs are not meant to handle that much axial load. If you did what he did (which was obviously fine for him), you may injure your back, and have permanant problems.

            I know a college basketball player who went straight to 50 lbs, and blew 3 discs completely to shreds. Granted, he wore it for longer than we are speaking of, but still... ease into it. He ruined his life, and his career. Don't let that happen to you.

            Print out that step mill/weight vest training plan I suggested above, and use it. It will work, and it will make sure you don't get hurt.

            Best wishes!

            Dr. Jen
            Dr. Jen
            www.fireagility.com

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Drjmilus
              I think it is better to use a 6" step and step up, then backwards, down, off the back (60 step ups in 60 sec) than to use a stair master. Use a stair in the gym, or a reebok step like they use in a step class.

              Weight vest: I would start lower than 50 lbs, and build up more slowly. This guy who went up to 100 lbs is alot bigger than you are. Your spine and discs are not meant to handle that much axial load. If you did what he did (which was obviously fine for him), you may injure your back, and have permanant problems.

              I know a college basketball player who went straight to 50 lbs, and blew 3 discs completely to shreds. Granted, he wore it for longer than we are speaking of, but still... ease into it. He ruined his life, and his career. Don't let that happen to you.

              Print out that step mill/weight vest training plan I suggested above, and use it. It will work, and it will make sure you don't get hurt.

              Best wishes!

              Dr. Jen
              I researched your website/program. When do you think a good time would be for someone in my shape to start your program? If the orginal post info isnt enought I can give you more.
              I figured as much about the weight vest after reading the 11 week program. Do you by any chance know where to get a step up? I looked at my gym tonight for one and didnt see one.

              Comment


              • #8
                Awesome thread..... I take my CPAT in a few weeks.

                The advice in here is priceless
                " Don't play with Fire and you Won't get Burned "

                Comment


                • #9
                  I also trained on a stair-stepper with 75# vest and I would occasionally step up and down on a block. The harder one? Stepping up and down from that 8" block was more difficult than the stair-stepper. For my CPAT, I bogged down on the dummy drag. I am not sure how I would train different now that I have done one especially finishing with 1:55 left on the clock.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    where can one buy a vest? How much will they run you for?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Listen to Rough Rider! I followed Dr Jen's advice and I didn't do so well. Not beating up Dr Jen, it's just the facts. Backpacks are good only if you know how to correctly adjust the pack and use one with a internal or external frame. I used a backpack, weighted vest are over priced and there wasn't one available at the localfitness center. Improving your cardio vascular endurance combined with total body strength training is the ticket. Although I did not do well on the stepmill, I was successfull in completing the PAT for Los Angeles County, they used real stairs and real equipment. The stepmill serves no purpose. It's just a piece of exercise equipment. It requires balance, and anyone who has been in the service for a while knows that when you have an SCBA on your BACK and trying to carry a three-man load, balance is significantly affected. That's why they put hand rails on stairs. The other point is, the stairs are moving and I am at the mercy of the machine. With real stairs, I am moving and I am in total control. My hand touched the rail on the stepmill, not grasped, touched like the CPAT video states you can do. But the subjective judgement of the proctor said otherwise. That's the way it went, no excuses. When you take the CPAT, pay attention to what you're doing on the stepmill and ride it out. It will be over with before you know it and won't have to do it again.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        In order to avoid inadvertantly touching the rails on the step mill I crossed my arms across my chest and grabbed the vest during the test...good luck!

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          what advice of mine?

                          Quote:
                          I followed Dr Jen's advice and I didn't do so well. Not beating up Dr Jen, it's just the facts. Backpacks are good only if you know how to correctly adjust the pack and use one with a internal or external frame. I used a backpack, weighted vest are over priced and there wasn't one available at the localfitness center.

                          First- I think anyone needs 12 weeks to train for the CPAT unless they are pretty large and in very good shape.

                          Second- Followed what advice? I never told anyone to get a back pack. They are not a good solution. People say they can't afford one, and I offer alternatives if they are having financial hardship. Please don't think I mean they are a good aternative. In terms of training for the test, the weight vest is the only option. I am talking in terms of training for the test and protecting your spine. "Above all, do no harm"

                          I would go to weightvest.com and get a vest. Your spine will thank you later!
                          Weight vest: $200, Blowing a disc: Priceless!... Losing a career:devastating.

                          Dr. Jen
                          www.fireagility.com
                          Last edited by Drjmilus; 04-25-2007, 08:53 AM. Reason: forgot something...
                          Dr. Jen
                          www.fireagility.com

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            CPAT Excuses

                            For anyone getting ready to take the CPAT. This was posted on our email system from someone who helped administer the test a few weeks ago.


                            The Excuse Board used at CPAT. Actual excuses used by applicants ( We don't make this stuff up).

                            All of these were used by the applicants after they failed the test.

                            I didn't know I was on a clock
                            I didn't eat
                            I ate too much
                            I ate at Taco Bell
                            I worked last night
                            I didn't make it to any of the open or formal practice sessions
                            The vest is too heavy (the vests all weigh 50 lbs)
                            The proctor slowed me down
                            I am not a "Morning Person"
                            I am not an "Afternoon person"
                            The course is confusing
                            I have allergies
                            I worked out this morning
                            The ladder was under control (while lowering the rope, he let go)
                            I am Sick
                            I got Asthma
                            My feet are too big (for the stepmill)
                            If I could just use my own gloves
                            I think you changed the course
                            If you could speed up the stepmill, I wouldn't stumble so much
                            I am only 5 minutes late (for his test)
                            I had the wrong vest size
                            I was out of the country

                            I was stopped by a train (same guy)
                            I was stopped by a cop
                            I got a ticket

                            I ran the mini marathon
                            I got the same cramp as I had in the mini marathon
                            I have a bad knee
                            I have water on the knee
                            I couldn't get a grip on it
                            I didn't want to burn out
                            I didn't know where to go on the course
                            I had the flu, last week
                            I need bigger steps (stepmill)
                            I didn't want to get dirty
                            I didn't train because the video made it look so easy
                            I didn't get any sleep last night
                            I didn't lean on the rails that much (stepmill)
                            I got lost in the maze
                            I made it through before (years ago)
                            I have a pinched nerve in my toe
                            I was a marine. I can do this. I've done 25 mile humps before ( failed Miserably)
                            I got a cramp
                            I feel through a roof (while roofing)
                            I stepped on a nail

                            Questions asked:
                            How long will this take? I have an appointment to make
                            Do I get a break for my age? (34)
                            Can you hold my inhaler?
                            Can I carry gatorade with me?
                            Whats the course record ? (Did not get off the stepmill)"
                            _____________________________________________

                            "Nothing counts 'til you have the badge . . . Nothing!"

                            More Tips on getting hired and promoted by Firehouse Contributing Author Fire “Captain Bob” Articles here:
                            http://www.firehouse.com/contact/10544410/bob-smith


                            Fire "Captain Bob"

                            www.eatstress.com

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