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  • New Workout Routine?

    Hey guys, I was googling firefighters workouts to help get me started to develop a program for me. I have a gym membership and am in decent shape as of right now. I am looking to get into awesome shape. my current workout routine goes as follows

    Biceps and Abs

    Pec's and Tri's

    legs, shoulders and back

    sat and sun

    Each day I do 3 different workouts at 3 sets a piece going down from 12,10,8.
    I am looking for a good solid workout to help reach my goals of becoming a full fledged firefighter one day, I have 3 of the 11 NFPA 1001 courses under my belt as of this month lol.

    Also a good diet plan would help me greatly

    I appreciate all that can contribute

  • #2
    Check out crossfit.com It is a strength and conditioning program that is not only FREE, but is the best thing out there if your goals are general physical preparedness.

    Perfect for firefighters, police & military as we have to train very hard for the unknown & the unknowable. The key to the program is not specializing and routine is the enemy...

    As far as diet goes if you are looking for a structured plan check out either the PALEO diet or the ZONE diet... Most of their ideas on diet are pretty on point.

    If you are looking for general diet advice here is just the tip of the iceberg...

    1) Eat lean meats, fruits and vegetables. Cut back (or out) on sugars, carbohydrates, sodas, juices, sauces etc..
    2) Drink alot of water. Everyday
    3) Try to eat foods that are in their most natural state
    4) Eat smaller portions more frequently throughout the day (5 or 6 times)
    Last edited by NODAK; 09-15-2010, 01:44 PM.


    • #3
      A good split I've been using for a while is a 2-a-day with cardio every day

      M/W/F -

      Morning : Chest - 3 exercises (3 sets ea x 6-10 reps) ; Back - same formula ; ABS ( 2 sets x fail )

      Night : Shoulders, Bi/Tri (3 exercises ea, 3 sets 8x10)


      Morning : Legs (4 exercises, 4x10-15), ABS (2xfail)

      Night : Traps, Lower back, Power exercises ( truck pushes, farmers walks, grip work)

      I run at least 1 mile a day

      I've been doing powerlifting for a while now so the volume doesn't bother me much.

      My only advice is if you do a 2-a-day split make sure to eat plenty of whole foods and make sure not to over train.

      and NODAK is right, crossfit is a decent workout.. I don't care much for it because it's pretty much a bunch of random moves pieced together that you do as fast as possible. It's great if you want to build up some good cardio endurance but I you wont see much as far as strength gains.

      The best thing to do is find what works for you.. so play around with everything.


      • #4
        Workout ideas

        Not knocking anything, just a few things to consider

        Keep in mind that the "Split" day concept came about from bodybuilding, the idea being to overload specific muscle groups to stimulate growth for looks. It allowed a person to spend alot of time on a few muscle groups which in most cases creates muscular imbalances, this can increase you risk of injury.

        The "functional" trend as seen in Cross fit or www.adapttraining.com is a much more efficient way of working out (IMHO). Keep in mind that when we (FF's) are out on the fireground we never use isolated muscle groups, the neuromuscular connection has to work multiple muscle groups to both move joints as well as stabilize joints. If you predominantly isolate certain ms. groups and not train the body as a whole then there can be an increased risk of injury. I feel that this is why so many "Big burly firefighters" get hurt, many times doing low demand activities.

        The other advantage to the overall body workout is that you can address all the components I feel are required for the "efficient tactical/occupational athlete: strength/power/ endurance (muscular and respiratory)/ ROM/ agility/ balance. The question to ask is whether your workouts address all of these components. The second advantage is that you can perform a workout in 30 minutes or create one as long as you like. Each workout can focus on certain components but always include all of them to some degree. The key is to create the demand needed to increase performance while maintaining maximum efficiency of the body as a machine.

        I feel that lack of ROM is probably the most prevalent factor in FF injuries along side muscular imbalance.

        If you would like an example of some workouts drop me a line.

        Orlando Gomez Portland Fire & Rescue


        • #5
          Gomez, glad to see your response, you did a great job of explaining it. I agree we never use "isolated" groups so why are so many folks hung up on doing iso's. Firefighters have to stop training like bodybuilders and start training like athletes, because that is how we perform on the fireground. Short bursts of "all out" followed by using compound muscle groups.
          I use programs out of Renegade Strength and Conditioning gym by Jason Ferruggia great stuff. Big weight with few reps, and various conditioning exercises to keep it fresh.

          My current workout is based on the strong lifts routine.
          Workout A Squats,Bench Press, inverted row, pushups or dips and rev crunches
          Workout B Squats, overhead press,deadlift,pull ups, planks
          Conditioning days have 40 yard sprints, hill sprints, battling ropes, jump rope, and a few others.
          If we want to perform top notch on the fireground, train like an athlete.


          • #6

            I'm not a firefighter, but it does the trick for me at least.
            It doesn't involve weights just run, pullup, situp, pushup.

            And.....of course.....eating right.


            • #7
              Major muscle group work only

              All good input, Gomez, Fire fuss, all you guys. I agree with functional training. BUT: I almost never do or suggest minor muscle group work. I don't think working biceps, triceps or calves in isolation are as effective as say, weighted walking lunges, pull ups and push-ups. I tend to do more of those on those days, and leave those minor muscle group things for body builders and New years resolutioners... as i call them.... short timers.

              No offense, Firefuss, just my idea...
              Dr. Jen


              • #8
                My workout.....

                I'll have to send ya an I.M. with the program I use. If you've seen the commercials they don't lie. When I started I was 6' 2" and 225-230 with a belly.

                Now I'm the same height and 185, with a much flatter stomach. I've still got a lil' bit of "love handles" but I'll burn 'em off, I know I will.
                "Be LOUD, Be PROUD..... It just might save your can someday when goin' through an intersection!!!!!"

                Life on the Truck (Quint) is good.....

                Eat til you're sleepy..... Sleep til you're hungry..... And repeat.....


                • #9
                  As someone who is trying to get into the fire service, here's my workout 3-4 days a week:

                  run - 4 miles ( averaging 32 min. )
                  finish with a sprint to the top and back down a 6 story stairwell x 2. Then drop for 50 pushups. Stretch, then strap on a 50 lb. weight vest and climb the 6 stories 10 times or climb 6 times with an additional 45 lb. bag of rocks.
                  Stretch some more.

                  Superset: Incline BP w/ pullups:
                  BP ( reg grip ) - 2 x 10; 5 x 5 ( close grip ) - 5 x 8
                  Pullups - 10,10; 10 x 8 ( these alternate between reg and close grip )

                  Stretch 3 mins.

                  Superset: barbell curl w/ overhead DB press - 5 x 8

                  Stretch 5 mins.

                  Weight sled: 210 lbs.and wearing the 50 lb. vest:Continuous set with the only rest being a transition to the next sequence: my driveway is 100 ft. so this is up & back:
                  A) "Hose" Drag 200 ft. ( 3/4" rope folded a few times to make it thicker )
                  B) Kneeling hand-over-hand pull 200 ft. ( this is done in 35 ft. increments as the rope is only that long for now...pull 35 ft. then run to the next spot, drop and pull the next 35 ft. and so on )
                  C) "Rescue" Drag 200 ft.

                  Sometimes, I substitute weighted dips / pushups for BP; squats and deadlifts for the sled.

                  On alternating days, I do an ab / walking lunge / short sprint routine adapted from a Stew Smith workout.

                  I'm looking at adding in some chopping/sledgehammer exercises, weighted bear crawls but I'm not quite sure where to add them.

                  Any advice is greatly appreciated.
                  Last edited by johnb; 11-01-2010, 06:23 PM.


                  • #10

                    I would add the sledge work after you incline BP and pull ups... maybe even as a 3rd exercise and make it into a 3 part circuit instead of a superset...

                    That is a GREAT workout! You have obviously been working at this!
                    When I need help in an emergency, you are the type of person I want to show up!
                    Dr. Jen


                    • #11
                      Dr. Jen,

                      May I refer you to the CFD Recruiters here in Charlotte?! Thanks, I've been training hard.

                      Thanks for the tip adding the sledge work with the BP/pullups. That should hit a full upper body/core range of motion especially alternating the swinging direction each round; right, left, vertical. I'll start these with a maul axe as I don't have anything heavy enough for proper resistance to hit with the sledge and there is plenty of wood to chop. I'll let you know how that works.

                      By the way, impressive leg presses.



                      • #12
                        Found a solution for using the sledge: place a log in front of the weight sled ( like a mock Kaiser ).


                        • #13
                          Great idea about the log, John! And yes, you obviously train hard. There is another way they test for sledge besides the keiser, though. It's with a target at hip height. Training with a cable machine, set at hip height, and heavy weight: accelerate through the hit motion, release slowly. It works really well too...

                          Oh - the leg press thing. I have reasons for my weight training. There is a method to my madness. I want to live for a long, long time. At 90, my grandmother died of osteoporosis (yes it's possible). Her big down turn was breaking a hip, then that arm when falling. Then the other hip and arm trying to get up and go to the bathroom (on morphine). When they left her laying on her back for 3 weeks, with suppressed breathing due to morphine, plus her inability to absorb calcium, her rib cage finally gave way.

                          I do everything I can to help my bone density. Leg press is huge.

                          Oh, and refer all you like!
                          Last edited by Drjmilus; 11-04-2010, 04:00 PM.
                          Dr. Jen


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