In LEO/Mil

November 30, 2012

PDF Article

Maj. Donald Clarkson outlines how CrossFit can create fitter soldiers in a one-year period between deployments.

The concept outlined in this article is based on having 52 weeks available between a unit’s redeployment and its next deployment. Cycle lengths are not set in stone and can be adjusted based on the unit's OPTEMPO and deployment timeline, or to accommodate more rest/skills weeks as required.

Post-deployment focused training—12 weeks—The focus during this time is on gymnastic skills, technical lifts, nutrition and the identification of individual weaknesses.

CrossFit—18 weeks—This is traditional CrossFit training supplemented with distance movements under load. Incorporate movements under load one day per every other week, preferably on strength days or days with very short met-cons. Recommend alternating faster movements with only body armor for one iteration and slower movements with a ruck/full kit for the flowing iteration. By the end of this period, soldiers should be moving 3-5 miles under full combat load.

Rest week/skills week

CrossFit—12 weeks—This is traditional CrossFit training supplemented with distance movements under load. Incorporate movements under load every week, alternating between movements with only body armor and movements with a ruck/full kit. Once a month, soldiers would move between 5 and 8 miles under full combat load over terrain as similar to their operational environment as possible. Anything further will be counterproductive to the soldiers’ recovery.

Pre-deployment focused training—8 weeks— About 50 percent of WODs in body armor. Incorporate team WODs, and focus WODs on area of deployment.

Rest week

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3 Comments on “Theoretical 52-Week Programming Cycle for a Military Unit”


wrote …

Great article and I hope it helps some units prepare for upcoming deployments though other means rather than the old 5 mile run a day. Unfortunately, and surprisingly, many units have yet to buy off on the CrossFit methodology, to the detriment of their organizations ability to properly prepare for any physical challenge. I hope to see CF spread I our community. I enjoyed seeing the incorporation of CFE in the programming. All around good template. Thanks MAJ Clarkson.


wrote …

I love it. I wish I had CrossFit back when I was in the military. Great article.


wrote …

This is fantastic. I've been thinking of ways to implement this into my unit's physical training program. I think this might be a great way to introduce it.

Pretty sure, though, no one is reading this- I just noticed the last replies were over a year ago.

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