How to Develop a Military Workout Program: 7 Exercise Recommendations

How to Develop a Military Workout Program: 7 Exercise Recommendations

The military has some of the most stringent standards when it comes to physical fitness. That’s why many people find it difficult to develop a workout program that meets the requirements of such a career.

If you are considering joining the armed forces or already command a regiment, designing a fitness plan helps you exceed expectations. This blog post provides an overview of how to develop a military workout program that is challenging yet realistic.

What Are the Baseline Fitness Requirements In the Military?

Regardless of which military branch you are in, you and/or your battalion will be required to complete a minimum amount of training each week. Being able to complete various physical activities begins with a foundation of the right workout structure, regardless of your location.

The branches of the military have different physical fitness standards, with the Marine Corps having the highest standards. Here are the baseline combat fitness requirements for US military personnel:

  • Two Mile Run: Soldiers must complete a two-mile run within a given timeframe to be considered of sufficient cardiovascular health.

  • ​Extended Arm Pushups: The soldier must complete as many pushups as they can in the allotted time, including extending their arms out fully between each pushup while in the chest-to-ground position.

  • Deadlift: Soldiers must perform a three-rep deadlift with the maximum weight for their gender, height, and weight.

  • Standing Power Throw: The soldier throws a 10-pound medicine ball behind and over their head, with the test administrator measuring how far the ball was thrown.

  • Sprint, Drag, and Carry: This task measures the soldier’s ability to sprint 50 meters, drag a 90-pound sled backward for 50 meters, hold a bodily position while moving for 50 meters, carry two 40-pound kettlebells for 50 meters, and complete a final 50-meter sprint.

  • Leg Tuck: Soldiers grasp a pullup bar in the relaxed position and complete as many knee-ups to their elbows as possible within the allotted time.

These are rigorous requirements that are difficult to meet independent of consistent, focused physical training. A versatile workout program helps you or your soldiers prepare for any military test or circumstance. Let’s look at a few sample workouts that prepare you for military fitness tests, as well as equipment that’s made for the job.

Sample Workouts for Each Body Part

Every good military workout program can be customized for case-by-case needs, but most will have you doing a combination of pushups, pullups, crunches, leg exercises, and cardiovascular activities. Each military branch typically has its own specific exercises, often beginning with the upper body.

Some of our recommended exercises may be familiar, while others may be new to you. The important part is that you do them sufficiently and consistently. Make sure to perform these workouts with the correct posture, otherwise all the time you invest in working out won’t generate results.

Here are the core actions for each major muscle group:

  • Chest: Pushups; bench press; incline bench press; flys; pullups; dips.

  • Back: Lat pulldowns; rows; bent over rows; pullups; kettlebell shrugs.

  • Shoulders: Presses; side lateral raises; overhead raises.

  • Biceps: Bench press; curls; hammer curls.

  • Triceps: Dips; kickbacks; diamond formation pushups.

  • Legs: Leg raises; kickbacks; running and biking.

It’s not enough to know which physical activities to use, though. You need a schedule with which to implement them. We’ve developed an outline for that next.


What Does a Sample Military Workout Program Look Like?

A robust workout plan is the next step in meeting or exceeding military fitness benchmarks. It’s ideal to have a workout program that meets the specific requirements of your branch and rank, but a well-rounded fitness schedule is all you need to get started.

Here’s our sample military workout program:

  • Monday (Chest, Back, Shoulders, Biceps): 2 sets of 25 pushups, 2 sets of 3 bench presses, 2 sets of 10 curls, and 2 sets of 10 flys.

  • Wednesday (Triceps and Legs): 2 sets of 10 dips, 2 sets of 15 kickbacks, and 2 sets of 15 overhead extensions.

  • Friday (Calves and Core): 2 sets of 20 crunches and 2 sets of 20 leg raises.

  • Sunday (Cardio): 30 to 45 minutes running or biking.

  • Tuesday (Shoulders): 2 sets of 15 upward presses, 2 sets of 15 side lateral raises, and 2 sets of 20 overhead raises.

  • Thursday (Abs): 2 sets of 20 crunches and 2 sets of 25 leg raises.

  • Saturday (Cardio): 30 to 45 minutes running or biking.

These activities, sets, and rep numbers are a good foundation but should be customized for your needs or those of your regiment. Test this plan and see how it goes with you or your soldiers. If it’s not challenging enough, add more sets to each day. If it’s too demanding, scale back by one set.

BeaverFit: Top-Shelf Military Fitness Equipment

To excel with the above workout schedule, you need the right equipment. BeaverFit’s special operations equipment (SOE) for military fitness training has everything you need. Here are a few BeaverFit products that complement our workout program:

BeaverFit Performance Lockers

BeaverFit carries a range of training lockers but their performance lockers are the standard choice for all-around fitness. This product comes in 8’, 10’, 20’, and 40’ lengths so you can find one that matches your regiment. BeaverFit performance lockers come with pull-up bars, monkey bars, and customizable accessories so you have all the training equipment you need on-site.

10’ Functional Training Locker

Need a training solution for a large regiment in a short period of time? Look no further than BeaverFit’s 10’ locker. This locker facilitates training for up to 50 soldiers and comes with popular accessories like kettlebells, battling ropes, Olympic bars, and sandbags.

ACFT Testing and Storage Locker

If you’re training or testing soldiers on the Army combat fitness test (ACFT) or preparing for your own test, BeaverFit already has you covered. The ACFT storage locker comes complete with everything soldiers need to train for and fulfill the ACFT requirements. This locker comes with two pull-up bars on the outside and storage space for the included training gear on the inside.

BeaverFit: The Perfect Gear for Any Military Workout

Staying in shape year-round is particularly important for military members. The Armed Forces have understandably high physical fitness standards, as active duty members are on the frontlines of various initiatives that protect American freedom.

The best way to meet such standards is with a military workout program, specifically with BeaverFit exercise products. Request a quote for your battalion today.

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