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Battle Ready Military Training: Phase 3, Special Ops

You’re ready to be an operator—the elite of the elite—with a healthy reserve of strength and overall conditioning in your ruck.

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  • 4 weeks

  • 13

  • Yes

Warrior Fit Deadlift
Per Bernal
Warrior Fit Deadlift
Per Bernal

By this phase, you’re ready to be an operator—the elite of the elite—with a healthy reserve of strength and overall conditioning in your ruck. This workout will break one rule (and a few brains) in that you will squat and deadlift in the same routine. The squat, which tends to place a heavier burden on your central nervous system, stored glycogen, and feelings, will come first. Your deadlift totals, understandably, may have to be adjusted down to keep performance optimal in the listed rep ranges. In Phase 3, you will also incorporate the single­-arm overhead press. This functional, unilateral move challenges your core musculature while helping you improve overhead pressing power.

Your progress on weighted, vertical pushes and pulls will be put to the test, as you will take your sets to failure for three sets before going naked (sans weight) for 30 finishing reps. The meat and potatoes of the workout will be followed by a nonstop conditioning circuit—four trips through a full­-body gantlet that includes exercises from previous phases.

Because of this workout’s high demand on your body, we recommend that you perform it only twice per week. Mix in an active recovery day at your leisure to train weak spots and/or perform light cardio.

Phase 3 Challenge: Max-Reps Deadlift

Rather than seeing how much weight you can put on the bar, we’re going to test your operator­-level, comprehensive conditioning by seeing how many consecutive reps you can safely perform on the deadlift using your own body weight. So, if you weigh 185 pounds, load the bar with 185 pounds, then grip and rip for as many reps as possible. Terminate the set when your form begins to degrade to avoid injury. And because you would never have access to straps for any task you’re called upon to perform in combat, you won’t use them here. Perform this challenge only once per week. Mark your total each week and try to meet or beat that number in the week that follows.

Return to M&F’s Guide to Getting Battle Ready>>

Routine

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Phase 3 Routine

Perform this workout twice per week. Mix in an active recovery day at your leisure to train weak spots and/or perform light cardio.

Exercise
Equipment
Sets
Reps
Rest
Exercise 1 of 13

Back Squat

Equipment
Barbell, Squat Rack
Sets
8
Reps
3
Rest
--
Exercise 2 of 13

Barbell Deadlift

Equipment
Barbell
Sets
8
Reps
3-5
Rest
--
Equipment
Dumbbells
Sets
10
Reps
3-5 per side
Rest
--
*Perform 3 to 5 reps (on each side) every minute on the minute for 10 minutes.
Exercise 4 of 13

Weighted Pullup

Equipment
Dip Belt, Pullup Bar, Weight Plates
Sets
3
Reps
To failure
Rest
--
Exercise 5 of 13

General Pullup

Equipment
Pullup Bar
Sets
1
Reps
30
Rest
--
**Perform 30 reps in as many sets as it takes, rest-pause style.
Exercise 6 of 13

Weighted Dip

Equipment
Ankle Weights, Dip Station
Sets
3
Reps
To failure
Rest
--
Exercise 7 of 13

Dip

Equipment
Dip Station
Sets
1
Reps
30
Rest
--
**Perform 30 reps in as many sets as it takes, rest-pause style.
Exercise 8 of 13

Pallof Press

Equipment
Adjustable Cable Machine, Resistance Band
Sets
5
Reps
10 per side
Rest
--
How to

Conditioning Circuit

Exercise
Equipment
Sets
Reps
Rest
Exercise 9 of 13

Skaters

Equipment
Sets
4
Reps
10 per side
Rest
--
Exercise 10 of 13

Farmer’s Walk

Equipment
Dumbbells
Sets
1
Reps
100 ft.
Rest
--
Exercise 11 of 13

Battle ropes

Equipment
Rope Attachment
Sets
1
Reps
30 sec.
Rest
--
*Alternating waves
Exercise 12 of 13

Kneeling Ab Wheel

Equipment
Ab Wheel
Sets
1
Reps
20
Rest
--

Sprint Workout

Exercise
Equipment
Sets
Reps
Rest
Exercise 13 of 13

Sprint

Equipment
Sets
6
Reps
20 sec.
Rest
100 sec.
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