Just got this question from a prospective BUDS candidate. “Spoke with you a while back. Still in the process of joining the military but an injury set me back. What would you say are good numbers to hit on the squat and deadlift prior to BUD/S?”
Honestly I would not worry about barbell lifts at all.
I would focus solely on getting great scores on your BUD/S PST.
I know because I made that mistake my first time through BUDS.
Before entering the Navy I lifted weights in a bodybuilding gym six days a week.
I would have lifted seven but I had to go to church on Sunday.
I did preacher curls, pounder away on the pec deck and used lots of machines and barbells.
After that training in the bodybuilding gym I went to BUD/S and moved around like a small gorilla with cement in his legs.
I was at first in the Goon Squad (the guys at the back of the pack) and got tortured daily as I was moving slow.
Yes; I was strong and had a few muscles.
But no one gives a shit that you bench press 275 lbs in BUD/S.
All they care about is can you run fast on the Obstacle course, swim fast and be able to carry your teammate if he falls behind.
My muscle man method had failed me. “This SUCKS” I screamed inside of my head.
Later on I failed out of BUD/S for a math test.
I was sent to the fleet Navy and stationed on a rust bucket ship.
We had no weights or weight room (hard to lift weights when your ship is rocking back and forth).
I knew that to excel next time I had to hammer out crazy bodyweight workouts and forget about the barbell.
I got to where I could do 2 hours of straight bodyweight PT workout and then go on a long run or bike ride in the hills of San Diego.
When I went back to BUD/S the training was still hard.
But instead of having cement in my legs I know was more limber and could move more freely.
My pull ups, pushups, obstacle course and swim times improved.
I was no longer tight and stiff and heavy from lifting with the barbell.
I had found a secret that no one told me before.
If I had it to do all over again I would train that same way with bodyweight and endurance workouts.
I know because it works. It is the same method that I am showing my son.
Want to read more and learn how I did it step by step?
Check out the Freak Frog workout Ebook here:
This ebook is written for my son to help him get ready for anything at anytime and be ready for BUD/S if he decides.
I know that you would benefit from it and I guarantee you will get results.
Gotta run – heading out for a long mountain bike ride now.
By the way — Do you consider yourself ready for anything at anytime?
Do you have a survival go-bag packed and ready by your bed?
Do you know how to use a pistol safely to defend yourself and your property?
If the sh@t hit the fan, would you be able to filter your own water, set up a shelter, build and fire and feed your family?
If you answered “NO” to any of those then you need to come to the Freak Frog course on September 23rd in north Florida.
You will learn all of those skills plus more.
Want to learn more? Check out the Freak Frog event link here:
Question: What about rock portage and carrying a boat on your head? You need muscles and trapezoids for that…right?.
Answer: Try this – carry a sand bag on your shoulder and hike down the beach. Dunk the sand bag in the water and carry it above your head. You don’t need a barbell for that. A barbell cost $150 minimum. A sand bag can be made for nothing with an old pillow case. You can also carry a ruck (backpack) for distance in the sand or in the hills.
Question: I weigh 125 lbs and am 16 years old and need to beef up – what do you suggest?
You need to make sure you eat clean protein like eggs, lean meats and vegetables.
Try to get a job in a local warehouse lifting and moving boxes. Have a set of sand bags outside the dock and do pushups and lift sand bags over head during your break.
Question: My recruiter is trying to get me out ASAP but he said it could be anywhere up to 5 months. I know that weights are irrelevant in BUD/S but wouldn’t it be a good idea to build muscle so that rucking and log PT comes easier? I currently am running 5-6 days a week anywhere from 3-5 miles.
After my run I go to the gym for 1 hour or so focusing on muscle endurance. For instance, my leg day yesterday consisted of 5 sets of 15 reps of 155lb squats. Followed up by 5 sets of 15 reverse lunges with light to moderate weight. I finished up with isolated 1 legged squats with 50 pounds using the same 5×15 split. Lastly to wrap up I’ll do anywhere from 300-500 reps for core.
When I’m lifting weights for upper body I only focus on the main power movements without doing auxiliary workouts ( i.e. Curls for the girls type of workouts). And I go for endurance, not trying to bench 300 or squat 500.
Answer: You should be focusing on functional fitness and stay away from excess barbell movements
If you want to get better at rucking you need to ruck (carry a backpack with 30 lbs of gear or sand in it).
If you want to lift a log over your head – you need to get a sand bag or a log and lift it over your head.
I spent YEARS in the weight room with barbells, dumbbells and Nautilus machines — all for mostly nothing (other than building discipline). I spent one year doing bodyweight PT and my performance at BUDS catapulted forward.
Question: Where can I learn more about joining the Navy and the SEAL Teams?
Answer: Check out the website here:
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