1. #1
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    Default What is the best way to train for

    the stair master? I know this seems like a stupid question but this thing is KILLING me. I go on it around 4 or 5 times a week at the gym. Ive been doing various speeds getting used to it. The other day I tried to go the 3.20 required but without the weight and I couldn't stand afterward. I'm somewhat ashamed of myself because I can squat over 400 pounds and I run pretty regularly. There is just something about this that is wasting my legs. I've been doing it for 2 weeks now and I dont seem to be doing any better at it. I'm looking for basically some stability in training for this so I can build my tolerance. Any suggestions?

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    The stairmill on the CPAT kills a lot of people. I remember the first time I did it my legs were like noodles. The best thing I can say is to keep up practicing. Try doing a circuit style workout where you spend a few minutes on the stairmill and then do a set of something else and then a couple minutes on the treadmill, a set of something else, stairmill, and repeat. Take breaks as needed, but make sure to complete the workout.

    Also, once you get comfortable, start adding in some weights while you're on the stairmill. The stairmill on the CPAT only goes at 60 steps per minute, that's one step per second. More like a freight train than a sports car. Train that way too. Endurance is more important on the CPAT than strength.

    As for the stability, see if you can get your hands on the P90X DVD set. The YogaX DVD does a lot with balance. The Plyometrics one does a lot of jumping, but I feel it helps with balance too. If you can add each of these in once a week or so, they might be able to help a little bit.

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    How about hitting the bleachers at your local HS football stadium??

    Or possibly try single-legged, leg press...

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    Sounds like a muscle endurance issue.. I've got one for ya... Tabata interval squats...

    What is that you say... 8 rounds of bodyweight air squats as fast as you can do them.

    The rounds are exactly 20 seconds of squats followed by 10 seconds of rest. Repeat that 8 times and you did a Tabata interval! Oh and your "score" is the LOWEST number of reps you complete in any of the 8 rounds.

    There are standards you must follow for the squat to count. The crease of your hip must dip below the knee in the bottom and full hip extension at the top of the squat.

    I too can squat over 400lbs and that is easy compared to Tabata intervals

    You can do them with push ups and sit-ups too

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    I might have found my issue today. I think I just need to be very warmed up, beyond stretching. I went on the stair climber today and did 5 minutes at level 3, 10 minutes level 4, 10 minutes level 5, and 8 minutes at the 6th level. Afterward I felt nice, not as bad as the other day and I did more than 3 times the work. I'll start off tomorrow at level 4 then work my up. I also bought a 40 pound vest to hopefully incorporate soon. I will soon order a 75 pound vest for when I think I'm ready for it. I'm going to kick the crap out of this test.

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    How often of a stairmill workout do you guys recommend? Everyday, every other day, or something else?

    What kind of comprehensive training is good for the CPAT?

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    I workout 5 times a week. Each time I work out I use the stair master. I usually work out 3 days, take a day off, work out 2 days, then take 2 off. Rest is as, if not more, important than exercising its self

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    What kind of workout do you do?

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    I've been lifting for about 10 years concentrating mostly on strength gains. My split usually looks like this...

    Monday - Triceps and biceps
    Tuesday - Back
    Wednesday - Shoulders
    Thursday - Off
    Friday - Chest and forearms
    Saturday - Legs and abs
    Sunday - Off
    Monday - Off

    After each workout I do my cardio.

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    Do you count the stairmill as cardio or as a leg workout?

    Also, how long do you usually work out for?

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    I really never did the stairmaster until I started training for the cpat. I used to used the treadmills and ellipticals. I consider it cardio. I'm so glad I started the stairmaster because it is 100% great for cardio. I was on for over 30 minutes today and at the 15 minute mark I was dripping with sweat. I love this thing. My legs feel like jello but I myself recover quickly due to my diet. I'm not really sore the day after.

    My workouts alone, cardio not included can last from 45 minutes to an hour. It all depends on the muscle group I'm working that particular day.

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    What kind of diet do you maintain?

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    I eat my body weight in grams of protein, I consume 265 grams throughout the day. I spread it out through 5 meals. I also eat a bunch of veggies for carbs and some fruits before 5pm. When you lift hard and heavy chicken is your best friend. Also, try and drink at least a half gallon of water a day.

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    MANOFSTEEL: sent you a PM

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    One small trick I started doing while training for the CPAT was to count my steps in three different groups. After the 20 second warm up, there is 180 steps remaining. The 1st group would be 100, 2nd is 50 and the 3rd is 30. It may not seem like much, but it helped keep my mind on something other than how my legs are feeling and how much I thought it sucked and how... It also let me know how much more I needed to push myself.

    For me, that is the most difficult task in any PAT that I have done... that just kicks my butt.

    Also - You are not required to run right after the stairmaster, you can walk, the majority don't. The run is only gaining you a handful of seconds over walking. I used that time to get my legs back underneath me because they do feel like jello after getting off of it.

    Just a couple of pennies to rub together.

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    You say that you couldn't stand after that initial session? That your legs were wasted? It just so happens that I had the exact same result a few days ago after doing this:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bvCLxD3BI98

    Actually, I didn't do that. I did only one lap. It took me nearly 1/2 hour. I couldn't even walk more than a few steps at a time for the first couple of minutes, no joke. My first time doing it a few months ago, I did a mere 1/2 lap in around 20 mins.

    Give it just one try, for one half to one lap, and tell me if that doesn't get the job done. Do it today, and tell me how it went. BTW, one lap should be approx. 120 burpees or so, depending on the length of jump.
    "The democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those willing to work and give to those who are not." Thomas Jefferson

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    MANOFSTEEL,

    Since you're a fellow powerlifter you should be alright, Do you have access to a decent size truck (like a Tahoe or something along the lines)? Practice pushing that up and down your street or in a parking lot at a low angle. That should help you build up enough endurance in your legs

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    Quote Originally Posted by sachse1 View Post
    One small trick I started doing while training for the CPAT was to count my steps in three different groups. After the 20 second warm up, there is 180 steps remaining. The 1st group would be 100, 2nd is 50 and the 3rd is 30. It may not seem like much, but it helped keep my mind on something other than how my legs are feeling and how much I thought it sucked and how... It also let me know how much more I needed to push myself.

    For me, that is the most difficult task in any PAT that I have done... that just kicks my butt.

    Also - You are not required to run right after the stairmaster, you can walk, the majority don't. The run is only gaining you a handful of seconds over walking. I used that time to get my legs back underneath me because they do feel like jello after getting off of it.

    Just a couple of pennies to rub together.
    I'm going to try this. It's funny how the small stuff that occupies your mind helps the most

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    On thing that I learned early on when getting ready for the CPAT was to keep in mind how slow the stairmaster really goes. I have never used the stairmaster to train for the CPAT and have never had a problem with the test, but the mistake that I see guys making is that they train at a higher step rate per minute than the CPAT because they think that faster means they will be more prepared. But at the CPATs slower one step per second rate, it's often more taxing because you are in that stepping motion for a longer duration. Compare it to doing a situp. Which is easier, doing 50 quick situps or doing 50 1-2 second situps? The slower situp is going to tax your muscles more.

    I'm a fan of training your body for exactly what it is going to be tested on (at least for the stair portion). I'd stick as close as you can to the step per second setting.

    Just my opinion... It sounds like you will be more prepared than most.

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    You may want to try doing the "rest step" also. I learned it while backpacking. As soon as you step up on the next step, lock your knee for as long as your foot is on the step. It takes the weight off your muscles and puts it on your leg bones for a second. That equals energy conservation.

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    Quote Originally Posted by RidgeRunner78 View Post
    You may want to try doing the "rest step" also. I learned it while backpacking. As soon as you step up on the next step, lock your knee for as long as your foot is on the step. It takes the weight off your muscles and puts it on your leg bones for a second. That equals energy conservation.
    Ill be trying this tomorrow

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    Manofsteel - How did that tidbit help, the rest step?

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    Quote Originally Posted by sachse1 View Post
    Manofsteel - How did that tidbit help, the rest step?
    It actually went pretty well. At first I held it a little too long and almost fell off like a dumbass, then had to basically run to the top which was probably tiring me out. After I worked that out it held out well

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    MOS,

    Is your CPAT graded as pass/fail? If you're in decent shape, you should do fine. However, sometimes tests need to be trained for specifically for that test. This is what I did preparing for the CPAT for about 6 weeks ( 3 X a week ): ( as a simulated CPAT at home )

    1) - step-ups: starting with the left foot, step up on a step then step up with the right
    then down with the right and down with the left...then repeat starting with the right foot. I started with 90 steps each leg with 55lbs. on my back the 1st week, then progressing to stepping up 2 steps instead of 1 ( kind of like a lunge ) then on to doing 150 steps each leg with 75lbs.

    *after stepups, walk around for 10 sec.

    2) 25 squats with the 55lbs. on my back, then kneel down and do 30 pulls each arm on an exercise band wrapped around a bedpost. ( when I did this outside, I was able to run the length of my driveway and pull my charged garden hose )

    *after "hosedrag" walk around 10 sec.

    3)carry 2 40lb. DB's around for 30 sec.

    *after "equipment carry" walk around 10 sec.

    4) 25lb. DB presses - quickly - 12 reps each arm then immediately pull down with the exercise band 15 reps each hand.

    *after "ladder raise & extension" walk around 10 sec.

    5) with bike innertube wrapped around a 25lb. DB, secured to the bedpost, 15 swings.

    *after "forcible entry" walk around 10 sec.

    6) crawl on hands & knees with eyes closed for 30 sec.

    *after "search" walk around 10 sec.

    7) deadlift and hold for 40 sec. doing half-squats ( when I first did this, I put all my weights on the bed and lifted one end...outside I was able to have the barbell set with 165lbs. and walked with it...not the same as the dummy )

    *after "dummy drag" walk around 10 sec.

    8) holding 2 25lb. DB's end to end, thrust upward from the hip 5 times, then do 3 rope pullups...repeat 4 times. ( for this evolution, I removed my backpack with 35lbs. in it and only had on my 20lb. weight vest ).

    *After "ceiling breach & pull", I would stretch, hydrate and continue on to do whatever workout planned for the day. By the end of 6 weeks, I was doing a 1.5 - 3 mile run before this "CPAT." A couple of times, I did this at the Y. The indoor track was convenient for the walk & run after the stepmill. Just keep at it and push yourself.

    When is your CPAT? Don't wait to get the weights on too long...your back and balance needs to adjust to having the weight as well.

    Hope this helps...
    J

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    I think it's about 10 weeks away now. I think I'm going to eb just fine. I'll start adding my 20 pound vest tomorrow and see how that goes.

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