1. #1
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Mar 2006

    Default Getting in shape

    Hello, i'm christian and i'm new here. yeah. i wanna become one of those guys that toss water on the fire. i forgot what they're called.

    Just some basic questions that i have. First of all, i'm a thin-body type guy..140lbs. I don't work out, mainly because i don't have much time. Well, how should i get started, lets say, if i wanna work out at home (without any equipment)?. what would be a good typical workout for starters?

    Also, if i have continuous backpain and it won't go away, is this a big problem for this career? Is being bilingual (spanish) a BIG plus in the hiring process? Thank you.

  2. #2
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Oct 2005


    Well, if you just wanna work out at home with no equipment, try doing isometric excersises, IE pushups, pullups, situps or crunches, etc. Since you're so light, try holding yourself in the pushup position for an extended period of time, then doing a set of pushups, and then holding yourself in the position again. You'll be amazed at how hard it works you.

    Another thing you could do is manual resistance. For instance, take a towel or rope or something like that, have a friend hold on to the ends and then grab the middle and do curls.

    For your shoulders, sit down in a chair and have your buddy stand behind you. Hold your arms straight out from your sides with your elbows bent at ninety degrees so your hands are beside your ears, palms up. Have your partner push down on your hands while you raise them straight up above your head till your arms are fully extended.

    For your legs, you could do jump squats, which is just squatting down, touching the floor with your palms, and then reaching for the sky and jumping as high as you can. Do a lot of 'em, and keep up the intensity.

    ALSO for your legs, stand with your feet shoulder width apart, and just start squatting down, nice and slow. Count to ten, and by the time you reach ten, you should be squatting with your thighs parallel to the ground. Hold it for ten seconds, then slowly rise back up on another ten count. Keep your back straight and don't support your body weight with anything but your legs.

    Tell your buddy not to wuss around with the resistance, these excersises need to be hard. You should feel your muscles burn towards the end of each set, and they should be sore the next day or two.

    This is getting really long, so I'll quit there. There's a few more that I can't quite remember, but if you do those enough times and do them right, you should be getting a good workout, especially if you're not used to excersising.

    Go for runs, even if you're already *skinny*. It's good for your heart and it'll increase your endurance so you don't suck down all your air in 5 minutes. (Not looking down on you or any of the bigger guys, this is a problem I have myself.) Make sure you stretch your whole body, it'll keep you from pulling a muscle and it also just makes you feel *goooood*, in my opinion, at least. It might even help your backpain.

    One last thing... no offense, but I'm sure you can find time to get to a gym. All you gotta do is get up an hour or so earlier and you can get a decently good, quick workout in, no problem. It's worth the time, money and effort.

    Sorry that got so long, let me know if you have any questions or comments. I couldn't tell ya anything about your backpain, Im not a chiropracter, but a roll of 5-inch is pretty heavy when it's wet and laying all the way down there on the ground.

    I hope I helped, good luck!!!

  3. #3
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Jan 2006


    Wow...i was actually going to post something along the same lines as the op. My concern however, is running. I will be attending First coast in st.Augustine Fl in april. I'm wondering if running is required as part of a PT regiment, if there is one. I am training, trying to build muscle and endurance, but I am still a little concerned with copius amouts of running. Can anyone tell me thier experiences with this school if they went? Any advice in the workout area or any area for that matter, like the guy above me who gave great tips, would be so helpful.

  4. #4
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Memphis Tn,USA-now


    Though an "experienced"volunteer firefighter,I'm going to be going through the hiring process for a paid department soon and am already trying to get into better shape.
    On my old dept.,I lived a quarter mile from the station and rode a bike everywhere I went anyhow so I'd use that to get to the station quickly.
    That took care of the legs and endurance.I could make 8 miles in forty minutes as a "cruising speed"over rural roads with easy to moderate hills.
    The arms,I'd use a couple 20# dumbbells.Nothing fancy,I'd lay on my back and press them a couple hundred times,three days a week.
    It got me into better shape than you'd think.I held up my end of the log when extricating patients,pulling ceilings and drywall or dragging a 2 inch line around when full of water.
    Whatever you do for exercise,it doesn't have to be a huge effort to get into shape and easing into it over a period of time is better than waiting til the last minute and cramming it all at once.

    Backpain may be a problem.I don't know if it's a job disqualifier or not.Ask a doctor that would know OSHA/FD regs on that.Make sure to ALWAYS use proper lifting techniques when exercising,working a fire scene or horsing around with the kids.
    I've had a hernia operation and the recovery period is not same day like they claim.Least mine wasn't.

    On your language question:knowing any other language is an asset.In emergency situations,there's not always time to get a translator on the phone to ask where it hurts.I know enough of several languages to get my face slapped or find out what's wrong and am trying to learn American Sign Language as well.
    As much knowledge as you can bring to your department will help enhance the service,especially if you can pass on that knowledge to others.
    Last edited by doughesson; 03-11-2006 at 06:07 PM.

  5. #5
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    Oct 2005


    Well, Beam, I haven't been through an academy yet, but I can tell you I've heard of PT including up to 4 or 5 miles of running a day. That might have been a military firefighting institution, though... can't say I remember, but theres a goal for you to work towards if you feel so inclined.

    Why don't you give them a call? I'd think they wouldn't mind filling you in...

    Keep training and good luck!

  6. #6
    Forum Member

    Join Date
    May 2004
    Oxford, MS

    Default Plyometrics

    Kswartz was talking about plyometrics when discuusing push-ups. Any time you lengthen your muscle and hold it, then try to exert a force, you take away your muscles natural abiltity to spring back. That is called plyometrics. Its great for getting endurance/ great for firefighters. Keep in mind CARDIO is the number 1 killer in the fire service.

  7. #7
    Forum Member
    benlewis60's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2004


    if you're serious about being a firefighter and getting into shape quit farting around and join a gym. If you can't 'find the time' to work out then I have serious doubts about your level of motivation to be a firefighter.

    Speaking spanish is a great plus. But an even bigger plus is showing the hiring board that you've devoted everything you have to being the best candidate possible. I'd suggest you take a good, hard look at what you want to be doing and why.

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