1. #1
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    Default Best Cardio for FF

    What are the best Cardio exercises for FF preparing for CPAT and Academy?? I am currently interval training on bike, running, using elliptical...I kinda jump around..but what would be best??

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    Quote Originally Posted by almsfan21 View Post
    What are the best Cardio exercises for FF preparing for CPAT and Academy?? I am currently interval training on bike, running, using elliptical...I kinda jump around..but what would be best??
    If you can the StepMill is best to train for CPAT. Do weight exercises that involve high reps. Build your legs with exercise. Do cardio 4-5 times a week and dont forget the most over look part. Diet.

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    Cool Ideas

    If you are focusing on CPAT then the majority of your training should be on a step mill. It is quite different than a stair master. If you only have a stair master don't use the hand rails and make sure you are using big strides not "the mini mach-2 hanging on for dearlife 'maniac, maniac' mode"

    Otherwise I design cardio circuit training. The idea is to change up what angles and demand the body is exposed to. Too often cardio is done with one exercise for long periods of time. Yes, you get a cardio workout, but you also develope muscular imbalances. By changing the exercise you prevent this. An example would be

    Warm up 10 min

    Tread mill
    walk backwards 2.0-2.5 mph 0 deg 1 min
    skip 2.5 0 deg "
    slow jog " " " hands on bar
    " " " hands behind back
    " " " Hands on head
    3.0-3.5 " 2-3 running arms
    " 5 deg 2 min "
    Lunges 20x each leg
    squats 10x
    jumping jacks 1 min
    divebombers 10x
    Same type of sequence on the elliptical or stair master

    Cool down 10 min

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    Default Cardio through resistance to bring up VO2 Max

    Here are some ideas: Super set, opposing muscle groups, no rest. Start light and pyramid up in weight as you go lower in reps while flip-flopping back and forth.

    Some good super sets are:
    pull-ups and push ups (adding wt to wt vest each set)
    lat pulls and dips (adding wt to wt vest each set)
    seated cable rows and incline pec flies (add wt ea set)
    weighted walking lunges and stiff legged dead lifts (chin up)... (add wt ea set)
    smith machine squats and jump rope for 1 minute (add wt ea set)
    Step ups with weight vest or hand weights and standing hamstring curls (up in wt ea set)
    Any of these work well super-setted with jump rope (1 min) for cardio.

    Make sure you keep your head above your heart. Keep water close by. Try to work up to 5 minutes of a super set. Do several super sets. Yep, that's alot of sets if you're not resting. Take a day off the next day (or swim).

    Stated above is right- step mill with a weight vest is very important stuff! Remember that it's not enough for legs- you'll need weight training too!

    I have heard of so many knee problems from running, that I don't really agree that it's some thing you NEED to do. (You can if you want, and it doesn't cause problems) If you learn to jump rope well, and do it on a wood floor, it's alot easier on your knees. That's why I suggest it here.

    Just make sure you have good arch support whether you jump or run. Remember to ease into the amount you do either so you don't get shin splints. AND do 100 toe taps on each side before you do either IF you are prone to shin splints! if you do get shin splints, read more about what you might do here: http://www.girlslax.org/shin_splints.html

    For information on job specific training, click here: http://www.fireagility.com/jobspecifictraining.php

    Best of Luck!
    Dr. Jen Milus, DC
    www.fireagility.com

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    Wink

    Thanks for the replies everyone. I decided upon the super setting..I do a super set of 5 sets of lat pull downs, and pushups. I then do a super set of 5 sets of seated rows and pec flies. I do a total of 6 super sets, three of each. On my leg day, I do the same format, squat press, lunges, bicep curls, and crunches for the exercises. It's killer

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    In my oppinion, run up and down the stair occasionally. Most of the workout should be running. It is the most realistic for the job.

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    The one thing that running wont exercise very well is your thighs, this is what causes knee problems. Try wallsits for 3-5 minutes each day, then do them with weights in hand.

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    look into CrossFit.com Best workouts I have ever done.

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    By far running is the best for cardio, however I inderstand that not every one is cut out to run a marathon. The stairmaster / stepmill is a great machine. as someone said running doesn't do much for the quads, so do some bike work or the stairs.

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    Default Off the cuff

    Just to give you an idea of what I do...

    I'm cheap, so I don't pay money to belong to a gym. The "Step Master" is not an option for me.

    I have two old semi-truck tires that I use when preparing for the step portion of the C-PAT. I'll put one of the tires on my back and do lunges (approx 20 per leg because that's the length of my back yard) I do some excercises that I've developed in my back yard for a circuit style training.

    Then I'll chain the two tires together, throw the chain over my shoulder, take them to the alley and drag them forward then backward (the dummy usually kills me during the test). I'll do more circuit style training with cinder blocks, tree branches, a sledge hammer etc...

    Then I'll take one of the tires on my back again and end by stepping on the steps of my back porch 180 times, 90 times per leg (one step per minute times 3 minutes) By the way, each tire averages 105 lbs a piece.

    I alternate this workout by running hills and cycling or running. My point here is that you don't have to belong to a gym to be successful in the CPAT or any other physical. Take what you have and the test that you'll be taking and make it happen for yourself.

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    I started doing Hindu squats before I took my CPAT.

    To do these you just place your hands out in front of you parallel to the ground. Then you squat down about 75% of the way while on your tiptoes, then rise back up. Do 2 or 3 sets of 10 about 5 days a week. At first they are hard, but in a week you will notice how easy they get.

    Hindu squats are good and bad for you. They are good since they build up your legs (especially at the knee) and give you some semblance of balance. But I've heard they (when done poorly) can tear your knee ligaments.

    All I know is pro athletes use them and I used them.....and I passed my CPAT.

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    Default Good Stuff

    All of the above are great ideas...

    Don't forget the step mill training with the weight vest...

    No matter how hard you train for the stair climb, your legs will feel like rubber when you're through. The time it takes to recover from this depends on your fitness level and your V02 Max. VO2 Max is the maximum amount of oxygen your body can process in order to feed your muscles to do work. In tests like the CPAT, if your VO2 Max is not high enough, you simply fail. Your legs may give out, or worse, you may become injured.

    To avoid these pitfalls, you must train properly!

    Gradually pushing up your limits over time can allow your body to compensate a little bit each time. This allows your heart and lungs to get stronger each time, thus preparing you for more, harder work the next time.

    This is an event that is really easy to train for. You simply need a road-map of how much weight to use when, and a plan of how to safely increase resistance and duration. You really do need a weight vest for this. They are sold at weightvest.com.

    Remember that training on the step mill is only part of the training process necessary for training for the CPat. Your legs need to be trained with medium to heavy weights. This step mill training plan is only a very small part of the bigger picture. If all you do for your legs is this training plan, you will probably fail the CPat.

    The rest of this article...

    Read Here....

    Dr. Jen

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    Default cpat

    I have a question for you guys that have pasted the CPAT. I work out about four times a week. I have read the posts and it does'nt seem like you lift weights much. The workout that I do is from Montgomery County, in Maryland that is the department that I am testing for first. Basically it is a full body workout then the next day all non weight exercises. I don't really like the chest one day and back the next ect. Anyways just wondering what others do so I can include that into my workout.

    thanks

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    I am in favor of training your body as a unit instead of individual muscle groups in regards to preparing for firefighting or the CPAT. If you are from a different school of thought, then I beg you to try and pick something light (like a piece of paper) off the floor while using ONLY 1 muscle. Physically it's impossible.

    There are certain abilities (like balance, strength, agility, power, endurance, coordination, and flexibility) we must train to prepare our bodies for the rigors of the service. I am certain most of us agree to that. And, we shouldn't avoid helping our hearts. So,it comes down to exercise selection, time management, and program design (including an understanding of training principles).

    I've used the M-W-F total body strength with the T-Th-Sat cardio approach. It works well for many but might have to be adjusted according to one's schedule plus the intensity should be varied since this program has you exercising 6 days in a row with only 1 day off. This combined with a stressful job wreaks havoc on your nervous system and ability to recover-not to mention eventually attacking your desire to exercise.

    It's worth spending time learning the fundamentals of program design to help make the right decision when it comes to training. Hope this helps.

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    Quote Originally Posted by timpage View Post
    look into CrossFit.com Best workouts I have ever done.
    I agree, I started to follow the Crossfit program about a month ago. I thought I was in pretty good shape until I started Crossfit. Their philosophy just makes sense. We're athletes, not bodybuilders, so we need to train like athletes.

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    Mad Maxx and Mpoletta are right.

    Body building is great, if you want to be a body builder. In my experience it is function, not form that you "guys" are after. (That's generic- for peeps).

    You need to get specific when you train if you want maximum performance. Use major muscle groups only. Do exercises that immitate what you need to do on the job. Add to them, exercises aimed at preventing the most common injuries (esp low back/core/trunk).

    Cross fit is great because it employs many muscle groups at one time. It's to the wall tough, if you want it to be...which is where you need to train in order that you can perform that way once on the scene, in an emergency.

    The guy with the tire and chain idea is really thinkin'. That's creative, cheap, and very good stuff.

    If you don't have semi tires, though, training in the gym, with some functional exercise (sports specific or job specific) can be done.

    Here's an article on job specific training

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