Back to Basic PT Program

In 1982, at the age of 18, I reported to beautiful Ft. McClellan, Alabama for Basic Training and Military Police school. I attended them together as part of One Station Unit Training (OSUT) and was there until I graduated March 16, 1983. All total, I spent 20 weeks there. The first week was processing in. The last week was prepping for graduation and finalizing paperwork. I spent, essentially, 18 weeks in training. I graduated, 19 years old, in the best physical condition I’ve ever been in.

For that 18 weeks of training, I exercised/worked out six days per week, with a “rest” day (just exercises focusing on flexibility with a shorter run or a march afterward) each Sunday. I ate three meals per day with no snacks allowed (although we found ways to sneak them occasionally). I had no alcohol, didn’t smoke and chewed exactly one pack (20 sticks) of Big Red chewing gum in that 18 week time frame. I started that training at 152 pounds and about 15% body fat. I graduated from MP school at 162 pounds and under 10% body fat.

As I look back in preparation for this new program launch, I realize I’m far from that age or physical condition. I’m NOT convinced that I’m physically incapable of attaining it again. Yes, I’ll be a “senior citizen” soon (that magic age of 55) and my body has been through 35+ years of abuse as a Military Policeman and then as a police man in the civilian world. But I have no serious arthritis issues, nor any other serious health issues. All that’s stopping me from being in that same physical condition is eating clean and doing the work. SO…

I’m launching this Back to Basic Physical Training (PT) program. It is NOT the military’s program and does not meet the requirements for the military’s soon to be implemented Combat Fitness Test. It DOES use existing strength, flexibility and cardiovascular training systems, coached by well-known and highly respected trainers, to get in peak fitness. It is comprised of five workouts per week with two rest days and on those rest days there is a cardio component – albeit, not as stringent as the workout days.  The schedule breaks down as:

Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday – strenuous workout.

Thursday – rest day comprised of stretch and then 20+ minutes of YOUR choice of cardio (multiple options for this rest day) Goal is a total of 40 minutes combined exercise time.

Friday, Saturday – strenuous workout

Sunday – rest day comprised of stretch and “relaxed” cardio: walk, golf, etc – just do it for a half hour or more. (again, several options available for the day) Goal is 18-20 minutes of stretch time and then 30+ minutes of additional movement.

The program is built to mimic, as best I can remember, the schedule we had for physical training in Basic Training and Military Police School, but using weights and High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) cardio instead of purely body weight exercises and running as the only cardio. There is always the option of adding extra cardio to the days where the workouts are circuit (no HIIT component) but it’s wise to give your body a chance to recover and rebuild in accordance with the scheduled program.

First launch of program is February 18th and, although my goal was to build an 18-week program, the reality is that it’s a 9-week cycle. My intention is to do two rotations of the 9-week program and then assessing where to go from there. Working on the 9-week cycle, each of the following is a launch date for 2019:

  • February 18th
  • April 22nd
  • June 24th
  • August 26th
  • October 28th (this 9-week cycle ENDS Christmas week!)

That’s FIVE 9-week cycles in the year starting February 18th. How many can you get through? How many will you commit to?

Here are links to the major documents / information you’ll need for the program. All are in PDF format.

Complete Back to Basic PT program booklet

Back to Basic PT Workout Calendar – February through December 2019

Warning Statements

Back to Basic PT Equipment Requirements / What’s Not Required

Back to Basic PT Program Recommendations

Back to Basic PT Program Acronyms & Introductions

Back to Basic PT Program Stretch/Rest Day Option List