Tough Mix of a Few Types of Workouts

Sailors perform lunges during command physical training.
Sailors aboard the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln perform lunges during command physical training at Huntington Hall field in Newport News, Va., July 17, 2015. (Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Ciarra C. Thibodeaux/U.S. Navy photo)

Eventually, what was a workout becomes a warmup as you progress into bigger and better conditioning. Here is a mix of PT pyramids for a warmup, a super-set circuit to push your maxes and a Build Your Own Spartan 300 to see your creativity and ability to finish when tired. This is followed up by a sprint/jog cardio session.

PT pyramid warmup:

Warm up the upper body with pyramid push-ups/sit-ups/run sets:

  • One push-up, one sit-up, run 25 meters
  • Two push-ups, two sit-ups, run 25 meters ... up to 10. Stop.

Warm up the lower body with squat/lunges/25-meter run pyramid 1-10:

  • One squat, one lunge/leg, run 25 meters
  • Two squats, two lunges/leg, run 25 meters ... up to 10. Stop.

Repeat three times.

  • Dips max
  • Pull-ups max
  • 100-meter bear crawl or quarter-mile sprint

Build Your Own Spartan 300:  

Pick six exercises of 50 reps each, using barbells, dumbbells, TRX or calisthenics of your choice =

6 x 50 reps = total 300 reps

For instance, I like to mix in three calisthenics or TRX exercises and three weighted exercises such as:

  • Push-ups 50
  • Pull-ups 50
  • Sit-ups 50 (all done in max rep sets in a circuit until all reps are counted)
  • Bench press 50
  • Push press 50
  • Squats 50 or rows 50 
  • (barbell at 50% body weight)

Then run speed/cardio. Warm up with an 800-meter jog/light stretch.

Run speed and goal pace.

Repeat 6-8 times.

  • Run 400 meters at goal pace for timed runs
  • Walk one minute/light stretch

Optional swim workout:

Warm up with 500 meters at goal pace.

Repeat 6-8 times.

  • Swim 100-200 meters at goal pace for swim tests.
  • Rest with one-minute tread of water (no hands).

Give all of this a try in a single session or break it up into two workouts in a day or two, if needed.

Stew Smith is a former Navy SEAL and fitness author certified as a Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) with the National Strength and Conditioning Association. Visit his Fitness eBook store if you're looking to start a workout program to create a healthy lifestyle. Send your fitness questions to

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