State of the Art Strength and Conditioning

ert-operatorWhat is Tactical Barbell?

TB is a comprehensive strength and conditioning system – for the operational athlete that requires elite levels of physical performance across multiple fitness domains.

Tactical Barbell I (3rd Ed) is the strength component of the system. It uses a progressive model of strength development that utilizes simple waved periodization. We’ve found this approach to be superior for athletes that need to excel in more than one physical domain. In other words, it’s a model that allows you to get strong without sacrificing your conditioning or skills training.

Tactical Barbell 2 covers off the other side of the coin – conditioning; or your body’s energy systems. Aerobic/anaerobic output, muscular endurance, work capacity and other domains. We use the best methods to progress each domain. What works for developing aerobic output can be drastically different from what improves anaerobic function. We teach you how to build a base, progress each individual attribute, and how to put it all together in the end for a comprehensive program that covers it all. An elite approach that takes sophisticated principles and turns them into simple, actionable protocols.

Both TB1 and TB2 are designed to work together or apart. Already have an existing strength program – but need a conditioning protocol? TB2 works alongside any 2, 3, or 4 day + strength training routine. And vice versa for TB1.

What Sets Tactical Barbell Apart?

The majority of ‘tactical’ fitness programs do the same thing. They throw tough workouts at you in a random fashion. The workouts usually consist of push-ups, running, burpees, like that. They’ll make you work hard. You’ll sweat like an animal. You’ll have a hard time completing them – but if you do you’ll feel good. The problem is they don’t give you significant measurable improvements in ability over time. Your actual limit-strength or muscular-endurance won’t get much better. You’ll sorta float around a plateau for most of your training life if you stick to this style of general purpose training.

Here’s an example. Your aerobic system provides you with the majority of the energy you need for your daily activities. The MAJORITY. It also enhances the anaerobic system. Stronger aerobic system = stronger anaerobic system. Proper aerobic training causes unique physiological adaptations to your heart and energy pathways. What is the “proper” way to develop your aerobic system?

ONE of the steps includes 3-5 sessions a week for 6-12 weeks. 30 minutes minimum, at a slow and almost painfully easy pace. UNINTERRUPTED by sprints or intervals. Slow and steady. Training in this fashion makes your heart work a certain way, and gives you adaptations you simply won’t get by doing sprints or intervals. Now think back to the ‘tactical’ fitness programs you’ve tried in the past. Do you recall having to complete an aerobic base-building phase like this for a couple months? Probably not. I’m guessing you were given a laundry list containing a variety of cool exercises that left you on your back in a puddle of sweat. Feels good – but doesn’t do much to actually advance your aerobic system. If you develop certain aspects of your aerobic system first – that laundry list would’ve have been easier to do. Make sense? Make no mistake, sprints, hills, calisthenics and all that good stuff will come into play. But at the correct time and place.

That’s just one example of how we approach things.

Work smart.

Results speak. Just because something is new or different does not necessarily make it more effective. Just because something is complex or has more moving parts does not make it more potent . Simply put, TB is for the operational athlete that requires a reliable, repeatable system for developing elite levels of strength and conditioning.

About the Author

Don’t leave your strength & conditioning to trainers that have never strapped on a ruck after 48 hours of sleep deprivation.

I have twenty years of combined experience in both the military and law enforcement. My early years were spent serving in physically demanding units, as an infantryman and paratrooper.

After military service came law enforcement, including a significant amount of time as an operator and Subject Matter Expert on a federal Hostage Rescue Team.

What has stayed constant has been a voracious interest in anything that could keep me performing at a high level. I wanted to be the strongest, fastest, and most capable I could be at any given time.

You name it, I tried it. Traditional bodybuilder style training. Strength programs designed by powerlifters. Mixed martial arts. Group conditioning workouts. And of course the training I received in the military and law enforcement. These programs and methodologies had value and I learned something from all of them. However they weren’t suitable ‘as-is’ for my particular goals and lifestyle. My yardstick was performance in the field.

I was greedy, and demanded a lot from my training program. Extreme results. Some way to measure the outcome. A systematic method of progress. No guesswork. I didn’t want a program that would leave me short on time with nothing left in the tank to train other vital skills. I didn’t want to be the guy that could bench a thousand pounds but couldn’t run a block. I didn’t want a program that had me fiddling around with balance boards, cables, rubber bands, or any other trendy pieces of equipment.

If a program required me to gain large amounts of bulk or body fat to improve strength, it was useless to me. I could see examples of the type of athletic strength I wanted everywhere. Mixed martial artists, sprinters, gymnasts, lean professional football players. With all of these examples around me, I refused to believe you had to settle for being bulky and somewhat fat to be extremely strong. Tactical Barbell originated with that slant.

Ultimately, I wanted something simple, repeatable and reliable. I wanted something that delivered results that the extremist in me would be satisfied with.

Tactical Barbell grew to be that program over twenty years. A program that now addresses the unique needs of operators around the world – be it military, LEO, First Responder or other.