Firefighter Workout: Cycle 3, Week 3

Firefighting requires a unique set of skills and physical abilities. Build the stamina, strength, endurance, and power you need to perform in physically and mentally demanding situations.

These workouts are designed by full-time firefighter and coach Lars Bredahl. Lars has been involved in various aspects of firefighting, including working on the Firefighter Combat Challenge Team and working as a trainer for his co-workers. Lars brings his years of experience and expertise together to create this workout program.


These workouts are designed by full-time firefighter and coach Lars Bredahl.Lars has been involved in various aspects of firefighting, including working on the Firefighter Combat Challenge Team and working as a trainer for his co-workers. Lars brings his years of experience and expertise together to create this workout program.


Who is this program for?

  • Firefighters seeking a higher level of fitness

  • Men and women who want to become firefighters

  • Firefighters interested in competing in firefighter challenges

  • Anybody that wants to train like a firefighter


Why should I use this program?

If you would like to be a well-rounded firefighter who is not only strong, but who also has good endurance, stamina and power, this program is for you.


What is the training schedule?

Workouts are scheduled every Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday. It is recommended that you begin the program from the beginning rather than jumping in part way through. This program is safest and most effective if you follow it in its entirety.



What equipment do I need?

Most of these workouts should be suitable for a typical gym. Over time there may be a need for some more specific tools like prowlers, charged hose lines, Rescue Randy, pylons, stairs, a Keiser force machine, sledgehammer, and hose bundles.


Where can I find more information and ask questions?

If you have questions, you can head over to the Breaking Muscle Forum, post your question, and I will get back to you as soon as possible with an answer.


Record and share your results! The only way we can make this program better over time is if you share your experiences and results. Comment at the bottom of each workout or in the forum with your age, weight, height, gender, and results.


For the complete explanation of the program, read the Firefighter Workouts FAQ.

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Strongman: Cycle 7, Week 6

Whether you are looking for explosive strength, the ability to lift heavy for multiple reps, or to increase your max lifts, strongman is a fun and effective training method.

Week 6

Day 1

Back squat, 2 x 15 @ 70%, 90 sec rest
T-bar row, 3 x 6
Back raises, 4 x 10
Dumbbell side bends, 3 x 25 each side


Day 2

Floor press @ 65% of max, 9 x 3 for speed
Dumbbell flat bench press, 3 x 6
Dumbbell row, 3 x 15
Dumbbell shrugs, 4 x 20


Day 3

Axle bar deadlift, 3RM
Clean and push press, 1RM
Yoke carry, heavy weight for 20m

Who is this program intended for?

This strongman program is intended for those who:

  • Want to get stronger and faster
  • Want to get ready for a strongman competition
  • Want a general strength and power training program which includes strongman


Why should I train strongman?

Whether you are looking for explosive strength, the ability to lift heavy for multiple reps, or to increase your max lifts, strongman is a fun and effective way to do so. If you are looking for improvements across all three, there is no better alternative.


Here are 33 more reasons to train strongman, and what strongman training can teach us about getting strong.


When are the workouts?

The workouts are released weekly on Monday. There is no need to start from cycle one. Each cycle we program gets better and better, so cycle six is a great place to start.


My only recommendation is that when you start this program, you start from week one instead of jumping in mid-way through the cycle. The programming is progressive and starting from the beginning will ensure the safest and most effective advancement.


What equipment do I need?

Day one and day two sessions are constructed so that you can do them in any respectable gym. No strongman equipment is required on these days.


For the third workout of each week, you will be doing event training. Ideally, you will have access to some basic strongman equipment for this, but this program keeps these requirements to a minimum.


The full list of requirements is:

  • Barbell
  • Dumbells
  • Bench
  • GHD machine
  • Yoke
  • Farmers walk handles
  • Axle bar
  • Log

The more relevant equipment you have access to, the more you will get out of the program. To help you choose substitutions, take a look at these gym-based alternatives.


Where can I find more information and ask questions?

Take a look at my strongman series for an explanation of strongman events split down by equipment. If you have any further questions, please ask them on the Breaking Muscle forum, and I will get back to you as soon as possible with an answer.

Special Forces Workout: Cycle 3, Week 7

Whether you want to join Special Forces or train at this level, this nine-month program uses an intelligent progression incorporating injury-proofing, strength, stamina, and toughness training.


Week 7

Day 1

9 push ups, 9 sit ups, 9 squats
Swim 50m @ 90% effort
tread water 20 seconds while holding a 20lb brick
Rest 2min
x 11


A: back squat X4, rest 4:00, x 3-4
B: push press X4, rest 3:00, x 3-4
C1: weighted pull ups X4, rest 2:00, x 3-4
C2: weighted dips X4, rest 2:00, x 3-4
D: 23 x 4-count flutter kicks,  rest :60 x 3
15min bike @ Z1 pace


EDITOR’S NOTE: Special Forces workouts are written by Wes Kennedy. Wes developed his passion for fitness during his eight years in the Canadian Forces. He spent the last five of those eight years as a Special Forces Operator, which required him to develop into a mentally tough and physically robust individual.


Who is this program for?

  • Military members preparing for a Special Forces selection phase
  • Anybody who wants to train like a Special Forces Operator


How does this program work?

This will be a nine month program designed to prepare military members for Special Forces selection.  The term Special Forces is used broadly and does not necessarily mean U.S. Army Green Beret.


This program will not contain the exceptionally large volume of swimming or rucking that might be required for a SEAL or SAS selection phase, although both modalities will be included.


The program will be broken down into 3 phases, creating a logical and  progressive plan that will have the tactical athlete peaking at the end.  Each phase has a focus, but all pieces will be blended together appropriately throughout:


Phase 1:  Structural Balance / Absolute Strength / Aerobic Base

Phase 2: Strength and Power Capacity / Volume Building / Skill Work / Aerobic Power

Phase 3: Muscular Endurance / Anaerobic Training / Toughness Training / Rucking / Swimming


Where can I find more information and ask questions?

I will post notes at the bottom of each workout that will go into more detail. I will also post links to videos whenever possible. I am constantly adding videos to my Vimeo and YouTube pages that break down various movements in great detail.


If you have more questions, you can head over to the Breaking Muscle Forum, and I will get back to you as soon as possible with an answer. For a detailed explanation of how to read the workouts, warm up properly, and get the most out of this training plan, check out the Special Forces Workouts FAQ.


Why should I use this program?

Whether you are looking to increase your chances of passing Special Forces selection, or you simply want to train at this level, this program follows an intelligent progression over nine months that incorporates injury-proofing, strength, stamina, toughness training, and event specific modalities such as swimming and rucksack marching. It is written based on my experience as an ex-Special Forces soldier turned coach.


What equipment do I need?

Mondays and Thursdays will generally be strength specific days that you can perform at most gyms. Tuesdays and Fridays may require equipment typically found at a CrossFit-type gym. Saturdays will often include things such as boxing, swimming, biking, and running outside.


Record your results!

The only way to make this program better over time is if you give us your results. So comment in the forums with your age/weight/height/gender/results.

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Eating Soy and Testosterone: Can Regular Soy Consumption Really Cause Low T or is That Just Another Myth?

The debate about men eating soy and its hormonal effects has been going on for years, and there are 2 groups in particular who fuel the debate year after year…
1. The group that often contains a lot of vegans and vegetarians, who claim that soy is in fact, a really healthy superfood, and that there’s no science backing up its testosterone lowering effects.
2. The group that usually contains a lot of bodybuilders and gym rats, who claim that soy is the equivalent of eating birth control pills and that it has very powerful testosterone lowering effects in the human body.
But which group is right? Or could it be that both of them are wrong? Let’s find out:

Eating Soy and Male Testosterone Levels

eating soy and how it affects testosteroneThere is really a need for debate like this, because soy is one of the most consumed foods in the world. It’s literally hidden in almost everything that we stick into our mouths.
Just start reading the labels of foods at your house, and you’ll soon see that almost everything has soy in it. The marinade in your meats often contains soy. See that word “vegetable oil?”, that’s more than likely processed soybean oil. Soya lechitin is a filler agent in most processed foods, and as you might guess, it’s a highly processed end-product of soybean production.
It’s so funny how blind we are to the fact that we’re eating a shitload of soy everyday, without actually eating soy. It’s just hidden in everywhere.
Back in 1999 more than 7% of all dietary fats in America, came from soybeans. Over a quarter of all American baby-formulas are made with soy as the base ingredient. And school lunch programs across the country are even adding soy to hamburger patties. That’s just crazy.
Why is soy put into everything then?
1. About 93% of the soy in the U.S is now officially GMO’d (genetically modified). This means that soy is extremely cheap. And cheap is what most of the food manufacturers like.
2. SOYJOY® is one of the leading sponsors of AND (Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics), which is an agency that pretty much dictates how the Americans should eat. No wonder why the governmental food recommendations state that men should eat at least two servings of soy per day…
Well what about the claim of soy reducing male testosterone levels? What is the basis for that?
Answer: Soy contains these compounds called isoflavones (genistein, daidzein and glycitein) which act as phytoestrogens (plant estrogens) in the human body. They’re structurally similar to the principal female hormone, estrogen, and are believed to have similar effects in the body.
As high estrogen level in men are almost always a direct route to low testosterone levels, eating soy – which contains estrogenic compounds – is often blamed for lowering testosterone.
But is that really what happens in the human body? Let’s see what science says:
a) Dr. Kenneth D.R. Setchell from Colorado State University, discovered this small molecule called equol from humans back in 1982. Since then he has been researching the molecule. He has already proven that the compound is formed in the gut when we eat isoflavones, and that men who eat a lot of soy have high amounts of equol present in their blood stream. Back in 2004, Dr. Setchell found out that equol is a strong anti-androgen, which can almost completely shut down the activity of dihydrotestosterone (the most potent androgen).
b) This study followed one 19 year old man who started consuming hefty amounts of soy in his diet. Suddenly the guy lost all interest to sex and suffered from erectile dysfunction. His blood DHEA, testosterone, and DHT levels also plummeted significantly. 1 year after stopping the soy consumption, his erectile health and hormonal profile was fully regained
c) In this human study, from 99 infertile men, the men that ate the most soy had the lowest sperm count.
d) In this study, soy protein increased the number of epithelial cells in the breast tissue by 29% (this is a sign of overblown estrogen).
h) These three animal studies [this, this, and this] found out that the isoflavones in soy can cause breast cancer (another sign of overblown estrogen).
i) In this study the researchers found out that male infant rats who received soybean feed when they were still in womb, had problems in sexual organ developement. This study also found out similar effects.
j) In this study, soy protein decreased testosterone and DHT levels in healthy young men.
NOTE: There are few studies which show no major differences in testosterone levels after soy consumption. However they’re quite often sponsored by SOYJOY® or other large soy producers. Meaning that the results are of no use and often completely biased.
Another thing to note is that dihydrotestosterone is made when an enzyme called 5-alpha reductase converts testosterone into DHT, and as soy lowers DHT, there is actually less testosterone being converted too. Meaning that the reduction in DHT can mask the testosterone lowering effects.



There really isn’t a reason for why men should be eating soy. It contains powerful phytoestrogens and produces equol in the gut which is a strong anti-androgen.
On top of that, does anyone actually like the taste of soy? The only people who eat it are women and men who follow a vegan/vegetarian diets. For men who don’t follow these diets, we tend to eat soy only by accident, as it’s hidden around in so many of our favorite foods.
Anyhow, you should probably avoid soy if you’re a man. It’s not good us, and it tastes bad.

The post Eating Soy and Testosterone: Can Regular Soy Consumption Really Cause Low T or is That Just Another Myth? appeared first on Anabolic Men.

New Year’s Day Total Body Workout



Hey everyone! I hope you all enjoyed a wonderful and safe night last night as we said goodbye to 2014 and welcomed 2015! What better way to bring in the new year than to start New Year’s Day with a total body, at-home calorie burner?! Get a jumpstart on your New Year’s fitness resolution with and this amazing 20-minute workout. Let’s do this 2015!

Here on there are literally hundreds of workouts to choose from. Everything from beginner to advanced, quick to endurance, and at-home to in-the-gym, there is truly something for everyone. Click here to be taken to our workout index.

In honor of New Year’s Eve last night, we’ll run through this workout “countdown style”. Presented below are 5 exercises. You’ll do 5 sets of each with a progressively decreasing number of reps for each. 25 reps for the first set, 20 reps for the second, 15, 10, and finally 5. It’s going to burn, but this is for the new year! Welcome 2015 in style!

Warm-up: We’ll warm things up with the following:
March in place for 1 minute
Walk in place with arm circles for 1 minute
Jumping jacks for 1 minute

The Workout

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1. Air Squats

2. Push Ups

3. Sit Ups
sit up

4. Chair Dips

5. Box Jumps (can be done on a stair)
box jump

Again – you’ll perform 25 reps of each, then 20 reps of each, 15, 10, and finally 5.
Try to get through it as quickly as you can; only brief rests between sets to keep your heart rate up!

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Looking for more great at-home workouts? Tone and Tighten has you covered! Check out our awesome at-home collection!

Make it happen,


By Jared Beckstrand