“Fittest I’ve ever been”

G’day Brian,

I spoke to you earlier in the year for some advice, in particular the Couch to Commando program from your website.

You also wrote an article “How gender bias in recruiting can hurt an individual (male)”, if your memory serves you well.

Since then, DFR told me that, come the new financial year, Infantry would be competitive-based rather than first-in-first-served.

In early July DFR called and asked me to complete a practice PFA, which I ended up scoring 60 pushups, 100 situps and 11.1 on the beep test.

The next morning I had a phone call from my enlistment coordinator offering me an Infantry enlistment date with only 3 weeks notice.

I suspect my practice PFA results had a large part to play with being accepted, and can confidently say that I would never have achieved these fitness results without the Couch to Commando program I found on your website.

I started it on 1 January and here are a few other noticeable improvements the program has made for me:

  • Barbell deadlift; went from 120kg 1RM to 190kg 1RM in 7 months
  • Barbell squat; 70kg to 135kg 1RM
  • Bench press; 50kg to 100kg 1RM
  • Pullups: 1 to 12 dead-hang reps
  • Chinups: 5 to 18 dead-hang reps
  • Beep test: 8.1 to 11.1
  • 20km pack shuffle with 30kg and hills went from 3 hours and 10 mins to 2 hours and 30 mins.
  • 10km pack shuffle with 30kg and hills is now down to 1 hour and 10 mins.
  • Turkish getup: from 4kg to 24kg in 7 months.

I also recently completed the 10,000 kettlebell swings in a month challenge that Don Stevenson mentioned in one of his fitness blog posts from your website which has now more or less bullet-proofed my lower back and glutes.

I have also found that it has trained my nervous system to recover very quickly. Before starting the program I would generally only workout on Mon, Wed and Fri, and I’d be buggered all week.

Now I can complete 13 workouts per week (4 resistance sessions and 9 conditioning) and feel like I still have a lot more energy to keep going throughout the week.

So big thanks to you and Don! I am now the fittest I have ever been and have put myself in a pretty good position for Infantry training.

After IET’s I will definitely continue the program and aim to have a crack at SF selection a few years down the track.

Name withheld.

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Brian Hartigan

Managing Editor Contact Publishing Pty Ltd PO Box 3091 Minnamurra NSW 2533 AUSTRALIA

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