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Do You Trust Your Training? Regardless - Test it Often

Stew smith

Trust the Process...But Verify / Assess Regularly

 If you plan to challenge yourself by attending any Special Ops program selection course, you likely are training hard just to get accepted into the training. If you are wise, you are focusing on the both phases of tactical training (getting to and THROUGH the training), then you likely have been on this journey for quite some time. Here are some questions:

Do you trust your efforts each day? Consistency? Sleep? Nutrition?

Did you push your perceived limits? Intensity?

Do you see the results toward your goal / timeline? 

Are you patient and trusting the process? 

Are you assessing yourself on occasion? 

Do you know the standards of fitness required of you when you join the military / in selection? 

Are you training for specific events while improving the elements of fitness you need to develop to endure training? 

There is much to unpack here, but this process is not as simple as finishing your high school athletic career (any sport) and joining the military. You have to put in the time to assess your strengths and weaknesses, develop what you are not good at, and get good at them. Trust me - your weaknesses will be exposed on the first few days of any spec ops selection. 

Live QA Video - Do You Trust Your Training? 

What Types of Assessments? 

Live QA Video - Scores / Times to Shoot For During Assessment

Having assessments regularly can be as simple as starting the week after a Sunday rest or Mobility Day doing the fitness test you are training for. Or it can be part of the workout. For instance, the PT Pyramid may be a classic workout with a warmup - max out - and cooldown built into it, BUT it is also a great assessment tool to check your muscle stamina/endurance and work capacity every week or so. Multiple sets of goal pace running (400 - 800m sets) getting easy each time you run time week after week is another assessment.

None of these assessment work if you are not keeping track of your pace, repetition progress, and times of each workout event. In workouts like the ones below, there are countless opportunities for self-assessment with PT Test programmed regularly, pyramids used as warmups, and timed runs, swims, and swims with fins to test your abilities and progress. 

Try These "GOOD ENOUGH" Scores for the following events to compare yourself to typical graduate level fitness of Spec Ops Programs:

Also see a podcast on the topic of Hell Week Success Fitness Scores

Remember - if you are not assessing - you are just guessing. 

Training is What We Do: 

Need Programming for Fitness Tests and Beyond?  We are all about getting you TO and THROUGH your future training program.  See how that works.   If you want help, that’s what I do… Check out these resources that have helped spec ops candidates succeed where others have failed for the last 20+ years!

There is More To than a You May Know

(In fact, there are more than 40 books, 1000+ articles, online coaching - and more) 

Who is Stew Smith CSCS? Coach, Trainer, Writer, PodcasterI'm the former Navy SEAL that tactical candidates go to for books, ebooks and online coaching to prepare themselves to get to and through intense tactical assessment and selection programs and qualify for service in their chosen tactical profession.  See More at

Where to Find More Information About Optimal Performance Training Programs

When you start training again, consider the seasonal tactical fitness model.  I call it A WAY to train and obviously not the only way to train. But it offers the opportunity to never neglect your weaknesses, helps with flexibility and mobility, but will also put you at a level of physical abilities where you are happy with your overall ability to do just about anything. We have a system where the seasons dictate our training. When it is nicer outside, we tend to run and do more calisthenics. When it is colder and not so nice, we lift more, run less, and still maintain our outdoor activities with shorter runs and rucks. Check it out: Seasonal Tactical Fitness Periodization System.  

These Seasonal Tactical Fitness BLOCK Periodization programs will walk you through 4 x 4 weeks cycles with 16 weeks of each season in two programs. (32 total weeks) 

Increase Strength & Crush the PST / PAST
3 Weeks Strength - 1 Week PT / Cardio Focus 
(16 weeks)

These programs will walk you through 4 cycles with 12 weeks of each season in two programs. 

The Specific Military / Special Ops Physical Fitness Workouts 

Navy SEAL Workout Phase 1
Navy SEAL Workout Phase 2 - 3
Navy SEAL Workout Phase 4  Grinder PT
Navy SWCC Workout

Army / Air Force Advanced Fitness / Special Ops 

Army PFT Workout (Prep For Rucking, OPAT, ACFT)
Army Special Forces / Ranger Workout
Army Air Assault School Workout
Army Airborne Workout
Air Force Special Warfare IFT / OFT / Selection Prep


Advanced Running Program - Special Ops Supplement Plan
USMC OCS / TBS Workout


The Combat Conditioning Workout
Air Force PJ / CCT Workout  Battlefield Airman Prep Course
The UBRR Upper Body Round Robin Workout / Spec Ops version


The Coast Guard Rescue Swimmer / Navy SAR Workout
The Service Academy Workout (West Point, Navy, Air Force Academy)
The Navy, Air Force, Marine Corp Boot Camp Workout


The Law Enforcement Physical Fitness Workouts

The FBI Academy Workout  |   FBI Workout Vol 2  
The DEA Workout
The FLETC Workout - Ace the PEB
The PFT Bible: Pushups, Sit-ups, 1.5 Mile Run
The Fire Fighter Workout - Ace the CPAT


Online Coaching Options

Online PT CLUB - Weekly Workouts created personally for you.

New Member's Only Content / Services Program!

If you want access to years worth of workouts, many of the top eBOOKs, favorite workouts of the week, free fitness APP, closed Facebook Group, video / picture library of exercises, and more access to LIVE Q/A sessions check out the Stew Smith Fitness Members Section

The dashboard below has the links to all the information, archives, videos, and links to workouts, podcasts, live Q and A lessons. 

Consider this! - A Membership Program and Gain Access to Exclusive Content
(click for Fitness Club Dashboard - members only)

Best of all, if you have questions, email Stew Smith himself (  Join the tactical fitness group discussions, latest articles, videos, podcasts at the Stew Smith Tactical Fitness Training Closed Group on Facebook.


Questions?  Just email -

At - List of Products and Services

  1. FREE Articles
  2. Podcasts and Swimming Videos (Youtube, TikTok, Instagram)
  3. eBooks
  4. Books and eBooks in PRINT
  5. Stew Smith Fitness Club membership site
  6. Online Coaching  

Stew Smith Fitness 


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