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FREE Spec Ops Level Running Program eBook

Stew smith

Running Plans to Help YOU Get TO and THROUGH any Tactical Profession
(Special Ops Level Selections too)

FREE eBook with

Buy Anything and the Spec Ops Running Plan ($9.99) at and use this RUNNINGPLAN999 coupon code and the Special Ops Running Program is FREE!

Before Your Start....Beware!

Before you go and start this running plan, you will want to first understand a few things.  THIS IS NOT A BEGINNER RUNNING PLAN.  You need to have a decent foundation of running of 15 miles per week before attempting this PROGRESSIVE running plan.  This plan will progress each week by 10-15% and will incorporate running and rucking. If you are not up to progressing up to 30-35 miles a week in a 24 week cycle, consider this FREE program below that is a 20 mile a week FLAT program than focuses primarily on increasing pace and speed versus also adding volume each week.

Running Program to Get YOU TO and THROUGH Selection (20 miles / week) 

For You Under 10 miles a Week - But Trying to Build Timed Run Pace and Goal Pace on Longer Runs...

Build up to the above distances using the program below OR cut the miles in half of the above running workouts every day. 

Running Plan I - Build up to a 5K run!

Beginner Running Chart for people seeking to start an exercise plan and need to lose 20+ lbs:  (always start run workout with a quick 5:00 walk / light leg stretch).  I highly recommend the RUN / WALK method as you are learning to run.

 Each Run in this plan is to be done THREE times a week

Week 1

Walk 20-30 minutes / stretching entire body daily  (monitor weight loss*)

Week 2

Run 1:00 / Walk 1-2:00 for 20-30 minutes

Week 3

Run 1:00 / Walk 1:00 for 30 minutes (listen body as injuries occur this week**)

Week 4

3 Sets of Run 1:30 / Walk 1:30 | 3 Sets of Run 2:00 / Walk 1:00

Week 5

3 Sets of Run 2:30 / Walk 1:00 | 3 Sets of Run 2:00 / Walk 30 seconds

Week 6

4 Sets of Run 3:00 / Walk 1:30

Week 7

Run 1 mile / try non-stop / walk 1 mile fast

Week 8

Run / walk combo 2.5 miles  (from weeks 8-10 – try to run as much as you can)

Week 9

Run / walk combo 2.75 miles


Run / walk combo 3 miles


Running Plan II - Intermediate Runners - Build up to 6 miles / 10K run: ( Timed Runs as well)

After starting a running plan, often people get injured after continuing past the 3 mile run point.  Add some non impact aerobic options in the plan of the week to help alleviate future pains.  Running Form - Evolution of Running 









1-2 mile

Bike or swim

1-2 mile

Bike or swim

1-2 miles

1-2 mile


2-3 miles

Bike or swim

2-3 miles

Bike or swim

2-3 miles

2-3 miles


3 miles

Bike or swim

3 miles

Bike or swim

3 miles

3 miles


2 miles

3 miles


4 miles

4 miles

5 miles


2-3 miles

6 miles


4-5 miles


 6 miles


3 miles

4 miles

5 miles



10 k


 Types of Running Form

Types of Running - Consider making the miles above a combination of steady paced running, goal mile pace running, intervals, and mixing in some sprints too. See the Evolution of Running Forms - Find Yours. 

Mix in a few goal mile pace workouts as well.

** As  you progress with the above running workouts, add in leg workouts with short fast interval runs to total a 4 mile workout: 

Option #1 Option #2 Option #3

Run 1 mile warmup
Repeat 8 times
Run 400m at goal pace
rest with 10 squats
and 10 lunges / leg

Run 1 mile cooldown / stretch

Run 1 mile at goal pace
Repeat 4 times
Run 800m at goal pace
rest with 20 squats
10 / lunges per leg

Run 1 mile cooldown

Run or bike 5 minutes
Repeat 4-6 times
Run or bike 5 minutes
Leg press - 10-20 reps
Wood chopper Squats 20
½ squats - 20
WC Lunges 10/leg
side step squats - 20

Running - Here are some things I learned along the way:

1 - Get good shoes - Running is tough on you - why make it harder on your feet, shins, knees, etc.  I found Brooks Beast to be helpful with 200+ lb runners historically, though I have tried others that were fine too. (UK Gear, Under Armour, Nike, etc). 

2 - Learn HOW to Run - Most people just run and do fine with their natural gait, but some people do not. Here is something I learned a while ago and wrote an article on the Evolution of Running as over the last 35 years different styles have been created.  Do you Chi, Pose, Mid foot, heel roll, barefoot run? Can you hear yourself running? 

3 - Learn HOW to Breathe - Personally, I have found that inhales for 2-3 steps and exhale for 2-3 steps keeps you on a nice in/out rhythm that will help you keep the heart rate lower while you push harder. Inhaling through the nose and out through the mouth is not only a good idea in cold air, it is helpful year round. See the book the Oxygen Advantage by Patrick McKeown to better understand why / how that works. 

4 - AVOID Caffeine Prior to Running Races (timed runs) - When the goal is to run fast and push a high heart rate to crush a fitness test of 1.5,2,3, or 4 mile distances as in the tactical professions, the last thing you need is to do is artificially jack up your heart rate. Unfortunately, this recommendation is written in blood as people die from overstimulation.  

5 - Strength Training and Running Faster - Sure you can work on your sprint / agility speed when lifting heavy (legs), but if you are trying to increase running distance and goal pace speed for timed runs (1.5-4 miles distances), you will do neither well if done together. Take some time off the heavy lifts if your goal is to get faster timed runs for selection PT tests that require 6 minute mile pace to be considered good. But you can still do leg workouts but with body weight as the thing you are working on is cardio endurance and muscle stamina.  Mix in squats, lunges, hills, and/or soft sand to work the lungs and the legs so they will be better at building up to and maintaining a faster pace for longer distances. 

6 - Variety is the Key for Tactical Athletes - Unless you are focused on a specific sport that requires explosive speed, medium or long distances, you may want to consider doing a variety of running to help you with keeping a moderate amount of miles that challenge all energy systems. Here is my cycle that also breaks up the monotony of just running during running cycles:

Monday - 400m goal pace intervals mixed with upper body PT (3-4 miles total)
Tuesday - Easy pace warmup, hill fast runs, spring / jogs with leg PT (6 miles total distances)
Wednesday - 800m goal pace intervals mixed with upper body PT (3-4 miles total)
Thursday - Mobility Day - Bike, stretch, foam roll, massage tools
Friday - Beach Run with leg PT (3-4 miles)
Saturday - Longer run, Endurance Course, O Course Running with Upper body PT / Lift afterwards. (usually 5-7 miles)
Sunday - Sometimes I will do an early AM ruck for 4-5 miles, but usually this is a rest day from running. 

This is my Spring / Summer cycle that typically puts me in the 25-30 miles per week range. Sometimes we boost to 35 miles but we do not stay there for long. 

7 - Logical Progressions - YOU have to progress gently into running. You cannot start off on Day 1 with a 5 mile run out of no where. Well - you can but typically this comes with some overuse injuries. Remember someone's workout is someone else's warmup - make sure you build up over time.  A good progression is 10-15% in time or miles added per week until you get to your goal distance, time, speed, etc. 

8 - Sprinting As You Age - Sprinting in my teens and twenties was fun to push your 100% of your abilities. However, if you want to avoid pulling something (hamstring, hip muscles, calves / achilles) avoid 100% speed effort as you age.  Now, after 40 years old, 80% is my new 100% and I do not pull muscles anymore as it seems I cannot warmup enough to push full 100% sprinting. 

9 - Stretch / Mobility Work - Do DAILY!  You need to stretch often and this can be a mix of static stretches or dynamic stretches but move your joints around often throughout the day - especially if you run in the morning and sit on your butt the rest of the day. 

10 - Finally - Find Softer Ground - I made it a point to get new shoes, and do most of the running on softer than concrete ground:  grass, dirt, sand, and turf. This helps tremendously well for making the impact of running a little less of a pounding. 

Running Plans - All books and ebooks at contain some form of progressive running plan and some with rucking depending on your goals.  But here are some links to running:

Special Ops Running / Rucking Plan (advanced)


Complete List of Books and eBooks Specifically Designed For Your Tactical Profession Goals

There is More To than You May Know

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

  1. 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 / CFT 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 RECON / MarSOC Workout
    USMC OCS / TBS Workout
    USMC IST and PFT


    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
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    6. Online Coaching  

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