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The Need for Speed & Timed Run Endurance (Basic Running / PT Plan)

Stew smith

The Need for Speed & Endurance for Fitness Standards Program
(Air Force, Navy, Coast Guard, Police)   


This program is ideal for those who need to crush the standard military, police, fire fighter fitness test (pushups, situps or plank, 1.5 mile run)

In fact, this fitness test is the most common fitness test in the world. It is used by more than 50% of the police forces for entrance level fitness exam, the Navy, Coast Guard, and even the old Army PFT (though they use the 2 mile run vs the 1.5 mile run) Though the Army has moved toward the next tactical fitness Combat Fitness Test, along the acceptance into the Army, many candidates or recruits will see the old standard fitness test (pushups, situps, 2 mile run). 

Many other countries use this PFT as well for their troops seeking employment.  This is why I call this test preparation guide the PFT Bible.   Usually this test is accompanied by a sit and reach flexibility test and/or a body fat test as well. Some branches of the military have transitioned away from situps or crunches and added the plank pose instead. It is never a bad idea for every repetition of crunches or situps you do to do a second in the plank pose to help fully balance the core system. 

This test is truly a FITNESS / HEALTH TEST.  It is not a job performance test.  However, statistically speaking, the better you score on this test, the better you will typically perform at boot camp or basic training or police / fire academy so don't just strive for the minimum standards as it will help you getting through basic training programs. 

Flexibility is key to injury prevention.  The sit and reach portion can be improved upon easily by simply adding stretching to your day for 5-10 minutes.  See Lower Back Plan

For body composition (body fat) reduction you have to focus on food intake as well as adding significant fitness routines to your week.  See the Lean Down Plan for more tips on optimal fat loss with diet and fitness arrangements. Here is a routine that will help you build up your speed for the timed run events, burn fat, and learn your goal pace for the timed run event.

Below is a running plan designed to build up to a faster 1.5 mile run time.  For more advanced running plan see (link)

If you are a beginner to running I would recommend this link for a build up to running program


* goal pace means the pace you need to get your goal 1.5 mile time
(ie a 12 min 1.5 mile run = an 8 minute mile,  a 2 min 400m (1/4 mile)

7 min mile = 1:45 400m (1/4 mile) = 10:30 1.5 mile run
6 min mile = 1:30 400m (1/4 mile) = 9 min 1.5 mile run

* Prevent injuries in the legs by learning how to use the Foam Roller and for good measure do the Lowerback Plan 3-4 times a week

* Arrange your workouts with pt / weights first followed by cardio below in order to reflect PFT testing order

* If you no longer do situps / crunches, replace with 1-2 min plank pose exercise or hanging knee ups.


Day 1
Run and Leg PT

Day 2
Easy Cardio Day

Day 3
Steady Pace Day

Day 4
Run and Leg PT

Day 5
Pace Day
(rest as long as you run)

Day 6/7

Week 1




Warmup with 5 min jog or bike / stretch

Repeat 4 times
400m run at goal mile pace
squats 20
lunges 10/leg
pushups max
Situps 1 min

Bike pyramid or elliptical then:

Run 1.5 mile

Lower Back Plan

1.5  mile at close to goal pace x 2 

Rest 10 minutes in between

Pushup / Situp Pyramid until failure

Warm-up jog 10:00
Repeat 5 times
400m run at goal pace
Squats 10
Lunges 10/leg

Lower Back Plan

Warmup Jog 5:00

400m at goal pace
800m at goal pace
1200m at goal pace
1 mile at goal pace
*rest with pushups / plank pose 1 min each

make up day or extra cardio day / Lower Back Plan

Week 2




Warmup with run and leg stretches

Repeat 6 times
400m run at goal pace
squats - 20
lunges - 10/leg
pushups 1min
plank pose 1min
situps 1 min on the even # sets

Run 15 minute PLUS bike or swim or some other non impact aerobic activity for another 15-30 minutes

Warmup 5 min stretch

Repeat 10 times
jump jacks 10
pushups 5-10

Run 1.5 mile run timed - rest 10 minutes and jog easy 1.5 mile run

Repeat 6 times
run 400m at goal pace
rest with situps 30 sec
(no leg PT today)

Lower Back Plan

Warmup jog 5 min

Repeat 6 times
Run 400m at 5 seconds faster than goal pace
pushups 1 min
plank pose 1min

make up day or extra cardio day / lower back stretch plan


Week 3

Easy Run Week



Bike Pyramid:
Manual mode level 2,4,6,.. hold each level for 1 minute until failure – repeat in reverse order . should be 15-20 minutes long

Run 1 mile at goal pace

Run 15 minutes PLUS 30 minutes of non impact cardio options

Pushup / Situp Pyramid

Long Bike or elliptical ride 45-60 minutes at higher levels of resistance / incline / intensity than normal

Day off - stretch

Warmup / stretch 5-10 minutes


Pushups 1 min
Situps 1min
Toe touch
Run 1.5 mile timed

Make up day

Week 4




Tough Interval:
Repeat 8 times
Run 200m fast as you can
Walk 100m

Pullup / Pushup / Situp Pyramid

1.5 mile run

Three Cardio Day: pick 15 minutes of each:  run, swim, bike, elliptical, row, fast walk

Run 2 miles followed by

4 x 400m at goal paced running

Pullup / Pushup / Situp Pyramid

Run and Leg PT:
repeat 6 times
400m run
squats 20
lunges 10/leg

Repeat 2 times
1/2 mile run at goal pace - walk 3 min

Pace Day - Find a goal pace and run for as long as you can at that pace.  Rest 3 min and repeat again.

Pushup / Situp Pyramid

Day off

Week 5

Timed Run Week

Warmup / stretch as per PFT Guide

Pullup / Pushup / Situp Pyramid

1.5 mile run

Pushup test
Situp test
Flexibility test
Bodyfat / weight test

Cardio of choice 20 min (run or bike)

Rest Day

Complete PFT Test - pushups, situps, 1.5 mile run, touch toes / fat test

Pay day PT:  Bike 20 min, run 20 min, swim 20 min and stretch 10 minutes


Bike Pyramid:  Manual mode level 2,4,6,.. hold each level for 1 minute until failure (repeat in reverse order) should be 15-20 minutes long

If you have any questions, please feel free to email me at and visit the Training Center for the article archive for more information (ebooks, articles) on working out.

See the or more Military & Police PFT Bible

Feel free to email me if you have any questions at

If you want to take it to the next level and start preparing for Special Ops Programs:

 Specific Training for the Special Ops Pipelines

Try Workout Programming Specifically Designed for any Tactical Fitness Goal:

Which Program is Right For Me -
Special Ops Candidates



Navy SEAL Workout Phase 1 Beginner Weeks 1-9 
Navy SEAL Workout Phase 2 - 3 - Intermediate Weeks 1-12
Navy SEAL Workout Phase 4 Grinder PT - Four weeks before Hell Week

Navy SEAL Weight Training Book
Complete Guide to Navy SEAL Fitness Book

The Pipeline of Training Options: 


It depends:  The Complete Guide to Navy SEAL Fitness is a classic and focuses on high rep calisthenics and running and swimming base.  You will build up your running over 12-18 weeks to 20 miles but very fast paced focus on both the 1.5 mile run for the PST and the 4 mile timed run for weekly run test at BUDS. If you are an athlete with a strong power / strength background in lifting and not running or swimming, Navy SEAL Fitness is ideal for you. IF you need some place to start Navy SEAL Fitness is ideal for you as well because a calisthenics base / running / swimming progression is a good place to build a foundation.  Though you will likely need to spend some time in the Navy SEAL Weight Training Book OR if Navy SEAL FItness is too challenging, go with Navy SEAL SWCC, EOD, Diver, PST Phase 1 Workout.  Phase 1 is a good starting point if Navy SEAL Fitness program is too tough. 

Navy SEAL Weight Training - This is part two (winter lifting phase) of my SEAL Prep program. If you have done the Navy SEAL Fitness (12 weeks to BUDS) program a few times and need a break, this is the next program that integrates lifting with the Navy SEAL Prep training. 

Special Ops – Most of my programs tend to focus on getting TO and THROUGH a specific tactical training program. So you may see a mix of all the seasons in some of these books, but if you are training long term, you can take advantage of Seasonal Periodization and save yourself some of the over-use, long term pains that tend to follow many of the tactical preparations - especially on the spec ops level of training. 

Start training today with workouts that focus on the specifics of getting to and through tactical profession training from firefighter, police, swat, military to special ops. We have programs to help you get TO and THROUGH training.


Seasonal Tactical Fitness Programs 

Especially These That Are Used For Local Spec Ops Candidates Last Year


Tactical Fitness Series - Tactical Fitness, Tactical Strength, and Tactical Mobility is an ALL-encompassing program that focuses on lifting, calisthenics, run, ruck, swim, speed, agility, and flexibility / mobility. Many people focusing on USMC (OCS, RECON, MarSOC) Army Ranger / SF, Air Force Special Warfare, SWAT / Federal Law Enforcement, and Navy Special Warfare have done very well focusing on the Tactical Fitness Series and developing themselves into an all-round Tactical Athlete

 OR Do You Want my REAL TIME Seasonal Periodization Training - Delivered Weekly?

Get Weekly Unpublished Workouts Tested and Evaluated by local
Stew Smith Training programs. 

Stew Smith Fitness Membership – You have access to years of workouts for both beginner / intermediate and advanced / special ops levels of fitness. Each week you will receive new and unpublished workouts being tested by Navy SEAL veteran / Stew Smith CSCS and his local group of future tactical professionals in both basic training and advanced spec ops training programming. The latest videos, articles, and other programming will be part of the weekly data feed to members as well. We go through the Seasonal Tactical Fitness Periodization program one week at a time.

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If You Need a More Personalized Approach to Fit Your Needs, Goals, Time per Day, Days per week, Facilities, Abilities, etc...Try Online Coaching

Questions?  Just email me at

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