Cart 0

Who's Ready for a Winter Lift Cycle?

Stew smith

Who's Ready for a Winter Lift Cycle?

There are many options on how to integrate strength training into your tactical fitness training program - see Seasonal Tactical Fitness Periodization.  We focus mainly in the Winter with what we call the Winter Lift Cycle, but the goal is to also maintain the cardio and muscle stamina gains we have created from the Spring / Summer Cals / Cardio Cycle. So, it is not your normal life cycle.

Increase Strength and Crush the PST / IFT(Latest Program)

The recent Winter Lift Cycle has seen many improvements in strength as well as the PST / PAST Tests scores using the 3:1 Block Periodization Model.  Three weeks of strength training / 1 week of PST / PAST Test (cals / cardio) focus for 16 weeks.  Incredible results!

 A recent user of the latest program: 

Stew Smith Fall / Winter Lift Cycle - Tactical Fitness Periodization (Strength and Hypertrophy)

The previous Winter Lift Cycle (2019) was titled Stew Smith's Fall / Winter Lift Cycle and is a 24 week cycle of the following:

Fall - 12 weeks of a transition out of running / calisthenics and into added weight, fewer reps of calisthenics, and reduction is running volume, BUT increase of running speed. Swimming stays normal with fins being used to top off leg days. 

Winter - 12 weeks of warming up with calisthenics and lifting progressions with increased weight / decreaed reps, but with a mild maintenance of running pace with reduced total volume each week. Get big and maintain cardio!

The Complete Seasonal Tactical Fitness Periodization System (NEW 2023)

Read more about it!

Navy SEAL Weight Training Workout

This winter lift cycle workout is specifically designed to be a follow up program to the Complete Guide to Navy SEAL Fitness (cals / cardio) program.  We have used to for those athletes that have a strength weakness.  If you need to put on some mass and build your muscle stamina as well to handle carrying equipment, people, logs and boats, this is a program that will build strength and durability and take your muscle stamina and cardio endurance to the next level.  (sold only on

Tactical Strength

The Tactical Strength book is a winter lift cycle as well as a companion book to Tactical Fitness. This one is unique as we created our own tactical strength test in both of these books.  The elements we help develop and test this cycle of the following:  We also use the Tactical Strength Test featuring the following events:
1. 25-Pound Pull-up:
2. Max 1–2 rep Bench Press:
3. Deadlift (1.5–2 times bodyweight):
4. Squat: Can you squat 1.5–2 times more than your own bodyweight?
5. Strongman Pull-up hang: This will test your grip.
6. 300-Yard Shuttle run: (6 x 50 yard shuttle or 12 x 25yd shuttle).
7. 5–10–5 Pro agility Test:
8. 50-Pound ruck: Rucking 4 miles
9. Kettlebell Swing: 5-minute test using the kettlebell swing or snatch movement.
10. 500 meter Swim with Fins: Any stroke.

Mastering these events will help prepare you for the rigors of any tactical profession and selection program. Sold Only On

Other Programs in the StewSmithFitness library that also include lifting cycles:

Maximum Fitness

Warrior Workout Vol 2

Tactical Fitness for the Athlete Over 40

Weight Vest Workout  

Who Is The Tactical Fitness Coach / Author Stew Smith?

 I'm the former Navy SEAL that military recruits and special ops 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

Check out the Complete List of Training Programs (Spec Ops, Military, Police, Fire)

We Have Answers For Beginners to Advanced Spec Ops Level Training Programs (see below)

Fitness for Beginners - Get Started for Free!

Most people who enter the recruiters' offices are seeking regular military jobs and on the beginner spectrum of fitness. Please consider the following before joining the military:

- Run - Learn how to run and get in shape to run 2-3 miles without stopping.  See beginner / intermediate running plan.  But, you may need to start off with just walking depending on your fitness level. If you played sports that had a little bit of running in it (football) or no running in it like swimming, you need to practice running regularly to get over the growing pains accompanied with impact cardio like running and rucking. To do well on timed runs, you need to practice that distance at a goal pace. Learn about GOAL PACE Running. 

- Calisthenics - You will be doing calisthenics not only throughout the day in basic training, but as a fitness test as well.  Get used to exercises like pushups, crunches, plank poses, pullups, squats, and lunges to work the entire body.  If you need some ideas, see the programs below that address all the physical fitness challenges you will see in preparation, testing, and basic training and beyond. The Boot camp, PFT, Bible, and Cals and Cardio are all encompassing workouts that will prepare you for the challenges of Navy, Air Force, and Coast Guard basic training and fitness tests as well. The Army and Marine Corps will require more challenging workouts and fitness testing.  See links of the books below to see more details of the Combat Fitness Test you must be able to accomplish when you join. 



DO NOT RELY ON THE MILITARY TO GET YOU INTO SHAPE AT BASIC TRAINING.  You will get into better shape for sure during your training if you arrive in lower fitness form, but you need to arrive with a foundation of physical fitness that is specific to your future job in the military / fitness tests / training. If you show up out of shape, you could end up failing standards or injuring yourself causing longer delays or removal from training altogether. 

For You Special Candidates (Get in Shape LONG Before You Join) 

High Intermediate Military / Advanced Spec Ops
Building Programming:

Which Program is Right For Me?
It Depends...Special Ops Candidates

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. 

Other EBOOKS (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. We also have training programs to help you with training as you age in these professions (Tactical Fitness 40+ series).


Lifting Cycle Programs For Those Who Need a Strength Focus

You may have seen my Winter Lift Cycle that I discuss in the Seasonal Tactical Fitness Periodization article as well as have our actual lift programs we have done over the years in the following books.


It is not all just calisthenics and cardio at Stew Smith Fitness

Tactical Fitness, Tactical Strength, Navy SEAL Weight Training Workout, Weight Vest Workout,  Stew Smith's Fall Winter Cycle, Warrior Workout #2Maximum Fitness

These programs as well as my online coaching programs have Winter Lift Cycles in them as part of our Seasonal Tactical Fitness Periodization System. But, do not get these lift cycles confused with ACTUAL strength / power lifting programs, these are strength / power programs that also have a focus on cardio fitness maintenance BECAUSE you need to be good at all the elements of fitness and develop into an all-round Tactical Athlete.  

Most Recent Spring / Summer & Fall Winter Programs:
(click to read more)
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.

Join the Online PT CLUB:
One On One Coaching with Stew Smith

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

At - List of Products and Services

  1. FREE Articles
  2. Podcasts and Swimming Videos at page  
  3. eBooks
  4. Books and eBooks in PRINT
  5. Stew Smith Fitness Club membership site
  6. Online Coaching   

Older Post Newer Post

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published