Advice for CFA?

Discussion in 'Naval Academy - USNA' started by erinq2000, Jun 19, 2017.

  1. erinq2000

    erinq2000 New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2017
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    1
    So here's the thing. I run cross country and indoor track, but that in no way means I am good at running. (At the peak of my track season, I ran a 7:07 mile). I am doing various types of running five days a week this summer as a way to both prepare for the cross country season and begin getting myself more conditioned for my CFA. The problem is, I am afraid it won't help me improve. I have good endurance at a slow speed, as most people do, but I need to improve my speed endurance and am not quite sure what I can do. My speed endurance is also holding me back from trying other types of running workouts.
    In addition, I have poor upper body strength. It's always been my Achilles heel since back in gymnastics. Now that I am no longer a gymnast, I can't even do a pull up anymore. At the gym, I use an assisted pull up bar, but I don't get to go to the gym much, so is there any advice you can offer for improving pull ups without a pull up bar? I am better at pushups, but still not good at them, so any advice for that would be good too (I can do about 25 in a row.) Crunches as well.
    Thank you for taking the time to read and reply.
     
  2. ElectedTuna

    ElectedTuna Member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2016
    Messages:
    78
    Likes Received:
    30
    I have some advice, coming from someone who started in a similar position to you, ran cross country, and I also T.A. for a weightlifting class.

    Don't doubt yourself. Anytime you do a workout correctly and try hard then you'll get better. For running workouts, have you ever tried adding in sprints or fartleks? For example, you sprint 10 seconds, then run for 20, then jog slowly for 30. Also, try adding in body weight leg workouts (squat jumps, burpess, jump ropes). From my experience, these made me run much faster, I ran around a 6:20 mile on the CFA.

    In terms of access to a pull-up bar, why not buy one off amazon? A good one only costs about $25 and you can hang it above your door. If you can't do a pull-up, try jumping up to the hang position then slowly lowering yourself. Even lat pull downs, bent over rows, and push ups can help if you have the equipment.

    For pushups, try different variations of pushups doing a few sets of each. For example, my weightlifting class does normal, high and low, low and high, diamond, wide, etc. This also works for pull up routines. Honestly, constant repetition allows you to do more bodyweight exercises. I would try specific workouts, there are so many YouTube videos and online resources out there to help you. I have experience helping others in my weightlifting class so I hope this advice is beneficial. Best of luck!
     
    erinq2000 likes this.
  3. PinWrestling

    PinWrestling Member

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2016
    Messages:
    77
    Likes Received:
    118
    I am a volunteer high school wrestling coach. One thing that I have learned is that the best way to improve in any area of your life is to practice just like the test. If you are a wrestler, you wrestle. If you need a better ACT score, do practice ACT questions in a timed setting similar to the test. If you need to improve on push ups, pull ups, and running; you prepare by doing push ups, pull ups, and running.

    This is my third time applying. My first year, I was only good at sit ups and pull ups. I then trained and maxed out almost everything (didnt max mile or b-ball throw). My training plan is, Basketball Throw: do lateral raises, front raises, and practice the throws. Pull ups: if you cant do one pull up, use a machine at the gym and increase strength until you can do one, GET ACCESS TO A PULL UP BAR, and do reps until failure. Shuttle Run: Practice technique on turns a few weeks before the test. Sit ups: Just Do Them, technique note: don't go all the way down, tuck in your head and touch only your shoulder blades to the ground and elbows to mid-thigh. Push ups: Just Do Them, I also could only get about 23-25 my first year. Do as many as you can then rest in push up position and then do more until you cant do anymore. Also, I do bench dips. For the Mile: I run long distance (3-6 miles, work up to this distance so you arent injured, at a 8-9 minute pace) on Sunday night. Monday I take off. Tuesday, I run sprints (6-0.25 mile sprints and 6-1/3 mile sprints <--- I am currently doing 4-0.25 mile sprints and working up to this). Wednesday: I run 1.5-3 miles (very slow jog). Thursday: I run hills. In Florida there are no hills, so I run this mile long bridge that has a crazy slope over the water. Run up the hill and walk down (I run .5 miles up, walk down .5 miles, turn around to run up .5 miles, and walk .5 miles to my car). Friday, I take the day off. Saturday: I practice the whole test timed with the mile last and record my time.

    This is just something you have to devote around 20-30 minutes of your day for. Practice is key. I run 5 days a week and go to the gym 3 days a week. This training plan might seem a little over-kill but I designed it to help me max almost every area of the test or at least improve every area. I used it last year and maxed almost everything. If you start to plateau in your results, incorporate other exercises that focus on your weaknesses (if your chest is more sore after push ups, work chest exercises in addition to the above plan). Most importantly, DONT OVERWORK AND INJURE YOURSELF!
     
    acebabe likes this.
  4. Cerberi

    Cerberi Member

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2015
    Messages:
    748
    Likes Received:
    857
    There is a former SEAL that has a training program that is frequently recommended. I have used P90X previously (I am over 50) and it helped with pull-ups, push-ups, sit-ups, quickness (shuttle run) and endurance - (though there is no actual 'running' as part of the program). Lots of ways to get where you need to be.

    If you were a prior gymnast - you know you have the work ethic necessary to max it all (except for perhaps the basketball throw)
     
    acebabe and erinq2000 like this.
  5. erinq2000

    erinq2000 New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2017
    Messages:
    7
    Likes Received:
    1
    Thank you!!! This was extraordinarily helpful. I appreciate you taking the time to answer. (Also, good luck on this year's application!)
     
    PinWrestling likes this.