In our last blog, we discussed some of the apps we recommend/use for a military/tactical lifestyle and we figured a good follow up would be some of the apps we use to keep in operational shape. Tactical or operational fitness encompasses a lot of different aspects to include strength, flexibility, speed, and stamina. This type of fitness tends to lead to a more rounded “tactical athlete” but also requires a lot of up-keep. That being said there are some great apps to use to help get you there.
The Wendler log focuses on building four key component lifts to include your bench, back squat, deadlift and military press (or whatever lifts you choose.) The program goes off Wendler’s 5 / 3 / 1 mesocycles with an automatic calculation of your one-rep max based of your performance during a daily AMRAP (as many rounds as possible) with a prescribed weight. The app also has an upgraded feature (which we recommend) that offers a whole host of supplemental programs. The app tracks your progress with graphs based on your performance. All in all this is one of the most tailored apps we have used and is excellent for increasing your overall strength.
One of the biggest aspects of tactical fitness is the ability to move long distances either running or rucking. While this app is created for civilians it has a great crossover into the operation world. The app accurately tracks your movement, whether it be rucking, running, biking or just walking. While many apps out there do the same, this one offers a comprehensive graph that shows your improvement over time with an unlimited storage template. The app will record things like pace, time, weather, stop times, steps, route, terrain and more. In addition, the app has configurable training zones, interval times and targets. Finally, the app does a great job of keeping you on pace with announcements of your pace, time, distance, speed, elevation and heart rate. All in all, if you are training up for a selection/school or just want to maintain your endurance level, this is the most all in one endurance app you will find.
Stretching is probably the most overlooked aspect of fitness and also one of the most important. It is usually seen as something you knock out really quickly before and or after a workout but ends with boredom. For us, we need someone to tell us what to stretch and for how long, that’s where Sworkit comes in. The app is great for giving you a step by step stretch guide for your choice of body region. The app has a pilates section which we could care less about but the other sections are spot on. It comes with videos on how to properly stretch, stretch timers and will synch to your healthy app if you’re into that sort of thing.
Where there is no gym:
Military personnel often find themselves in locations with limited fitness equipment. Over the years we’ve found a few apps that focus on using just your body weight and actually offer a decent workout.
So before you pass this off as a sorority girl’s app hear us out. We did this app after being challenged by a girlfriend and it actually offers some crushing leg workouts. You can start the app off either easy or advanced and the advanced mode on its own will do a proper job of noodling your legs and giving you some cardio. The workouts take anywhere between 10-20 minutes and as the app suggests are done daily. We will admit that a few of the workouts are a little weird but we modified them with our own variations.
The Pushup Counter and Trainer is another good bodyweight progression plan app aimed at strengthening your pushups. The company offers other similar apps for building your pull-ups and sit-ups. This app does a good job of slowly building you up to your desired pushup max.
Overall Tactical Fitness:
If you’re looking for an all in one fitness app SOFLETE is probably your best bet. They offer a number of different programs tailored to your desired outcome. In addition, the app has movement explanations as well as contact with online coaches. The fitness portion was developed by individuals who have been through various SOF schools and know what it takes to maintain an operational fitness level.