Phase 1 Special Forces Prep: Structural Balance, Strength, Aerobic Base

Wes Kennedy


Athbasca, Canada

Military Fitness, CrossFit

Who is this program for?

  • Military members preparing for a Special Forces selection phase
  • Anybody who wants to train like a Special Forces Operator


How does this program work?

This will be a six month program designed to prepare military members for Special Forces selection. The term Special Forces is used broadly and does not necessarily mean U.S. Army Green Beret.


This program will not contain the exceptionally large volume of swimming or rucking that might be required for a SEAL or SAS selection phase, although both modalities will be included.


The program will be broken down into two phases, each with a different focus:



Download Phase 1 Special Forces Prep: Structural Balance, Strength, Aerobic Base as PDF


Why should I use this program?

Whether you are looking to increase your chances of passing Special Forces selection, or you simply want to train at this level, this program follows an intelligent progression over nine months that incorporates injury-proofing, strength, stamina, toughness training, and event specific modalities such as swimming and rucksack marching. It is written based on my experience as an ex-Special Forces soldier turned coach.


What equipment do I need?

Mondays and Thursdays will generally be strength specific days that you can perform at most gyms. Tuesdays and Fridays may require equipment typically found at a CrossFit-type gym. Saturdays will often include things such as boxing, swimming, biking, and running outside.



Week 7, Day 1

A1: Front Squat @ 31X1 x 5-6; rest 2min x 3
A2: Standing DB Press @ 30X2 x 6-7; rest 2min x 3
B: SLRDL @ 31X1 x 10-12; rest 90sec b/t legs x 3/leg
C1: Side Bridge L 90sec; rest 90sec x 3
C2: Side Bridge R 90sec; rest 90sec x 3
D: Powell Raise @ 3010 x 10-12; rest 60sec b/t arms x 3/arm



  • SLRDL: Single Leg Romanian Deadlift. This is done w/ 1 dumbell in each hand, reach down as far as you can while maintaining a neutral spine and retracted shoulder blades
  • Side Bridge
  • TRMXD -Powell Raise
  • Front Squat


Day 2

15min AMRAP @ 90% effort Run 400m
15 Burpees
Walk 15min

15min AMRAP @ 90% effort Run 400m
15 Wall-Balls





  • Goal is a steady pace throughout. Score should be the same for the first and second half of each set


Day 3

A1: Thruster x 7-8; rest 2min x 3
A2: Bent Over BB Row @ 41X2 x 7-8; rest 2min x 3

B: Tall Kneeling Pallof Press @ 1511 x 10-12; rest 2

C: Band Pull Aparts @ 3113 x 10-12; rest 2min x 3 +10min Step Ups 18" w/ 30# vest



  • Anytime that you hit the top of the rep range, you must go up in weight on the next set
  • Step-ups should be done at a continuous pace



Day 4

Run 350m

Walk 1minute x 10



  • Goal is same hard pace each set. Each set should be within 1-2 seconds of one another.


Day 5

40min Bike @ Z1 pace

40min Jog @ Z1 pace


20min Swim @ Z1 pace
Every 100m tread water for 15 seconds w/ 10lb brick



  • A good rule of thumb for Z1 pace is to maintain a HR between 120-135bpm


Click on the number below that corresponds to the week of training you're in.


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