Leg Day Workout: PT, Runs, Sprints, Hills and Mobility

Frankenstein walks
Frankenstein walks

Adding a leg day to your workout can be as logistically simple as doing a 5 x 5 set/reps of squats and leg machines in the weight room, or as challenging as the below list of lower body exercises, which are performed across multiple venues.

This is not your typical Leg Day. This particular workout is designed to present the types of challenges that the tactical athlete will face, as well as provide a much needed recovery session to assist with flexibility and mobility after a long leg workout.

2.5 mile easy run – Our local group has this particular distance built into our program, as we train about this distance away from a really tough hill that is a ¼ mile up. Build up from whatever your “warmup” run distance may be at this time over a few weeks if needed. You can start with a 5-10 minute warmup run if you are not used to running 4-5 total miles yet.

Run hills or stairs 15 minutes – Run uphill as fast as you can. Jog or walk down for recovery period. Repeat for 15 minutes. Over time, you can build up this routine to 30-45 minutes.

Run and Leg PT Sprints or Goal Pace Running – It is up to you on this one. Either sprint 400m as fast as you can each set, or try to use this time to set muscle memory for your goal pace for timed runs. For instance, if you want to achieve a 9 minute 1.5 mile timed run, your 400m needs to be 90 seconds each set. The squats and lunges require no weight.

Repeat 5 times
Run 400m
squats 20

Repeat 5 times
run 400m
lunges 10/leg

Transition to Pool or Other Non-Impact Activity
Dynamic Stretches for 10 minutes - (Butt kickers, Frankenstein walks, side steps, leg swings, etc). Take 10 minutes and loosen up the legs again with some mobility exercises.

Swim Workout
Tread water – no hands 5 minutes – Work on your different kicks like scissor kicks, breast stroke kick, flutterkick, and egg-beater kicks.

Swim 500m-1000m at an easy pace with fins – Top off leg day with swimming with fins to work the legs one last time.

Dynamic stretches in pool – in chest-deep water, stretch for 10 minutes, doing all of the dynamic stretches above to complete your leg day.

If you prefer not to swim or a pool is not available, replace these exercises with other non-impact options like biking, rowing, or elliptical machines for an easy-to-moderate level cooldown workout to top off a successful leg day.

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Contributor

Stew Smith works as a presenter and editorial board member with the Tactical Strength and Conditioning program of the National Strength and Conditioning Association and is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS). He has also written hundreds of articles on Military.com's Fitness Center that focus on a variety of fitness, nutritional, and tactical issues military members face throughout their career.

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