Weekly Workout: Outdoor Workout with Some Classic Exercises

Two 38th annual Mulberry Island Half Marathon/5K race participants dash toward the finish line at Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Virginia.
Two 38th annual Mulberry Island Half Marathon/5K race participants dash toward the finish line at Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Virginia, Sept. 14, 2019. (Senior Airman Delaney Gonzales/U.S. Air Force photo)

As the bad weather breaks, more and more people hit the great outdoors for exercise. Here is a great workout if you have a place to run, do pull-ups, a TRX, a barbell and a kettlebell. The following circuit can be arranged in any order, with a goal of doing as many sets a possible in one hour:

  • Hang cleans
  • Push press
  • Kettlebell swings
  • Pull-ups
  • TRX atomic push-ups
  • Bear crawl 50 meters
  • Fireman carry of 50 meters or farmer walk of 100 meters
  • Run 400 meters 

Goals each set

  • 5-10 reps of hang cleans and push presses
  • Max pull-ups and TRX atomic push-ups
  • 20 kettlebell swings
  • 50-meter bear crawl and 50-meter fireman carry or 100-meter farmer walk with 40-pound weight in one hand.
  • 400-meter run at goal mile pace (if possible)

If you get tired of the circuit, "rest" by running a full mile to loosen up a bit when needed.

Indoor Option

Sometimes taking gym equipment outside (if it is not yours) may be a challenge, so you also can do this circuit indoors, if needed. Some changes  you may want to consider:

As many rounds as possible (one hour)

  • Hang cleans: MJDB #2 -- 10 (if you are not comfortable with barbells/prefer dumbbells).
  • Push press: Overhead presses can be done with dumbbells if you prefer.
  • Kettlebell swings: Try woodchopper squats in place of kettlebell swings, if needed.
  • Pull-ups: Go with plldowns if you need an easier option
  • TRX atomic push-ups: If you do not have a TRX, try regular push-ups or bench press.
  • Bear crawl 50 meters: You can opt out of bear crawls and do walking lunges for 20 lunges/leg
  • Fireman carry of 50 meters or farmer walk of 100 meters
  • Run 400 meters on a treadmill or bike (two minutes)

Swim Workout Conclusion

Then cool down with a swim of 1,500-meter intervals broken up the following way:

  • 500-meter warmup -- any stroke

Repeat 10 times

  • 50-meter freestyle sprint
  • 50-meter CSS or breaststroke

This is a challenging/advanced-level workout that will task the athletes with a variety of upper-body, core and lower-body exercises, with carries and crawls. You may find that the cardio segments are the actual rest of this workout. Breathe deeply during the run and come back to the circuit ready to roll again. Rest? If you need to get a sip of water or shake out your arms or legs, that is fine, but try to keep moving.

Stew Smith is a former Navy SEAL and fitness author certified as a Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) with the National Strength and Conditioning Association. Visit his Fitness eBook store if you're looking to start a workout program to create a healthy lifestyle. Send your fitness questions to stew@stewsmith.com.

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