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Kettlebell Snatches + push-ups: good enough?

mightstone2k

Level 6 Valued Member
Background: 33 y/o male, been using kettlebells since 2015, achieved Simple in June 2021

Upcoming events: military PT test in April (max push-ups in 1 minute, max sit-ups in 1 minute, 1.5-mile run for time)

LIMFACs: trial lawyer. I’m often in court for a week at a time or preparing for court, and have an hour-long commute one way

I’m looking for a minimalist program to keep improving my snatch while preparing for my upcoming PT test. I was doing A+A snatches with the 24kg until I took a three-week break for my honeymoon and COVID. I want to keep snatching without expending brainpower. Here’s my plan:

Ballistics: 24kg snatches using the Die-Rolled Variability scheme

Grinds: push-ups using the second of Jody Beasley’s plans for building powerful push-ups.

That lets me work on two exercises I want to keep improving with a relatively minimal time commitment. Snatches shouldn’t take a long time, and each block of push-ups takes ten minutes.

I am skeptical of my own idea because it’s my idea. Any thoughts? Think this is enough work? I figured the push-ups replace the grind component of the Die-Rolled Variability. I won’t stay on push-ups forever, so if there are other grinds that would pair well with snatches, I’m open to suggestions.
 

mightstone2k

Level 6 Valued Member
What's your run times looking like at the moment?
I did a pre-COVID run at a 12-minute pace (for the mile and a half). That’s normal for me. I don’t run all year, my first few runs are in the 11:30-12:00 range, and I bring it down to 10:00-10:30 by my test. I usually only spend a month prepping for the test. The other eleven months are kettlebells.
 

Starlord

Level 5 Valued Member
I did a pre-COVID run at a 12-minute pace (for the mile and a half). That’s normal for me. I don’t run all year, my first few runs are in the 11:30-12:00 range, and I bring it down to 10:00-10:30 by my test. I usually only spend a month prepping for the test. The other eleven months are kettlebells.
Sounds like you've got your approach squared away.

I always advise some easy runs during the course of the year and to really focus on running getting closer to your fitness test to maximise points.

In the British Army currently the cut off for max points on the 2km run is 6:15 for the SCR.

This is the only event that requires I specifically have to prep for to acheive maximum points. Med ball throw, long jump, pull ups, trap bar deadlift and shuttle sprints I can get max points on even when hung over.

So my prep for an SCR will have a running focus for it. Don't know if you're looking to just pass or to try and get maximum points. So I'll just throw that out there.
 

mightstone2k

Level 6 Valued Member
Sounds like you've got your approach squared away.

I always advise some easy runs during the course of the year and to really focus on running getting closer to your fitness test to maximise points.

In the British Army currently the cut off for max points on the 2km run is 6:15 for the SCR.

This is the only event that requires I specifically have to prep for to acheive maximum points. Med ball throw, long jump, pull ups, trap bar deadlift and shuttle sprints I can get max points on even when hung over.

So my prep for an SCR will have a running focus for it. Don't know if you're looking to just pass or to try and get maximum points. So I'll just throw that out there.
My goal is always to score a 90.1. If I score between 75.0 and 89.9 (inclusive), I have to retest in six months. 90.0 and above, I retest in a year. Maxing out has never been a goal of mine. It distracts from my actual training goals :)
 

ShawnM

Level 8 Valued Member

I would do a program like this and on your off kb days do 1/4-1/2 mile sprint work on day, a fast 1 mile run on another and a long ruck/walk on a last day. Push ups GTG with 50-100 a day. The sit ups should take care of themselves.
 

mightstone2k

Level 6 Valued Member

I would do a program like this and on your off kb days do 1/4-1/2 mile sprint work on day, a fast 1 mile run on another and a long ruck/walk on a last day. Push ups GTG with 50-100 a day. The sit ups should take care of themselves.
If I’m understanding that article correctly, it’s basically Q&D 044, but with preprogrammed sessions instead of rolling the dice. Add some locomotion and GTG push-ups. Am I picking up what you’re putting down?
 

ShawnM

Level 8 Valued Member
If I’m understanding that article correctly, it’s basically Q&D 044, but with preprogrammed sessions instead of rolling the dice. Add some locomotion and GTG push-ups. Am I picking up what you’re putting down?
Yup, that's about it. The only change I made was doing it with the 033. I went 044 if my energy wasn't the greatest and I knew shorter rest periods were going to be an issue.
 

Period

Level 7 Valued Member
Just my two cents: if you’re serious about this PT test, you need to prioritize it over everything else. I’d run at least four times per week, and do at least one “test” set in sit-ups and push-ups every two weeks (before a rest day). As for running, a number of approaches can work, as a former middle distance runner I’d recommend a mix of the following:

- longer, slower runs (not too long, let’s say about twice the distance you have to run in the test, with a pace no more than 20% slower than what you need to do in the test)

- running the test distance: at least once every two weeks, before a rest day

- pace work: half the magic of good results on anything longer than 400 m is hitting the right pace. Start too fast and you’ll be cooked, start too slow and you can’t make up for lost time. Therefore, train hitting the goal pace over shorter distances repeatedly, half a mile and a mile for example. 2x1 mile or 4-6x half a mile at target pace would be a good workout.

As for push-ups, personally I’d just ditch any higher intensity work until April – that’s only 2-3 months, anyway. If you’ll improve your reps per minute significantly, your lower reps will probably not suffer a bit, they might even improve. I’d mix it up here as well, accumulate some volume with lower reps and higher sets one day, do 1-3 timed sets with the hands raised (on a table first, then a bench, then a low bench etc.) working on cranking out higher reps another day, maybe even just try to simply do push-ups for two minutes straight (without counting reps) a third day.

Sit-ups shouldn’t be too hard, I’d just practice whatever form they are looking for.

As for snatching, I’d do it after the other training with whatever you’ve left, so it doesn’t compromise it. The approach is entirely up to you, one or two higher sets with reps or multiple sets with lower reps. Personally, I’d probably use a timed set – as many reps as comfortable in X minutes – and personally, I would choose your target time for the 1.5 mile run as “X”, because why the hell not (note: in fighting sports, we do a lot of exercises for the duration of a competition round – we believe it helps to both be able to exert power over that time frame, and to get a better feeling for the duration of the round, which again helps with pacing).

PS: As always, please bear in mind that I am speaking from my own personal experience, not for the SF methodology.
 

mightstone2k

Level 6 Valued Member
Just my two cents: if you’re serious about this PT test, you need to prioritize it over everything else. I’d run at least four times per week, and do at least one “test” set in sit-ups and push-ups every two weeks (before a rest day). As for running, a number of approaches can work, as a former middle distance runner I’d recommend a mix of the following:

- longer, slower runs (not too long, let’s say about twice the distance you have to run in the test, with a pace no more than 20% slower than what you need to do in the test)

- running the test distance: at least once every two weeks, before a rest day

- pace work: half the magic of good results on anything longer than 400 m is hitting the right pace. Start too fast and you’ll be cooked, start too slow and you can’t make up for lost time. Therefore, train hitting the goal pace over shorter distances repeatedly, half a mile and a mile for example. 2x1 mile or 4-6x half a mile at target pace would be a good workout.

As for push-ups, personally I’d just ditch any higher intensity work until April – that’s only 2-3 months, anyway. If you’ll improve your reps per minute significantly, your lower reps will probably not suffer a bit, they might even improve. I’d mix it up here as well, accumulate some volume with lower reps and higher sets one day, do 1-3 timed sets with the hands raised (on a table first, then a bench, then a low bench etc.) working on cranking out higher reps another day, maybe even just try to simply do push-ups for two minutes straight (without counting reps) a third day.

Sit-ups shouldn’t be too hard, I’d just practice whatever form they are looking for.

As for snatching, I’d do it after the other training with whatever you’ve left, so it doesn’t compromise it. The approach is entirely up to you, one or two higher sets with reps or multiple sets with lower reps. Personally, I’d probably use a timed set – as many reps as comfortable in X minutes – and personally, I would choose your target time for the 1.5 mile run as “X”, because why the hell not (note: in fighting sports, we do a lot of exercises for the duration of a competition round – we believe it helps to both be able to exert power over that time frame, and to get a better feeling for the duration of the round, which again helps with pacing).

PS: As always, please bear in mind that I am speaking from my own personal experience, not for the SF methodology.
I’m not “serious” about the test, in the sense of wanting to max out. I identify it as an upcoming event only because it is an upcoming event and I still need to pass it. The last time I took a test was in May 2019 (tests were cancelled for a while due to COVID). My prep for that started a month in advance. The first two weeks, I did three days/week PT prep (push-ups, sit-ups, and a 1.5-mile run), and three days/week S&S. The second two weeks I dropped S&S and did mobility on those days. That’s more or less going to be my plan this time around too, except with snatches replacing S&S.

Right now I’m just seeing if I’m under-doing it with my current plan. Balancing training with work (and life) is a struggle these days, and I perpetually think I’m underselling myself and getting less out of my potential than I could. Hence this thread.
 

Period

Level 7 Valued Member
I see. Usually when I see these tests mentioned, there is more at stake for people than that.

It's kinda hard to say whether you are "under-doing it" or what performances your potential would allow, because you're not giving us too much information about your performances in these tests, general goals etc, the only specific thing you mentioned was hitting Simple last year, which doesn't really tell us much in regard of the test.
My opinion is that if you are doing any test basically en passant, then you will never know what you'd be capable of if you trained specifically for it. You may meet your previous performance, improve on it or get a worse result than last time, but that will depend on a number of factors, with training just being one of them. The less used you are to a certain test, the less consistent your results will be.
Whether what you achieve in training is enough for you is another matter, but that isn't up to me to say. What might be "enough" for you might be a very bad result for me, or vice-versa.
 
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