Why You Should Focus on Form, Not Weight, in This TRX Workout

An explosive ordnance disposal team member does the deadlift portion of the Army combat fitness test.
Pfc. Micah A. Navarette, an explosive ordnance disposal team member with 720th Ordnance Company from Baumholder, Germany, does the deadlift portion of the Army combat fitness test during the 2019 Ordnance Crucible on Fort A.P. Hill, Virginia, July 22, 2018. (Spc. Arnada Jones/U.S. Army photo)

If you are looking for a good full-body day that is rather advanced (high volume), here is a challenging variety of exercises and "rest exercises" that are mixed with a few cardio options.

We mixed weights, calisthenics, the TRX suspension trainer, bike or run, and swimming together for a tough one:

Warm up with the 25-meter run/push-up pyramid 1-10: 

  • Run 25 meters, one push-up
  • Run 25 meters, two push-ups … stop at 10
  • You can do dynamic stretches for the runs, too.
  • Do the same with a 25-meter squat pyramid 1-10.

Everything is 50 reps: Do big sets of 20+ to finish quickly or 5 x 10 for a steady pace workout)

  • 50 dips: Do max-rep sets but rest with 50 lunges. Break up as needed to alternate dips/lunges until you get 50/50 of each (lunges = 50/leg)
  • 50 pull-ups: Rest with 40- to 50-pound dumbbell holds in both hands (like farmer walks) between sets until you reach 50 reps.
  • 50 bench presses (135 pounds): But rest with TRX atomic push-ups, max reps and TRX rollouts 10 until you get 50 reps on the bench (or do regular push-ups or plank pose for one minute, as needed, as "rest")
  • 50 squats (135 pounds): Rest with a one-minute overhead plate hold between squat sets (25-45 pounds)
  • 50 TRX rows: Rest with 50 TRX triceps extensions (You can opt for dumbbells on this if no TRX.)
  • 50 push presses: Rest with sets of 50 abs of choice until you get 50 reps.
  • 50 deadlifts (135 pounds) or leg presses: Rest with 50 kettlebell swings until you reach 50 reps of deadlifts.

Focus on your form, not going heavy, for above lifts.

Bike pyramid: Make each minute tougher than the previous one by increasing resistance by two levels each minute. Keep RPM at 80-100. Go up for 10 minutes, then return in repeat order for 10 minutes.

Or run 2-3 miles.

Swim a 500-meter warmup

  • Tread water with no hands for five minutes
  • Swim 1,000 meters of intervals; break up as preferred 
  • 20 x 50 meters, 10 x 100 meters, 4 x 250 meters, etc.

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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