Military Push Ups | Tips to Run Faster

September 11, 2022

Are you seeking more tips of how military push ups can help you run faster on your 1.5 mile to 3 mile run time? If so, welcome to Nutrition Geeks. Push ups are definitely a great way to strengthen the upper body. You will need a strong mid-section as well to maintain your form at sub-maximal and maximum efforts. I know you may be training for your physical fitness test as well. I recently created a new resource called the Army combat fitness 2 mile running course. It consists of 9 modules with 58 video lessons. In addition, the course concludes with a custom, 16-week training plan built for your specific goal time.

I didn't see a running course online to help military members or civilians. So, decided to create one. I share the exact training methodologies and tactics I was taught by 3 of the world's top distance running coaches. I hold personal bests of 9:27 for 2 miles, 50:54 for 10 miles, 14:18 for 5K and 2:19:35 for the marathon. So, do understand the complexities of working a full-time military job and trying to run fast. Training for Army races takes time and patience. My overall goal with the products I create for runners is to help improve your lactate tolerance.

Are Military Push-Ups Better?

Pace sustainment in races is one of the biggest challenges for runners. Your military push ups will, along with proper aerobic and anaerobic training, produce legitimate results. The military push up is similar to a regular push up. The only major difference is you keep your army closer to your body as you are doing them. The push up event used to be one of 3 events on our soldier APFT. We recently switched to the new Army combat fitness test or ACFT. The ACFT consists of 6 events with your last event being the 2 mile run.

Army ACFT
MAJ (ret.) Pennington finishing as the top American and in 4th place at the 2007 California International Marathon in 2:19:35

Of course, if you are in the military you already know this. That being said, many of my readers are from other countries. So, may not know. The 6 events are the sprint drag carry, 3-repetition maximum deadlift, hand release push ups, plank test, standing power throw and the 2 mile run. So, military push ups and are vital in order to perform to a higher level on your military physical fitness test. Consistent reps daily or every other day is best. Also, continue to do consistent sit ups and planks.

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What is Considered a Military Push-Up?

You definitely want to ensure you maintain form when running at very fast, anaerobic efforts. Again, the biggest challenge is pace sustainment. So, training at speeds significantly faster than goal race pace is vital. One, it will make your goal race pace less aggressive. Also, you will be able to clear lactic acid faster than it is building up. Military push ups focus on stressing the triceps by keeping your elbows closer to the sides of the body.

So, it is a push up that more or less restricts your movement as compared with the regular push up. I credit push ups to helping me break the 2:20 marathon barrier. Also, setting new personal bests from the mile (4:22) to the 20 mile distance (1:44:05) as well. My top recommendation as you prepare for your races or physical fitness test is to focus on aerobic mileage first. Remember, a longer build up is far better than a shorter one. It takes the body about 4 weeks to adapt the physiological stresses you are placing on it. The optimal time frame to train for any race is a minimum of 16 and preferably 20 to 24 weeks.

What is a Good 2 Mile Run Time for the Army

It really depends on who you ask. Everyone has their own idea of what a good 1.5 mile (US Air Force, Navy & Coast Guard), 1600m (Indian Army), 2km (UK Army) or 3 mile time (US Marines). The 2 mile is a highly anaerobic event like the 1600m to 3-mile distances. So, you have to run a higher percentage of your weekly mileage at or below your goal race pace. The world's most dominate runners are running between 35 to 40% of their weekly mileage at or below anaerobic threshold effort.

We are running between 85 to 89 percent of max heart rate at this effort. A good tip here is to consider investing in a heart rate monitor. I regularly use the Garmin 245. It helps me to train at the proper intensities without running too fast during tempo or easy runs. In addition, ensures I am staying in the proper anaerobic intensities during fartlek and faster, varied paced long runs. Faster long runs, like speed work, will help you to recruit more fast twitch muscle fibers. The more of these we can recruit the better prepared we will be when it comes time to race. A good 2 mile time is anywhere from 15 minutes to sub-10 minutes.

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Why Does the Army Run 2 Miles?

The Army, like the other branches, has us run all out to determine our cardiovascular fitness. I spent over 20 years on active duty prior to retiring in March of 2022. What I do know is that we run the most during basic training and in our leadership schools. Yes, we still run a descent amount during regular morning PT. That being said, I don't think enough nor fast enough. I saw far too many military members rushing their fitness. They were being forced to do sprints and faster ability group runs and not being able to keep up.

It certainly wasn't that they lacked motivation. It simply was they were not running enough during the week. Of course, I know you may not have a say of being able to run Monday through Friday. Your military leadership will have you doing a lot of other explosive-type exercises. That being said, you do have control of being able to run during lunch or after work.

Focus on Your Speed Development

Continue to do consistent military ups throughout the week. Remember, it will only make you a stronger runner. That being said, don't neglect your speed whether training for the 1600m to marathon distances. There are many great races out there like the Army 10 miler or Marine Corps Marathon. So, make sure to do at least 1, vo2 max workout per week. Again, you want to stress the energy systems of the body adequately.

Also, ensure to jog on your recovery days. Remember, the benefits of the hard training you are doing today will be seen several weeks and months from now. The real benefit comes from within the rest period. I trained with sub 2:10 marathoners who could run sub-5:00 mile pace for 26.2 miles but run 9 minute mile pace on their easy days. So, if these elite runners can slow down and take it easy so can we.

We are running between 95 to 105% of max heart rate running at vo2 max. Your vo2 max is your body's maximum oxygen uptake. It is running so intense that we simply can't clear lactic acid faster than it is building up. Of course, we have to slow down and take small breaks to recover.

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Do Longer Tempo Runs

Short, 2 to 3 mile tempo runs will certainly create a strong physiological boost. That being said, the longer we can train at the anaerobic threshold, the better. It is even more important the longer race you are preparing for. Are you preparing for your military physical fitness test? If so, then definitely check out the new Army combat fitness 2 mile running course I created. I literally cover every topic necessary to help you drop significant time. In addition, the training principles I cover in that course also carries over to the longer races.

I also have training plans and running courses for runners seeking to race in half marathon and marathon races as well. I know there are runners seeking to break the 2:30, 3 hour marathon, 3:30, sub-4 and 5 hour marathon barriers. So, created a running course for each specific time barrier mentioned here.

Closing Thoughts

I hope this brief overview of the importance of military push ups and how to run faster has been helpful to you. Would you like to keep in touch? If so, make sure to subscribe to the RunDreamAchieve YouTube channel. I make new training and racing videos there each week to help runners such as yourself. How often do you train mentally for your races? I ask because there are many runners who never pay attention to this.

The world-class runners I have trained and lived with combine both mental as well as physical training to produce superior results. One of the key strategies to success is to duplicate the work habits of successful people. So, start visualizing yourself getting across the finish line in your goal time. Also, running fast, relaxed and passing people. It only takes about 10 to 15 minutes a day but have found this to be very powerful in endurance success.

I am certain that if you adhere to the tactics I have briefly discussed here you are going to make massive gains in your race fitness. I look forward to hearing about your new personal best. Are you ready to take your training and racing to the next level? Click on the green buttons on this post to learn more about our products and services.

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