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General Physical Preparedness (GPP) Training


For the past year I've been on some type of program or other. First it was Steve Shaw's Wild 20 Power Building program. Then I focused on strength for awhile with an 8x8 down to 8x5 and 8x3 rep scheme on my main lifts. After recovering from that I tried The Complete Power Look Program. I liked that one so much that I did two rounds. Recently I've been trying a squat every day approach. I got the idea from the 100 day squat challenge. I modified the program to fit my schedule and gave it a shot. Instead of squatting every day I squatted every day I lifted which was usually 4 days per week. I'd vary the intensity with 102.5, 85, 95, 90% of my max in that order throughout the week.

Well here I am a couple months later and I'm beat. I got to a point where my back always ached so I threw in the towel. I know it was an aggressive program but I thought maybe I was just a sissy and needed to suck it up for awhile.

I recently read about General Physical Preparedness training. How does one go about training for nothing specific in an effort to be ready for anything? I like the idea and it fits my needs (I'm a police officer).

Anyone have any good advice regarding this approach? Right now I'm alternating between push and pull routines where I work up to at least one heavy set to keep my strength up. I pretty much do whatever sounds good for the day. Truth be told, I'm worn out and it's nice to just wing it based on feel. I'm going to mix in different cardio workouts on days that I don't lift. Basketball, 20 minute jog, sprints, etc. For now the plan is to lift days 1 & 2, cardio day 3, repeat.

On a side note, my initial motivation for the squat program was to reach a max of 400lbs. I once heard a man should be able to bench 300, squat 400, and dead lift 500lbs. I bench 305, power clean (not squat clean) 295, and got my squat up to 360. I'm a shade under 6'5"--not exactly built for winning any weight lifting competitions. Not a fan of dead lifts after a back injury but love cleans.

Thanks in advance.

(Typed from my phone--forgive any typos)


I’m ex-army and have used this to train soldiers more effectively than the usual style of training, and I think this training would benefit LEO as well.

I came up with this plan after reading how Coah Thibs trains his CF atheletes.

I would go for 2 days of strength training,

  1. Squat, Mil.press
  2. Deadlift/Power clean, Bench
    5x5,531 etc whatever progression works for you, and some extra rows/pull ups.

Followed by a high intensity circuit, kind of like a crossfit WOD but mostly job specific activities e.g sprints, wrestling a partner, heavy carries/drags.
Starting with regular clothes then work up to full kit(body armour/Gas mask)

Alernating with 2 days of endurance training running, swimming, carrying a ruck etc, to build up the aerobic base.

I found this worked well as the guys got stronger(which was lacking), and improved overall endurance.

Check out Christian thibaudeau log 2 post #899, this post is awesome


Thanks for the input. I tracked down the recommended post and it has some great ideas. I can use that approach to guide my training. It’ll be a new concept to focus on training lactate threshold and anaerobic/aerobic thresholds versus the usual focus on just lifting for strength or hypertrophy. I’m only 31 years old but high intensity weight lifting has worn me down this year. Looking forward to something new and giving my joints a break from all out lifting for awhile.