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Prowler Conditioning for Beginners

Hey guys,

I just made a prowler today but have never used one before. I’m gonna be testing it tomorrow. What do you guys suggest that I do? I’m definitely gonna start light (45-90lbs) and probably push it on grass (if so, I have to probably start around 45lbs).

What kind of distances should I be going? (As a guideline)

Or should I just push as fast as I can and then slow down when I need to and rest. Repeat until I feel like dying lol.

[quote]Airness wrote:
Hey guys,

I just made a prowler today but have never used one before. I’m gonna be testing it tomorrow. What do you guys suggest that I do? I’m definitely gonna start light (45-90lbs) and probably push it on grass (if so, I have to probably start around 45lbs).

What kind of distances should I be going? (As a guideline)

Or should I just push as fast as I can and then slow down when I need to and rest. Repeat until I feel like dying lol.[/quote]

The key to conditioning with any piece of equipment is building up work capacity slowly. You can make progress a few different ways:

Adding weight
Adding distance
Adding intensity (speed)
Shortening rests

Work capacity is equal to work done in a given amount of time.

(weight * distance)/time

So if you hold the weight and distance constant you can improve your work capacity by decreasing the time it takes to complete the distance. Say you have a total of 100 meters for your training session and you will complete it in 4 total sets of 25m. You can decrease the time by a) going faster or b) taking shorter rests.

Or if you want to hold distance and rest constant you can increase the weight used.

Or if you want to hold weight and rest constant you can increase the total distance by adding sets or increasing the distance of each set.

I would use one of the methods at a time and try to increase the work capacity at each session and then after a few weeks or so dial it back a bit and start over.

As far as starting out I would just try something and see how it feels and make adjustments as necessary. Just remember if your lungs aren’t on fire and you’re not blinded by sweat you aren’t doing it right.

[quote]LIFTICVSMAXIMVS wrote:
Airness wrote:
Hey guys,

I just made a prowler today but have never used one before. I’m gonna be testing it tomorrow. What do you guys suggest that I do? I’m definitely gonna start light (45-90lbs) and probably push it on grass (if so, I have to probably start around 45lbs).

What kind of distances should I be going? (As a guideline)

Or should I just push as fast as I can and then slow down when I need to and rest. Repeat until I feel like dying lol.

The key to conditioning with any piece of equipment is building up work capacity slowly. You can make progress a few different ways:

Adding weight
Adding distance
Adding intensity (speed)
Shortening rests

Work capacity is equal to work done in a given amount of time.

(weight * distance)/time

So if you hold the weight and distance constant you can improve your work capacity by decreasing the time it takes to complete the distance. Say you have a total of 100 meters for your training session and you will complete it in 4 total sets of 25m. You can decrease the time by a) going faster or b) taking shorter rests.

Or if you want to hold distance and rest constant you can increase the weight used.

Or if you want to hold weight and rest constant you can increase the total distance by adding sets or increasing the distance of each set.

I would use one of the methods at a time and try to increase the work capacity at each session and then after a few weeks or so dial it back a bit and start over.

As far as starting out I would just try something and see how it feels and make adjustments as necessary. Just remember if your lungs aren’t on fire and you’re not blinded by sweat you aren’t doing it right.[/quote]

This.
For example, I live on a hill. I push (more like a jog, definitely not a sprint) it up the hill to a certain point and push it back down. That’s 2 trips. I started with 10# on each post. I did 4 trips the first week. The next week, I add 2 trips (up and down). Every week I add 2 trips until I complete 10 trips (5 up and 5 down). The next week after that, I add 10# to the prowler and start back over at 4 trips.

I originally did this 4 days a week. My hips starting hurting all the time. I changed to doing weighted pushed on lower body days (I do 5/3/1) and unweighted pushes on upper body days. My upper body pushes consist of making the 10 trips with as many trips done at once as possible. Currently, I can do 6 trips (3 up, 3 down) and then 4 trips so I cover the 10 trips. When I can get to where I can do the 10 trips all at once without stopping, I will add either a small amount of weight (5 lbs total or something) or add unweighted trips.

The way I do it now, I have 2 loaded days per week and 2 unloaded (sorta like a deload). My current way is working well but I’m sure I will change it at some point.

Also, pushing it in the grass sucks, especially if the ground is uneven. It also tears up the yard. I push it on asphalt. Smooth concrete is the easiest IMO, with textured concrete being harder than asphalt.

Once you start pushing it, you will come up with your own variations of progress. Sprinting with it is possible, but it will only take a couple trips and you are done. I promise you. You cannot beat the prowler. It only allows you to try and play along. I would talk about pushing it to co-workers and they scoffed, even mocking it. Then they came over and pushed it. They became believers. I am not sure I have ever done anything so physically hard in my life as a true sprint with a weighted prowler. My wife has threatened to get rid of it (she bought it for me for Christmas last year) because she is afraid I will die pushing it because of how hard I am on myself with it. I told her I would take house payment money to replace it if she did that…

Sorry about the tangent…

I agree with having sweat in your eyes, your heart pounding, your lungs on fire and a stitch in your side. If you have these, you are doing it right. As Harry Selkow said: walk with it, run with it, sprint with it. Whatever you did last workout with it, do more this time. Either add trips or weight, decrease rest time, go further. Just do more.

Have fun prowling!