Military Inspired Workouts to Whip You into Shape

By: Amanda Belo

Need some new suggestions for getting fit and strong? ‘Be all you can be’ with these workouts inspired and often practiced by men and women of service. We’ve got three ideas that promote full-body and functional fitness to help keep your exercise routine challenging, interesting… and maybe even fun!

Boot Camp Workouts

Train like military recruits in this classic, high-intensity fitness program. The Boot camp workout is a great way to burn calories quickly with no equipment use necessary. It can also encourage camaraderie when practiced in a group exercise setting where you can support each other.

Boot camp involves a series of exercises performed for short intervals, with little pauses in between, to build strength and endurance. While every boot camp workout is different, you’ll likely see many of the same exercises; such as jumping jacks, push-ups, lunges, sprints, squats and mountain climbers among others.

Challenge yourself and test your limits. Go for it!


Suspension Training

Created by former Navy SEAL Randy Hetrick1, this workout is not just for those special ops iron machines that defend us. Everyone can benefit from this total-body, gravity centered workout.

Suspension training is unique in that it uses your own bodyweight as resistance to exercise the muscles in your body.  Because of this, adjusting your body position adds or decreases the degree of difficulty to meet you at your level of fitness.

Not only does this exercise promote strength, stability, balance and flexibility, it also makes life convenient. Whether you are at home in the living room, outside by a tree, or on vacation, you can get a effective workout anytime, anywhere.

TRX Suspension Training is the name most people recognize, but there are a variety of other equipment options available; including GoFit, WOSS Attack Trainer, Crosscore 180 Bodyweight Trainer and CoreX Suspended Trainer.


Krav Maga (krahv mah-GAH)

What’s a great way to burn calories, increase strength and endurance, and learn preventative strategies to defend yourself in the event of a dangerous situation all at the same time? Krav Maga!

Originally created in the 1950’s for the Israeli Defense Forces as a combat defense system, today Krav Maga – which translates to “contact combat” in Hebrew – is used everywhere by civilians, military and law enforcement alike today.2 Recently, it has become a popular fitness trend that allows you to burn calories while learning physical and mental self-defense tactics in the process. It can literally save your life!

Krav Maga blends different forms of martial arts, and it may be helpful to learn the basics of the practice in case you decide to take a class with an adapted version of the discipline. This way you are familiar with the movements and can focus solely on working out. According to the Krav Maga Institute, when starting out participants “learn basic stances, striking, techniques for falling and getting up safely, and basic defenses against common attacks including chokes and headlocks.”



*Notify your doctor before beginning a new exercise program, particularly if you have a health condition(s).