Police officers have to stay in shape for the safety of ourselves and for the public that we serve and protect, it is important to stay in shape for our job. At any given time we could be in a physical altercation that being in shape could be the difference between going home to our loved ones and not going home to them.
I have been a police officer for the Brownsville Police Department for a year, located in Southwestern Pennsylvania. Before I went into the Police Academy I was a competitive bodybuilder. I carry some of the training and eating from Bodybuilding over into my job as being a police officer but, being the job that it is, I had to make some changes in the way I trained and ate.
I will share some ideas I feel are very important for the uniformed police officer:
First Day: Train Chest
I try to get twelve sets of three different movements after three warm-up sets.
- 4 sets of incline press for 8-12 reps.
- 4 sets of dips for 12-15 reps.
- Finish off with 4 sets of cable flyes for 12-15 reps.
Second Day: Train Back and Shoulders
- 3 sets of chins or assisted chins for 8-12 reps with stretching the back in between each set.
- 4 sets of low rows squeezing each rep for a second for 10-12 reps.
- 4 sets of behind-the-neck pull-downs holding each rep for a second for 10-12 reps.
- 3 sets of shrugs with dumbbells for 15-20 reps with a full stretch between each rep.
- 4 sets of dumbbell overhead press for 12-15 reps.
- 4 sets of dumbbell side laterals for 12-15 reps
- 4 sets of dumbbell front raises for 12-15 reps.
Third Day: Train Arms
- 4 sets cable push-downs for 12-15 reps.
- 4 sets of overhead dumbbell presses for 12-15 reps.
- 3 sets of dips for 10-15 reps leaning backward so it takes the strain off of the chest.
- 4 sets of alternating curls for 10-15 reps.
- 4 sets of preacher curls for 10-15 reps.
- 3 sets of hammer curls for 12-15 reps.
Fourth Day: Train Legs
- 5 sets of leg extensions for 10-15 reps.
- 5 sets of leg press for 10-15 reps.
- 3 sets of lunges for 15-20 reps.
- 5 sets of stiff-legged deadlifts for 10-15 reps squeezing the hamstring muscles.
- 5 sets of leg curls for 10-15 reps.
I suggest training legs on the last day you have to work before your 2-day off because you don't want to have your legs in pain and get into a foot chase with someone. You could possibly tear you quad or hamstring if you did that. So train your legs the last day so that it gives the legs two days to heal.
Abs and Lower Back
I highly recommend to train your abs and lower back every day, with at least 150 reps in abs. The reason being is we as patrol officers are sitting in a car most of the time with a duty belt on that can weigh between 10-20 pounds.
Sitting all the time and not working the abs can be devastating on the lower back and abs.
I have also found that a large amount of police officers have hernias. I feel this could be attributed to having a thick duty belt on and it constantly pressing into the abdomen 40 plus hours a week. This would make the ab muscles lose there strength after time.
Body Fat Percentage
As you see I believe as police officers we need to train with higher reps to keep our body fat percentage down. The reason being is that with our uniform, a bulletproof vest that constricts our breathing and a duty belt that can all add a additional 10-20 pounds to any uniform officer, we don't need any more weight on our body to carry around.
Cardiovascular training is also extremely important to the police officer.
Doing cardio could actually be more important then any other kind of training that a police officer may do. I suggest at the minimum jogging or biking several miles a week.
I also suggest doing 2-3 sessions of cardio a week, at a heart rate of 60%-70% for about 30 minutes. 60%-70% of your maximum heart burns the most amount of fat.