GRC-WOW: The Bodyweight Philosophy: Part 1

GRC-WOW Bodyweight PhilosophyGRC WOW: Bodyweight Philosophy: Part 1
Cadre: Patrick

This week, I’d like to introduce you to GORUCK Cadre Patrick. While I have yet to meet Patrick, I can totally attest for his workout style, which focuses on getting the most out of your body by using your body. Using your own bodyweight is an awesome way to tone what you’ve got and pack on some muscle. It’s also the most convenient and affordable way to get fit as most bodyweight exercises can be completed in your living room or your backyard…that’s my kind of workout! 

Enjoy good livin’ brought to you by Cadre Patrick! And if you missed any of the previous GRC-WOWs, check out the series here.


The Bodyweight Philosophy

Many don’t realize that serious muscle and strength can be built with just bodyweight exercises. Not only that, bodyweight-only workouts can be high intensity and completed in quick training sessions throughout the week. Naval Special Warfare and the military in general have perfected this philosophy. Finding the time to get a workout in anywhere at anytime is crucial, especially when deployments are a way-of-life that require extensive travel and training. All my workouts stick as closely to this mantra as possible.

Finding the time to get a workout in anywhere at anytime is crucial, especially when deployments are a way-of-life…

Keys to an effective bodyweight workout

  1. Include as many full body movements as you can to jack up the intensity and decrease the time of the workout.
  2. Increase the intensity of the bodyweight movements by doing more reps, decreasing the rest time between exercises, or changing the angle of the movement.
  3. If you can’t do movements with your full bodyweight, change the angle or use elastic bands to load the movement.
  4. The warm-ups are just to get the blood flowing and loosen you up.

The warm-up

  • Glute Bridges, 3×15 (This movement activates the glutes and hamstrings, which are responsible for hip extension and hip abduction.)
  • Hurdler Stretch, 2×2 per leg
  • Jumping Jacks, 50
  • Push ups, 2 count 40
  • 1-Mile Run

The workout

Total time: 25 minutes

Instructions: Complete up to 3 rotations of the following circuit:

  • 10 one-legged squats – each side (Warning: difficult and dependent on fitness level.)
  • 20 X 3 body weight squats
  • 20 X 3 burpees
  • 20 X 3 walking lunges (10 each leg)
  • 20 X 3 jump step-ups (10 each leg)
  • 10 X 5 pull ups (or inverted body push ups against a wall)
  • 10 X 6 dips (you can use bar stools or similar)
  • 10 X 10 push ups
  • 1:30 plank center, 1:30 plank Facing left, 1:30 plank facing right


  • Stop when you need to, get water when necessary, but try to finish it as quickly as possible while still practicing PERFECT FORM.
  • You can cut short the number of repetitions, but never half-ass a rep.
  • If you can only do five or six pull ups, bring a chair over to the bar, hop up above the bar and lower yourself down.
  • If you can’t do a plank for 30 sec, hold it for 15, and work your way up to 30.
  • If 20 body weight lunges is too many, only do 10 and work your way up to 20.
  • Challenge yourself safely and within reason.


Goruck Challenge Cadre PatrickAbout Patrick:

Patrick is a GORUCK Challenge Cadre, a former Marine and current member of the US Navy. He has over eight years of operations as a member of Navy Special Warfare and is looking forward to passing on his love of the maritime environment to GORUCK participants.

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GORUCK Challenge

Meet the Author


GORUCK Cadre with backgrounds in Special Operations lead every GORUCK Challenge class from start to finish. Individuals start the Challenge, a team finishes the Challenge. Together. The Challenge is hiring. You’re probably a good fit if you love to drink beer, have a background in Special Operations, and hate the thought of being a drill sergeant. The Challenge is elite training, not basic training. Visit GORUCK Challenge to start Good Livin' now.

4 comments… add one
  • nrsthree Mar 7, 2012, 11:12 am

    Can somebody clarify what it means when the exercies say “20×3” for burpees, squats, lunges, etc? Does that mean 60 of each in one rotation on something else? Thanks for the clarification.

    • Mud Run Maniac Mud Run Maniac Mar 7, 2012, 11:40 am

      Hi, 20 x 3 = 3 sets of 20 repetitions. You are correct, 1 rotation = 60 total reps.

      Hope that helps. Cheers!

      • nrsthree Mar 7, 2012, 11:45 am

        Awesome, Paul. Thanks. Looking forward to the workout.

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