written by Taylor Watkins
Are you looking for a new way to get in your cardio and strength training? Time to put on your ruck (aka: backpack), add some weight (bricks work great for this! Start with 4 and work your way up.), and get moving!
GORUCK came into my life 2010 during my first Tough Mudder. I thought it was amazing that these guys would get together with weight in their rucks and do an entire Tough Mudder. Then, GORUCK started their Challenges. I did my first GORUCK Challenge in October of 2013 in Washington, DC and my wife and I completed the GORUCK Nasty Obstacle Course earlier that year. These were both great events. In 2014, I completed a GORUCK Light (6-8 hours) and another GORUCK Challenge, both in Philadelphia.
How do you get started? What exercises can you do?
- Get a ruck – I would highly suggest the GR1 or GR0 from GORUCK based on your height. These are expensive rucks, but the have a Lifetime Guarantee and they are made in the USA by a Veteran-owned business!
- Add some weight to your ruck – Bricks are the easy way. (4-6 bricks based on your weight) Start light when you are first starting out and get used to carrying the extra weight. Start adding weight later when you get stronger. You can find out more on packing your ruck by following this link: http://www.goruck.com/gear-landing
- The lighter your ruck, the faster you can go. This would be CARDIO.
- The heavier your ruck, the slower you go. This would be STRENGTH. It is not suggested that you run. Rucking is a fast walk. Make sure you keep the weight high in the middle of your back, not low. Bend your knees and move forward. To increase your speed, fast walk or shuffle. Make sure you are striking in the middle of your foot and with a soft knee to absorb the shock.
Personally, I have started training for two GORUCK-Heavy (24 hour) events this year. This first one is in June with my father! (He is 62 years old and started training for this!) This event is based on the clandestine missions of the SAS, French Coalition, and US Special Operations before D-Day called Operation Jedburgh. The second event that I am participating in is in August. I am going to Plymouth, MA to do another Heavy called ABSOH. (All Branches of Special Operations-Heavy). As of right now, there are over 140 participants and 6 Cadre, one from each branch of Special Operations.
Rucking is “social fitness!” Grab a bunch of friends, join me, get outside, and go for a ruck! For a bigger challenge, try a GORUCK event. You will have a goal for your training and you will find out more about yourself at one of these events than any mud run or obstacle course.