This will be my first and probably only post on here. I have physical fitness tests for my police program in Quebec, Canada, in exactly 1 month and 10 days as the title says. Tests are:

-2,8km in less than 12 minutes (Got it easily) -Bench press one plate 15 reps (Not even close) -15 pull-ups (Could make it) -100m swimming in less than 2 minutes (Tips???)

The bench press is my clear issue here. I'm an ectomorph and can bench 15 reps of 25 pounds (no judgement please). Is it possible to add 20 pounds in one month? How to do so?

  • When you say you are benching 25 pounds, do you mean a pair of 12.5 pound dumbbells or is it a standard 45 pound bar + a total of 25 pounds of plates? Also, can you link to the physical fitness standard you are looking to meet? The RCMP only require benching 70 pounds and the (inadequate) information I could find on Quebec provincial police standards suggested they don't use a bench for upper body strength testing. – gwaigh Feb 13 '19 at 5:58
  • Sorry, I meant 25 pounds plate making a total of 95 pounds. Actually depends on which school you apply to. – J. Doe Feb 13 '19 at 11:41
  • 2
    Ecto/meso/endomorph have been debunked. How long have you known this test was coming up? – JohnP Feb 13 '19 at 13:32
  • Didn't know since yesterday since I just got my confirmation letter that I was accepted for the physical tests. Sorry, my english is bad, i'm french haha – J. Doe Feb 13 '19 at 14:05
  • Just to let you guys know, the test is based on a pointing system. The running is 8/20 and all the rest is 3/20 (I didn't mention the wall climbing). If I fail one of the test it isn't the end, but I still want to do the best I can. – J. Doe Feb 13 '19 at 14:09

Adding 20 pounds in a month is possible, 5lbs a week on a bench press is actually rather common, but it heavily depends on your background. If you've been working at your bench press intensely for a while and you are where you are, then barring some very poor programming on your part, it's going to be extremely hard.

However, based on where you are, it sounds like you e.g. recently tried to see what you could bench, realized it was far off from the test, and are now in scrambling mode?

Next, men gain upper body muscle strength much easier. If you're female, then this will be much harder.

An example program I might do in this situation is bench press 3 days per week.

  • Day 1: Focus on getting stronger. For instance, lift in the 6-10 rep range, minimum 40 work reps (that would be 4-7 work sets)
  • Day 2: Focus on endurance. For instance, do some sets of 20 reps.
  • Day 3: Practice the test

Minimum one day off between days.

The idea here is you have one day where you get used to lifting a weight heavier than the test weight. This often gets overlooked, but it's simple: if a person can bench press 100 pounds for 1 rep, but improves that to 120 lbs, then 95 lbs is going to be easier.

You have another day where you get used to lifting more reps than the test day. (You're trying to push your endurance.)

Finally, you have a day where you practice the actual test.

Remember though, these are days you are going to have to push yourself. The point is to get stronger / lift more weight, do more total reps, and do more reps at the test weight.

Lastly, if you feel that good about the run, you could consider gaining weight, which will make the bench press easier. The tradeoff is everything else will get harder, but that might be a worthwhile trade at this point.

  • Thank you, that was exactly the kind of comment I was looking for. Really helpful, glad you saw this post. – J. Doe Feb 13 '19 at 23:40
  • Sure thing. Good luck! – b-reddy Feb 20 '19 at 13:27

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