Rucking Thread

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Sangoma
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Rucking Thread

Post by Sangoma » Mon Dec 17, 2018 11:35 pm

I wanted to ask this question on the Juice thread, but BD suggested a separate discussion topic is warranted. Here it is: Rucking, how do you do it? Starting weight, distance, heart rate, speed, progression - what are the parameters and how do you tweak them? I am very interested in this because I want to improve my endurance base for grappling. AND - I have a dog, who will be very happy if I choose rucking as my training modality.
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Blaidd Drwg
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Re: Rucking Thread

Post by Blaidd Drwg » Tue Dec 18, 2018 6:59 pm

I won't belabor this too hard. There are a lot of resources. These are just my thoughts on how it worked for me to go from walking an hour or so a couple times a week to chasing down and smashing the 12Miles in 3 hours ruck standard with a 55 pound(in my case 75 pound) pack...while still powerlifting.

This took a year and a half.
I started by walking fast...I'd measure cardio in halves of an hour. The minimum amount is therefore 30 min. An hour and 23 minutes is 1 hour.
I added a weight vest once I could keep a comfortable 3MPH pace. The starting weight was 20 pounds.
I would add between 4 and 8 pounds each week or so but would also back cycle. work up to a 40 pound vest, then drop back to 30. I did this entirely on feel.
I would nearly always Ruck after squatting, sometimes the day befgore but always after. (my squat went up during this time)
Once I was pushing a pace around 3.5 MPH with a 40 pound vest, I switched to an ALICE pack.
I stayed at 40 pounds for a solid 2-3 weeks. then slowly started adding.
At this point, (1 year ago) I was gettign 8 plus hours of rucking in per week. Never less than 1.5 hours at a shot. Sometimes 3.
I did not make the route intentionally hard. I would walk flats, hills, whatever but let my recovery dictate the terrains.
At this point i started working with a new coach and we tried a number of things, including intervals on the bike, running etc. We also tried running with the pack. Do Not Do This.

By March I was hitting 9-12 mile rucks easily. Able to hold a 4plus per hour pace off an on while carrying between 50-80 pounds all the time. I felt unstoppable. My resting HR was back in teh low 50's, BP dropped. Appetite was through the roof. My lifting was unaffected until....I did on long hard test loop with a very heavy pack cxhasing that 12miles in 3 hours target. To stay on pace I had to run. This caused the shoulder strap to crush some nerves in my brachial plexus.

I got this...

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brachial_plexus_injury

I lost use of my tricep, delt, suprpinatus and a few fingers for a time. I went form benching 315x8 on New Years to gettign stapled with 135. It's been a long year rehabbing this.

My takeaways.

Keep load moderate , use the hip belt.
It's a very fast awkward shuffle, do not run unless chased.
Footwear...figure it out.
look for calf or shin pump. usually means bad load distribution on pack.
Increase volume by time, not distance.
Do not jump weight up more than 5 or so pounds a week.

Once of the reasons my shoulder injury was bad is that the years of benching had built a lot of mass to impinge the nerve within. If you are heavily muscled, be very fussy about straps. always wear a hip belt.
"He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that." JS Mill

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Re: Rucking Thread

Post by dead man walking » Wed Dec 19, 2018 3:06 am

did you ever monitor your hr?
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Re: Rucking Thread

Post by Blaidd Drwg » Wed Dec 19, 2018 10:19 am

dead man walking wrote:
Wed Dec 19, 2018 3:06 am
did you ever monitor your hr?
Initially, yes. I used a Garmin and tracked pace and HR, elevation etc. After a time I found like you do with all HR stuff, it becomes too wildly variable to rely on as an indicator of "work" but a good lagging indicator of general effort.

When I started I had a difficult time get my HR above 110-120. By the time I worked the loads up and became efficient at cranking miles, I could easily see it sit at 145-155 for a long stretch.
"He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that." JS Mill

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Re: Rucking Thread

Post by Turdacious » Wed Dec 19, 2018 2:15 pm

My .02:
Build up slowly-- your shins really need to ramp up.
The fun of rucking is heavily terrain dependent: on concrete it kind of sucks, offroad there's nothing better.
Sand adds a fun element-- it's not something to do when starting out, but with very light footwear the benefits are incredible.
Running with a pack uphill is not as bad as running downhill. Do not ever run downhill.
Ruck technology has really improved in the last couple decades. You don't need a military style ruck, but something designed for backpacking will give you the best waist belt (rather than a day pack). A 10 year old pack from an second-hand outdoor store is not noticeably worse than the latest and greatest.
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Re: Rucking Thread

Post by nafod » Thu Dec 20, 2018 12:31 pm

I go hiking all the time, and just throw on the backpack with about 30 LBs in it (guess). It lives in my car, so always ready. Favorite hikes here start with a 500 - 1000’ vertical grind then some nice walking in the woods up top for 5 miles or so, followed by the return descent. Sometimes I’ll go to the local ski slope and do laps. There’s a lake I’ll hike around for 5-6 miles. Many of the trails are rocky with tricky footing. Usually shoot for about a 1+30 hike, with at least one kickass hill in there.

It builds up toughness, I find. The ability to just carry the load and go. Easier on the joints then running, and a nice day in the woods. Fun!
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Re: Rucking Thread

Post by johno » Thu Dec 20, 2018 5:47 pm

Good stuff above.

As already said, ease into it. Start with a light load & go for comfortable walks to let your body adapt. The older you are, the more time you need.

Running shoes with flexible soles may not be the best for rucking. Consider shoes with stiffer soles, or boots.

The heavier loads (40-60 lb) BD describes should be on the outer edge of what you should routinely ruck. Yes, there are young men in the military who must carry much more. But a good % of those guys have problems as a result.

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Are full of passionate intensity.

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Re: Rucking Thread

Post by Sua Sponte » Thu Dec 20, 2018 9:11 pm

Mostly everything covered already. A few reinforcements.

As johno said, start slow, start light, start short distance. No need to rush. BD story is a cautionary tale.

After the WWII, a guy named SLA Marshall did a study and wrote a book about it. "The soldier's load and the mobility of a nation." In it he suggests max load should never exceed 40% of body weight. The load calculation includes everything on your body; clothes, shoes, hat. Everything. Don't forget weight of water and food are int there as well. The current Army (and Marine manual) on foot marching prescribes that a proper infantry unit should be able to move 20 miles/day in 8 hours, at that load, everyday, without loss of combat effectiveness. Note that's just 2.5 miles per hour over flat or lightly rolling terrain (but off the hard ball).

Just a personal recommendation, but don't exceed a 35lb ruck (plus water) and start at a 3 mile/hour pace. Up the pact over time but most people usually can't walk faster than a bit over 4miles/hr for any distance. The older you are, the more time you should take. Worthwhile at the start to use an HR monitor. Once you get to that load at that pace increases in difficulty should come from adding hilsl if you got 'em.

Ditto on the running with a ruck. Ranger Regiment standard is 12 miles, 3 hours, 55lbs ruck plus everything else (webbing, rifle, skid lid, water....)over uneven rolling terrain. For guys doing the job, you won't hang around long if you can't pull it in under 2 1/2 hours but I would not recommend it. I still know a lot of guys who have orthopedic and back problems. Me included.

You will get the most value going cross country. It can be interesting with map and compass. Be wary of twisted ankles, water, sudden drops, wild and plant life, sudden changes of weather, and extended sections dead fall- the last will kick your ever loving arse.

Squats go well with rucking until you start climbing hills Then choose your poison.

Rucking and Maffetone are made for each other.

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Re: Rucking Thread

Post by Blaidd Drwg » Fri Dec 21, 2018 3:02 am

Sua Sponte wrote:
Thu Dec 20, 2018 9:11 pm
Mostly everything covered already. A few reinforcements.

As johno said, start slow, start light, start short distance. No need to rush. BD story is a cautionary tale.

After the WWII, a guy named SLA Marshall did a study and wrote a book about it. "The soldier's load and the mobility of a nation." In it he suggests max load should never exceed 40% of body weight. The load calculation includes everything on your body; clothes, shoes, hat. Everything. Don't forget weight of water and food are int there as well. The current Army (and Marine manual) on foot marching prescribes that a proper infantry unit should be able to move 20 miles/day in 8 hours, at that load, everyday, without loss of combat effectiveness. Note that's just 2.5 miles per hour over flat or lightly rolling terrain (but off the hard ball).

Just a personal recommendation, but don't exceed a 35lb ruck (plus water) and start at a 3 mile/hour pace. Up the pact over time but most people usually can't walk faster than a bit over 4miles/hr for any distance. The older you are, the more time you should take. Worthwhile at the start to use an HR monitor. Once you get to that load at that pace increases in difficulty should come from adding hilsl if you got 'em.

Ditto on the running with a ruck. Ranger Regiment standard is 12 miles, 3 hours, 55lbs ruck plus everything else (webbing, rifle, skid lid, water....)over uneven rolling terrain. For guys doing the job, you won't hang around long if you can't pull it in under 2 1/2 hours but I would not recommend it. I still know a lot of guys who have orthopedic and back problems. Me included.

You will get the most value going cross country. It can be interesting with map and compass. Be wary of twisted ankles, water, sudden drops, wild and plant life, sudden changes of weather, and extended sections dead fall- the last will kick your ever loving arse.

Squats go well with rucking until you start climbing hills Then choose your poison.

Rucking and Maffetone are made for each other.
ALL OF THIS.

Pushing those numbers at an age that has a 4 and a 9 in it was flat stupid. That said, I had a lot of fun. That said...listen to the actual professional soldier types above and stay below 40...90% of the benefits at something close to 15% bw is possible.
"He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that." JS Mill

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Bobby
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Re: Rucking Thread

Post by Bobby » Fri Dec 21, 2018 8:28 pm

Blaidd Drwg wrote:
Fri Dec 21, 2018 3:02 am
Sua Sponte wrote:
Thu Dec 20, 2018 9:11 pm
Mostly everything covered already. A few reinforcements.

As johno said, start slow, start light, start short distance. No need to rush. BD story is a cautionary tale.

After the WWII, a guy named SLA Marshall did a study and wrote a book about it. "The soldier's load and the mobility of a nation." In it he suggests max load should never exceed 40% of body weight. The load calculation includes everything on your body; clothes, shoes, hat. Everything. Don't forget weight of water and food are int there as well. The current Army (and Marine manual) on foot marching prescribes that a proper infantry unit should be able to move 20 miles/day in 8 hours, at that load, everyday, without loss of combat effectiveness. Note that's just 2.5 miles per hour over flat or lightly rolling terrain (but off the hard ball).

Just a personal recommendation, but don't exceed a 35lb ruck (plus water) and start at a 3 mile/hour pace. Up the pact over time but most people usually can't walk faster than a bit over 4miles/hr for any distance. The older you are, the more time you should take. Worthwhile at the start to use an HR monitor. Once you get to that load at that pace increases in difficulty should come from adding hilsl if you got 'em.

Ditto on the running with a ruck. Ranger Regiment standard is 12 miles, 3 hours, 55lbs ruck plus everything else (webbing, rifle, skid lid, water....)over uneven rolling terrain. For guys doing the job, you won't hang around long if you can't pull it in under 2 1/2 hours but I would not recommend it. I still know a lot of guys who have orthopedic and back problems. Me included.

You will get the most value going cross country. It can be interesting with map and compass. Be wary of twisted ankles, water, sudden drops, wild and plant life, sudden changes of weather, and extended sections dead fall- the last will kick your ever loving arse.

Squats go well with rucking until you start climbing hills Then choose your poison.

Rucking and Maffetone are made for each other.
ALL OF THIS.

Pushing those numbers at an age that has a 4 and a 9 in it was flat stupid. That said, I had a lot of fun. That said...listen to the actual professional soldier types above and stay below 40...90% of the benefits at something close to 15% bw is possible.
No need to go over 40-45lnbs if you aren`t a part/full time soldier.It does tend to tear up the body over time.
You`ll toughen up.Unless you have a serious medical condition commonly refered to as
"being a pussy".

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