TACFIT Firefighter - My Thoughts
This section is currently broken down into four sections.
The first section is my perception of Tacfit Fire Fighter: First Alarm confined to two sentences. (Taken from THIS summary article.)
The second section is a review of First Alarm after I had completed Stage 1 of my training. The full article can be found HERE but below is the review portion taken from the article.
The third section is a compilation of bullet points that I wrote while working through the program. They are also contained within an article I wrote HERE after completing Stage 2 (Part 1 of 3)
The fourth section is a FINAL SUMMARY after completing the entire program. (Taken from THIS summary article.)
Apologies if it seems disjointed. The reviews evolved as I progressed through the program.
First Alarm In Two Sentences
Tacfit Fire Fighter: First Alarm is an intelligent health first fitness program that incorporates sophisticated layers, which develop many fitness attributes and enhance vocational and recreational performance. Joint mobility and injury prevention are firmly built into the program and I believe that anyone who undertakes First Alarm will see great benefits.
First Alarm - Initial Thoughts After Completing Stage 1 Training
Let's dive into the amazing ocean that is Tacfit Fire Fighter.
Ok. Where to begin? There are many beginnings here so I start with one word. Layer. Or to be more precise: Layers.
Stating the obvious here, but a quick look at Tacfit Fire Fighter: First Alarm would tell you that it is a fitness program. The words strength, power, metabolic conditioning etc, contained within the sales material denote what one can expect. However, this is one tier of a beautiful cake or the entrance to Doctor Who’s Tardis.
The reality is that there are many layers to this 'fitness program'. If some of the physical attributes were looked at from a metaphorical perspective, it would start to paint a different picture. Yes, strength is physical, however, this type of training enhances mental and emotional strength. Yes, power is physical but this program also provides the emotional power to overcome non-physical resistance such as cravings, road rage and general crappy thinking!
For me it denotes a unique intelligence within the programming of Tacfit Fire Fighter.
I believe that many fitness programs may unknowingly have similar layers (not necessarily the same quality), however, Tacfit Fire Fighter facilitates the understanding and focus of these layers. It takes exercise and says, “You are no longer just exercise. You are a pathway to undertaking physical training that incorporates elements which transcend the physical and can be applied to regular daily life. By undertaking this journey today, you can become a better you tomorrow”.
Before I started this type of training I had many questions, doubts and uncertainties. Was it for me? Would it work? Blah-de-blah.
I was reading a blog post somewhere in Cyberspace and a very simple statement captivated me. It was akin to the following (I forget the exact words), “Reading something is not enough. You have to do it and internalise it before you can understand/appreciate it”. This one sentence decided it for me. I would do Tacfit!
And, boy, am I happy I did.
I am in danger of making this a sales pitch! This is not my aim. I do, however, feel that the details that follow (within the article that can be found HERE) relate to the above and add credence to it.
I have been training with Tacfit Fire Fighter First Alarm (hereon in known as TFFF) since the 23rd April. I started off with 8 days to recover from my previous training program followed by the TFFF Challenge and 7 complete cycles of Recruit (Level 1).
The journey thus far has been………hmmmmmmmm………Which adjective to use?………Amazing? Yeah, that’s cool………Ah, got it!………Enlightening.
Here I will just list what my gains from my TFFF experience to date:
- Fat loss (and according to my fat % monitor I was already in single digits!)
- Strength gains.
- Increase in tissue elasticity. I have no idea what the technical term is but I can feel a greater storage of elastic energy on compression.
- Increase in heart rate recovery.
- Deeper tension release (residual tension from training and life in general)
- Greater intuition – Balancing work and recovery. Understanding and regulating training intensity.
- Deeper understanding of myself mentally and emotionally.
IMPORTANT NOTE: I have to make it clear that prior to starting TFFF I was already undertaking Tacfit training. I started Tacfit26 in October 2013 and displaced it to train with TFFF. I had already developed many of the above, however, TFFF has further advanced this. It has been wonderful to see further progress in certain areas that I thought I had already developed!
The areas that I had previously enhanced are also part of TFFF and anyone undertaking this kind of training will benefit:
- Increased mobility.
- Injury prevention through mobility and compensatory training.
- Better posture (or more accurately, poise).
- Increased energy levels.
I did not include these in the first list above as I have already attained these attributes through my prior Tacfit26 training. With TFFF I am maintaining and further developing them.
If someone were to ask me whether they should do TFFF my answer would be, “I don’t know. We are all different with different focuses. Read my journey and if it resonates, go for it! If you are not sure, go for it anyway!”
If someone were to ask me if TFFF is for fire fighters only my answer would be, “This program seems perfect for fire fighters but is also perfect for everyone else. I am biased. It works for me and I am an English teacher! It will 100% increase strength, add muscle (where muscle is needed), reduce fat (especially with using the compliance system within the program), restore mobility and is health first.
This type of training also helps process physical, mental and emotional stress. We all have that. It just varies depending on the life we have chosen for ourselves. It is the most intelligent all-encompassing fitness program that I have had the privilege of undertaking.
If you are interested in it, take the leap. I think you will be glad you did”.
Bullet Points Pertaining To First Alarm
I am currently undertaking a recovery phase using Tacfit Firefighter's mobilty and compensation programs and have to say that I am really impressed. The coaching cues are excellent and I have learned more about certain movements that I thought I already knew about!
I really like the fact that there is no background music to the follow along videos. Personally I stopped playing music while training so that I could focus on performance and this is a welcome asset to the follow-alongs. (Note: There is background music on the Fire Fighter Challenge video and it is coooooooooooool :)
I had a great compensation session today. I only needed to do one circuit but you can always add more recovery as long as you don't stray into moderate intensity. What I like about TFFF is that they also encourage the use of intuition.
The follow-along videos are excellent. These guys have thought of everything!
The Tacfit Firefighter compensation series is my favourite. 40% of the poses are ones that I need to develop and it is working a treat. I could feel the release as I progressed through the circuits. I have never done an hours worth of compensations before but this is the second time in as many cycles. Props to TFFF!
Achieving goals................With Tacfit Fire Fighter I know that I can 'just keep showing up' and will achieve my goals safely and have good fun at the same time. How many fitness programs can offer that? :)
I wanted to share a recent comment I made to Ryan at Tacfit Fire Fighter. For me it highlights the positive mental and emotional effect that a highly intelligent 'fitness' program can provide in life as well as the gym.
I have/had an 'all or nothing' personality but with amazing programs such as Tacfit and Tacfit First Alarm I now have an 'all or even more' personality. This new attitude has transcended into my personal and professional life for the better. What you are offering goes way beyond fitness.
The Final Summary
1. Stage 1 of Tacfit Fire Fighter: First Alarm began on the 23rd April 2014 and concluded on the 1st June (article HERE).
2. Stage 2 commenced on the 16th June and Stage 2 (Part 1 of 3) was completed on the 25th July 2014 (article HERE). A total of 7 Cycles.
3. Stage 2 (Part 2 of 3) started on the 26th July and concluded on the 31st August (article HERE). A total of 7 Cycles.
4. Stage 2 (Part 3 of 3) started on the 3rd September and was completed on the 12th October 2014. (article HERE).
5. Tacfit Fire Fighter: First Alarm Compliance Program (Scores HERE).
It has been an absolute honour to have undertaken Tacfit Fire Fighter: First Alarm.
Like life, my journey did not progress in a linear fashion but like a heart beat. The middle was the hardest part but methinks that this is part of the psychology of the program design. First responders don’t have the luxury of finishing a race and sitting down to bask in the success of a completed task. I have come to understand that ‘The end’ is actually only the half way point. They still have to get home again and this was my experience. After breaking though the half-way mark using strength, determination and benefiting from intelligent program design, I felt the journey became easier. Not easier in terms of energy output etc but mentally easier. I felt I could do it. To achieve the last 7 cycles at Fire Fighter/Smoke Eater level (levels 3 and 4) was a dream come true. To complete the final Tacfit Fire Fighter Challenge at Smoke Eater level (top level) was just unthinkable a few short months ago.
I also followed the ENTIRE 92 day program (plus additional training cycles through personal choice) over a period of 173 days with ZERO injuries.
Tacfit Fire Fighter: First Alarm will absolutely build strength. It will definitely develop power. It will without a doubt add muscle where needed (volume of mass will be nutrition dependent) and burn fat.
The above are givens and usually what the majority is searching for............but.................after completing the program I can confirm through personal experience that it will do soooooooooooo much more. I call them deeper levels.
The standard attributes above are by-products of a bigger picture. Yes you will get them, BUT, the following list is the catalyst for rapid growth and progressive development (in my humble opinion):
- Increased flexibility (through strength/ surrender, not tissue stretching).
- Enhanced mobility.
- Extreme range strength.
- The ability to freely move in 3D (twisting, turning, pitching, swaying etc).
- Dramatic decrease in the potential for injury.
- Ability to rapidly recover both physically and mentally from life's challenges.
- Improved posture and poise.
- Learning new movements (aka exercises) will become easier.
- Zero boredom.
- Higher intuitive awareness (body, work/recovery ratios and intensity output).
- Increased coordination and ease of movement.
- Be challenged, interested, motivated AND have fun.
We are all different. Another person will have a different list to the one above but this is what I experienced during my Fire Fighter journey. For me it has been transformative.
If I look at the movement patterns within Tacfit Fire Fighter and compare them to my perception of what Fire Fighters have to do (I’m not a fireman) I would say it is perfect for their demographic. I would also take this further by saying that it is perfect for almost everyone else. It has so much to offer in terms of healthy fitness training that it would be something that I would happily recommend to both first responders and 'general' fitness enthusiasts. Although hypertrophy will happen, this is not, and does not pretend to be a body building program. I do, however believe that aspiring muscle gainers will benefit from the enhanced movement that First Alarm provides as well as the prehab and recovery programs contained within. It will also lay a solid foundation (bone density, tissue strengthening etc) from which mass can be added.
I will 100% be repeating the program in the future. I now have data that I can compare to monitor future progress.
What I liked about the program
- The program layout on the Tacfit Fire Fighter web site is fantastic. You just go to the day you require and EVERYTHING is laid out for you; printable charts, exercise instructions and follow along videos.
- The video exercise instructions are short and sweet with direct coaching cues. No fluff here!
- There is no background music on the videos. (There is music on the Fire Fighter Challenge video but it is cool :)
- The coaching cues are excellent.
- The instructors on the videos are personable, enjoyable to watch and easy to learn from.
- I believe they have pretty much thought of everything.
What I didn't like about the program
To aim for a balanced summary I spent a considerable amount of time thinking about potential 'negatives' for Tacfit Fire Fighter: First Alarm. I personally couldn't think of any. Call me biased. I don't mind. My experience above paints a very positive picture.
There is one caveat to all of this, which is that you do have to put the work in. There are no magic gadgets, gurus or pills to make our lives easy. Easy does not take us to the next level. Only intelligent hard work. Be compliant and the magic will happen. This program offers the intelligence. You only need provide the compliance.
I end with one of my favourite quotes from Scott Sonnon:
“I don't guarantee it'll be easy, but I promise it'll absolutely be worth it”.
13th October 2014