The Workout Behind a Special Ops Physique

Categories Lifestyle

Former commando turned health and fitness trainer Scott Evennett deconstructs some workout myths….

Health, fitness and mindset expert Scott Evennett has heard the myth that you can’t achieve an aesthetic physique with mostly functional training.

“If someone has told you you can’t have it all, I call bullshit, because you can,” he fires.

Scott spent eight years service and four operational deployments with the Australian Special Operations Command and now specialises in performance-based human development, building a business on strengthening clients’ mind and body.

“It’s time to ditch the 3 x 12 sets of isolated bicep curls with long rest between sets and choose some workouts that challenge you physically and mentally,” Scott says.

“I’m hungry for human performance, I love to challenge my mind and body to see what it is capable of but I’d be lying if I said I didn’t also care about the way my training makes me look.

“It’s my job to help you bridge the gaps between aesthetics and functional training. Each of you wants the ability to do more with your bodies, but looking good is a nice side effect, right?”

This is a typical workout Scott gives participants in his Warrior Athlete Immersion courses on their road to a Special Ops physique.


5-10 minutes of dynamic stretching, made up of a duck walk, lizard crawl, bear crawl, and broad jumps.


Lower rep, lower speed strength training — think heavy compound lifts, back squats, dead lifts, bench press, strict press, ground to overheads, and weighted pull-ups. Complement that strongman strength training with functional exercises like farmers carries and yoke carries. For example, 5 x 5 dead lifts, 5 x 20m heavy farmers carries.

Farmer’s carry.


10-12 reps to increase muscle size through the volume of work, which Scott usually likes to combine into supersets. For example, 3 x sets of 12 x barbell bent-over rows, superset with max body weight pull-ups.


High-speed strength training, Olympic lifting, moving loads quickly like dead ball lifts, tyre flips, sled drags, sled pushes, combined with power cleans, snatches, clean and jerks, etc. For example, 10-minute AMRAP (as many rounds as possible) 20m heavy sled drag, 5 x heavy deadball lifts.

Cardiovascular endurance

HIIT (high-intensity interval training) — short bouts of very intense exercise followed by rest periods, like working for 20 seconds then resting for 10, using both weights and body weight. For example, 8 x rounds of 20 seconds work and 10 seconds rest (shuttle sprints, sandbag thrusters, box jumps).

Muscular endurance

Longer, slower, repetition of the exercise to test your ability to undergo repeated bouts and recover efficiently. For example, 5km pack march using a 10-30kg weighted pack or vest.

Speed and agility

Being agile on your feet is extremely important, as is your ability to accelerate, change direction and then accelerate once again. For example, 10 minutes of Malcolm drills (20m sprints beginning on your belly, adding a weight vest or gas mask for difficulty).


The water rounds out your training program with some lower intensity training and recovery swims. For example, 5-10 x sets 200m swim, 10 push-ups, 10 squats, 10 sit-ups, 10 burpees.

Mobility, stretching, and soft-tissue massage

Keeping joints and muscles mobile minimises the risk of injury, increases strength gains, and halves your recovery time. For example, 10-20-minute full body flexibility/mobility session every day plus one 30-45-minute soft-tissue massage per week.

“Your goal is being all around physically and mentally fit,” Scott explains. “You will need to follow a progressive program that incorporates all the above elements. It’s about ultimate performance but with that will come desired looks.”

“A warrior’s approach to training is ‘the mentality of being able to do and have it all’. If this sounds like a challenge you need, let’s talk programming. I’m taking on a few guys who want this. I will customise your program to match your own lifestyle limitations and variations.”

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