Fit To Fight Fire: Lead Yourself


Increasing Fire Ground Performance - Firefighter Fitness


  • Episode 019 – Listener’s Podcast

    Episode 019 – Listener’s Podcast

    19/11/2017 Duração: 42min

    Episode 019 - In this episode, we respond to questions submitted by our listeners. We discuss tips for getting hired, being successful in the academy, and creating buy-in as a junior firefighter. We also touch on exercises and equipment that have worked well for us in preparation for the fire ground, and the importance of knowing your body like you know your firefighting skills.

  • Episode 018 – Zac Varela

    Episode 018 – Zac Varela

    05/11/2017 Duração: 54min

    Episode 018 - Zac Varela is a 10 year veteran of the fire service, and an Engineer for Aurora (CO) Fire Rescue. Over the years, the engineer role has taken on many different roles and responsibilities, but Zac shares what he expects of himself in this position. We cover a wide range of topics in this episode, including having tough conversations with your officer or others on your crew, leading not only at work but also at home, and how age comes into play in a physical profession such as ours.

  • Episode 017 – Jason Hoevelmann

    Episode 017 – Jason Hoevelmann

    23/10/2017 Duração: 53min

    Episode 017 - Jason Hoevelmann is a Deputy Chief/Fire Marshal with the Sullivan Fire Protection District, a combination department, and a career Captain and Training Officer with the Florissant Valley Fire Protection District (MO). His experience spans more than 20 years and he has been an instructor for more than 15 years. Jason shares where it all started for him, how he "chases the kinks" with his crews, and the ways in which he prioritizes his day at the firehouse. Jason is the author of No Exceptions Leadership: The Leadership Handbook and is behind

  • Episode 016 – Brian Brush

    Episode 016 – Brian Brush

    08/10/2017 Duração: 37min

    Episode 016 - Brian Brush, an 18-year veteran of the fire service, is a firefighter at Edmond (OK) Fire Rescue. Prior to Edmond, Brian was a Lieutenant with West Metro Fire Rescue (CO). Brian shares why he got into the fire service and why he made the decision to move departments. It takes humility, passion, commitment, and compromise to excel at this profession, and he says without any of these, it can't sustain. Brian contributes regularly to Fire Engineering, teaches at various conferences, and will be at the Mile High Firefighter's Conference next week, October 13-15 2017.

  • Episode 015 – Hunter Hackbarth

    Episode 015 – Hunter Hackbarth

    28/09/2017 Duração: 36min

    Episode 015 - We talk with our former Training Chief, Hunter Hackbarth, on the topic of leading a cadre, which at times means just facilitating or simply getting out of the way. We touch on the importance of pride around the fire station and throughout the department, and how failure should be looked at as an opportunity to get better. Also, does there have to be separation or a barrier between the officer and his/her crew? Between the Chief and his/her staff? Not if you are authentic and have a clear purpose.

  • Episode 014 Xtra – Eric Schultz – Uncut

    Episode 014 Xtra – Eric Schultz – Uncut

    16/09/2017 Duração: 05min

    Episode 014 Xtra (Uncut) - A short collection of thoughts that surrounded Eric and I's conversation on Episode 014. Maybe it will prompt some discussion around your firehouse, or with your brothers and sisters.

  • Episode 014 – Eric Schultz

    Episode 014 – Eric Schultz

    16/09/2017 Duração: 39min

    Episode 014 - On May 18, 2017, Firefighter Scott Deem passed away while operating on a 4-alarm fire with San Antonio Fire Department. Eric Schultz was an academy brother of FF Deem and discusses that tragic night as well as the effects it has had on him and the department following the LODD. We also talk about the value of training when part of a major metropolitan Rescue Company, and what our daily priorities should be in the station and while on duty. Eric is a 10 year veteran of the fire service, 6 of those with SAFD, and is currently assigned to Rescue 11. He is a fireman's fireman - one that values blue collar work, high standards, and humility.

  • Wednesday Burn 002 – Would You Want You Instructing You?

    Wednesday Burn 002 – Would You Want You Instructing You?

    24/08/2017 Duração: 16min

    Wednesday Burn 002 - What is the level of instruction that every recruit deserves? What creates buy-in within an academy or a crew as an officer or an instructor? Why do some leaders tell you what to do, but don't always show you what to do? What do recruits expect from an instructor? We answer all of these questions and more when we burn on "Would You Want You Instructing You?" Sponsored by Paul Conway Fire (

  • Episode 013 – IFP: Increasing Fire Ground Performance

    Episode 013 – IFP: Increasing Fire Ground Performance

    17/08/2017 Duração: 08min

    Episode 013 - Increasing Fire Ground Performance (IFP) is Fit To Fight Fire's training protocol. If you are looking to get better at the craft and are looking to replicate performing under stress on the fire ground, then look no further. We talk about the evolution of this program at our department and our upcoming Hands On Training (H.O.T.) at FireHouse Expo (October 17-19) in Nashville, TN.

  • Episode 012 – Tim Sendelbach

    Episode 012 – Tim Sendelbach

    10/08/2017 Duração: 40min

    Episode 012 - Tim Sendelbach is a 30-year student and educator of the fire and emergency services, currently serving as the Editor-in-Chief for Firehouse. He is responsible for the content and editorial direction of Firehouse® Magazine,, Firehouse Expo, and Firehouse World. He has served as an Assistant Fire Chief with the North Las Vegas (NV) Fire Department, as the Chief of Training for Savannah (GA) Fire & Emergency Services, and as Assistant Fire Chief for Missouri City (TX) Fire & Rescue Services. Tim shares how buy-in is immediate when instructors are participating in the physical fitness with recruits, how important education is to creating a well-rounded firefighter and human being, and the need for critiquing yourself and fire service traditions to bring out the best ideas going forward. Sponsored by Paul Conway Fire (

  • Episode 011 – Jeff Clark

    Episode 011 – Jeff Clark

    29/07/2017 Duração: 38min

    Episode 011 - Jeff Clark has been the Fire Chief at East Side Fire & Rescue (WA) since February of 2016. Prior to that, he spent 25 years with Chandler (AZ) Fire Department, rising through the ranks to become that organization's Fire Chief in 2008. Chief Clark introduces a recruiting model that all departments should emulate, as he believes in finding the right firefighter to fit the organization, not just the next applicant that walks through the door. We discuss the challenges of leading an organization after leaving another, how a socially intelligent approach can create greater buy in, and why it is that well-trained crews are rewarded with greater responsibility on the fire ground. Sponsored by Paul Conway Fire (

  • Episode 010 – Jim Smith

    Episode 010 – Jim Smith

    16/07/2017 Duração: 47min

    Episode 010 - After 40 years with Aurora Fire Rescue, Jim Smith retired earlier this year. Jim physically outperformed the majority of firefighters he worked with up until his last shift. He takes us through his calling as a firefighter, his comeback from what most said was a career-ending injury, and how humility helped him everyday and with every new firefighter that was assigned to him. Sponsored by Paul Conway Fire (

  • Episode 009 – Justin McWilliams

    Episode 009 – Justin McWilliams

    29/06/2017 Duração: 34min

    Episode 009 - Justin McWilliams of Clackamas Fire District (OR) talks about creating a search culture and why we search. More importantly, he discusses his journey in becoming a better firefighter, which is centered around shelving his own ego everyday. We also touch on the importance of mentors and the physical demands of performing a search. Justin has taught classroom and H.O.T. sessions at FDIC and other regional conferences and is a member of Brothers In Battle. Sponsored by Paul Conway Fire (

  • Episode 008 – Jarrod Sergi

    Episode 008 – Jarrod Sergi

    16/06/2017 Duração: 35min

    Episode 008 - Jarrod Sergi is a Lieutenant with Norfolk Fire Rescue and is assigned to Ladder Company 7 following time on one of the city’s busiest Engine Companies. He also served a tour in the Training Division as a Fire Academy Coordinator. Prior to working for the City of Norfolk, Jarrod served 6 years in the United States Navy as a Damage Controlman (shipboard firefighter) and a Search and Rescue Swimmer. Jarrod is the founder of Trial By Fire and talks with us about why he invests in fire service training, how his military experience prepared him for the firehouse, and how trust is the foundation to creating 'buy in' from those you lead. Sponsored by Paul Conway Fire (

  • Wednesday Burn 001 – Running On The Fire Ground

    Wednesday Burn 001 – Running On The Fire Ground

    07/06/2017 Duração: 08min

    Wednesday Burn 001 - One of the most polarizing topics on social media is whether or not to run on the fire ground. Some buy in to it, some don't. We burn on the topic to provide some clarity and thoughts. Sponsored by Paul Conway Fire (

  • Episode 007 – Mark vonAppen

    Episode 007 – Mark vonAppen

    02/06/2017 Duração: 26min

    Episode 007 - Mark vonAppen is the man behind Fully Involved, the blog that has become an integral part of the fire service revolution to promote improved leadership, culture, and morale. He is a Captain with Palo Alto (CA) Fire Department and tells us how it all started for him. We discuss accountability and having the tough conversations with other firefighters, as well as ensuring that today's youth within the fire service are encouraged to go after their passions. Mark speaks regularly around the country at conferences and is hosted by an increasing number of fire departments every year. If you are interested in his leadership courses and/or materials, you can contact him at [email protected] Sponsored by Paul Conway Fire (

  • Episode 006 – Dave McGrail

    Episode 006 – Dave McGrail

    27/05/2017 Duração: 40min

    Episode 006: Dave McGrail is an Assistant Chief with Denver Fire Department and is best known for his experience with high-rise operations. Chief McGrail talks about the importance of being engaged in the fire service every day and eliminating complacency. We discuss bringing your "A" game to every call, and why it's important for fire service instructors to not only bring their message, but also show the way themselves. Chief McGrail teaches high-rise classes throughout the country at various conferences, and authored the book Firefighting Operations in High-Rise & Standpipe-Equipped Buildings. Sponsored by Paul Conway Fire (

  • Episode 005 – Michael Snodgrass

    Episode 005 – Michael Snodgrass

    19/05/2017 Duração: 33min

    Episode 005: Michael Snodgrass is the creator of FireXTalk, the founder of, and teaches regularly at the Randy Carpenter Memorial Firefighter Survival School. He is a Lieutenant with Gresham (OR) Fire Department, and has 25 years of experience in the fire service. FTFF traveled to Portland to speak at FireXTalk 2017 along with Fully Involved's Mark vonAppen and Justin McWilliams of Brothers In Battle. We discuss the origins of FireXTalk, the importance of creating realistic training that involves the possibility of failure, and qualities that make a firefighter successful in challenging and stressful situations. Sponsored by Paul Conway Fire (

  • Episode 004 – Jim Moss  Dan Kerrigan

    Episode 004 – Jim Moss & Dan Kerrigan

    12/05/2017 Duração: 55min

    Episode 004: Jim Moss and Dan Kerrigan, the authors of Firefighter Functional Fitness, join us to discuss the 4 Pillars concept within their book, how to promote a culture of fitness within your department, tips for dealing with sleep deprivation, and finding the motivation and discipline to establish career long healthy habits. Sponsored by Paul Conway Fire (

  • Episode 003 – Frank Viscuso

    Episode 003 – Frank Viscuso

    05/05/2017 Duração: 26min

    Episode 003: Deputy Chief Frank Viscuso of Kearny (NJ) Fire Department is the author of Step Up & Lead and speaks nationally on leadership and officer development. He discusses the contagious effects of positive and negative environments around the firehouse, the importance of leading yourself before you lead others, and training in realistic scenarios. Sponsored by Paul Conway Fire (

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