Colorful words, let’s just say he used a lot of colorful words. One thing I learned is that in the military “sir” is short for officer. Therefore addressing a sergeant or kernel or anything other than an officer as “sir” can be taken as insult. His name was Jason. If you called him sir he politely called you some colorful words. Words that make you wonder why you paid for this experience. And then you got punished for being stupid because he told you to call him Jason. Drop down and give me 25 push-ups.
On Friday I entered into the Goruck Challenge. Underestimating what I was getting into was an understatement. You put on a backpack (that never comes off) with 35 pounds of bricks and a Camelback, the rest of its contents are up to you. Those 25 push-ups you end up doing are with that back pack on (it never comes off). It is not just you doing those reps it is everyone on the team. And when you make it through to the end, the remaining members of that team are now good friends of yours. You devised that friendship in a way that you can’t really explain to your other friends.
Goruck for me was 20+ miles, 13.5 hours, lost track of the elevation, and a life changing experience. Jason, our Cadre leader, asked us all why we were doing this. I didn’t really have an answer. I did not adequately prepare. Show up don’t quit. That was all I could think of. From running a marathon to getting into the ring nothing prepared me for this. I wanted to quit every five minutes. Don’t get me wrong here. I was not the guy who thought “this was the coolest thing ever”. What I was thinking was “oh my god I didn’t realize that traps could hurt like this”. That didn’t matter though; I was alive and could still keep going.
I looked across at my buddy Mikey and knew that I just had to keep going. That statement kept going through my head Show up don’t quit, Show up don’t quit, Show up don’t quit. Where did that come from? It is bannered across the wall at the best gym in Scottsdale: CrossFit Scottsdale. Ever since I walked in the door there I have taken that saying very personally. It doesn’t say “do your best” or “keep trying until you get it” or “everyone gets a participation medal”. What it states is extremely clear. You come through that door every day, leave whatever is bothering you aside, enter that workout and do it until it is done. Tomorrow you come back for more. It might be difficult but it is not impossible, nothing is impossible.
Goruck is not an adventure race, and it is not a workout, it is a gut check. I’ll let you research it; you don’t get to hear all the secrets until you enter the challenge yourself. The reward didn’t come till a couple days after. After that life seems a little more simple and easy. Appreciation can get overlooked as being an incredibly important quality in life. Going through it makes you want to thank everyone who helped get you there (like accepting an Oscar). It makes you want to thank all the people you train with that never let you quit. You know those people… mine go with me to CrossFit Scottsdale. Who are yours? -Sean Nugent