I have set my eyes on a new prize, and the intent of this journal is to track my progress towards that goal... and to perhaps talk through the event itself to debrief the experience. Right now that goal is to participate in the GoRuck challenge in Columbus, OH on 21 June 2013. *****://www.goruckchallenge.com/Events/Challenge
This is a pretty good departure from my normal training. Through the nicer months I jog a few times per week, and I lift 5-6 days a week. For the past couple years my training has been geared towards competing in strongman (NAS sanctioned) competitions. I stopped competing well over a year ago, but I've always been drawn to the idea of pushing myself and doing something different and this seems like a great opportunity to do just that. This also dovetails nicely with my close to 16 years of military service, so in some ways it feels familiar.
So to kick this off I think we will go with a good old SWOT analysis:
1. This wouldn't be the first time I've had this kind of extended military physical challenge. Having been through boot camp and commissioning as an officer has given me a wealth of experience to draw on.
2. I have roughly 21 years of physical training experience, participating in a variety of sports and competitions. I will have to alter my training, but I'm not starting at square one.
3. I am comfortable as both a leader and a follower. The military has taught me that both are necessary.
4. I'm confident in my own ability to do this. I will make mistakes, but I don't get flustered by it and they don't derail me.
5. I'm good under pressure. When the world is falling down around me I get zen and my ability to make good decisions doesn't go to hell.
1. In general I don't love people. I have a tendency to be quick to judge and quick to be irritated. These traits won't help when the going gets tough.
2. While I'm fit, I will be the first to admit that I don't LOVE endurance type activities. I will have to be extra cautious about shrugging off the parts of training that I don't want to do.
3. Though I'm good under pressure, I can be a little distractable when the pressure isn't there. Blame that on MTV or something, but I can require a lot of entertainment or I can lose focus.
4. I have some old injuries that I need to be aware of. I'm almost 37, so of course I have my share of banged up elbows, a lower back that goes out when it wants, etc. Injury prevention needs to be a top priority
5. This isn't my life. I have other responsibilities and I have to find a way to juggle potentially long training times (30 minute jogs aren't going to cut it when I may have to do that 6-8 times in a night) with the rest of my life.
1. Well, the good news is that money isn't an issue. If I need/want new shoes I will get them. The GoRuck brand packs cost roughly $300. I can afford that plus the entry fee.
2. I have some other individuals who will be coming along for the ride. At a minimum "Ben" will be my training partner for this little adventure. Ben is a former Marine, so I will lean on him quite a bit as I know he has more experience with this than I have. There may be others to be named later.
3. New friends, new experiences, new knowledge.
4. There is a good bit of info out there about this experience. I won't be going in completely blind.
1. Weather is a big one. I can't control it, but I can prepare for it. During the next several months of training I expect I'll see single and three digit temps, crap tons of rain, and generally any other weather pattern that would have me considering how badly I want to do this.
2. Travel for work. This can potentially take me out of my training "groove" and I will need to plan accordingly to accomplish my goals while I'm on the road.
3. Though the overall intent of the event is the same, every event has its own flavor, if you will. There will always be a level of uncertainty.
4. Any time you get away from your basic "walking around" level of exertion, you increase your risk of injury. This is going to be a monumental departure from walking about, both in training and performance measure.