T Nation

Navy SEALS Challenge

Hey Guys,
I’ve hit a VERY intriguing (at least to me) fork in the road. Ever since I’ve started reading this mag., I’ve put my training on pause (up until now) so that I could basically rewire all of the myths and bullshit that I’d been taught before. Now I’m starting to train, and the first step is fat loss. Right now i’m 175 lbs. at bt/w 17-18% body fat. I’m training for strength right now b/c I was advised for reasons of getting fatter to go on a bulking cycle. ANYWAY, I leave for the Navy in almost exactly 2 months. Now I’ve been recently told that we can take the SEAL challenge where we get to work w/ SEALS instead of regular boot camp. Do you guys think that this wood be more outweighed by the pluses or minuses. Here is the suggested preparation program: Week 1-Run 2 miles/day (8:30 pace), 4X15Pushups, 4X20Situps, 3X3 Pullups, Swim for 15 min. Week 2- Running same as week 1, 5X20 Pushups, 5X20Situps, 3X3Pullups, Swimming same as week 1. Week 3- No Running, 5X25 Pushups, 5X25Situps, 3X4Pullups, Swim for 20 mins. Week 4- Running 3miles/day, pushups, pullups, situps, and swimming same as week 3. Week 5- Running 2/3/4/2 miles M/Tu/Th/F, 6X25Pushups, 6X25Situps, 2X8 Pullups, Swimming for 25 mins. Week 6- Running same as week 5, Push, Pulls, Situps, and swimming same as week 5. Week 7- Running 4/4/5/3 miles M/Tu/Th/F, 6X30 pushups, 6X30 Situps, 2X10 Pullups, Swimming for 30 mins. Week 8- Same as Week 7. Week 9- Running same as week 8, Pushups and Situps same as week 8, 3X10 pullups, Swim for 35 mins. Sorry for the Long Thread but I HAD to ask you guys. As for an opinion, I’d be interested in what Coach Davies would have to say, this seems like his expertise. I just wanna know whether you guys think the challenge of the program would negetively affect my training. If it would, I’ll just suck it up and to regular boot camp, then continue my weight programs when I get out of boot camp. Thanks Guys

Sorry, I forgot to mention that the Pushups and stuff is on MWF, Running is MWF (until week 5), and swimming is 4-5 times/week. This is only the prep. program, so the actual program will be more involved than this. I am on “don’t diet” by the way. Sorry length again.

Kyle: Are you looking to go to BUD/s after bootcamp or are you just looking for the increased activity? Now, when I went through it was the “Divefarer” program, but that has since been changed to the SEAL challenge program. However, as of just a few years ago, the program that you describe was only being talked about. Are you sure that the recruiter is telling you the whole story? You have to understand that they will tell you whatever it takes to get you to sign up or join a “special” program. The last I knew, everyone was together at boot camp, only those guys that joined with the “SEAL Challenge guarantee” were made eligible for what was called “SEAL PT”, in which you go in the mornings at 0500 to either the pool or the gym and do PT with other guys that joined up under this same challenge. The PT is lead by SEALs and Navy Divers. Oh, there is another catch: the guys in charge (RDC’s or Recruit Divison Commanders) of your division DO NOT HAVE TO LET YOU GO TO SEAL PT, even if you have every right to be there and have joined up under the SEAL Challenge. You only get to go IF THEY ALLOW YOU TO! Now, like I said all of this applied a few years ago but it may have changed since then. You really need to be asking all of these questions to your recruiter as well as the SEAL Detailors up in Great Lakes before you take anything for granted, especially whether there is a bootcamp division for “SEAL Challenge” candidates ONLY. If you have any other questions feel free to ask, but be very wary of everything they tell you.

What do you want to accomplish? Do you want to be a SEAL? BTW, you will go thru “regular” bootcamp you just PT a little harder than the rest. It’s geared toward guys who want to be SEAL’s so if that isn’t your goal don’t waste there time and yours. Regardless of which route you choose prepare yourself to lose your conditioning. Sad to say but all but USMC boot camps are a joke…

Take the SEAL camp. It would most likely help improve your work capacity and make you a tough mother. View the camp as just another training program and once your out build upon what you gained through the experience.

I’d say if you can go through this progression in 8 weeks, you’ll have no serious trouble adapting to the actual program. Ideally, you’d want to spread this type of progression over more time.

Kyle, a bit of advice. If you are going to go to BUD/S but you are attending an “A” school after boot camp, I wouldn’t worry too much about being able to PT with those SEALs while in boot camp; you’ll have plenty of time to get in shape and ready while you’re in school and waiting to go to BUD/S. I went through BUD/S back in '95 with class 201 so there’s probably some new programs out now that I’m not aware of. I think they have ones where you can get guaranteed a spot in a BUD/S class when you enlist but I’m not sure. Getting guaranteed a spot in BUD/S before you leave for boot camp would be great for you if it’s possible; there’s a good chance that your rating detailer may not release you to the BUD/S detailer after “A” school if there’s a shortage of your rate out in the fleet. And then you’re really fucked because you’ll be on a ship for a few years before you can get the chance to even apply for BUD/S. Anyway, before you get to BUD/S, I would highly recommend you spend the majority of your time on your running, swimming, and lower back (I always thought that the push-ups, pull-ups, etc were a joke so I never had a problem). I would be able to run 5 or 6 miles in boots and cammies on a 7:30 mile or better if possible. I would also highly recommend that you spend equal amounts of time running on both soft and hard-packed sand. Most of your conditioning runs will be in boots and in the soft, deep sand so you better get used to it. The reason I mentioned working your lower back is because soft-sand running is absolutely murder on the muscles around your lumbars. I remember literally being in tears by the time a run was over because my lower back hurt so bad, not because of the aerobic expenditure of the run. Anyway, enough rambling from me. If you want some more specific advice you can post your email address and I’ll be happy to help you out as best I can. Hoo fucking Yaa!!!

Thanks for the responses guys. I am still gonna evaluate whether I want to do the program or not. I’m going in guarenteed as a nuke, and I agree with Frankly that everyone’s but the USMC boot camp is a joke. That is the only reason I was concidering doing this challenge. The only think that would maybe dissuade me would be the fact that is is almost purely cardio… which I know T-men hate. If I can just get through the regular one, maybe I wouldn’t lose so much muscle mass when I go to my “a” school?