Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Strength in Diversity in the Navy SEAL Teams: All Body Types Needed!

Guest blogger: Stew Smith

I often receive emails concerning guys who are “too lean”, “too short”, “too tall”, “too big” to attend SEAL training. This is one of the first “doubts” you will have about yourself on whether or not you are tough enough to make it through SEAL training. There is not much you can do about what God gave you physically - BUT the good news is the SEALs need men of all shapes, sizes, backgrounds, and colors.

Each month, I will address a concern from the emails I receive on a near weekly basis and this will hopefully help you clear the self-doubt you are having about attending SEAL training

Too Lean:

Question: I've heard that guys at BUD/S without enough body fat have a really tough time -- that they have to carbo load even more than the normal person.

True - some guys go to BUD/S and are lean - meaning sub 5% bodyfat. Not only will you want to eat more carbohydrates, but you will have to eat more fat and protein as well in order to maintain your weight. We had one really skinny kid in my BUD/S Class who was tough as nails and was cold all the time and he had to eat extra meals - sometimes waking up in the middle of the night to eat some pizza or protein shakes to keep weight on. But in the end, he was actually one of a few BUD/S graduates who actually gained weight by the time BUD/S was over.

You will be cold, but we all are, your muscles will keep you warm like fat will. In fact it is the muscle shaking that produces body heat so do not be scared of shaking - it warms you up - it is when you stop shaking is when it is dangerous.

In the SEAL Teams, you will be able to get into places others cannot and perhaps be a cardio-vascular stud and outlast many others. To me that is an advantage in many situations.

I always tell people that there is Strength in Diversity - we all carry unique skill sets whether they are physical, mental, or the experience of life that all come together to create a platoon of well rounded SEALs in a TEAM. If you make it through SEAL Training, you obviously have “something special” to share with your teammates and add to the strength of the team.


Stew Smith is a former Navy SEAL, and author of several fitness and self defense books such as The Complete Guide to Navy SEAL Fitness, Maximum Fitness, and SWAT Workout. Certified as a Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) and as military fitness trainer, Stew has trained hundreds of students for Navy SEAL, Special Forces, SWAT, FBI, ERT and many other law enforcement professions. See him at StewSmith.com.

Don't miss Fight Science Special Ops with Stew Smith

February 16th on Nat Geo Channel

1 comment:

Joe G. said...

Stew Smith!

Your show on Nat Geo is one of the coolest in that network's young history.

Unfortunately, I am approx. 25-30 too old to try out for BUD/S, but I've damn sure learned a boatload (no pun intended) about fitness from people like you and Alden Mills, et. al.

God bless you.