Thursday, May 7, 2009

Secret Weapon #1

CM SEAL Team blogger: Mike Ryan

Secret Weapon #1

“Cowards never got started and the weak died along the way.” Truer words were never spoken.

The first time I read this quote I was standing at parade-rest waiting to begin my first day of SEAL training. The words were carved into a wooden bench that stood just inside the doors of the Naval Special Warfare Center. At my feet, just in front of the bench, stood a perfect line of about 30 helmets - the last remnants of students who had reached their mental and physical limits and quit training. Predictably, my initial reaction was a mix of skepticism and sarcasm. “Yea” I thought, “that’s a little bit over-the-top.” About twenty minutes later I realized my worst nightmare had just begun.

Throughout training, and later as a SEAL operator and BUD/S's instructor, I came to appreciate the full meaning of the quote. “Cowards never got started…” for me those words came to symbolize the never-ending process of self-improvement. Ultimately, change requires courage. “…And the weak died along the way.” A not-so-subtle reminder that change also requires strength.

If you reading this blog and you’re an avid fan of the Perfect Pushup (like me) I have to assume two things; First, you’re not a coward or a quitter. Second, you’ve made the commitment to improve strength and performance. You’re one of us. You’re on the team. So I’ll let you in on Secret Weapon #1 – nutrition.

“Nutrition” you say, “that’s no big secret.” But it is. Nutrition is like a good right hook. You know it works – you just don’t use it as often as you should. The bottom line; adopting a militant approach to proper nutrition will yield surprising results. So let’s get to it.

What do you need? When do you need it? And how much do you need? All good questions. Tomorrow we will focus on protein.

Michael Ryan is the President and CEO of Intensity Nutrition LLC. Founded by former Navy SEALs, Intensity develops super-premium sports supplements for professional, semi-professional, tactical, and functional athletes. Intensity will launch early summer ’09 and welcomes any recommendations for product development. Mike and Alden met during “running remediation” at Basic Underwater SEAL (BUD/S) training. Special thanks to BMC Pardue for the introduction.


Lisa A said...

Mike, Welcome to Charlie Mike and a heartfelt "thank you" for your service ! I'm imagining that heading up Third Phase training was a interesting experience, and I'm wondering what you might have learned from the trainees ?

Your blog is timely, I'll be sure and tune in for secret weapon #1.

Unknown said...

Thanks for your question. It’s an interesting one. From the trainees I learned a couple of things. First, despite the diversity of their backgrounds and physical capabilities they were all united by an absolute, unwavering dedication to becoming a SEAL. Quick story. I once interviewed a SEAL candidate and asked him, “What would you do if you couldn’t become a SEAL?” He literally couldn’t answer the question. He was so mentally committed that he didn’t even have second choice! (That one made it.) Second, training is more mental than physical. A big heart and a great attitude will get you further than big biceps. Some students got it – some didn’t. Finally, you can’t do it on your own. If students were unwilling or unable to recognize that they could achieve more as part of the team– their chances for success were limited.

Unknown said...


I love the quote. The future belongs to those who dare. Some dare, and most don't. It's just plain easy to be a "Don't". SOG s are a whole different breed of Human. If they do not succeed in becoming a member of a SOG, I will bet you that 95 % are winners in life. You can not train Drive into a person. You also can not train toughness also. combine the 2 and add a mission ( Personal or Military) and you have a winner.

Cowards find Excuses and never look for help in their failures. It's just too hard for them, why barter?

Pain is the SIGN that WEAKNESS is LEAVING your BODY. Add a sound easy nutrition and you have less pain. Less pain is more time for success, and Success breeds success. Success starts in one's Mind. If you can not think clearly, you must adjust your nutrition so you can.

Winners never quit, and quitters never win.



Unknown said...

Max, great post! You get it. You bring up a great point. Nutrition can have a great impact on mental acuity and focus. As does exercise. Dial in both components and you have a winning combo!