This is not an AAR, that’s coming.
Back in November, a good friend of mine texted me and asked if I was interested in doing a custom F3HH GORUCK event. I passed at first because up to that point I’d done 1 light and 2 toughs. The next logical step in my mind was to do a T/L, then a Heavy, not a HH. But the more I considered it and consulted with the M, the more I believed I could do this so I made the HC for the Heavy. That’s right, one H. A few weeks went by and after some encouragement from some terrible friends, I agreed to the Heavy Heavy (you’ll find out why). The following is what led me to this point.
1) Have great (or terrible) friends
This is important. Make sure that you know at least one person going before signing up. If you don’t, press in and find that person. Text them, call them. TALK to them. Berean and I texted weekly, and then daily leading up to the event. We talked gear, scenarios, possibilities, we ENCOURAGED each other. We discussed our strengths, weaknesses, workouts for the week. We discussed our FEARS. Best to go ahead and get that out the way. If you know your demons early on, they wont surprise you later. Why is this so important? I truly believe the closer you are to someone, the more likely you are to stay and fight for them. You won’t want to let each other off easy. Luckily F3 provides these bonds in spades so this shouldn’t be too hard.
2) Time to train your ass off
Talk to your family about what kind of time you will need in order to be ready for such an event. This will take a commitment that is unparalleled to anything in your life. Be ready for that. If you truly WANT this, you will find the time. When you can’t find anymore, you need to start making the time. I’m not going to sugarcoat it and say that it’s easy to balance training with 3 kids, M, soccer practice, social functions, and work. It’s not. You will probably argue about it with your wife. It will be hard, but don’t worry this is just a test for whats to come. For someone not in Heavy shape, this meant doing the PATHFINDER challenge, 2-4 mile rucks pre-AO, posting with your ruck ON, going to the gym 3 days a week (sometimes twice a day), listening to my body (pushing when it felt good, resting when it didn’t). If you don’t have time, please consider postponing your event until you do. THEN GET AFTER IT.
3) Know Your Why
The most important thing you can do for yourself. I’m a believer that you should have a why regardless of the event, but most definitely for a GORUCK H, HTL or HH. The unfortunate part of this (and many can attest to this) is that a lot of times the “why” is born out of pain. This is true for me. When I realized how hard my wife had been fighting her disease over the past year, it dawned on me that she’s doing a HH every day. She’s uncomfortable, get’s little to no sleep, is in incredible amounts pain, psychologically broken, but she keeps going. She’s giving everything she has and has the ability to smile every once in a while. HOW COULD I NOT? This is when I realized my motivation for finishing. It was strong. She is strong. If someone asks why you are doing something so crazy, you should be able to tell them immediately. Remind yourself everyday.
Looking back, without all 3 of these things I don’t know if this is possible. If you’re on the fence about any CSAUP, maybe this will be a good blueprint for getting you to say yes to whatever it is. I’m a firm believer that our culture has conditioned us to be comfortable but that comfort doesn’t satisfy me the way this event did. If it sounds like I’m advocating doing something stupid, I am! Get uncomfortable. It doesn’t have to be HH, but whatever it is that’s calling you, GO DO IT. That feeling of being hesitant may seem like wisdom or cautiousness…IT’S A LIE.