Thoughts from finishing: Living with a Seal: 31 Days Training with the Toughest Man on the Plane by Jesse Itzler
Before picking up Living with a Seal, I expected it to be a “note-taking” book as I call them: books where I actively write down thoughts I while reading. Don’t get me wrong, there are a ton of valuable lessons in Living with a Seal, but, it isn’t quite the same as Algorithms to Live By if you know what I’m saying. I flew through Living with a Seal because I couldn’t put it down. The writing, the order, the humor - all of it crafted an entertaining book.
However, I’m going to be honest, when I finished the book I had one burning question: Is that really possible? What I mean by that is that what Jesse Itzler went through with SEAL almost seems borderline impossible. To give a short recap (provided in the back of his book), over 31 days they completed: running 222.5 miles, 6488 pushups, 236 pull-ups, 957 sit-ups, 200 burpees, 800 jumping jacks, 50 box jumps, 150 flutter kicks, and 14 fireman carries. On the 27th day, Jesse completed 1000 pushups in a day. The book also talks about how SEAL could do many, many, many more of each of those exercises. The numbers fail to mention weaing weighted vests, how they shaved over a minute off the running pace, and the conditions they were in (December in New York).
But the “is it possible?” question isn’t really meant to challenge the validity of the book - that isn’t what the question is direct at. The question is for myself. It’s for us, you and me. While reading the book it, it starts to implant a small thought into your own brain: can I do that? It would be extreme to invite someone in to our own home for 30 days to live with us 24/7. But, what about those pushups? What about those pull-ups? There was no “failure” living with SEAL - it takes as long as it is going to take to complete the exercise. So the next question I have for myself and for you is - why aren’t I? Why aren’t you? Jesse can do it. SEAL can do it. Many other people can do it. There are no excuses and the only left to do is to do it.
So what am I going to do about it? Well, it starts with pushups.