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Getting Psyched For Kokoro Camp

I haven’t blogged about this, but my buddy Junior and I have been training for months to participate in Kokoro Camp. The date is finally here…we’re leaving for California tomorrow morning and will be at SealFit HQ by Friday at noon. If you haven’t heard of it, Kokoro Camp is a 50+ hour military-style camp modeled after the infamous BUD/S program that Navy Seals go through. I’m anticipating an extremely high reading on the Suck-o-meter with lots of me getting my ass kicked.

From the SealFit website:

As the world’s premier training camp for forging mental toughness, an Unbeatable Mind and a warrior’s spirit, the camp is an intense crucible experience modeled off of the famous Navy SEAL Hell Week. The difference is that Kokoro is built to teach through experience, rather than try to make you into a quitter.

Some of the activities include:

  • Hours of PT with little break
  • Heavy ruck runs (40 lbs)
  • Messing around in the Pacific Ocean
  • CrossFit WODs sprinkled throughout the 50 hours
  • A 20 mile ruck in the mountains with a challenging time hack
  • Getting chased by AT-ATs
  • No sleep
The good news is Encinitas is a lovely SoCal town and the beaches there are awesome. I visited last year.

Where I Am At Mentally

I’ve had some pretty good pre-event anxiety for the last few days. I used to get a lot of anxiety before a crew race or CrossFit competition, where all I’d do for hours is visualize the event and get mental about it. This isn’t the same anxiety. This anxiety is like when the Empire was invading Hoth and the Rebels could see the AT-ATs on the horizon and they knew the shit was about to hit the fan. It’s a sense of creeping apprehension. It is definitely not pleasant.

The good news is Junior and I have put in a good batch of training for the last six months and I feel as ready as I can be physically. There is likely no perfect physical readiness, because Kokoro breaks you down no matter how strong you are (that’s the point, after all), but I’m ready to put forth a badass effort.

I think having done the GoRuck Challenge thricely will give me a mental edge…I feel like I can take a huge volume of physical and mental abuse from having survived those events.

Stuff I’m Worried About

Running in boots is my chief concern and how much that is going to tear up my feet. Much of the problem is running around with wet boots, which causes mad blisters and lots of irritation. I got a bunch of advice from my military buddies and that includes: using Liquid Band Aids, using Moleskin pads, using duct tape, individually taping toes, wearing double socks, and changing socks every chance I get.

Swimming in the Pacific at night is going to suck because of the temps, but there’s nothing I can do about it. It’s just going to suck.

Training

We would do one SealFit workout early Saturday morning and then do the regular gym WOD immediately afterwards, which was usually a longer workout. We did that for months. I did CrossFit 4-5 times per week otherwise and I also added in running 2-3 times per week, where one of the runs was a stairs workout at a football stadium. I had a shitty achilles issue that cleared up about three months ago, so I’ve only been running regularly for that long. I’m not fast right now but I’ve got reasonable stamina. I can ruck with 40 pounds but I won’t be blowing the doors off anyone.

Alright, time to make this happen. Here’s a morale video:

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  • Ben’s ole roommmate, Joe

    I don’t know what that video has to do with you being a BA, Ben, but good luck.