This is a guest article from Matti Marzel about staying tough. It’s a long read but a good one showcasing his time in the army and how to transfer the toughness required there into training today. Even if you’ve never been in the army and don’t plan to you may gain some key insights by reading this article.
In the last article that I wrote I talked about Mental Toughness in the Army and how you should strive to develop that kind of FULL Force, All-Out, Commando Elite Unit Do or Die Mentality! In this article I want to go over what to do once you have developed that Do or Die, All-Out Full Force Mentality and are living by it on a regular day-by-day basis, especially in your Training!
Lets dive deeper into the Mental (and Emotional) Toughness that is required in the Army, I’m talking about a Combat Soldier, not about a Medic or a Logistics Soldier or any other type of Soldier. I’m talking about one type of Soldier, and one type ONLY, and that is the type of Soldier that I was myself in my Service time in the Israeli Army: The Combat Soldier!
You see, being a Combat Soldier in one of the Toughest and Brutal Army in the world has taught me a thing or two, and that is that you should ALWAYS Strive to Live in the Zone by Staying Tough, and Enduring that Toughness as well while you’re at it! Let me explain it in more details, by Staying Tough and Enduring I mean that you should always be ready for whatever may come, and for every damn surprise that crosses your path as well! Especially when the surprises aren’t good surprises and are dangerous as hell, lets take a prime example for a Combat Soldier, no matter which Army he served in: WAR!
That’s right Comrades, War is THE biggest and most important Goal and purpose as to WHY they Train and build the Combat Soldiers from scratch into what they’ll become in a couple of years! This may sounds like I’m romanticizing War, but I’m not, hear me out my friends, because I’ll say this only once: War in REAL LIFE (Not movies, games or television series!), is UGLY as hell and disgusting as shit, and that’s an understatement! Now I’ve seen some ugly stuff happening in my Army time, and I will NOT go into the details in this article, because 1. If I do, I’ll have to kill you afterwards, and 2. It’s not the Focus of this article whatsoever.
Now obviously I will not kill you, that was a Joke (Yeah I know, I made that joke in the previous article as well, but it’s a damn classic that will never be old!), But I am dead-serious about WAR and my Time in the Army not being the Focus of this article.
Nope, instead I want to talk about how all of the above-mentioned qualities play a huge role in your own Training Journey and how you should use it to its fullest potential! Meaning that you got to Stay Tough and Endure all the Training that you’re doing in your own Life! And before I’ll continue to talk about how all of this plays a major role in your Training Journey, I also want to mention that it can and WILL play a major role in everything else in your Life! That goes without saying, and should be a no-brainer by the end of this article!
Now that we’ve talked about War and staying Tough and Enduring the stressful situations and circumstances in the Army as a Combat Soldier, lets look at one more example of Combat Soldiers during War times and HOW they stayed tough and endured miserable, disgusting, life threatening and dangerous situations that could have ended their Lives in an instance and mere seconds, and it has done so with a lot of Combat Soldiers in the past, and it keeps on doing so with Combat Soldiers in the present. And I must truly admit and say that I’m NOT one of those Soldiers that lost his life in battle or during my service in the Israeli Army, I’m very thankful and grateful for that indeed!
Lets take the Second World War for example, and I want to Focus on the Combat Soldiers in the Pacific for instance! Simply because these USMC (United States Marine Corps!) had THE toughest and most brutal battles to fight when they fought the Japanese in World War II! Now obviously for the Initiated, the Marines didn’t consider themselves a part of the Army, and I believe that they STILL do not see themselves or look at themselves in that matter, but that’s a story for another time and neither here nor there!
My Focus in this article is to show you and to open your eyes to make you realize that what those Soldiers faced on a daily basis, I haven’t even come close to and would NEVER come close to facing in my Life as a Combat Soldier! Simply because the situation is different right now and it’s not necessary to fight these kind of Battles under severely Bad and Messed up Conditions anymore! That time is over… and I’d say it’s for the best, with ALL of my deep and major respect towards these Old Veterans, without them we wouldn’t live in the world that we live today! And never forget, that without these same Brave Veterans (that don’t consider themselves Heroes or Warriors btw, their Humbleness is remarkable!), we would never know what TRUE Bravery and Comradery is!
So the next time that you encounter or meet an Oldtime Veteran from the Second World War in person, please do me a favor will you?! Shake his hand and tell him how much you respect and honour them for what they’ve been through and what they’ve done for all of us! But above all, never act like a freaking moron in front of him or disrespect him, because then you’re just being an complete idiot and very disrespectful, which is so messed up and disgusting, that I can NOT describe it in words!
These exact Veterans that are now almost dying out and passing away, are the same ones that stayed super Tough and Endured miserable, disgusting, Super scary and frightening moments in their years of service in wartime, that you and I cannot even fathom or imagine! I can obviously imagine it better then someone who’s reading this right now that has never been a Combat Soldier or was Trained as a Combat Soldier. But still, even for me personally, I can NOT begin to describe the Bravery, Endurance , Mental & Emotional Toughness that it requires to go through all of that and come out on the other side as a whole different person both in and out!
Now once again, don’t get it twisted though, I’m NOT glorifying and making War sounds better then it is, which it’s definitely not, not by a long shot, and as a matter of fact, War will NEVER be “awesome”, “Cool” or “Wicked”, or whatever kind of stupid name you wanna give it! War is one thing and one thing only: Terrifying! And anybody that tells you different, is either a liar or a dead man! Take my word for it Comrade! War isn’t pretty at all, it’s bloody awful and miserable, and that’s putting it very mildly.
Now why would I mention War and the destructive and miserable outcomes that it can and will bring with it in the long run?! I know, that’s a damn good question my friend, and I’m glad that you asked it, I really am! Let me answer that question for you! It’s very simple actually, I mentioned ALL of this to show you what those Veterans and even modern day Combat Soldiers have to go through in their daily life in the Army, I’m not in the Army anymore nowadays, at least not full-time or in an Army base! But I’ve been there and done that, so I can speak from personal experience of being a Combat Soldier myself!
And what I’m telling you right here and right now is worth a LOT to anyone who’s smart and wise enough to incorporate all of the information, tips and advice into his or her own Training! You see, having the Mentality and State of Mind of a Combat Soldier, can make you a BETTER – scratch that – WAY better person in your Training as well as your daily life, and that’s a promise from me to you! Mark my word comrades, Cultivating this kind of Mental & Emotional Toughness plus Enduring it as well, will make you an overall better, wiser and Stronger person in the long run!
Just think about it for a second, You prepare yourself Mentally and Emotionally every single day for something Tough and very hard that has to come or will come very soon! The only difference is that there will be NO War or some other life-threatening and very dangerous situation whatsoever (be thankful and grateful for that!), so the Mental & Emotional Toughness that you cultivate, master and develop and endure, will become a part of your daily life and you will kick major ass and take names with everything that you do in your Training as well – And that’s a guarantee I’ll make you right here and right now!
It’s not about being super macho, a cool dude or any of that fake make belief crap! It’s about honest, legit, real and useable way of thinking, living and achieving your goals in the long run! Just think about all of this and how it can help you in your Training in a major way?! I’ve been using this exact same Mental & Emotional Toughness and State of Mind in my OWN Training, and the results speak for themselves! I break personal records and even set world records from time to time! And the Feats of Strength that I do and the personal records that I set with them for myself are flying off the shelves! I’m hitting them left and right and what’s even better is that I OWN all of them and have made them EASY to own as well in the long run! Which, once again, this kind of Toughness Enduring and State of Mind can bring to the table (among other things!). But this is one of the major things that I do, cultivate and use in my own Training and Life – period! Now it’s your turn!
So the next time that you take the time to prepare yourself Mentally and Emotionally for your Physical Training, also take a moment to think and remember ALL of the Combat Soldiers worldwide, whether it’s in the past or present time, that have to go through miserable, dangerous and very stressful daily situations, and how blessed, thankful and greatful you should be that you’re not in any of those situations yourself, but more importantly: How you should be thankful and grateful towards ALL of the Combat Soldiers that make this world a better and safer place to live in! I say this straight from my Heart and with honesty: that ALL of the Combat Soldiers in the world are with me in spirit and I consider them my brothers! It’s a mutual respect we’ve got for each other, no matter which Army we served, or whether we served in a regular Unit, Special Forces Unit or in a Elite Commando Unit. It’s all good with me and I respect all of them equally! So this one goes out to all of you Soldiers out there, dead or alive, You got my mutual respect and I salute you, Comrade!
And no matter how times seems Tough, Hard and unbearable in your Training, just remember that the Physical Training of a Combat Soldier in the Army (and especially Special Forces & Commando Elite Units), are FAR harder, more Brutal and Tougher then yours probably will ever be! I speak from personal experiences over here! Let me ask you a question:
Have you ever crawled, ran and carried stretchers and other Army equipment through the dessert, mud and through water for days on out, while NOT having slept good for days or even eating a decent meal for days?!
Well if not, then YOU my friend, have NO idea what TRUE Brutal, Hard and Tough Training is! Try to Train, Staying Tough and Endure all of that with minimum and very bad quality food, shitty conditions and almost no sleep for days! Good luck with that, after you’ve done all of that for weeks and even months, then get back at me and tell me how your Training at your comfortable home with ALL the high quality and quantity food that you want, with the maximum sleep and very good conditions around you, is “unbearable”?!
If this sounds ridiculous and absurd to you, then you’re right! Because it absolutely is! If you compare your own life right now at your comfortable home with your comfortable surroundings to a Combat Soldier with the EXACT opposite, then you can see how lucky and blessed you really are! So cherish all of this and NEVER take it for granted or think less of it! Because if you do, then you’re making the biggest mistake of your life, and you will regret it later in life as well, I guarantee you that!
Speaking of Staying Tough and Enduring, before I’ll wrap up this article, I want to mention to you that whatever I said about my OWN Training in the Army and the Training of a LOT of other Combat Soldiers in the world right now, none of that however, comes even close to what the Oldetime Veterans had to Endure, go through and witness on a daily basis back in the 40’s in World War II.
And that’s an understatement, take them as an prime example of GOOD, Inspiration and Motivation in your Own Training and learn from their Bravery, Comradery and Mental + Emotional Toughness! These Oldetimers are Tougher then ANY generation thus far that came after them, that’s for sure! Don’t ever let their age fool you, these Oldetimers would fight, Stay Tough and Endure beyond what you even think is possible in a heartbeat, If they still had the Strength, Endurance, Stamina, Power and Youthfullness that they had back when they fought as Young Men in World War II! ‘Nuff Said, I rest my case!
So all there is left for you to do, is go out there and Train with the FULL Force, All-Out, Do or Die Mentality, and Stay Tough and Endure throughout all of it, it couldn’t be any simpler then that! Notice that I said SIMPLE, Not easy! Know the difference Comrade!
This is it for now! Until the next time!
In Strength & Health!
You can find more by Matti at Ferocious Strength.