Don’t Read This
I’m serious. Don’t read this book, or listen to it if…
You don’t want to be forever changed.
I listened to this book on a long flight back from Thailand in February, and by the time I arrived back in Boise, I felt something had changed inside of me.
I could say it was a good change, but I’ll let you decide if it is good or bad.
“Can’t Hurt Me” is a book is about David Goggins. David grew up in a very abusive household. He and his mother eventually escaped in the middle of the night, but as a result lived in extreme poverty for quite some time.
David struggled with learning and self-esteem throughout school. When he was in his mid-twenties, he was 300 pounds and barely scraping out a living spraying for cockroaches at night.
He finally hit an extreme low point and decided he no longer wanted to be the man he was. Instead, he chose to become the toughest human being on earth.
Seriously. Who does that.
With a prior stint in the military after high school, he was permitted to apply to the Navy Seals. They told him he would have a shot at getting in if he could lose 100 pounds in 3 months. He did that.
And that was just the beginning of the amazing challenges David took on. Beyond Special Forces training, he has competed in some of the hardest races in the world, including a 130-mile race through Death Valley. He recently held the record for the most pull-ups in 24 hours (4,030), plus a slew of other mind-boggling feats.
These accomplishments didn’t come easy. In fact, at every turn he battled issues that would have kept most people from even attempting these challenges. Goggins pushed himself in ways I didn’t think were possible.
David’s theory of how he has been able to accomplish these amazing feats is centered on the mind. He says he tapped into a way to harden and control his mind to do extraordinary things. He explains this in detail in his book. Needless to say, I was and still am fascinated.
It has led me on a new adventure of self-discovery.
I’ve always considered myself a non-runner. I competed in sports in high school and college, but I’ve never enjoyed or liked running, so I never really ran more than 3 miles. When I did, it would be for a charity run or a fun run, so I just jogged/walked my way through it.
In recent years, I’ve tried to run for exercise, but once I reached about the half-mile point, my body felt like it would break down on me. My back would scream at me, my knee pain would force me to walk. It was silly really.
But despite all that negative history with running, reading the book changed my perception of what was possible. I felt the need to prove myself wrong about running (or really any other thing I thought I couldn’t do well).
So a few weeks ago, I laced up my running shoes and started.
I’ll share more details of my journey later, but I will say that last Saturday I ran 13.1 miles.
A half marathon.
Me. I did that.
And yes, I’m still standing.
I never thought that I would be able to do that. Ever.
But that was before I read this damn book.
It’s changed my outlook on what is possible. I’ve read many books, but none so far have impacted me mentally and physically like this book.
So, I say it again. Don’t read it.
Don’t rock the boat of your mind.
Keep the status quo.
I’d better also say that if you decide to ignore my advice and read/listen to the book anyway, there is a fair amount of cursing in the book. So, if that kind of thing really bothers you, then yeah, don’t read this one.
One thing I liked about the audio version is that between chapters David shares more details and stories not covered in the book, so it gives the whole story more depth and perspective.
So, I guess I’m a runner now.
I’ve had to totally change my running style/stride to make it possible. But I’m doing it. And it feels unbelievably awesome because I feel like I’m doing what I thought just a few weeks ago was impossible.
I don’t have a specific goal right now other than, “let’s see what I can do,” and so far I keep surprising myself.