The Navy SEALs fitness test has become a popular challenge for athletes and fitness influencers on YouTube, comprising pushups, situps, swimming, pullups, and running. But far fewer attempt the physically and psychologically grueling SEALs training gauntlet known as Hell Week, widely regarded as the toughest fitness screening process in the entire United States military.
In the most recent challenge video on his channel, bodybuilder and YouTuber Aseel Soueid, along with a group of fellow MyProtein athletes, travel to San Diego to experience Hell Week first-hand. And there's no easing into things: the "warmup" portion consists of three full hours of pushups, running, core exercises like bear crawls, and ice baths, done in circuits over and over again.
"The number one key thing I did take away from the ice baths is that it really helps to shape your mental strength," says Soueid. "It's literally all in your head."
This was followed by the standard fitness test which is used by the Navy SEALs and familiar to most of the athletes already: 2 minutes of pushups, 2 minutes of sit-ups, 2 minutes of squats, as many consecutive pull-up reps as possible, and a 1-mile run. (The swimming round was skipped this time.)
"The mile was so hard, because keep in mind, we are soaking wet, we have tons of mud on us, and we have heavy heavy boots and gear that's wet," says Soueid. "So it was literally like running a mile with a 50-pound weighted vest on you."
Without any rest, they then moved straight onto tactical training, which included exercises including sandbag carries, army crawls, group stretchers, and even more ice baths. "I think this teaches you a huge life lesson," he concludes. "You have to surround yourself with likeminded, strong individuals, and no matter what happens in life, you have to just keep on going... You have to push yourself and dig deep. I never thought that I could get through that."
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