QS Tools for Military Style Training

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Self researcher(s) Troy Angrignon
Related tools Journal
Related topics Sports, fitness, Mood and emotion, Heart rate, Sleep, Activity tracking, Diet and weight loss, Stress, Productivity, Location tracking

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Show and Tell Talk Infobox
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Date 2013/03/23
Event name Bay Area Meetup
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QS Tools for Military Style Training is a Show & Tell talk by Troy Angrignon that has been imported from the Quantified Self Show & Tell library.The talk was given on 2013/03/23 and is about Sports and fitness, Mood and emotion, Heart rate, Sleep, Activity tracking, Diet and weight loss, Stress, Productivity, and Location tracking.

Description[edit | edit source]

A description of this project as introduced by Quantified Self follows:

Troy Angrignon wanted to prepared for military-styled events, but didn't think he was up for it. He wanted to be fit, capable, skilled and be able to do service. In this talk, he discusses how he used QS tools to help him train.

Video and transcript[edit | edit source]

A transcript of this talk is below:

Troy Angrignon - QS Tools for Military Style Training

Thank you everybody for coming, and this is an awesome turnout and this is a great space and this is my very first time in attending this session down here, so thanks to Lisa and Karen for all the hard work they’ve put in this presentation, and if it’s good, it’s because of them, and if it’s bad, then it’s my fault. So in between five and eight months and it depends on me meeting some threshold conditions that I’m going to talk to you about in a minute. I am going to camp, and it’s a 7 ½ day camp and potentially it’s run for both civilians and for people entering Special Forces, particularly Navy Seals. The camp is split up, it’s 5 18 hour days where essentially they just beat you mercilessly for 18 hour days, but it’s log PT, it’s running around, is yoga, it’s meditation, is journaling. It’s a whole bunch of things you wouldn’t expect. 18 hours a day, five days, and then at the end of it, the culminating event is 50 hours straight through and it’s the civilian equivalent of what is called Navy Seal Hell Week, because 120 hours straight through without sleep. So this is 60 hours straight through, no sleep around the clock and basically it’s a teambuilding event, so this scares the crap out of me because it’s a really difficult thing and I know some people who have been through it. So, when I set out to do this, I realized this was so far beyond where I was in my training that I really had to make some big changes, learn a lot and try to figure out how to even take this on because it’s just too far beyond where I was. So in order to explain how I got there and kind of what I learned about tools and QS along the way, I want to back up a step and talk about two big principles, two the stories that sort of inform a lot of my sport life. One is Carl Jung’s archetypes of ambition, which is he believed that people went through four phases. The first phase was there’s athletes that said, how pretty my you know, how strong and my. And the second phase being the warrior, which assumes the athlete phase, but also in the warrior phase, they say, who is my competition and how do I best them and how do I compete against them. The next phase, he believed was the statesman’s phase where you have the capabilities from the first two phases, but now you are starting to say how do I take everything I’ve learned in my athletics and my warrior, and how do I serve, how do I bring my skills to others and serve my community and like people. And eventually the spirit phase, which that idea you’ve probably heard of you know, how do you come to the conclusion that your spiritual being, and how do you get human experience. I’m really going to be talking about the first three, and the second big thing that hit me in my training and this was probably 10 or 15 years ago that I remember reading this quote and just being completely slammed and surprised by it, the power of this quote, which is, Heinlein’s statement, the specialization for insects, and humans are meant to be nervous. I’m not going to wait and you can find this quote later. If you just Google specialization for insects you will find that quote. So my sport life went and it’s a bit of an eye chart, and I’m just going to walk it through in four phases. My early years I picked up sports, I cycled, I rowed and I ran whatever. I picked up martial arts and I did those things. Then I jumped into thinking, I really want to combined these things. I want to do adventure racing way you run and you ride, and you paddle and you climb, and you do them all together with a team, so that became a lot more fun; how do I combine all these sports. The next phase, I realized that actually all the things I was doing were part of a bigger whole, so I looked into things like natural movement and something called (move now? 03:47)), Where essentially they were saying, these are all just primitive skills that we should have. We should be able to lift and roll, and climb, and fight and swim and do all of those things that are part of a bigger system of movement. So that became a whole era. And then beyond that, kind of the last three or four years really began to have my eyes opened to the fact that it’s not just about physical. It’s about physical, mental, emotional, and creative and spiritual. So if I can bring all of those together into my training. So now, I’ve taken a single sport, I’ve taken multisport and put them in a whole movement system and then felt it’s not just physical. It’s physical plus all of these things. So that led me to being viewed by a good friend of mine, Beau and all of his special forces buddies. Beau is a first Marine recon, he and his buddies are associated with something called Go March which we are involved with before we go out and do civilian military style events. We spend a lot of time cold, wet, and sandy carrying our buddies, carrying really heavy logs. That thing is extremely heavy, that took us about three hours to move like half a mile. It’s a good teambuilding event, and covering each other with sand. We call that sugar cookies, and so we do these things – and that’s another Special Forces operator, a really good guy and you know, these things run 12 hours through the night. 50 pounds on our pack, plus 50 to 100 pounds of the stuff on top of our backs. And when we finish, this was last weekend actually, two weekends ago, this was our class finishing in fact, on the day that City Council was supervisors and they declared it international Go March challenge day, so that was kind of cool for us, and I realised I wanted to do more and more of these things. So I decided to build a training plan. When you do one of these events, you get your little badges, so it’s kind of like collecting Boy Scout badges. So I said I’m going to come up with a whole bunch of cool stuff, so I entered the first five and I’ve got three more coming, and the big scary one is this one here, that’s going to happen. It’s going to be the seven or eight day event. And the idea being, as I aggregate all of these fields, then I can also add on top of that, so other skills like first aid, and community response a kind of disaster response, to eventually work with with folks like this, the team Urbacon folks, where these are military, medical and civilians who work in disaster response. So it’s kind of about you are getting skills as well as community service capabilities. So I’m doing this event and it’s very scary and I’ve been trying to figure out how to get there. So the first thing I did is I went and found some good coaches. These are three former seals. Mark Devine is in NCH, California, Brad is in Florida and Phil Black is also in Florida. All three of them served between five and 20 years in the Seals. So I’ve been working with them and I read everything I could get my hands on, and talked to every Seal. And I read everything I could possibly find and probably watched around 50 hours of YouTube, trying to find everything I could find. So how do you train for this stuff, because it just seemed crazy. Putting together a training plan scared me silly, and it has things in here, you probably wouldn’t expect you know, yoga, visualization, and breathing practices and things like that and I didn’t expect to find when I started this program. I change my diet, I was on a paleo diet, and I switched to something that had paleo plus a lot more carbohydrates. Then I started looking at tools and I realised the tools were really broken up into performance tools and lifestyle tools, and then I said, well, how do they all connect. This was the crazy part, and I’m happy to share this with you guys. After because it’s an eye chart, but I realised they were clustering into you know, ecosystems and some of them connect and some of them don’t, and this is kind of these tricky part. And again I’m happy to share that with you later, because it’s an eye chart. So I realised there was a bunch of things I didn’t want to use; I tested them all and then I got rid of them. You know, the Nike Fuelband I wrecked three of them in three weeks. I just kept taking them in the ocean and they would just get destroyed, so they gave me a fourth one and I gave away. So I did several on and a lot of these key things that I’m using which is the Garman and the Withing’s scale, Fitbit I’m sure you’re familiar with and things like WellnessFX. And so I’ve aggregated all of this data into this thing here called Training Peaks and this is my weekly and monthly dashboard. I can look at everything, I pull all the data from all the sources and I pulled them into something called Training Peak so that becomes my master record. So I can go back and do analysis on it. And I can even look at a single work out, and I can look at heart rate zones, I can look at what I rode, to the gym, I had a transition. I had a work out, I had a cool down and work out and had a cool down and work out, cool down and work out. That was a 4 ½ hour day and I probably slept for six weeks. So what have I learned, you learn a lot when you are sitting in the surf cold with your friends. For me it was about figuring out what my mission was, which is be fit, be capable, be skilled, and be able to do service. From there, I picked a big scary goal, which is this go do this seven-day event. From there, that I had to have tests to prove that I was ready and able to accomplish this. So I’ve got a series of checklists and test that I have to meet before I can go and do this. And in order to achieve those, I have daily micro goals. I might have to beat my mile time by five seconds tomorrow. So I have gone all the way from my mission, and all the way to my daily performance. Surround yourself with friends when you are doing something like this, it helps. Mental training is critical. Visualization and breathing has been unbelievably powerful and just paying attention to the mental state. And all the basics, get lots of sleep, eat good food, take care of your body and simplify your tools so that they don’t distract you.

And that’s it. Thanks.

About the presenter[edit | edit source]

Troy Angrignon gave this talk.