Chad Waterbury: Endurance Training


I have recently begun the Navy SEALs Warning order, in early preparation for future training for the SEALs. I figure it is a good place to start, and afterwards I can get more complex with my training.

The Warning Order revolves solely around endurance. It calls for long, frequent runs, long frequent swims, and ever increasing amounts of pushups, pull-ups, sit-ups, and dips. The Order includes no weight training.

Here is my question. I currently weigh only 135 pounds. Having just re-read your article from 2003, “Endurance and Hypertrophy Paradox”, I fear that this extreme level of endurance training will leave me even smaller than I am now. I probably already know the answer to this, but is there any way I can integrate a weight lifting element into the Warning Order to at least maintain my body weight, while not diminishing my endurance gains? As you probably know, the level of endurance required by a SEAL is ENORMOUS, so it is a different situation than that of most trainees only looking for slight conditioning.

Thanks in advance for any help.



I would skip the warning order and get Stewart Smiths - 12 weeks to BUD/s book. You don’t need weight training to prepare. Check out Nate Morrison’s website at (might be .com can’t remember, try both). Nate is an Air Force PJ and is a REAL operator. If you want to know what it takes to be an SF guy ask a REAL operator, someone who is REALLY there. Good luck.

I’ve seen Nate’s site and it has an evil workout (I think it lasts 12 weeks - not sure) to help prep you for spec ops. Another resource would be David Werner who runs Crossfit North

He is a former SEAL and he really endorses Crossfit style training for spec ops. Crossfit might be what you’re looking for since it mixes running, weight training, and bodyweight exercises. You probably don’t want to rely only on Crossfit as your only workout plan to prepare for BUD/S. While I never had spec ops training, just going through regular training showed me that all the military cares about is how far you can run in the least amount of time, and how many reps of bodyweight exercises you can do. Raw strength, unfortunately, is secondary. That’s too bad because in a real combat situation, no one cares how many push ups you can do. What’s important is whether you can carry a fully loaded pack or whether you can carry a wounded buddy to safety. This requires both strength AND endurance, and doing endless reps of push ups won’t build enough strength. But until the military changes its training philosophy, your current weight of 135 will actually be an advantage in training. Once you become a SEAL, you can do Crossfit stuff or design your own training plan built around weights and running.

MTB! What’s up man. It is Scott. Didn’t know you were posting here. I am not here too much, occasionally. So did you purchase any of those NYBB strongman implements yet?