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David Goggins    

Retired Navy SEAL & Endurance Athlete

There is no one quite like Chief Petty Officer David Goggins. As a Navy SEAL, David was one of an elite group of men regularly sent on some of the toughest missions in the world, but that just wasn’t enough. David needed yet another challenge, so he set about conquering the hardest sporting events known to man and is now considered to be one of the greatest endurance athletes in the country.

In less than four years, David completed more than 30 endurance races, including multiple ultra-marathons, triathlons, ultra-triathlons, bike races and arduous mountain ascents, setting new course records and regularly placing in the top five. In 2007, shortly before he was diagnosed with a hole in his heart, David completed 203.5 miles in the 48-Hour National Championship endurance foot race, beating previous records by 20 miles and earning a spot among the top 20 ultra-marathoners of the word. His extraordinary achievement earned him a feature story in Runner’s World, where he was named a “Running Hero.” The Navy even asked David to be their “poster boy” by appearing in a recruiting commercial.

David’s military record alone is astonishing. He is the only member in the U.S. Armed Forces to complete SEAL training (including two Hell Weeks), the U.S. Army Ranger School (where he graduated as Honor Man), and Air Force tactical air controller training. He’s faced combat in Iraq and served as the body guard for Iraqi Prime Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari.

But all the awards, medals, and accolades mean nothing to David – that’s not why he does what he does. To him, it’s all about achieving his personal best and pushing well past his comfort zone. David chooses to run the toughest races and put himself through some of the hardest military training programs in the country to test himself… to see what he’s made of. For him, physical tests are journeys of self-discovery and endurance is like a meditation that strengthens his faith. No other experience makes him feel more clear, focused and alive.

Growing up in Buffalo, New York, and rural Indiana, David is all too familiar with the struggles of dealing with an abusive father, suffering at the hands of violent racism, and living with the harsh realities of being raised by a single mother trying to give her son a better life by working three jobs. Barely graduating high school, David was constantly told he was too dumb, too sick or too fat to achieve his goal of a career serving our country. David never let slim odds or daunting circumstances to get in his way, hold him back or make him a “victim.” He chose to instead overcome and prove the naysayers wrong. And while on that path, David’s managed to raise more than $2 million for the Special Operations Warrior Foundation.

His constant conquering of adversity has made David a much sought after public speaker. His bold, “no excuses” approach gets him regularly invited to speak at college campuses and business forums, as well as to top sports teams like the Super Bowl Champion Seattle Seahawks. What they get is a crash course in personal accountability – David is all about owning his failures and learning from them. For him, today’s too-often norm of coddling, entitlement and playing the blame game is simply unacceptable. He’s pure old school, and that’s precisely what makes him one of a rare and unparalleled breed of men.

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