"No bastard ever won a war by dying for his country. He won it by making some other bastard die for his country."
I am a big fan of George Patton. He was a tremendous athlete during his prime. He represented the United States in the military pentathlon at the 1912 Olympics in Sweden. He also suffered a serious battle injury that documents indicate would have killed a lesser man.
Patton was constantly leading from the front. He trained daily and preached his mind and body toughness principles.
The following is a sampling of the PATTON WAY I found in General Patton’s Principles for Life and Leadership by Porter Williamson. As modern gladiators we can benefit from applying Patton's principles to our daily practice.
“There is only one kind of discipline-perfect discipline.” – So many of us use selective discipline. We choose the right times for executing on diet and exercise. We then wonder why we struggle to accomplish our objectives. Discipline isn’t a sometimes thing. It’s an all the time thing.
“The mind must always control the body.”- The General was referring to war and the fatigue a solider would undoubtedly encounter. The modern gladiator has other battles and other fatigue that must be faced.
“A pint of sweat will save a gallon of blood.” - Daily practice is not always a pleasurable experience but it is a necessary part of preparation. The more you work your body and your mind the more prepared you will be for the encounters of the modern world.
“Keep your feet clean”- I have been entertained many times by viewing the ECO Challenge on television. These folks are incredible endurance athletes. They go hours upon hours with no rest and little food. What continues to amaze me though is the number of D.N.F.’s (DID NOT FINISH) from battered and broken feet. How can they train and condition so thoroughly yet ignore their feet? It seems like a little trivial thing but your feet are the platform for your body. If you have twisted toes, falling arches, or any other problem, figure out how to fix it now.
“There is no power in a bushel of blubber “- Patton felt that the abdomen was the center of a man’s power, and that strengthening the core not only increased physical power, but will power and determination. Make core conditioning a priority and you will not be sorry and your physical prowess will improve. Fat guts have never been fashionable.
“Stretch as far as you can”- Patton told his men to reach and twist as far as possible throughout the day, especially after being in a static or confined position. You should take your spine in all direction each day and stretch the hamstrings, quadriceps, hip and abductors/adductors at the conclusion of each workout.
“Take a Cold Shower” - Patton knew that the cold water toughened the mind and the body, Take a 30 day challenge of starting each morning with a cold shower and you will quickly learn why Patton was a fan.