No Limits: Extreme Athlete and Elite U.S. Service Member David Goggins Exemplifies the Power of Humans


Recently, a large group of volunteers from Camp Hometown Heroes, a free national summer camp for children of fallen U.S. service members, attended the Patriot Tour featuring a number of speeches by veterans and military leaders. All were impressive including Navy Seal and former USAF TACP (Tactical Air Control Party) member David Goggins.  Despite having a hole in his heart which limits its capacity to 75%, David is widely considered one of the most extreme and accomplished athletes in the world. From completing over 4000 pull-ups in 17 hours to finishing a number of 100-150 mile ultra-marathons, David proves that with fierce mental focus and physical conditioning  there are “no limits.”

More about David Goggins from  Wikipedia:

David Goggins (born 1975) is a Navy SEAL and former USAF Tactical Air Control Party member TACP who has served in Afghanistan and is an ultramarathon runner, ultra-distance cyclist, and triathlete. After several of his friends died in Afghanistan, Goggins began long-distance running to raise money. Goggins wanted to enter the Badwater-135 Ultramarathon as a fund raiser, but was told by organizers that he needed to enter another ultramarthon first; as the Badwater is an invitational event. In 2005, Goggins entered the San Diego One Day, a 24-hour track ultramarathon held at the UCSD campus in San Diego. He was able to run 100 miles in under 19 hours despite never having run a marathon before. He was subsequently granted entry into the 2006 Badwater-135. At the 2006 Badwater-135, he finished 5th overall, an unheard of result from an ultramarathon novice at a world-class event. [1]

Since this beginning, Goggins has competed in numerous long distance endurance events (while still on active-duty with the US Navy), most notably ultra-marathons; with the aim of charity for the Special Operations Warrior Foundation, which gives college scholarships and grants to the children of fallen special operations soldiers. [2] By November 2008, Goggins had raised over $200,000 for the soldiers’ families and continues to raise money with his endurance events.

He has participated in notable events such as the Las Vegas Marathon and the Badwater-135 Ultramarathon, where he placed highly. He also has participated in the Furnace Creek-508 (2009), a ultra-distance invitational Cycling Race.

Major Races & Accomplishments

2013 – 24 Hour Pullup World Record – 4,025 pull-ups

2008 – Kona Ironman World Championship – 11:24:01

2008 – MiWok 100k Race – 9:55:19

2007 – Leadville 100 – 22:15:36

2007 – Badwater Ultra Marathon; 3rd Overall – 25:49:40

2006 – Ultraman World Championship; 2nd Overall – 41:23:00

2006 – Badwater Ultra Marathon – 30:18:54

2006 – San Diego One Day (24 Hours) – 21:21:00 (100 miles)

Only three months after completing his first Badwater Ultramarathon in 2006, he competed in the Ultraman World Championships Triathlon in Hawaii. He placed second in the three-day, 320-mile race, cycling 261 miles in two days on a rented bicycle. Before training for that race, he’d never ridden a bike competitively.

In 2007, Goggins achieved his best finish at the Badwater-135 by placing 3rd overall in an impressive international field. [3]

Over the next two years, he competed in another 14 ultra-endurance races, with top-five finishes in nine of them. He set a course record at the 48-hour national championships, beating the previous record by 20 miles with a whopping total distance traveled of 203.5 miles and earning himself a spot among the top 20 ultramarathoners in the world.

In 2008 he was named a “Hero of Running” by Runner’s World.[4]

In May 2010, during a routine medical checkup, his doctor discovered a birth defect known as artrial septum defect (ASD), or a hole in his heart, and it’s only able to function at about 75 percent capacity. In “normal” people, this would prevent them from doing activities such as scuba diving or anything at high altitude. Only a few days after learning of the condition, Goggins had surgery to repair his heart. [5]

In 2012, Goggins took on the challenge of beating the world record for the most pull-ups done in 24 hours, the main aim of the challenge was to raise money for the Special Operations Warrior Foundation. After 6 hours and 30 minutes in, David had completed 2011 pullups (halfway to the record). By 9:15 pm, after 13.5 hours David completed pull-up 2588. He had been in considerable pain for hours as a severe bulge burst through the skin of his right wrist. A medical x-ray at 10:30pm confirmed a right extensor polycis complex partial tear. The pull-up bar David used for the Guinness challenge was poorly designed. David used a totally different bar during the months of training prior to this event. Despite not beating the record Goggins managed to raise more than $20,000 for his chosen charity.

On November 27, 2012, he completed 3,207 pull-ups in 12 hours, but had to stop due to an injury in his right palm. On January 20, 2013, in Brentwood, TN, David broke the world record for the most pull-ups done in 24 hours. He completed 4,025 pull-ups in 17 hours, and set a new world record. It was David’s third attempt at breaking the record.

He returned to the Badwater-135 in 2013, finishing 18th, after a break from the event since 2008.