Roster 009, Eddie Vergara, earned his original PATHFINDER Classification on 30 November 2014 as part of Class 003, and then qualified a second time in Class 004. On 15 March 2015 Eddie completed the F3 Custom GORUCK Heavy Class 064 with 56 other team mates who achieved a 100 percent pass rate — only the fourth Heavy class in GORUCK history to complete 100 percent strong.
Having completed PATHFINDER 003, I have to admit I wasn’t entirely committed to signing up for Class 004. Class 003 had me more than prepared for the F3 Custom GORUCK Challenge in November and after that, I didn’t feel like I needed to go back into a regimented training program. I knew how to ruck, I proved I could do that for miles on end, I even got the 12 miles in under 3 hours which, for me, seemed impossible at prior to Class 003.
PATHFINDER had me mentally and physically prepared and I “thrived not just survived” my GORUCK Challenge and I was in the best rucking shape of my life.
I felt great after that challenge and didn’t have the aches and pains others were posting up. In fact, I was rucking the very next day.
Enter F3 Custom GORUCK Heavy. Signing up for this, I still wasn’t committed to doing PATHFINDER 004. I felt I could still go it alone having already done it once and knowing (or thinking I knew) what would be expected of me. I signed up in part to support Team SPEARHEADand some other F3 guys that wanted to try PATHFINDER after hearing and seeing what it had done for me…and hey, who doesn’t want another patch?
What happened surprised me…I was pushed into another level by Class 004.
Training miles became more crucial to keep up with other people in the group attacking this thing. I was complacent and resting on my 004 accomplishments…others were hitting this training hard core and pushing limits in leadership, training, and miles. So I became motivated to do better.
I had made PATHFINDER about me…and I forgot for a moment that it was about the person beside me.
It sounds so cliché in our community, but it’s so true. People in Class 003 showed me the way, showed me the standard and to “do the harder thing”. They were there for me when I was trying to survive, to get through and get better. Having achieved my goals, I needed to be an example in 004. I needed to encourage new PATHFINDERs to do the harder thing, to celebrate small victories and DFQ attitudes. Once again PATHFINDERs were there for me, to not let me be satisfied with yesterday. To see today and tomorrow and say, “I’m gonna do this…and I’m going to get better.”
In short…you may come to PATHFINDER to better yourself, and you will, but it becomes invariably about being there for others. Pushing each other to go those extra miles, to face fears and lead workouts or try what was mentally inconceivable…and crushing it.
PATHFINDER Class 004 has me as ready as I can be mentally and physically for the F3 Custom GORUCK Heavy. WHEN (not if) I get that patch…PATHFINDER 005 will be waiting to push me further.
Pathfinder Class 005 #009
Graduate Pathfinder 003/004