Cade's Corner: Navy SEALs and the Super Bowl?

I remember an old saying – "Garbage in; garbage out."

This is so true. Put bad fuel in a sports car and it's going to run like crap. Put bad fuel in your body and you will see the same result.

With our lives so scrambled this past year, and people reluctant to even go to the grocery store, it's not surprising that our food choices have suffered.

We're reaching for comfort foods more, and more likely to grab what we have on hand, vs. planning a healthy, nutritious meal that will really fuel us.

Navy SEALs are the professional athletes of the military. During a typical week of SEAL training we ran over 60 miles, swam at least 4 miles, and conquered the incredible O-course (obstacle course) several times. Not to mention the never-ending calisthenics.

We simply couldn't put bad fuel in our bodies and expect to last.

When I first started SEAL Training we were eating three times a day at the Navy Chow Hall that we shared with everyone else on the Amphibious Base in Coronado, CA. Everything was deep fried... bad fuel.

Thankfully our Command was proactive in getting healthier options available to us given the extreme physical demands we were enduring.

Everyone in my BUD/S Class noticed an immediate improvement in not only our physical performance, but other elements like fatigue, injuries, muscle aches, and recovery time. This reminds me of another saying: "You can be hard or you can be smart."

This was an excellent example of "being smart."

As I have grown older I can't stress enough the importance of nutrition. Not only for Navy SEALs – but for anyone who wants to get the best performance out of their lives.

Ever wonder why Tom Brady, the six-time Super Bowl champion, is still at the top of his game at the age of 43?

He will tell you... diet, diet, diet.

Well, each time Navy SEALs go out on a mission they are playing in a Super Bowl that they can't lose.

Warriors Diet

Staying healthy and feeling your best is as much what you shouldn't eat as what you should. Even during a pandemic, with proper planning, you can fuel your body optimally.

And stay healthier, with more energy, as a result.

Stay away from:

  • High fat/processed food – yes... that means any place with a drive thru window.
  • Simple carbohydrates – sugar, non-whole grain bread, starchy vegetables (potatoes, corn, rice)
  • Excessive dairy
  • Excessive alcohol and tobacco
  • And especially for men – soy

So, if you really want to start getting the most out of your body, start by removing from the list above.

Now let's get into the things you want to add or maintain in your nutrition plan:

  • Lean proteins – chicken, fish, lean beef
  • Healthy complex carbohydrates – fruits & berries, non-starchy vegetables (spinach, lettuce, carrots, broccoli, green beans, mushrooms), beans.
  • 100% whole grain bread (in moderation), brown rice, quinoa, couscous.
  • Omega-3 fatty acids that are found in most fish as well as flaxseed, walnuts, and almonds.
  • High nutrient supplements that contain many of the vitamins and minerals you might not get in your daily nutritional intake. I highly recommend Patriot Power Greens™. It's filled with 40+ fruits & veggies, superfoods, enzymes, probiotics, plus much more. Try it out for yourself, here.


Now I would be lying if I said I strictly adhered to all of the above. It can be extremely challenging and a recipe for disaster if you are truly trying to make a lifestyle change.

This is where the balance comes in.

Plus, with the news consistently bad, I'm not above a comfort food choice from time to time. Nor should you be.

Therefore, I have adopted an 80/20 rule for my nutrition, which means that 80% of the time I try to maintain a strict nutritional diet as described above. But I give myself 20% of the time to enjoy some of the things on my "naughty list." Generally, on the weekend.

So, if you are serious about wanting to get the very most out of life physically, mentally, and emotionally, give this a try. It's never too early or late to start filling your tank with good fuel.

And more important now than ever.

Be a survivor, not a statistic,

Cade Courtley
Former Navy SEAL / 4Patriots Contributor


  • Mike Bredesen - February 07, 2021

    Thank you for the heads up on diet. My wife and me know how to stay healthy but the article you wrote is a needed reminder. Thank you and thank you for your service. We support all of the military, first responders and your families. On another note the crew at 4Patriots hammer down on the emails. I cannot read them all due to working but read the ones that I’m interested in. We salute all of you.

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