Fueling The Pursuit

Sgt. Michael Smith on Overcoming Obstacles and Chasing Dreams

Episode Summary

Sgt. Michael Smith lost his arm in a terrible accident but what it awoke within him mentally clearly outweighs what it took away from him physically.

Episode Notes

“Losing my arm wasn't even the worst part. It was my kidney failure that was the worst part. But all of it together was the best thing that could've ever happened to me.” - Sgt. Michael Smith 

Today's guest is Michael Smith, Sgt. 1st Class US Army, Triathlete and Paralympic Hopeful.

I’m going to get straight to the point and just say it -- Michael Smith is a lion! Anyone who can say what he just said in the opening quotation to this episode, can’t be anything but a lion. 

Michael’s story is one of those stories you hear and can’t help but shake your head at because it just doesn’t seem possible. And yet, not only is his unbelievable story true, but the lessons he shares from his journey are clearly applicable to all of us. Yes, he did lose his arm in a terrible accident but what it awoke within him mentally clearly outweighs what it took away from him physically

Somehow it had the opposite effect on Michael’s outlook on life. Instead of discouraging him, it fueled his desire to be great. He doesn’t hesitate to tell us the accident was the best thing that had ever happened to him. And by the end of our captivating conversation with him, I believe him. And I think you will too!

(1:04) Training for the 2021 Paralympic Games…

(1:53) “...the training is intense, a lot of sacrifices. I've sacrificed friendships, relationships. I mean, all types of stuff, man. And that's just what it takes for me to get to my goal.”

(6:52) Using the challenges of Covid to impact training… “it's the small stuff that you have to conquer before you can expect the big gains and expect to do well on a bigger thing.”

(12:39) A crazy accident and medical setbacks…

(16:13) Twenty-two surgeries, multiple amputations, kidney failure, and a special Aunt...

(22:34) Crawling out of the lowest point… “I came out as fast as I did, and as strong as I did because of my faith in God, my family and my friends.”

(25:31) Getting to the Warrior Transition Battalion… and the mindset shift that changed everything.

(29:25) Jon’s mindset shift thanks to Coach Peterson…

(31:20) Earning fit for duty status … “First I had to get my mind right. Once I had that, the physical part was easy.”

(37:11) The difficult transition from soldier to Paralympic hopeful…

(39:09) “This is my thank you for saving my life.”

(44:17) “When I meet people, I want them to be like, ‘Man, I met this brother and he had me wanting to conquer the world!’”

(47:13) What advice would you give to others to fuel their mindset?


Warrior Transition Battalion - website

Army World Class Athlete Program - website

Swim, Bike, Run 4 Equality - Facebook


Sgt. Michael "Dreamchaser" Smith - Instagram

Sgt. Smith's fav UCAN product: Tropical Orange Energy


Jon Rankin - gobemore.co | @chasejonrankin

Bryan Green - maketheleapbook.com | @maketheleapbook

Learn More:

UCAN - ucan.co | @genucan

Your Personal Best Awaits