This article was written by Luke Ryan and originally published on Sandboxx.

Ranger School is one of the most demanding courses the U.S. Army has to offer. It’s a rite of passage for Army Rangers as they progress in their careers, and it’s a proving ground for other soldiers from other units. The school is divided up into three phases: Darby, Mountains, and Florida. They take place in Fort Benning, Dahlonega, and Florida respectively.

Earning the coveted Ranger Tab involves an intimate understanding of small unit tactics and mission planning. At its very core, it’s a leadership school. Every student is stripped of their rank and they take turns being graded in various leadership positions. However, when people think about Ranger School they typically think about its physical intensity.

Graduates will recall the dozens of pounds lost, the extreme sleep deprivation and resulting hallucinations, or the countless injuries they felt compelled to endure. Ranger School pushes you physically, there is no doubt about that. But how do you prepare for something that diminishes your body in such a unique way?