Of all the AO’s in our wonderful region, the Pain Lab is the hidden gem. If you’ve not tried it, well, you’re missing an opportunity. Created by Rudolph and now carried forward by HIPAA, the Pain Lab is a chance to do something different than you normally would do. No running, no jumping (well not much) but a focused workout that will provide your body a good test. With Folsom hosting the 2.0 friendly workout on 6/16, HIPAA was looking for a volunteer Q so he could be with his son on Father’s Day weekend. My older girls were uninterested to join me at 0700 for a workout, so I took my sophomore Q for the Pain Lab. Earlier in the week Qheeshe sent me a text that he had hopeful candidate for the Pain Lab he was sending over. Unlike the most handsome cardiologist in Gastonia, Dr. Qweesh did not violate any HIPAA laws (that I know of). I planned my Weinke accordingly.
Saturday morning at 0600, I awoke to the dog standing over top of me – a bathroom excursion appeared to be the unspoken demand. I hooked the leash and went for a quick circle of our neighborhood. I arrived back home to gather my things and learned my 12 year old had splashed merlot during the night and not feeling well. Neither she nor my M had slept much. It was a decision point some of us had faced – do I run out and leave my M to deal with this or stay for moral support? I opted for option 1 feeling the Father’s Day weekend would buy me some reprieve of guilt or penance. So I left arriving later than intended, still needing to set-up the circuit of stations for the Pain Lab. Whoopee made sure to call me out for being late to the warm-up. I joined before Linus finished the first set of SSH’s among the other standard exercises before the pledge and then the division of bootcamp and Pain Lab. Qish and his FNG were present, Sargento followed behind, all were Pain Lab pledges at my disposal. Fortunately I brought along extra ‘quipment to be used. Unlike the normal bootcamp the Pain Lab, or at least my Q of it, would and always will begin with stretching. My only qualm with F3 is the stretching is OYO which at our ages, at least the +35 year olds can appreciate a little bit of stretching ahead of the beat-down. So our session began with another warm-up:
- Seal Jacks IC x 10
- Cotton Pickets IC x 10
- Toy Soldiers IC x 10
- Side to Side Lunge IC x 10
- Inchworm Merkins – pyramid to 5 and back down
- High Plank Lunge – Hip flexor/groin stretch (right, then left)
- MNC’s IC x 10
Then it was time for the Thang which would be my favored tabata with 5 timed circuits of 40 seconds with a 20 second rest between; Three timed rounds with 30 seconds between each one.
- Goblet Squat
- Plank jack w/ Shoulder taps
- Single Arm Swing (dumbbell wt of choice, 20 seconds R, then L)
- Alt Lunge w/ twist using a dumbbell
- Merkin w/ alternating rows
- Mountain Climbers
- French Curls
- Low to High Plank (Sargento informed me these are called Mahktar N’ Diayes in the exercises lexicon – and he should know as master of the ABC workout)
- Squat w/ Shoulder Press
Of course I had music to play as no official Pain Lab is complete without some heavy metal to drive the backbeat and push the PAX. Rudolph and HIPAA would be disappointed to hear if anything less were attempted. I thought my playlist was worthy but of all people Sargento begins to poke holes in the selection. Then our FNG, Matt Stroupe says I picked the pop Metallica song, when they sold out (Hero of the Day). Fast forward…Dokken’s Paris is Burning played – they didn’t like that…Rush’s One Little Victory…not heavy enough…Q is failing big time. Finally Godsmack’s I Stand Alone blared and my PAX were happy. Before going any further, I should note that Qweesh made only two rounds of Circuit 1 before declaring he had to leave for work. Now this is the perfect opportunity to take a shot, maybe on his lack of upper body physique or his soccer arms. But it’s hard to throw a jab when someone was up earlier than me to run 10 miles prior to the workout and that he posted to provide a warm-hand off of FNG Matt. So the good doctor did his part and left his patient to mine and Sargento’s care. Good EH Dr. Squiche!
I had a third circuit waiting but we ran out of time, opting to head back to the starting point to initiate Mary for Linus’ bootcamp to return. We got in a few rounds of flutter kicks, American hammers, and Penguin Crunches before the bells rang to end the workout. We joined the others for the COT, naming Matt Stroupe “Hunkajunk” as he affectionately referenced his personal vehicle. Take notice of the spelling as the Weasel Shaker (me) has to clean up all your attempts to identify the PAX. (FYI – it’s Dr. Seuss with an “e” before the “u” – y’all suck at spelling Arial too – which you officially entered as the font when you intended it to be the Disney Princess (that is Ariel)). Okay – I’m down from my soap box.
COT – make note of this Friday’s 3rd F event beginning at 7 pm at First Presbyterian Church – the PAD which is at the top of the steps where we perform DORA. Pockets and YHC are the speakers. Guy’s only – coffee and water available. We offered several prayer requests which Linus will note in his BB.
Moleskin – I began this diatribe offering perspective of the Pain Lab as a hidden gem. It certainly is for several reasons. All those sad clowns we speak of are not former D-1 athletes that strayed from the training tables and gyms. At best, we are former high school participants or recreational players looking to stoke our competitive fires. The point of beginning this journey of Fitness, Fellowship, and Faith can be the biggest step. Posting at a workout can quickly realize the lengthy distance between our minds of what we could once do with relative ease can deteriorate when out of the game. The Pain Lab is a nice way to re-engage the body to the foray. There is no six to pick up in the Pain Lab, we’re all in one big mosh pit of sweat, encouraging each other. I’m certainly a fan of timed tabata’s as there is no particular count to achieve – you verses you can be a rep of 1 or 100 or any amount between. Whether we want to admit it or not, there is peer pressure among the PAX. We’re guys and we’re wired to compete. But the Pain Lab washes away some of that machismo, where it seems a bit like pre-season training and we’re all on the same team. So if you’ve not yet experienced the Pain Lab, step out of your comfort zone one Saturday to try this workout on for size. Hopefully like our newest FNG, you’ll realize it’s no Hunkajunk either, but a great way to get back in the game and join this great group of guys that are all pursuing similar efforts to push their rocks just a little further each day. Until the next one – thanks for the opportunity to lead.