F3 Gastonia

Fitness, Fellowship, Faith

Day: June 27, 2018


Coconut Horse is about running, not necessarily where you run. Roscoe and I had talked about running the trails at the YMCA and the time was right. We started at 0630 and took the “backwards” route out of the Harris Teeter. We made it to the Y and started for the trails. If you did not know, the trails are in the far back right of the parking lot and has about 3 miles of trails in a couple loops. It was tougher than I thought it would be-elevation changes, switchbacks, and all the time watching for the Squatches. Diva, Defib, and ToolTime led the way with the rest of us pushing but not quite the same speed. Overall I think it was a great route and definitely something we should do again. By the time we finished, we had gone just over 5 miles. A few of us went for coffeteeria, or in my case, chocolatemilketeeria. As much as I dislike running, I really enjoy being out there with the rest of you boneheads.

At the end, we made sure to include Sargento, Quiche, and Stroganoff in our prayer as they were well into the half marathon in the Boston area. We found out later on they all did well with no major injuries-congrats guys.


Billy Madison – the man, the movie, the farewell

Sorry for the delay – we literally moved for 2 straight days after I finished this Q and I was without internet (or home) until this week. Sidenote: back to back Qs after a month off from workouts was a VERY BAD idea before moving. My M (Veronica Vaughn) laughed at me when my legs were so shaky while carrying furniture. I cried.

The Thang:

Side Stradle Hops x 10 IC


Farewell Q was a recreation of the movie (my namesake) Billy Madison! Cinematic beauty ensued (there was sweat and tears everywhere) and it went like this….

  • As the movie begins with an aimless Billy (sad clown syndrome) in a drunken stupor, eagerly awaiting “nudey magazine day” he spots a Penguin walking around….
    • Exercise = Penguin Walks (Duckwalks, but with arms at side) to end of parking lot and back
  • Just like many PAX when we join F3, Billy accepts the challenge to become a better man and encounters obstacles when he returns to school…
    • Exercise = O’Doyle-Rules-Inspired, Banana Peels (ab workout – full situp, lift leg and touch toes) x 25
  • Time for a spelling bee! “R…..you going to the mall later?” We must help Billy spell the word “Couch”…
    • Exercise = 
      • C = Captain Thors x 10 situps x 40 American Hammers
      • O = Outlaws x 10 each direction
      • U = Up Downs x 10 pushups on Q’s count, fast chop feet in between
      • C = CDDs x 25
      • H = Hail Marys x 25 each partner 
  • Just like Billy, it’s time to find out what these PAX are really made of….time for the Academic Decathlon!
    • Exercise =
      • 100 meter sprint
      • Merkins – 1 minute of AMRAP (in place of shotput)
      • 200 meter sprint
      • Situps – 1 minute of AMRAP (in place of discus throw)
      • 400 meter sprint
      •  Pullups – 1 minute of AMRAP (in place of javelin)
      • 1500 meter run
      • LBCS – 1 minute of AMRAP (in place of hurdles)
      • Jump ups x 20 (in place of high jump)
      • Squats x 20 (in place of long jump)
  • Think we’re done? Wrong! “Now you’re all in big, big trouble!”
    • Exercise = DODGEBALL! (F3 Style – plank/LBC while you’re out. Losing team has to run laps. Winning team laughs!)
      • As an aside, being a true HIM and demonstrating humble leadership, I gracefully allowed the other team to win – as a way of saying goodbye and picking up Gastone’s confidence. He had a sad look in his eye and I didn’t want him crying on my last Q.


Thanks for the chance to share our story (His story)…

Remember that you never know which fellow PAX you are ministering to just by locking shields and pushing one another in these workouts….

3 years ago, my wife was given a terminal cancer diagnosis. She had stage 4 ovarian cancer that spread to her heart. 2 days later, the company I worked for, was sold and I was laid off. With 2 toddlers at home and no insurance, and the prospect of losing my wife – our world was collapsing.

We left our dream home in Florida, broken (I remember being unemployed for the first time since I was 12 years old, and pushing my wife in a wheel chair with my 4 & 5 year old dragging bags behind us through the airport) to seek help….after a year of countless chemo sessions and nights sleeping in a bedside cot in the hospital, and 4 high-risk surgeries my wife defeated cancer!

After her battle, we moved across the country to NC and our biggest fear came true – my wife’s cancer returned. We had purchased a new home in a new state where I knew no one, but I started attending workouts at F3. I found the PERFECT support that I needed. In my darkest, most depressing time, I found a group of men to lift me up and make me better. F3 gave me something to look forward to and gave me the fellowship that the male soul needs. This group of crazy dudes with weird names would place hands on me in prayer after kicking my butt working out. My wife had a much easier battle that 2nd go around and she is now 2 years, cancer free!

We are moving back to Florida, with our health and a new perspective and an appreciation for life, love and joy that we never would have had before.

You are all so much more than just a PAX to me, you are my friends and you were there for me when I needed it most. Remember the power of this ministry as you raise men up for the betterment of the community and future generations of men to lead others.

I’m excited to keep posting with the F3-Jacksonville crew – who I will undoubtedly shame by comparing them to the “men of Gashouse” and I’m happy that I can reuse some of my jokes and workout ideas for some new laughs. 🙂

Thank you all, and please stay in touch!

“Nothing makes the earth seem so spacious as to have friends at a distance; they make the latitudes and longitudes.”
– Henry David Thoreau


Your friend,

Tully (Billy Madison)

Here’s The BackBlast

Alright……..good to be back at it this morning to work a little soreness out. Wednesday’s for PrisonBreak are always a good break from the normal boot camp beat down. You still have the options to either run or ruck. The gnats were out again in full force as I exited the truck. Good to see Blart out there during the week. I thought it would only be 3 PAX until about 3-4 minutes before click in, headlights start rolling in. While we all chit chat the last minute or so, we got some stretching in. Let’s roll.

We had 1 to ruck and 5 to run. There were more of the parks finest wild animals on show this fine day. Reports of 2 skunks; 346,214 gnats; 1 fox or possible small coyote(which Blart and I discussed, but he had a better visual than I did), and a few duck. All PAX returned to start at time without any animal confrontations.


announcements: JJ5K, July 4th 4-miler, Pastor Clever VQ Thursday at Folsom, XMAS Town 5k registration has begun

prayer requests lifted

YHC took us out

Honor again to Q this fine establishment. I know many will be in and out on vacations, but let’s continue to reach out and not allow them to fartsack when back in town. I’m also working on segments in Strava so those of you who use the APP can track your progress week to week through certain sections of the route. Pizza Man already has a couple segments that I’ll just build on. Way to push men. Those who weren’t there; ShowToKnow!!!!!!!

Billy Madison’s Farewell at Midoriyama

Billy Madison had to get out of town without a backblast, so I will write one for him. Sorry if I missed anyone’s name who was there. I don’t remember a lot about the workout. It was very hot. We ran back and forth across a soccer field and did exercises. We played dodgeball. It was fun. Billy Madison is always fun.

Billy Madison and his family came here from Missouri. He showed up at F3 Gastonia workouts quietly at first and then joined right in as one of the guys. He shared his story about how his M was going through a devastating diagnosis. She miraculously survived this and it really changed how they viewed their life. They home schooled their 2 children for a year and just travelled around the country, seeing sights they may have never seen. They eventually settled in Gastonia and he said he was looking for some guys to connect with. F3 is his group of guys and he is our friend. Billy Madison always had fun and always brought a smile. I remember seeing Billy on the side of the road in the Palmetto 200, laying on a towel with a freshly cut Mohawk and an American Flag tank top reading a book. Billy Madison is always fun. Billy liked to sprint to the front of the Pax as long as he could and push the pace. We wish him the best in Florida and some F3 guys down there have already reached out to him so that is great. When I think of Billy Madison I will think of the truth he told us that life can be short so enjoy it and cherish it while you can!

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