F3 Gastonia

Fitness, Fellowship, Faith

Author: CSPAN

The CSPAN and Dark Helmet traveling Roadshow

0530 Fort Mill Clown car formation

0533 obviously one man had never ridden in a jeep with no doors and no top…so I drove faster…the radio was changed way too often…somebody got their hair messed up…

0620 lots of pre-work from the “home” team -runners and ruckers

0630 disclaimer and mosey off with CSPAN on Q

0700 handoff to Dark Helmet on Q

0730 COT / Prayer or Praise / BOM

0735 Thanks for the invite, our honor for the invite to Q

0740 best #coffeeteria in all of F3Nation

Here is a writing from Dredd that Helmet and I were discussing during our Qs:
A Virtuous Leader is a Pro who Leads from the Shield Lock

The Shield Lock is the horizontal relationship between men. It is the means by which we fight the Flux, those emotional peaks, and valleys that regularly roll through our lives. The Members of an SLT are Pros who get ready for the Flux through Preparedness. Knowing that it will happen, but just not when they get ready for the expected and stay ready for the unexpected through the development of their Shield Lock.

Leadership has its dark nights of the soul, times when a Leader doubts that he has made the right decision or fears that, despite his best efforts, the Outcome for his Group might be adverse. It is then that the Flux can drag him down into the mire, sap his Hope and leave him Inert, staring fearfully at Obstacles rather than Exhorting his followers to breach them. If dependent upon his Leadership alone, the Group would lose Momentum and start Decelerating toward the Disadvantage that results from Inertia. The Flux will render even the strongest Leader in-Effective if he insists on Leading as a singleton.

Combination is a Leader’s best Guardrail against the Flux because the odds are low that four men Leading together will simultaneously be afflicted by it. If one man is down, the other three will pull him along until he is up again. Knowing this, a Virtuous Leader never tries to Lead alone. He is a Pro, for whom Preparedness is an Essential in everything he does throughout the G3L. He constantly builds and strengthens his SLT through the same principles that guide the development of his Shield Lock. Ultimately, it is from his Shield Lock that he Leads.

This is a radical proposition in a culture that pays lip-service to collaborative leadership in theory but doesn’t reward it in practice. In practice, it is the Steve Jobs and Mike Krzyzewskis who alone wear the garlands of Organizational triumph. We may know (intellectually) that there is a Team behind these men, that their accomplishments are the product of a conspiracy to Advantage, but they alone remain the primary focus of our adulation because solo leadership is a cultural Habit.

To flip that would require more than what most “good” Leaders do from the stage, which is to humbly thank all of the people without whom their success would not be possible. That’s fine, laudable even, but it’s not Shared Leadership. Shared Leadership requires that there be no stage. Or, if the stage cannot be avoided, that the man in the spotlight on the stage is not the Member of the SLT who bears ultimate responsibility for the Organization’s Outcome.

A mere Effective Leader may not be able to see the Virtue in that kind of anonymity. But a Virtuous Leader, Pro that he is, would see it as a necessary prophylactic against the magnification of the peaks and valleys that public success and failure will have upon his Flux. It dampens the volatility of the undulation.

It is true that success has many fathers, but that failure is an orphan. By Leading from the Shield Lock, the Pro shares both with his Brothers of his SLT—for the benefit of the people who depend upon him.

Sidewalk Chalk and #UvsU

Very hot, sunny, and humid for a 0700 start of @F3GasHouse

Disclaimer without Legal Counsel (#FartSacker)

COP Warm-up with all my favorites, in cadence, to 10 repetitions, and your welcome…#JaneFondaVideo

Mosey to Flag, quick discussion on politics, Pledge in Cadence

Mosey up the street, stop by for some dips, stop dips because of weird #Bromance in the car in front of us, #mumblechatter, #weird, and only @F3Gastonia = Where was that other guys head really?

Mosey to Church Parking Lot

Sidewalk Chalk Board of Pain= (do station than run/bear crawl/long run/bear crawl/ run)
10 Flying Squirrels
20 Diamond Merkins
30 Carolina Dry Docks
40 Squats
50 Calf Raises
60 Seal Jacks
70 SSH
10 Flying Squirrels
20 Merkins
30 Carolina Dry Docks
40 Squats
50 LBC
60 Hello Dolly
70 SSH

We did that for about 40 minutes…Dolph and his group set the pace #STRONG

Pick a partner you don’t know, go to that station you like the least, and do the exercise and hold each other accountable.

Switzer up for a quick sermon

Mosey home at your pace


Prayer and Praise


Naked Man Moleskin / Sermon Notes

-Thank you for the invite to Q
-Package is still sleeping somewhere…
-Read “Freed to Lead” https://www.amazon.com/Freed-Lead-Unshackling-Modern-day-Warrior/dp/0991238109
-Good crowd this morning and strong push on the #UvsU
-Be thankful for the fitness and body God gave you
-A man you don’t know will hold you more accountable than your best friend #whetstone
-It has been amazing to watch @F3Gastonia, what an awesome 1.5 years

Be a better man today than you were yesterday,



Q101 & Q201 @GASHOUSE

Conditions were better than expected with overcast and cold at 40 degrees

Started with a BOM and Disclaimer = I am not a professional

Quick discussion on the momentum built @F3Gastonia and how quickly they are building from “Nomad” to “Region”

Q101 (disclosure- this doc is plagiarized with all credit going to others):


Q – Pax Relationship: The unspoken social contract between the Pax and a Q: “We will follow until you give us a reason not to”. The Pax are very forgiving toward a new Q. Most have been through it and understand the anxiety.


Considerations for the first few Qs:


  1. Launch a quick grenade over twitter, let local Pax know that this is your VQ, most F3 vets enjoy being part of a VQ Pax.
  2. Simplicity/Complexity and Originality
    1. Keep the Weinke simple. The fewer moving parts the better. Many first-time Q Weinke’s are too complicated.
    2. Keep it familiar. New exercises or sets that require more than the briefest of explanations usually lead to confusion.
    3. Don’t be shy about stealing a Weinke, or parts of a Weinke, from another more-experienced Q.


  1. Go with strengths: “Don’t Q it if you can’t do it.”


    1. Next exercise is [brief pause], the merkin.
  • The Pax then repeats the exercise called.
  • Speak loudly so all Pax can hear. You are in charge.
    1. Start(ing) position [brief pause],
  • Not “exercise” position. Start position.
  • The “Move” is to get the Pax to the position required to begin exercise. The “Move” is not a command to begin exercising.
    1. In cadence [brief pause],
  • In cadence simply means the Q counts the movements (1-2-3) and the Pax calls out the repetitions in unison (“One!”).
  • The Q counts should correspond to a distinct movement in the exercise. It is in rhythm. For example, for a merkin: “1” is the movement to the down position, “2” is the movement to the plank position, “3” is the movement back to the down position, the Pax call of “One!” is the move back to plank position.
  • The Q indicates the completion of an exercise by a higher inflection on his last repetition.

See OBT & Dredd’s excellent tutorial on the how and why of cadence counting: http://f3nation.com/2012/02/22/f3-tv-how-to-count/

NOTE: When a Q does not lead an exercise in cadence that would normally be done that way, he is giving away his authority to lead the Pax. He is implicitly telling the Pax that he not able to count in cadence or is not willing to learn.


  1. Weinke review with Site Q or experienced Q. Not required, but a good idea for a vet to check for potential issues.


  1. Too long, too short: It takes a few times go get a good feel for how long your Weinke will take to execute. Be flexible if running too long and have a couple of stand-by ideas in mind in case you run long. Think through transitions from one set to another. Minimize dead time, standing around.


  1. Tap a vet – if you need time to get unsmoked or burned through Weinke in 30 minutes, there’s no shame in asking a vet to lead Mary or the next section of the workout.



  1. FNG inquiry and Disclaimer – every workout should start with an FNG Inquiry and Disclaimer
    1. Disclaimer:
      1. Why: We want to disclaimer in front of Pax because having witnesses adds a layer of protection above asking if they’ve read it on the website.
      2. What: Main points in your own words:
        1. I am not a professional
        2. This is self-policing: Stop or modify the exercises as required


  1. Take control—be the leader. Be assertive, don’t mumble. If something doesn’t work and you have to audible, acknowledge it and move on to the next exercise. Don’t apologize, just move on.


  1. Observation – Do your best to keep an eye on the pax during the workout to see if you are losing people, either from it being too easy, too confusing, or too hard. During your first few Qs, it is hard enough just to make it through the workout. Ask your Site Q or another experienced Q to keep an eye on things and whisper in your ear if needed.



  1. Twitter counts – check with Site Q on whether he or the Q will tweet the count. Remember to use workout tag (i.e., #TheArmoryF3 also include @F3Gastonia) and the #F3Counts


  1. Backblast –
    1. Part of the workout Qs responsibility to post the Backblast, not the Site Q. The Site Q may volunteer to post the Qs first workout on his behalf but that is at his discretion .
    2. Get backblast credentials BEFORE first Q so that you are prepared to write up BB when it’s done. The website interface is not difficult and will take only a few minutes to learn. Here again, your Site Q will be an invaluable aid in assisting you to post your first BB.
    3. Get login credentials from Bandit


  1. Post Mortem – follow up with your Site Q about what went right, what could be improved, what was a disaster, etc. Seek out honest feedback from other veteran Q and Pax. The best way to improve is to address your weaknesses head on.


0700-0800 #Gashouse did a workout and felt like we did enough flying squirrels and broad jumps, “The Swiper” took it easy on us, @F3Gastonia has quality #mumblechatter and as we discussed Second F creates the workout comradery. It was great to see to see Gastonia leaders jumping into the ring to Q. Fun morning… and I always recommend gloves

Q201 was a scaled back for @F3Gastonia

  • Get more FNG’s (#sadclowns need friends)
  • Get more men involved with Q (F3 = developing male leadership)
  • Develop your regional leadership group (all men can support)
  • Rotate Q’s often (this keeps the PAX interested)
  • Change your location at each AO (get them running)
  • Warmup and cooldown are essential to reducing injuries
  • Q’ing improves your leadership
  • Enjoy your Q, let your personality show, thi sis part of the fellowship





Thank you for the invite for Q-School Q and the great attendance


@F3Gastonia has got the momentum, keep posting


Appreciate Swiper for getting involved and helping out, and providing commentary #HIM


Get on twitter (yea BA, you guys have potential with the pictures, keep up the good work)











Gas House invites CSPAN for a visit part 2

Bandit and I saw each other climbing Crowders Mountain a few weeks ago,and I politely requested to get back on the @F3Gastonia schedule.

Conditions were horrible… rainy, cold, and 40 degrees…and transitioned to raining sideways for part of this #downpainment #awful

Disclaimer was disclaimed

Discussion on how well @F3Gastonia has “exploded” since March

#Chatter about Swiper, Gunny, Package, & Chaser and all of the going on with @F3theFort

And off we went at a mosey + (maybe too fast) pace to the track next door

2.5 laps on the track

COP to warm up with all of my favorites to 10 in cadence

Plank-O-Rama to warm up everything else

Today’s workout was almost an exact replica of my Q 6 months ago (@F3Gastonia struggled then, there was no @F3Gastonia struggling today except Shrimp, and that was only because the restroom was locked #pregame #youngmanproblems)

Quick discussion on plan for today:

Using the 4 corners of the track, and the count of 25 in each corner for a total of 100 exercises

  1. SSH
  2. Calf raises
  3. Squats
  4. CDD (we did the run backwards to make it worse)
  5. Flutter (your welcome…you were already wet)
  6. LBC
  7. And because everyone knew it was supposed to be awful we finished with burpees

Mosey at “fast” pace to COT

Prayer or Praise


Naked Man Moleskin

Excellent #chatter throughout workout

Really cool to see the Larry Birds circle back and pick up the 6 and get some extra pain stations in, obviously the counts were much higher for that group of #HIM

#Coffeteria is outstanding and has great attendance

The weather stunk…appreciate the men who showed up

2ndF is spot on @F3Gastonia

Continue to seek out a 3rdF Q from your PAX

Lots of discussion today about what F3 has meant to me and why we do what we do…hope you enjoyed the sermon

Seek out an accountability partner, as it is much easier to “slide” when no one is watching #ISI

Bandit has already booked me a slot in May…I love that #HIM

Be a better man today than you were yesterday, sorry for the delay in the back blast #LIFEproblems




#TheFort invades #GasHouse

Disclaimer, 2 FNG “who will now be forever known as Castro & Dr. Feelgood”, and welcome to #TheGasHouseF3 , Team Gastonia is building great momentum at this AO, if you have not been here…you need to try it out.

T-Claps to 777, Chaser, Corn Hole, Dark Helmet, Gunny, Package, Roscoe, and Seacrest for #givingitaway and showing up to support Gastonia, I appreciate your willingness to step up and lead.

A quick shout out to Swiper for the invite, it is always awesome to be part of a launch.

The commitment level of the Gastonia PAX is outstanding and it was great to see so many of them have been here since the launch weekend…this is going to be a strong group.

Seacrest had his (VQ) and did an outstanding job of conducting the warmup. A strongly structured COP (circle of pain) is an essential to a F3 workout. Seacrest lives in Fort Mill now, but his heart is still in Gastonia, and it was awesome to see his leadership displayed. SSH, IW, Squats, Windmills, Americans, Mountain Climbers, and a couple of others all called in strong cadence. Made me proud, and this one is going to be a strong leader.

Run to Flag Pole where Gunny lead us in a strong group rendition of “The Pledge of Allegiance”

Since I am on Q = we started running

Mosey over to Middle School track

We got in about 3 miles in and spent the next 45 minutes moving around the track and using the corners as stations

We started off with a lunge walk forward routine, bear crawl / crab walk routine, high knees / butt kickers routine, light sprinting backwards routine, I really was trying to get myself loose.

The 10 burpees at every corner seemed to be a real crowd pleaser. The 10 squats at each corners seemed to have made my legs sore today…or was it the 25 SSH at each corner? No matter proud of each man fighting through to the finish.

Quick discussion on #HIM, the #HIM above us and that resides inside of us, and the power of letting #HIM inside you shining through your activities. We transitioned to a discussion on aligning ourselves with other #HIM. Seemed like a reviewed a couple of other topics like #Sadclowns, my mind went blank after Gunny’s inchworm/plank/American sequence…

And then I basically started a Q school about half way through the workout. It was great to see each of the Gastonia men gain confidence leading from the front of the PAX. T-Claps to the men with experience sharing, training, and leading when we broke out into the teams for individual Q coaching, it seems to have paid off.

Here is a cool backblast written about Dark Helmet’s VQ, the last 2 paragraphs describes what most men feel the first time they Q (lead): http://f3nation.com/2015/03/18/kettlebell-burpees-yeah-thats-a-thing-at-the-armory/

Your F3 brothers are making an investment in you because we are going to expect you to lead (and being a Q is the just part of that), even on the days when only one other guy shows up, give him the best workout you got in you…that is truly being a #HIM…and that is why I have been doing F3 six days a week since I started 2 years ago. F3 will make you better by teaching you to improve yourself as a leader and a follower.

Our time together was well spent today, please come visit me for one of my Qs in Fort Mill, I‘m always good for a double your money back guarantee…we will do hand release pushups until our arms fail…or a burpee mile…something #CSAUP…


Prayer & Praise, BOM (CSPAN style where everyman shares a prayer or praise, and if you can’t think of something…we will plank until you have something to share), and we had strong attendance for post fellowship at Panera.


Always an honor to Q, appreciate the honor to lock shields with Seacrest and the other fine gentlemen of Gastonia, here is everything in my notes:

CSPAN – over & out







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