F3 Gastonia

Fitness, Fellowship, Faith

Author: Short Sale (page 1 of 6)

Convergence: Who Wants The Belt?

F3 Gastonia announced the fourth quarter Convergence at The Fighting Yank with Roscoe and Short Sale tabbed to lead the PAX. As it would be a tag team affair, the theme would follow suit as the pair transformed into former Tag Team Champions “The Rockers” Shawn Michaels and Marty Jannetty. Great effort was made to look the part as well as design a Weinke to execute a beat-down that would challenge the All-Star Battle Royale in downtown Belmont.

A chilly morning began with a number of PAX getting some extra credit while kit for the Pain Lab and the stage were formed. Linus kicked off the event a few minutes early–reading the Proclamation ahead of Veterans Day – more to come on that. With the circle formed and document read, John Williams orchestra masterpiece from 2001 A Space Odyssey began to thump over the speaker. The Nature Boy made this famous and as the self proclaimed World Universal Intercontinental Heavyweight Tag Team Champions of F3, your heroes crested the hill and ran into the squared circle to rousing applause and enthusiasm. Once in the ring and with all the excitement, Short Sale made a not so informative disclaimer. Seeing his partner in major trouble, Roscoe was frantically in their corner calling for a tag.  At the last possible moment before the match was called, Short Sale struggled to the corner and made a legal tag.  Roscoe came in with new energy and immediately initiated the warm up but would soon lose steam. Another exchange was made as would occur frequently during the workout. There were 45 men that experienced this live but you can read about it here:

Warm-up:

  • Roscoe: SSH – IC x 20 (tag)
  • Short Sale: 5 Burpees OYO (Tag)
  • Roscoe: LBC’s IC x 15 (Tag)
  • Short Sale: 5 Burpees OYO, Squats: IC x 10 (Tag)
  • Roscoe: Merkins 15 IC

During the warm-up, we reviewed a few of the F3 principals (peer led, held outdoors – rain/shine, free of charge, open to all men, ends with a Circle of Trust). As HIPAA and Madoff were the first to answer, they received “flair” which were bright colored strips tied around their bicep. As any wrestling fan knows, “flair” is as important to the look as the hair, ripped physique, and a signature move. Your Tag Team Champions had plenty of flair – and shared often during the workout to reward great effort or in Sargento’s case as a consolation prize (in this era of everyone getting a participation trophy). If Sargento had gotten flair earlier it would have been removed for his odd mumble chatter today.

Thang:

Mosey to the Glenway Pub parking lot:

Short Sale instructed: Divide into teams of 5 for Four Corners, tag team version.

  • Corner 1: Flying Squirrels
  • Corner 2:Squats
  • Corner 3: LBCs
  • Corner 4: 4x4x4(4 reps of SSH, Merkins, Mtn Climbers)

Partners 1-4 begin at corner performing AMRAP of exercise. The timer is Partner 5, carrying a sandbag. Upon arrival, the partners tag in to carry the sandbag to the next corner. It was a little chaotic but there was no rest so the heart rate got going as did the mumble chatter. Plenty of flair was awarded for men pushing the rock.

Roscoe: Once sufficient effort and flair was handed out, Roscoe called for Omaha and the PAX followed back through the park to Belmont Middle School track.

THE HUMAN TORTURE RACK:

Partner up. P1 places P2 in the torture rack (Fireman’s Carry) and performs 10 squats, one spin, moseys to the other side of the track, 10 more squats.  Both partners then mosey to the next corner where P2 carries P1.  There was supposed to be a mandatory “WhoooooOO!” while doing this exercise but too much mumble chatter at the explanation caused this part to fail.  One lap of that and Roscoe was spent.  Somehow he struggled to jump from his knees to tag in Short Sale before collapsing in a pool of mud and sweat.

SHORT SALE then called for the ugly wench Dora.

Dora 1-2-3

Remain on the middle school field for yet another partner exercise. P1 performs the exercise; P2 runs the length of the field and returns to tag in. The first set was a challenge on the legs, the next for the arms and the last for the gut.

  • 100 Jump lunges (50 each leg)
  • 200 Merkins
  • 300 Flutter Kicks

A train raced through on a nearby track. Dolph called the 5 burpee penalty – some followed suit, others ignored the challenge. This was a tough set at this point. We’d been pushed pretty hard with a lengthy mosey from the first thang to the second thang. There was a look of exasperation on many faces – but think of all the dramatic wrestling matches you’ve seen in your lifetime, when the good guy begins to re-gain his strength, pulling from deep within for the final push before making the pin. This was no different as the PAX pushed through toward the finish. Roscoe’s blond hair and sunglasses apparently reminded Def Leppard of his high school girlfriend.  Roscoe objected because he is no doubt better looking than Def Leppards high school girlfriend and even though he wrestles in the superheavyweight class no doubt weighed less than Leppard’s High School girlfriend.

Roscoe/Mary: At this point the PAX were called to plank up for the six and Roscoe asked for things we are grateful for.  Cornerstone’s daughter as a cancer survivor, All the PAX and F3 Nation, there were others….then Mosey to the fountain for Mary.  The Pain Lab moseyed over and joined in for the last bit of Mary which included Burpees, Dying Cockroaches, Squats,  and LBC’s before the tag team was counted out of the ring and Linus took back over for the closing ceremonies and Decision.

Linus called for all the veterans to come to the center of the ring. We had the Navy (Slaw), Marine Corps (Oompa Loompa), and the Air Force (Somebody) represented.  Each PAX was asked for who served in their family.  There were many fathers, uncles, grandfathers, and some grandmothers that served.  Thank you all!  Then Linus played the service Anthems for Army (merkins), Marines, Air Force, Navy, Coast Guard. Our Veterans were granted immunity of the called exercise to observe the PAX doing merkins, burpees, jump squats, lbc’s, and Michael Phelps. During the merkins, Sister Act and Def Leppard had a posterior view of Short Sale, commenting how firm his glutes appeared in the tights, possibly accented by the jock strap. As a reward, someone may or may not have been tea-bagged during an impromptu monkey humper. The sights that eyes can never remove live forever.

At the end the moment everyone was waiting for. The Ring Announcer declared “The Rockers” the winners of the match and still Tag Team Champions of the World!

COT: Prayers of thanks for Cornerstone’s daughter that has survived cancer but he initiated a collection for Band-Aids noting his daughter and other survivors continue treatments and after each shot, they need a Band-Aid for the wound. You can contribute to this cause via this link: https://t.co/aUQk0GliWs   Pizza Man’s daughter is ill, prayers for her recovery. Pizza Man’s Grandmother and her new knee.

Announcements: Tomorrow is F3 Dad’s at Martha’s House at 3PM.  It will be a 2.0 friendly beatdown followed by some fellowship and games.  If you come, bring water, snacks, and Frisbees, volleyballs, footballs, and anything else you want to play with.  Remember, it is for the kids! (wink wink)

Christmas-town 5K is technically closed for registration but we’re pushing 8 chariots. Please come out and support and run without a bib if you want. The Christmas Party will be December 15th at Quiche’s new estate. Rumor has it that pets will be allowed?

We named 2 FNG’s today. FNG Sap was visiting from Greenville, SC. JK2 and his company had a conference this weekend that lured several F3 men from other regions to participate in our Convergence. Special recognition to Spackler, Hacksaw, and To-to (theirs not ours) to join our convergence. Broke and Slaw EH’ed Chris Shuford to our workout. He was raised in Belmont, working his first job at Chronicle Mill earning the F3 name Lint Head. Welcome gentlemen.

Moleskin:  Pizza Man asked Roscoe or Short Sale to Q this convergence a while ago thinking he would be out of town.  We liked the idea of the Co-Q so we went with a theme.  Linus has an idea to Q a themed Veteran’s Day tribute at the Gashouse so he just moved it over and incorporated it into the Convergence.  The Pain Lab went mobile again and Roadie upped the game with a huge tire flipping station.  This was followed by Freight and Tiger sharing good words and introducing a 40 Day Spiritual Challenge.  We also learned that Ricky is full of constructive sarcasm.  Freight also delivered water, coffee, and bananas.  A true #HIM!

F3 is a blessing when we can share in all three F’s in one morning. You can sense the joy in the group when we get together and the fellowship is strong.  Please don’t take it for granted and always look for ways to be a positive influence on your spouse, your children, your peers, and strangers.  We should always be looking to invite others into the ring.

Yo Mama…

Today, the last Saturday in October is a unique milestone for me. Not only is it the first Q of the month, it is my first official post as well, at least on Gastonia soil. I did pick up one credit for the Bourbon Chase a few weeks ago but that is the reason for my lack of posts. I got hurt training for the BC and had to take time off. I aggravated not only my calf but got a new injury to my left leg on my final 6.7 mile run. It sucks getting old. Then Roadie throws out a new 40 day challenge. So today makes my 6th workout of the week (Hey Roadie – how many Bud Lights can I drink as a cheat meal??). A few weeks back, Linus asked for a Q as he would be out of town – I volunteered. I had designed a run intensive workout that was pushed to the side as I’ve not recovered well enough to lead that (“don’t do it if you can’t Q it” right?). So stay tuned for that one down the road (literally). Instead I pulled a few things from various workouts to have an upper body focused cardio beatdown.

HIPAA was scheduled for Pain Lab and Hush Puppy was quickly coaxed to join the Bootcamp crew. Good to have those guys among us. Nice to see Stroganoff back as he had been on the IR for an undesired extended stay. The others were a veteran crew but a disclaimer was shared: “I’ll offer some suggestions and feel free to follow them, or modify as needed – your choice.” Heyzus and Toto came in hot and joined us during the warm-up. Lets get to it:

Warm-up:

  • Side to side lunge IC x 10
  • Toy Soldier IC x 10
  • Imperial Squats IC x 10
  • 4×4 OYO x 5
  • SSH – Ring of Fire; PAX individually drop for 5 merkins – thanks to Whoopee for taking his sweet time to apply perfect form (who says he hates long warm-ups?)
  • Mosey to the entrance for The Pledge

Mosey across the street to Akers Pharmacy – I led the long way taking a lap around the building – Q Power to elicit mumble chatter. I’m not sure this spot has ever been used but keep it in mind for the future. It offers significant elevation change with equal slope on either side of the building. Line up against the back wall.

  • Hip slappers x 10 (5/side)
  • Bear crawl the parking lot (~20 yards)
  • Merkins x 10
  • Run a lap around the building, plank for the six
  • Repeat 1x

 

  • Dirty Hookup x 10
  • Joe Hendricks across the parking lot
  • Dips x 10
  • Run a lap around the building, plank for the six
  • Repeat 1x

Next up was Partner 11’s. At the back of the building, begin with 1 WWI, smack hands w/ your partner, run opposite direction around the building, meet at the front for Boo-yah Merkins starting with 10. Repeat that until reversing reps. This seemed to be a crowd pleaser. Whoopee and Defib got after it pretty good. There was competition for the couple of dry spots in the parking lot. Fortunately the rain had moved on but the cool air was present. Hopefully we’ll enjoy a bit of Fall before we have to break out the winter gear. So, where was I? Oh Partner 11’s took quite a bit more clock than I had anticipated. That wasn’t supposed to be the main event. My group was the last to finish and the first finishers were doing flutters or lbc’s waiting for us – having an deep conversation about something. “Hey – 2nd F is for after we done – follow me…”

We headed to the First Presbyterian Church youth building where some coupons had been deposited. The PAX groaned which always makes a Q smile. With only 20 minutes left, adjustments were required. Five stations were as follows:

  • Block curls
  • Lateral raise w/ bricks
  • Burpee side hop (put a post down the middle to force the higher jump)
  • Squat Press w/ half block
  • American Hammer w/ brick

PAX paired for the stations except for Roscoe that went lone wolf. “How many reps?” the PAX inquired. The final station had the PAX pick up a sandbag in each hand and first lunge walk across the parking lot, then farmers carry on the return. Some were faster than others. The good news was the shoulders and arms got some attention with the coupons. I didn’t bring music today so the mumble chatter began. Toto was the first to remove his shirt. Whoopee couldn’t let him go solo so he removed his as well (unlike QvQ, he didn’t tear this one off…). Whoopee commented that he forgot to shave his back. The diving board was open for business and here we went into the deep end. “How do you shave the middle part?” was the open ended question Hushpuppy asked.

“Ask your Mama…” Whoopee returned quickly…then it was on. Nothing like “Yo Mama” jokes to illicit juvenile humor. Without a title in mind for the backblast, this was easy fodder.

  • Yo mama’s so fat…If she was a Star Wars character, her name would be Admiral Snackbar.
  • Yo mama’s so stupid…When I said, “Drinks on the house,” she got a ladder.
  • Yo mama’s so fat…She brought a spoon to the Super Bowl.
  • Yo mama’s so stupid…It takes her two hours to watch 60 Minutes.

A train was heard in the distance, so we threw down 5 burpees. To Clavin’s displeasure, this was EC to the Burpee side hop station. Time was running short so we hustled back to the base and with four minutes remaining a little Mary was in order:

  • Sandy V Chops (unlike Midoriyama’s Sandy V’s – keep legs stationary but split into a “V”; clasp hands together overhead and raise forward to chop between legs. I didn’t even count – just had the PAX join for an extended period of time until the Q went to failure. Along the way several began the Atlanta Brave/FSU war chant.
  • Leg Raises x 10
  • Flutter Kicks x 10
  • Crunchy Frog x 10
  • Dying Cockroach until the bells

COT: Announcements for Christmastown 5k – support however you can; Nov 10 Convergence at the Yank (Roscoe and YHC are “tag-teaming” the Q); Nov 11 F3 Dads at Martha Rivers 1500 under Picnic Shelter #1. No prayer requests made verbally so I took us out in prayer.

Moleskin: As much as we’re trying to use F3 to keep our fitness and improve ourselves, nicks and injuries will occur. Unfortunately time, rest, ice, drugs (legal otc or prescribed) are about all we can do. Patience is the toughest pill to swallow. Listen to your body and take the time to get healthy but don’t get too comfortable on the couch. Until the next one (which hopefully won’t be too long).

Short Sale

Bourbon Chase – Van 2: When Will It Be Your Time?

[Editors note: My weekly backblasts are long enough to cover a 45 minute workout; capturing 4 days required some extra words so accept my apologies for being long winded. Skip to the end of you prefer]

This is the story of Van 2’s courageous travels of 103.8 miles through the beautiful and scenic hills of southern Kentucky horse county, conquering our portion of the Bourbon Chase. Officially we traversed 4.3 miles more than Van 1, just in case you’re keeping score at home. Many thanks to Sargento that stepped in to Q this event nearly a year ago, checking off a bucket list item to run in the Bluegrass state. Since the initial meeting, there have been several line-ups for the event. The only thing that held true for our van was Mayor in the driver seat, JJ and Short Sale as runners. With injuries, illness, and professional responsibilities, the deck was shuffled several times before the final line-up was cemented less than two weeks before go time. So on a rainy Thursday, the venerable St. Marks van loaded with Def Leppard, Freight, JJ, and Short Sale along with the newbie’s of Sister Act and Oompa Loompa. It would be a long journey to reach Bardstown, KY, home of well, not really much, unless you count Rick’s House as a featured destination. It required several stops to stretch our legs, re-fuel and then a 10 minute detour to find a Zaxby’s in order to satisfy Dr. Qweeshe’s sensitive pallet. Finally we arrived at the General Nelson Inn, a quaint motel – yes you heard that correct – a motel, where we paired off into seven different rooms, that was until Sister Act checked for bed bugs and found some relative looking more like a roach that required a room change.

With the line-up changes and nagging injuries of some runners, our start time was moved forward to 9:00 am which required an early start for Van 1 to head 20 minutes north to the Jim Beam distillery where the Chase would begin. Little did they know, Van 2 had agreed to rendezvous at the start to support our fellow teammates, because that is the kind of guys we are – offering up encouragement. Plus we were a little curious if Sargento would actually allow HIPAA to drive the van since the Big Cheese was in fact the first runner. In either event, it was an opportunity to tour the site of the famous Jim Beam. Once Sargento set off, we bid our guys good luck as Van 2 sought the Cracker Barrel to fuel our bodies for needed energy. Mayor transformed the van into our alter image of the “Fury” complete with F3 and GasHouse logos (freehand by the way). We then headed off to the first transfer zone at the famed Makers Mark Distillery. This was quite the scene in terms of the facility itself and the Bourbon Chase tents and vendors. We completed the requisite safety video and then had time to tour the premises to learn how the sweet brown nectar is made, where it is stored (partly shelled out of the limestone mountain), and even enjoyed a free tasting.

As Broke headed up the path, Oompa Loompa grabbed the baton (wrist bracelet actually) and he was off on his maiden relay voyage of 4.9 miles.

With Dolph having run the BRR, I offered to be Mayor’s co-pilot. It should be noted that I relocated Freight’s bag to take this coveted spot while he was inside his house Thursday morning. Little did I know the level of responsibility required. Pressure quickly mounted when leaving Maker’s Mark and the Mayor said “where to?”

“Huh?” I responded, staring at the faint circle on my phone searching for a signal. “Left” I guessed only to miss the next turn. Thankfully JJ was ahead of me and his phone app was working. I was temporarily spared this time. We followed the runner’s route, up one hill and down another, up, and down – this was similar to the beginning of Thunder Road. We passed Oompa a mile into the leg. Little did he know this would be no ordinary Coconut Horse, Pub or Crossroads route. We felt pity and quickly blamed Sargento; this would become customary for any difficult challenge encountered. Sister Act was next up to break barely a sweat at 4.8 miles. Then JJ took off on the longest run of the event at 8.9 miles. He’d confided he had not really trained for this length but accepted the challenge without complaint. Again, I screwed up on the directions missing the wrong yellow flashing light. Thankfully we had extra time due to JJ’s lengthy distance that we arrived in plenty of time which allowed for us to break out the “vagina’s” otherwise known as the couch pouch.

Mayor was the first to put air in his pouch as he struggled running in circles to grab needed airflow to the chamber of the cushion. As he gained top speed, he hit a pot hole, stumbling forward, somehow saving himself from an embarrassing crash in front of a handful of people. As with much of the events, discussion, and jokes shared among our trip, you had to be there to appreciate the humor. Once we were all settled and relaxing, the F3 Fort Mill guys happened to park beside us and we shared some conversation with them.

The handoff was made and YHC was off on a 7.2 mile voyage along Highway 150. It was a grinding run that I’d prepared mentally and physically during the summer heat. Among the fleeting thoughts in my head, a few were appreciating the months of extra running that I’d begrudgingly done – as with anything training will go a long way to achieving success. I achieved a personal best time for the distance arriving at my finish in the small town of Perryville, KY ready to hand off to Def Leppard – but he was absent. Apparently the event volunteers said because it might get dark before he completed his 6.3 mile run, he needed his vest and running lights. Little did they know our sage Cat’s speed. Leppard was pissed, taking his frustration out speeding through the course collecting 18 kills! 18!! If that isn’t a record for F3 Gastonia Relays, it has to be top 5. I heard the Leppard does not often swear, but it burned him quite a bit as most of the runners he passed did not have the requisite vest and lights. He may have actually said a curse word (you’ll have to ask him).

Freight finally got his chance to stretch his legs, cruising nearly 6 miles through a winding and twisting residential section with lots of land and big houses, finally to arrive in downtown Danville where quite the party was going on. The streets were closed and DJ pumping ’80’s music (sorry no George Strait). We gathered with Van 1 to make the handoff. Van 2 clocked out for a few hours and at Sister Act’s suggestion found a Cattleman’s which is like a Longhorn.

Then it was onto the Brightleaf Golf Resort to relax and attempt sleeping. The vagina’s were out again and shortly thereafter light rain pellets dropped enough to irritate and force us back into the cramped van. Time passed and it was soon time for Oompa to begin his second turn, this time in a steady rain. After several failed attempts to provide the driver with accurate directions, I told Freight to relax that I had the next destination plugged into my phone. Unfortunately I keyed the end of route instead the beginning. Once past the destination, Freight shared of my error. Mayor gave me a look that a parent offers when their offspring disappoints. I’d failed again and leapt from the passenger seat, past Freight and JJ to the empty bench. I demoted myself. Freight took his rightful spot as our new co-pilot.

The rain continued through Sister Act’s leg and briefly for JJ’s turn. The night runs can be the most peaceful parts of the relays races. Ask among the past participants and the majority should agree. However, running in low 40’s through a steady rain might dampen the spirit. Thankfully the rain stopped for my 5.4 mile run where the road was very narrow, and very hilly. I picked up a few kills and got isolated. As vans passed, I braced when seeing their headlights point skyward and begin to climb an oncoming hill. Part of the good and bad of the night run is not seeing the terrain ahead. Def took over for me to travel over 4 miles and took a dive as two cars passed, not giving each other space, much less a runner. He may have said another curse word (you’ll have to ask him). The Four Roses Distillery was the sight of this exchange but at 3 am, not nearly as scenic as the others we’d been during the day. Freight took off for a hilly 9 miles toward the famed Wild Turkey site. Along the way, his knee stiffened but our former Nantan pushed through at his own demise. Van 1 was back on the trail and we searched for a sleeping spot.

Our earlier start time allowed for us to pass quite a bit of our competition and we were some of the early arrivals to the exchange zones which meant the port-a-jons were newly deposited on site. We awoke early Saturday morning to observe a Type A women not satisfied with the location of the 10 $hitters facing the parking lot. Picture this squatty woman with her thunder thighs crammed into tight leggings, short blonde “tinker-bell” haircut – the kind woman you’d expect to be screaming at a manager to apply her $10 off coupon for a $12 salad – yeah, one of those bitches. So we laughed as she pushed, shoved, and twisted all these things to face the opposite direction, only to seem exasperated at the gap between the 4th and 5th stall that she couldn’t resolve; Type A women, you either love ’em or kill ’em – or maybe you just want to kill them but you fight the urge.

So Oompa’s time to run was approaching and Mayor had our van in a front row parking spot as the lot had filled with a multitude of white vans. This is where we learned about Sister Act’s need and I mean need for a Starbucks iced coffee. If he asked once, he asked 100 times for this kick starter. We compared it to the Snicker’s commercial with the grumpy actor whining and complaining until getting “satisfied” with the candy bar. Mayor promised we’d find him some Starbucks before his next run and so we did. Only now it was too soon before his run – his longest of the event at 8.4 miles. So we poured the nector into a Yeti cup for safe keeping. As most relay runners know and for those that don’t – the third leg is driven mostly on adrenaline and they aren’t always the best times of the event. Sister Act was motivated to drink his Starbucks and he ran an efficient 7:45 pace. So if you ever need some bait for SA – now you know.

By this point, JJ’s quad was burnt and he pushed through his final segment, getting passed by what appeared to be a minor league track club wearing ranger panties and tank top complete with numbers on the back – if you’re thinking “what a tool” you’d be accurate. JJ handed off to me for 6.7 miles that I’d hope to enjoy running along a scenic parkway, golf course, neighborhood, and then into an greenway. It was low 50’s and overcast and my right calf said it was done about a mile into the trip. So the battle ensued finding ways to take weight off only to create an ache on my left knee. How much worse could it get? Each step, each song on my playlist brought me closer to finishing that was the only way my mind could help me through it. Thankfully my route had only a few inclines and mostly was downhill or flat so that eased the pressure and I was never happier to see Def Leppard waiting to take the baton. He was off for a final time, continuing for 4 miles on the same greenway trail.

THE GLORY LEG

Freight’s knee had been hurting since his long run earlier in the wee hours. He tried a new concept of stretching hoping he could workout the pain and gut through the last 5 miles of the Glory Leg. He took the baton and grimaced fierce on the first few strides. He pushed ahead. Once we returned to the van and made our way out of the exchange zone, we passed our man around the one mile mark – he gave us his typical “hang loose” signal which we assumed he was good and we forged ahead to meet Van 1 at the finish. Soon upon our arrival at Rupp Arena, Mayor received a call from Freight: he’d gone as far as his leg would allow. All of us that know Freight well and for those that even know him a little, this call was a last resort. He will fight to the end and unfortunately he could do no more than limp at this point. He thought of what was best for the team – sub in another runner. Van 2 was banged up at this point, except for SA, but he’d poured 32 ounces of Starbucks into his belly and wasn’t a great option. We shared the news with Van 1. Sargento had been taking over the legs the entire Bourbon Chase – due to his “injury” and as THE Q.  Since he started the race, it would be no surprise if he handpicked himself to finish the remaining few miles and accept the Glory of starting and finishing the race. We thought about Quiche because – well, he is Quiche and he was our best runner. Before the next replacement could be contemplated, HIPAA had shed his warm clothes, appearing in his sleeveless F3 shirt, shorts and running shoes. He’d been waiting for this moment to come the entire trip and like Clark Kent he’d found a phone booth; he was ready to be called. HIPAA dove into Van 2 and Mayor took off to find Freight. The runner’s bib was transferred and HIPAA tagged in with slightly less than 2 miles to the finish. As customary, the team had gathered before the finish line awaiting our runner and would cross the finish line as a team. As if HIPAA was hopped up on a half case of Red Bull, he churned the remaining distance at a PR (that is Personal Record for you non-runners) pace. Sure enough, we saw HIPAA round Jefferson St and make a sharp turn to West Main St. Boudin commented it seemed our man had been shot from a cannon. We would have finished at 29 hours and 40 minutes, just inside the top 100 out of 436 teams had he been able to maintain his speed, but HIPAA beat Van 2 to the finish and had to wait about 9 minutes until the rest of our team could arrive.  Once the crew was gathered, HIPAA picked up his pace and strolled to the finish, officially at 29:49:11. The time didn’t really matter, this was about finishing and we achieved our goal, happy to celebrate with some bourbon tasting and a few beers.

Moleskin

My second relay race is in the books. This time around, I focused on training to get my body conditioned for the challenging 19.3 miles I was destined to run since accepting the challenge in March. I only regretted tweaking my calf prior to the race but overcoming adversity is part of this event. There were several iterations of teammates for the Bourbon Chase before the final line-up assembled. The camaraderie of the van far outweighs the lack of sleep, lack of food, and frenzied schedule. The team remains together except when someone is running. With that come conversations and interactions that help you get better acquainted or deepen the relationship. I can share a little of what I learned as member of Van 2? Oompa Loompa is liable to say anything – I don’t think he has a filter. You may not realize how often he posts, but he mixes in about everywhere, head down and pushing through. He ran the same way to kick start each of our rounds. Def Leppard is a calming influence that could be a stone to anyone among our region (but don’t steal him from Freight, he needs HIM). Plus it is always good to talk with him about anything. Sister Act is every bit the beast that set a record with 37 posts in a month and apparently the secret is he needs his iced coffee from Starbucks. He also loves fine china (you’ll have to ask him). JJ is ready to fill any void that is needed to support the team, including directions. Freight is meticulous to know where he is going. So it was no surprise that he was navigating our next move well ahead of my supposed role as co-pilot. Thankfully I gave way to his expertise. On top of that, it is clear that Freight accepts any challenge. Even when he was scheduled to be the lead off, he accepted the clean-up spot, even when it included the second longest leg of 9 miles on a lonely road or pushing  his body as far as it would allow him. And then there is Mayor – he is a veteran of four relay races, securing the van for the trip and getting the guys where they need to be, always ahead of schedule. These relay races cannot be completed without a driver sacrificing their time. Which speaking of sacrifice, Mayor chose to be with us instead of attending his 20th high school reunion. Drivers are always essential to the success of the event.

In Proverbs 17:17 the scripture reads: “A friend loves at all times and a brother is born for adversity.” As the self appointed co-pilot, I didn’t perform well. Actually I was terrible. I had not prepared for that role. I wrongly assumed it was to keep Mayor company while driving. Don’t take that the wrong way – we had plenty of good conversation during the eight hours of road time. But when it came to navigating to the next exchange, I failed. Thankfully Freight and JJ were there to pick me up. The cool thing about this event is everyone pulls their weight. Once the van comes live, each man takes the baton for their segment, long or short, hills or flats, rain or sun, clouds too. We run to tag the next guy in – it becomes “their time.” We support one another and celebrate their achievements. We’re ready to jump in where needed, even when it may be the other van driver charging to the finish. As Saturday night wore on, Mayor began feeling bad, headache, stomachache – we’ve all been there. Living out of a van in a damp night might cause some of those things. He wasn’t up for driving the return from Lexington to Gastonia in that condition. I might suck as a co-pilot, but I happily took my chance to drive our van home. When will your name be called? You never know but the great thing about our brotherhood of F3 is we know men are there to support us in whatever ways are required. If you’ve never experienced one of these relay events, put it on your bucket list. You get so much more from them than you can imagine. Last Sunday morning, I jumped into the driver seat for my man Mayor – it was my time.

What am I forgetting…?

Oh, yeah, the backblast…well over the Folsom 60 minute rule for posting and even some of the unwritten 24 to 48 hour “rule” to submit a backblast. Now it’s time to once again take the bull by the horns. It’s possible the Q has become delirious. Seriously, he’s running 100 miles per week, maybe logging more miles than sleep. So I suppose we’ll give the mighty Gastone a pass this time.

It all began over a week ago, early on a Sunday morning in the gloom. Gastone headed out from the parking lot at the Harris Teeter, affectionately known among F3 lore as The Coconut Horse. Maybe his mission was to run to CrossRoads and check with the other running AO. He ran and ran for miles with the soaked shirt to prove it. Others did some extra credit too, Stroganoff and Short Sale passed in the darkened morning. A few others would soon arrive into the parking lot at the standard start time of 0630. Short Sale was hustling into the lot to meet the pack that just started off on their journey. Roscoe had already ripped his shirt off and declared him to be late. Monk was now alongside and the quintet was set.

The standard loop was completed without any highlights or bloopers to speak of. The pledge was recited, announcements shared, and prayers lifted. Stroganoff had soccer dad duty and hustled home for his 2.0. The remaining four enjoyed Starbucks and conversation. What a great Q – I mean maybe one of the best ever. So glad it could finally be documented.

Com’in Back from Cali…

My family vacation this summer was a trip to the west coast, starting in LA and finishing in San Diego, checking out the left coast for a change of scenery. It was beautiful, well parts were at least. LA is a zoo and you can keep the traffic. Imagine Franklin Street during Christmas, 8 lanes wide all going at least 60 to 90 miles an hour. Then throw in a few Evil Knievals weaving in and out and splitting the lanes when they have to. I enjoyed seeing Mike Love’s current tour of the Beach Boys live, some good food, and a few other things, but it is good to be home. Where I thankfully checked the Q schedule as I was doing my month end Weasel Shaker duties to learn Turtle Man had me listed as Q of The Black Knight this morning. Actually it didn’t bother me – kind of got me excited to design a new workout.

I decided to use my sandbags and bricks for a portion so that required me to get up early. That wasn’t a problem as my body clock is all to heck at the moment. I woke up about 0200 for some reason and doubt I slept much until the alarm at 0500. Good news is I arrived early to the AO for a change; second one in the parking lot behind the freshly shaved Island. If he didn’t have the purple Hornets shirt on, I’d have thought we had an 20 year old FNG. Don’t worry, Island said “the beard” will return one day. Whoopee and Stone Cold declare they were going to run instead of attend my boot camp. I was a little hurt because Whoopee and I already traded barbs via twitter – not over our musical interest but over the workout. But he’s got the BRR upcoming that requires dedicated miles. Now – my man Gastone – he got up early for EC to log his miles and then posted for the extra pain. He had the sweaty knuckles to prove it. Others began to roll in and it was time to clock in. Veterans abound so only the brief disclaimer was stated: “modify as necessary.”

Warm-up:

  • 4×4 (4 merkins, 4 mtn climbers) x 5
  • Butt Kickers IC x 10
  • Squat Jack Twits IC x 10
  • Burpees 5 OYO

Pledge

Mosey via the gravel road to the first picnic shelter at Martha Rivers, careful to avoid the large dumpster truck. Upon arrival I explained Round 1: mini Insanity. The circuit had 4 exercises at 30 seconds each with no rest until after all had been completed. We did 3 rounds of AMRAP during each 30 set:

  • Knee crunches (rest back of calves on picnic bench)
  • Dips
  • Box Jumps
  • Decline Peter Parkers

This was a grueling set that immediately brought the sweat, except for Gastone – he was already moist. Odd word “moist:” but guys find it funny while women seem to hate it unless it is mentioned in baking – is it time to digress? On the knee crunches I reiterated to give yourself some headroom between the picnic benches and quickly referenced the fabled Michael Scott joke “that’s what she said…” It took a second before the chuckles occurred. It was dark and I think it was Pedal that nearly broke the table on one of the moves – he said he was fine. Gastone tried to bring the mumble chatter but he seemed to be the only one. A peanut gallery of one is tough; time to mosey to Phase II – along the upper track and through the back entrance to Riverwood we ran until reaching the entrance. We dropped for LBC’s for a period of time until the 6 arrived and all had done at least 30 seconds of crunches. Let’s get to the office building for 11’s. I’ve not done these in a while but recalled Island doing an entire workout of this exercise and it being tough. My version was to begin with 10 merkins on the south end, run to the opposite side near the wall for 1 flying squirrel. You know the drill from there. All the guys pushed hard through that one. Other than the huffs for breath, it was quiet.

The final Thang only required a fellowship mosey to the front of the old HT. I did this a Midoriyama a few weeks ago and it was a crowd pleaser. Learning from that lesson we divided into groups of 3. P1 would remain at the parking line and perform Moroccan Night Clubs with bricks in each hand. P2 would lunge walk to the next parking line with sand bags in each hand or over their shoulder. P3 was waiting while performing flutter kicks. P2 set the timer for the exchange meaning P1 and P3 had +/- a minute of the exercises. Most of the time MNC’s are docile but do them for a minute with resistance and the shoulders will burn. More time was needed as we only made it two rounds before a sprint was required back to the AO.

COT: The announcements have been posted in other BB’s so take  a look. Throw some school supplies in your car as Hush Puppy and Squirt are collecting for Least of These kids. We lifted prayers for the newest AO Mt. Hollywood, all the guys traveling, and all the thoughts in our hearts and minds.

Today was a grinder but one that everyone pushed through. We really could have used two more really strong men to make the teams of three work, oh that’s right, they were running. I’ll still count them since they did break a sweat during their 5 mile mosey. To the others, it was good to see TimeFrame back along with many of the regulars. Thanks to our fearless leader Turtle Man that put me as the Q. Even though he was spooning this morning and missed his ride to the workout, he made sure his PAX were taken care of – you’re welcome. Until the next one, thanks for the opportunity to lead.

Drink the cooler…

Many of you know that I graduated from NC State. Being a Wolfpack fan is most certainly a test of perseverance. There have been many football and basketball games that my team was bitten trying to snag a victory from the jaws of defeat. But there have been bright spots that allow my red to be worn with pride. In November 2003 I was sitting with my college friends, commiserating over losing to last place Maryland. Not only losing, but getting our ass handed to us like Chinese take-out, to the tune of 41-14 late in the third quarter. It seemed hopeless but miracles can often happen and one started brewing. Mike Glennon finally made a play and we scored to draw within 20 points. Then Maryland fumbled and we scored again. Momentum shifted nearly as fast as Wojo on a jailbreak. My friend beside me said something I’ll never forget: “If we win this, I’ll drink the cooler…” The cooler he referenced was the remainder of cold beers that we made a decent dent in the pre-game tail gate and again at halftime.  It would be a tall task for anyone not named Huck or Roadie. So after Saturday’s Q where I brought the cooler for my “99 Bottles of Beer on the Wall” workout, I had a number of odd beers laying in warm water. What better way to get rid of them than take Midoriyama’s open Q for today. The day after the Fourth of July, forecasted in the 90’s again, I thought I might have a few takers.

I arrived to find a few men standing against the wall of the turd shack, the only shade available in the normal gathering spot. Breaker Breaker was stretching, going for a double. Apparently he didn’t challenge himself enough this morning at the Goat and wanted a bit more – nice push BB. A regular cast of characters gathered and 1730 hit. I turned and began reciting the pledge ignoring the mumble chatter. A veteran PAX needed nothing more than “follow me at your own risk…” No time to waste, skipping the standard DQ’s and MNC’s. “Get in high plank and follow me…”

Warm-up:

  • Mtn Climbers IC x 10
  • Plank Jacks IC x 10
  • Peter Parker IC x 10
  • X Crunch SC x 10
  • Scissor Touch R – SC x 10 (left arm by side, both feet 6″ off ground, right hand straight overhead; R arm/L leg go to 90 degrees to touch and go back – it’s a burner.
  • Scissor Touch L – SC x 10
  • Elbow plank – right hip touch SC x 10
  • Elbow plank – left hip touch SC x 10
  • Elbow plank alternate hip roll-overs SC x 20

Mary is out of the way, time to mosey to the picnic shelter. It was only about 90 degrees pre-workout. I felt a little gipped as Freight’s Q on Tuesday was in the 97 degree oven – stuff JV workouts are proudly known for. But I had a lot of cardio planned and I opted to conduct it under the picnic shelter – for those that showed – you’re welcome. We lost Gomer at this point. He posted in standard attire of jeans and boots. Maybe there was a fire to put out but he bailed. The remainder gathered under the shelter for instructions. Some observed there was no cooler in sight. Keep ’em guessing. For those that post at the Goat, the idea came from Jen A that runs the Bootcamp in Cramerton. We split into three groups. Each station had three exercises at 10 single count reps to perform as many rounds as you can in 3 minutes.

  • Station 1
    • 10 Box Jumps
    • 10 Dips
    • 10 American Hammers
  • Station 2
    • 10 Burpees (Slaw – you’re welcome)
    • 10 Flutter Kicks
    • 10 Decline Peter Parker (a crowd pleaser)
  • Station 3 – each PAX had a brick for each hand
    • 10 Setup w/ Press
    • 10 Derkin Row (another crowd pleaser)
    • 10 Bulgarian Squat

After each circuit, we ran a lap around the parking lot to make sure the heart rate stayed up. Lots of subtle shoulder work in these gems. Three minutes straight of cardio is tough. Sargento stated he needed more running on the Weinke – but I’d argue he gets enough of that. Plenty of groans let out when I called only the first minute complete. There would be more to come. Bring out the cooler. Like the deck of death, grab a beer with two exercises to be performed to failure. When you fail, switch to the other one. Some switched multiple times – I did on dips and derkins they are no joke.

  • 99 seconds – IceHouse – Merkins and Peter Parkers
  • 98 seconds – PBR – Leg lifts and Am Hammer
  • 97 seconds – Ole English (Sargento couldn’t resist the temptation; Queso was impressed) Burpees and Dying Cockroaches
  • 96 seconds – Miller High Life – Ash Pond pulled it out and popped the top before I could call out the exercise – Good man. This was a trap, but a good one. He polished off the 16 ounces pretty quick while the PAX caught their breath. Freight made it clear that none of the Baptists partook of the Devil’s Juice. Ash Pond = #HIM
  • 95 seconds – Coors Light – Monkey Humpers and High Knees
  • 94 seconds – Budweiser – Dips and Derkins

If the PAX complained about 3 minute circuits, they really didn’t like doing over 30 seconds of the same exercises. Plenty of whining when I announced a minute left in each set and we weren’t even to the half-way point. But we made it five rounds and the PAX earned every bead of sweat. Once finished, the cooler had bottled waters for the PAX to take with them on the return to base. There we met Swimmer that had been on a bike ride.

COT: We lifted prayers for Breaker Breaker’s M going through some challenges. Def Leppard is leaving in the morning for his overseas trip. We wish him safety upon his travels. Same for Sargento and Queso, going on a father-son adventure to Chicago. A Cubs game is on the schedule. Enjoy the time and be safe. Announcements – rafting in a few weeks – check twitter.

Moleskin: I think I’m 2 for 2 with the cooler workout. I was happy to see Ash Pond enjoy the bait. Using the beers for the exercise selection is nothing more than to generate mumble chatter. Not difficult for Midoiyama men. It wouldn’t be the same if they weren’t complaining or needling someone. So I’ll keep this Weinke around. I think the Folsom boys would really enjoy it but early feedback suggests I may need to have some on reserve that we wouldn’t get much of the exercises in. Going back to the State win, Coach Tom O’Brien said “What we needed to do was to get one score, because you have to get the first one. Then you can get the second one. You can’t make it up all at one time.” Like anything we do, it begins with the first rep and then the second. Before you know it, you’ve completed a set, then a circuit, then a mile. IT all adds up to our benefit. Thanks for the opportunity to lead. Until the next one…Cheers

99 Bottles of Beer…

Whoopee vacated his Q slot for this morning’s bootcamp. Either his M failed to tell him or he failed to remember they had a garage sale scheduled bright and early this morning. Plenty of George Strait cd’s are still available I here. So I gladly took control for the boot camp while Bedpan was to have his VQ with the Pain Lab. When I’m on a work call that looses my interest, I open my excel file with all of my Weinkes and get creative. This idea had been brewing for a while and I tempted the PAX of Gastonia via Twitter and Slack, hoping to entice a big crowd.

I arrived in the parking lot after an EC run and was pleasantly surprised at the eager group of PAX. I had a strong feeling Udders from Greensboro would post. I was happy to see the return of the “the Streak,” as well as Hushpuppy. I attempted to lure Brownstreak to the bootcamp providing as much insight as I could (he doesn’t like surprises if you didn’t know) but he was leaning toward the Pain Lab. I checked my watch and 0700 struck – time to get this train wreck mov’in.  No FNG’s but a disclaimer was stated as there were some newer men among us. “You verses you, modify as needed, do what you want to do.” Did I say you verses you? I did…let’s go:

Warm-up:

  • SSH IC x 10
  • Squats (apparently I didn’t say “in cadence” though the PAX were following my lead quite nicely until HIPAA called me out) we finished 10 – in cadence
  • Rapid fire: LBC’s in rapid cadence x 8; Plank Jacks in rapid cadence x 8, and just for HIPAA: 5 Burpees OYO

Pledge – boot camp bid adieu to the Pain Lab

We moseyed to the Grier track for Part I. Once through the gate we circled and I was once again surprised that only 7 men followed me. I guess the temptation wasn’t strong enough or the PAX were skeered as they sometimes say. No matter – the PAX that faced me were ready for a beat down and I was ready to give it. The biggest form of flattery is to borrow from another man’s workout. The track work is a combination from Stroganoff’s world famous “Wolfpack Grinder” and one that Tiny Tank led in honor of his West Point classmate Dan Whitten. To perform the real Whitten – you need some equipment, so modifications were in order. However – if you have access to a dumbbell or kettle-bell and a medicine ball – look up this workout and do it when you can’t attend F3. You will be tested. So today’s version was originally slated for 4 rounds of 20 reps. After round 1, I modified unbeknownst to the PAX. Here’s what we did:

  • Steps-ups
  • Dips
  • Run 200 meters
  • Burpees
  • SSH
  • Run 200 meters to complete a full lap
  • Round 1 was 20 single count reps of the exercises; Round 2 was 15, and Round 3 was 10

I omaha’ed the fourth round because of time. Thanks to Roscoe for leading plank work waiting for the PAX to gather. Props to Roscoe for leading the charge with Udders closely following. This circuit was designed to elevate the heart rate. I’ve found that any occasion to run and throw in burpees will get your ticker pumping. A quick count off confirmed all eight men were still with us. Onto First Presbyterian Church’s PAD where the Main Event was waiting.

The set up took a minute to get the music going (thanks Rudolph for your speaker) and the cooler opened. Preparing for this Q was a bit unique and took me to three different stores to find the various coupons. I did fulfill a few requests but unfortunately those men were not among my PAX. Stroganoff titles many of his routines and this one deserved such distinction: 99 Bottles of Beer. Think all the way back to your elementary school days and those field trips. I feel certain that most if not all of us sang the song as the bus took off. I’m going to venture a guess that few field trips ever actually completed the countdown. I imagine in today’s PC world, young kids singing a song with “beer” in the lyric would be frowned upon. But today’s workout would bring smiles. So think of the “deck of death” workout but instead of cards, various bottles of beer were used. The time began with, yep you guessed it, a 99 second circuit, followed by a 30 second rest and then 98 seconds, and so on. I offered the PAX an asterisk that if they selected a bottle and didn’t like the exercises, they could “take one for the team” with a power chug of the ice cold beer. Some thought about it but none accepted the challenge, at least the drinking beer part. It went like this:

  • 99 seconds: Old English 40 – Single line suicides & V Ups
  • 98 seconds: Busch Light – Donkey Kicks & CDD’s
  • 97 seconds: PBR – Jingle Balls & Am Hammers
  • 96 seconds: Natural Light – Ski Abs & LBC’s
  • 95 seconds: Stella Artois – Step Ups & Derkins
  • 94 seconds: Ice House – SSH & Squats
  • 93 seconds: Mich Ultra – Hi/Low Wall Taps & Floyd Mayweathers
  • 92 seconds: Bud Light – Lt Dans & Flutter Kicks
  • 91 seconds: Miller High Life (Just for Medicine Woman – a no show) – Burpees & Dying Cockroach

You see two exercises – most tabatas are 30 to 45 seconds.  Doing any one exercise for 99 seconds; it’s not that easy. So the idea was to do the first exercise to failure and then start the second – keep the cardio and heart rate going as much as possible. The mumble chatter was pretty good. Roscoe announced each new round with “(name) get you a cold beer.” I also had a cooler of water for the PAX and we certainly enjoyed a few of those cold ones in the summer humidity. We completed 9 rounds before it was time to head home. Oh did I mention the play list? All songs about drinking cold beer or partying or just a cool groove, but mostly about drinking: Blooze (Junkyard), Party Like Tomorrow is the End of the World (Steel Panther), Had Enough (Tesla), Toes (Zac Brown Band), Day Drinking (Little Big Town), Metalingus (Alter Bridge). I hear that some bumpkin midget named George Strait has a song called “Cold Beer Conversation” but after listening to 30 seconds I decided the slow moving twang would have a negative effect on our heart rate. Maybe the next Q can use that song while doing yoga or an hour’s worth of star gazers?

PAIN LAB BB:

Shoulder press,lunge,lbc,merkin x20 three times.

Annie’s=planks one handed taking the other hand in the motion of cleaning the floor. Each side hold 20 seconds.

Bat wings x 20; 4 x each

Forwards, backwards circles; Seal claps, overhead claps x 20

WWII, Sandy V, Freddy Mercury’s, LBC’s, Flutter Kicks, Heel taps.

  • 5 burpees
  • 10 lunges
  • 15imperial walkers
  • 20 merkins

Sally up song w/ squats

15 super mike Tyson’s = mike Tyson then a burpee afterward.

15 minutes of battle rope alternating between planks

15 minutes of kettle bells

Rotated these two in groups.

COT: I ran with Madoff for some extra credit this morning. He was unable to post because his son had a swim meet but asked for a friend Nikki Bailey that is battling stomach cancer. We also lifted up prayers for Hushpuppy’s work friend Ashley that lost her battle with cancer leaving behind a family. Toto’s mother-in-law and his marriage. I believe Timeframe had a request that I cannot recall the specific name. We have a lot of PAX traveling home or to vacation destinations – we asked for their safe travels as well as safety and enjoyment as we look forward to celebrating July 4th.

Moleskin: Roadie was correct – the enticement of beer was a trap, well sort of. As noted, the PAX had the opportunity to drink one for the team. Of course splashing merlot would have come into play. I appreciate the 7 PAX that followed me out of the parking lot and allowed me to have some Q-fun with the workout. It was a grinder but the guys pushed through. Roscoe was on fire. Until you hear Moses say his age, you wouldn’t know by the way he pushes through the workout. Toto is drinking the F3 Kool-Aid like it was a free keg on the 4th of July. Nice to have Dr. Feelgood in the fold. Blart was quiet but had his typical dry witted comedic statement that got the guys laughing. JJ was steady as always, and Udders joined in as if he was one of us and not just visiting. Great work by the boot camp guys. Once the workout ended, we re-packed the cooler and I now have a collection of tall-boys, double-deuces, and an Ole E “fo-ty” that I doubt I’ll ever drink. High school and college was a long time ago and I have enough room in my budget for my standard Bud Light. So that means before this piss-water goes bad, I may need to bring the cooler to an AO near you. I’m scanning the Q schedule and you may very well find yourself participating in my version of 99 Beers on the Wall. That is unless Udders doesn’t snatch my Weinke and take this cooler to G-boro. It was a pleasure to Q.

If you can take the heat, get in my kitchen

I have been looking forward to this Q – I had the concept for the “what” and only needed to wait for the opening in the busy schedule for Midoriyama. There is quite a following which speaks volumes for the AO that Def Leppard leads. As your Weasel Shaker, I track all of the numbers and our only afternoon workout averages 17.3 men for the two workouts each week. Why is that important? I had coupons and circuits that required a unique three-man rotation.

I had my work scheduled cleared and happily checked out of the office at 4:15 to ensure enough time to navigate traffic on I-85 and set up the small soccer field for the pain that was to come. I checked the temperature as I parked my car – 95 degrees it read. Hot but the humidity is yet to come for the Boys of Summer.  The PAX arrived slowly but surely. Swimmer suited up for a bike ride and the rest of us gathered into the circle. Time to clock in:

Pledge (in record time)

Warm-up (maybe another record)

  • MNC’s IC x 1
  • Don Quixote’s IC x 2
  • SSH IC x 3
  • Toy Soldier’s IC x 4
  • Burpees 5 OYO
  • Let’s mosey to the small soccer field

Whoopee would have loved the shortened warm-up. It certainly provoked some chatter and curious thoughts among the PAX as for the efficiency. Frankly, we needed all the time to get through the Weinke. We arrived at Field 1 on the right which had a short course arranged. Tiger came in hot and sprinted to catch us. I was prepared for as many as 30 but 15 would be ideal for the coupons. Tiger gave us 10 for the bootcamp so we divided into two groups of three and a group of four for the following:

P1: takes the newly purchased bricks and performs:

  • MNC’s x 15 (sgl ct)
  • Squat Press x 10
  • Jack Webbs x 5

P2 grabbed a sandbag in each hand and farmer’s carried across the width of the soccer field. Q’s note this distance was too short and either needs to go the length or lunge walk to extend the time for P1 and P3 that are doing the exercises.

P3 is waiting on the opposite side of the field performing:

  • Makhtar N’Diaye’s x 5 (low plank to high plank)
  • Burps x 10
  • Mtn. Climbers x 15

P2 exchanges places with P3 who farmer’s carry the sandbags across the field to exchange with P1. We went a total of 5 rounds (~10 minutes). In case you’re not digesting the concept, I’ll give you the Workout for Dummies version. This set was a  shoulder/upper arm focus with the bricks on one end plus the 10 to 25 lb sandbags to conclude with the plank exercises. About midway through the PAX verbalized their shoulder burn. I felt it then as well but the burn has continued as I rest my arms on the desk trying to type this BB. This will be felt and because of that, it is a keeper for future Weinke’s. So after that was done, it was on to Thang #2. This was something I did a few weeks ago at the Black Knight. Roadie reminded me he was present for that one and hated it just as much then as he did today. I did modify this version slightly because we’d be doing it in the afternoon sauna. But in honor my man Slaw, I couldn’t Q a Midoriyama workout without filling his pallet of burpees. Unlike his Del Frisco’s anniversary dinner, this serving was free. With a little pre-amble I announced we’d be doing the Slaw-ful. Beginning with corner #1 do 12 burpees. Then running the short end of the field to corner #2 for 11, then the length of the field to corner #3 for 10, then corner #4 for 9. It descended all the way down to 1 for a total of 78 (the total workout had 103 burpees for the day – just in case your counting). Of course Slaw was in the lead pack with Sister Act. Amid the afternoon heat this really amped up the heart rate making it hard to catch our breaths but we pushed through. Well done by all the guys to knock that one out.

We were about a half hour into the workout and next on the list was something I had advertised had never been done before. The idea came from a simple elementary field day game – the balloon relay. Of course I needed to add a bit of a twist. So I printed out an exercise and reps on a slip of paper and slid it into the balloon. With 10 men we divided into two teams with one member of each team running across the field to the bleachers to sit on the balloon, find the piece of paper and return to their teammates with the exercise/reps to perform before the next man took off. After the Slawful of burpees, the rest was welcomed. The game had it’s share of challenges as Pizza Man squashed his balloon so violently the slip of paper flew out, taking him several seconds to find, allowing team 1 to take the lead. It wasn’t necessarily a competition as nothing was on the line except of course pride, which is as valuable as anything among F3 men. The red, blue, green, and yellow balloons contained the following exercises that each team performed twice.

  • Burpees x 10
  • Merkins x 10
  • LBC’s x 20
  • Flutter Kicks x 15
  • SSH x 20
  • Sumo Squats x 15

Once this session was complete there was about 7 minutes left – just enough time to clean up and mosey back to the start for a little bit of Mary which was Low plank roll-overs x 20, Leg Raises x 10, American Hammer x 15. Pizza Man called 22 for the Vets: Time!

COT: lifted prayers for Def Leppard’s son Logan that is currently in the hospital this week where the doctors and team are trying to diagnose the source of his seizure’s and develop a strategy for treatment. WE also shared about a friend of Blart’s who son passed unexpectedly, Pizza Man’s niece battling addiction, Sister Act’s grandmother, Tiger’s daughter traveling across country, and all those traveling for vacation. Announcements – Third F event Friday night at 7 pm at First Presbyterian Church. Pockets and YHC are your guest speakers. CSPAN is the guest Q at Folsom on Saturday and some guys are hiking Grandfather Mountain Saturday leaving at 0630 from the Schiele Museum.

Moleskin: As I came in early, Blart passed me on an extra credit run – tough to do in the heat knowing the bootcamp would follow. In a similar vain this afternoon was the second post for Roadie attending Folsom and Sister Act running the Pub. It was certainly warm this afternoon but not too bad. Def Leppard brought a cooler of water to share – that certainly hit the spot – thanks for bringing DL. We had a few minutes of rain arrive during the balloon relay that briefly cooled us. But no sooner than it quit did the steam from the hot ground warm us up. You never know how some of these ideas will pan out. The PAX seemed to enjoy it so I hope to bring parts of it back soon. It is always fun to be among the chatter at Midoriyama. Thanks to Def Leppard for the chance to lead. Until the next one.

Pain Lab: No Ordinary Hunkajunk

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.

Round I

  • 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

Round II

  • 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
  • Merkins

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.

South Street Challenge

I’ve had this beat down on the drafting table for a while, waiting for an opening on what has become a popular Q spot of late. The idea spawned from Tiger’s Q a while back at the Yank. An uphill run with pain stations at the bottom. It was a strong test, one that needed to be shared with others. So I noodled on the idea and had a general plan of what to do. But then something else shocked my brain Thursday night so I decided to pull a slick switch and have 10 minutes of Mary to kick off the festivities. It went like this:

Pledge, mild disclaimer: “get in plank” where we did each exercise for 25 seconds:

  • plank jacks
  • burps
  • jingle balls
  • mtn climbers
  • merkins
  • imperial walkers
  • high knees
  • touch left toe, raise right knee
  • touch right toe, raise left knee
  • lbcs
  • chop sticks
  • reverse crunch
  • fifer scissors with punch
  • plank rolls
  • am hammer
  • flutter kicks
  • leg raises
  • ww1
  • freddie mercury
  • ski abs

When the idea came to begin with Mary, I added a playlist with the theme of summer. Summer Nights by Van Halen was on their first album with Sammy Hagar in 1986, which we learened Island, Round-up, and obviously Madmen had not been born (#imold).  Song #2 was Summertime Girls by Y&T followed by Joe Satriani’s Summer Song. Whoopee – you missed another great set.

The PAX looked relieved that was over but the main event was waiting. I did a demo tour posting printed signs of each exercise that had a 10 count. We began the loop with 10 burpees and progressed down the three blocks to reach Second St doing merkins and monkey humpers before making the return to the top. The route was 0.48 miles round trip broken up at various intervals of:

  • burpees x 10
  • ssh x 10
  • dips x 10
  • box jumps x 10
  • merkins x 10
  • monkey humpers x 10
  • mike Tyson’s x 10
  • plank jacks x 10
  • squats x 10

The PAX pushed through with Round-up leading the charge followed closely by Dr.  Seuss.  Others that completed 4 full rounds were: Island, Turtleman, and Roscoe. Nice job men getting in over 2 miles. The rest of us were close to that mark but had to u-turn at Main St to get back on time. Which at that point I realized Spider-Man snuck out early for work. I guess fighting crime does pay.  Or maybe he went to Comic-con in Charlotte going on this weekend.

COT

We heard and lifted prayers for Lynn Ham, Breaker Breakers uncle and sister in law’s husband; Def Leppard’s son going to the hospital Monday and Timeframe asked for the Clark family that lost their little girl too soon. The announcements which are still current as of this B.B. are 3rd F event Friday 6/22 at 7 pm at First Presbyterian Pockets and YHC are sharing.

This was a good workout that if I had arrived early enough to post the signs, it could have moved much faster.  I’ll keep that in mind for the future.  Thanks for the chance to Q.

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