F3 Gastonia

Fitness, Fellowship, Faith

Author: Stroganoff (page 2 of 7)


Once again it was cold.  My trusty vehicle thermometer told me it was 19 degrees when I arrived at The Black Knight to kick off the week.  This has become a recent theme during the Gloom.  My high dollar Casio watch told me it was 5:32 am (it’s 2 minutes fast and I do not know how to correct it) so we started with a quick warm up IC:

SSH X 10

Imperial Walkers X 10 (after the Don Quixote juke)

The Pledge

Wait, is that Pockets coming in hot?  Let’s add one more warm up with some Hillbilly’s X 10

The Thang

Time to mosey to Martha Rivers Park and Field #4 or what most call the Upper Back Field for something I’ve never done before….who knew I could come up with something new.  This came to me on the drive to the AO this morning.

It would be a ‘Murph-Like” workout…..clearly not The Murph but similar in the manner in which we performed the reps/sets.

Line up on one side of the field facing across the short side.  Here we go:

Sprint to the other side followed by a set of 10 Merkins – 20 Squats – 30 LBC’s – Plank for the six

Rinse-Repeat for 4 more rounds

For round 6 we added a second set of reps after the sprint across the field so it went like this:

Sprint to other side – 10 Merkins – 20 Squats – 30 LBC’s – 10 Merkins – 20 Squats – 30 LBC’s – Plank for the six

Rinse-Repeat for 4 more rounds

For those counting, this yielded 10 total sprints – 150 Merkins – 300 Squats (ask Gastone, I think YHC only finished 290) – 450 LBC’s

The ground was frozen solid so my apologies to those who did not have sufficient glove protection.  There is no such thing as bad weather, just bad gear, correct?

Plenty of time left so we moseyed to the picnic shelter for my normal Q routine of IC work as followed:

Dips X 15

Step Ups X 20

Flutter Kicks X 20

Dips X 15

Step Ups X 20

Flutter Kicks X 20

Dips X 15

Step Ups X 20

Time became an issue so we moseyed back to the start and finished off with one set of Mary:

Flutter Kicks (IC) X 30

Quick announcements plus a few prayer requests:

Tube’s Grandmother

Gastone’s monther-in-law

F3 Gremlin’s family and the PAX from Mint Hill/MECA.  Godspeed.

Namo-O-Rama;  Nice to see Hippa out for his second workout and a Kotter (Tube).

Second round of apologies for the grass/straw that is now all over my car and my house.  What can I say, F3 workouts are outdoors.

I was unable to come up with a good name for this backblast so I just put up the temperature plus the number of reps we did during the wacky field sprint work.

As always, it was great to start the week out with you men in the gloom.  I hope the work was worthy of your time.  Thanks for the opportunity to lead.

Until the next one.  Aye!



Let’s Do Some Steps

It was a summer time gloom this morning Downtown at the Pavilion.  After the last few weeks, the 62 degrees this morning felt like July.  It was fantastic.  YHC arrived with a few minutes to spare without knowing for sure if I was Q’ing today or not.  I knew that EZ Rider was potentially injured and might not make it so mentally I had prepared myself but was totally unprepared with any details of a workout.

Let’s improvise.

Warm up IC

SSH’s X 20

Imperial Walkers X 20


Let’s go

The Thang

Mosey to the parking deck due to the threat of rain with a few juke moves along the way (my Wolfpack did win last night) to psych out the PAX.  I’m sure it confused them all.

Time for some 22’s utilizing the parking deck steps for the laps:

Do an exercise on the bottom floor, run the steps to the top deck, do another exercise, come down the other set of steps back to the bottom to rinse/repeat reps in descending/ascending numbers that add up to 22 per round counting up/down by 2:

Round 1:  20 Merkins – Run steps up to top deck – 2 Squats – Run down to bottom floor

Round 2:  18 Merkins – Run steps up to top deck – 4 squats – Run down to bottom floor

Round 3:  16 Merkins – Run steps up to top deck – 6 squats – Run down to bottom floor

I think you get the idea as this continues until the final round of 2 Merkins at the bottom and 20 squats on the top deck.  This was awesome.

Short rest before some partner work.

Partner 1 does exercise while partner 2 runs the same loop we just ran during 22’s, up one set of steps to the top deck and back down the other set of steps to switch off with Partner 1.  Cumulative reps as follows:

LBC’s X 300

Flutter Kicks X 300

Freddy Mercury’s X 300

This group was so pumped that we still had plenty of time for a quick mosey up the steps to the top deck for a set of 10 OYO Sumo Squats; run back down other set of steps to the bottom level for a set of 10 OYO Merkins followed quickly by 5 burpees (I had ignored an earlier train passing by)

Mosey to the courtyard area with benches for some final IC sets as follows:

Dips X 15

Low-Slow Squats X 15

Dips X 10

Low-Slow Squats X 15

Dips X 10

Low-Slow Squats X 15

Mosey back to the Rotary Pavilion for one quick set of Flutter Kicks X 35.

As I already stated…..it was fun.

Announcements:  T-square still collecting items for the displaced family; Roscoe leading 40 days of discipline starting January 20th

Several Prayer Requests sent out

New word discovered:  Monkish

Honored to lead the workout this morning.

Until the next one.  Aye!


Weathermen & Thermometers Lie & Scarfs Can Freeze

The weatherman last night just before bed told me the low was going to be 21 degrees.  I woke up and my outdoor thermometer told me it was 16 degrees.  As I pulled into The Pub around 5:20 am, my car told me it was 13 degrees.  Hmmmmmmm…………

Not sure which was accurate………..it was not warm.

Just before 5:30 am, 3 more idiots showed for a cold Thursday mosey at The Pub.

The last few workouts my face was hurting by the end so I ‘borrowed’ one of my M’s old lightweight scarfs to see if I could us it as a warmer around my neck and lower part of my face so only my eyes are exposed.

Off we went.

About 2 miles in, it was apparent the scarf idea was a total fail as it began to freeze (just as Sargento had predicted) so I removed it and it still helped my neck stay warmer than recent workouts.  You know it’s cold when your breath is not able to keep a scarf warm enough to not freeze.  However, it was solid as a rock by the time we arrived back after getting in 5 miles.

Thanks for the push gentlemen.  No way would I have done the distance or the pace today without you.

Good COT this morning as we shared parenting advice (never an easy topic) with each other.  This is the real reason we come out and should continue to come out.

By the way, on the way home my car told me it was 12 degrees.  Regardless, good work men.

Until the next one.  Aye!


Stroganoff’s 12 Days of Christmas

On a holiday weekend with a chance for rain, I wasn’t sure how many would make it out for the workout today.  As usual, I was not disappointed when 14 showed in the gloom including one FNG (welcome Emoji/Michael Ginther).

After some completely inappropriate mumble chatter just before the workout started concerning my Santa hat, we went through the disclaimer and got ready to get after it.

T-Claps to Roscoe for breaking out the 1987-88 Ashbrook High School Key Club shirt.  This was from my senior year of HS and really took me back……..take it easy.

We went through a quick IC Warm-Up:

There was a train in the distance that was heard by all but I decided to skip these burpees (we had some in our future) even though a few prematurely started them.

SSH X 10

Imperial Walkers X 10

Mosey to the big flag in front of the museum for the Pledge.

The Thang

Mosey to the track at Grier Middle School for the first annual rendition of Stroganoff’s 12 Days of Christmas.  I had not idea how this would go or how long it would take.  It went something like this:

Imagine singing along to the classic tune and inserting exercises for each day brought to you by your F3 Q as follows:

On the first day of Christmas, your F3 Q brought to you…….

1st Day – 1/2 Lap around the track

2nd Day – 12 Bobby Hurleys + 1st Day

3rd Day – 12 Merkins + 2nd Day + 1st Day

4th Day – 12 LBC’s + 3rd Day + 2nd Day + 1st Day (You get the idea of the repeated sets just like the song goes)

5th Day – 5 Buuuuuurrrrpeeeeessss (sung just like 5 Golden Rings with a much higher, out of tune voice) + first 4 days

6th Day – 12 Flutter Kicks + first 5 days

7th Day – 12 Squats + first 6 days

8th Day – 12 CDD’s + first 7 days

9th Day – 12 Hillbillies + first 8 days

10th Day – 12 Mountain Climbers + first 9 days

11th Day – 12 Side Straddle Hops + first 10 days

12th Day – 50 Moroccan Nigh Clubs + first 11 days

As the days stretched on, the mumble chatter became less and less as did the personal space intrusion during the squats.  This can mean a number of things, the workout sucks or the PAX is just mad.  Not sure what this one was.  I must admit the last few sets of Bobby Hurleys and burpees were not fun.  I will be sore.

However, we still had a few minutes so plenty of time for a set of my favorites at the picnic tables:

Dips X 15

Step UPS X 20

Derkins X 15

Mosey back to the Schiele for a quick round of Mary before the bells ring:

LBC’s X 20

Flutter Kicks X 15

Times up.

Good work this morning men.  I wasn’t sure how the multiple 12 reps would go and how long it would take but it turned out to be a good workout for myself.  I hope it was a worthwhile endeavor for everyone.

Announcements (there were some but it turned out to be a disaster).

Unfortunately we had several prayer requests including remembering those that may be experiencing their first Christmas without a loved one.  This can be difficult.

We finished off with Name-O-Rama that included the FNG – Emoji plus a quick note from a book I just finished – Wooden on Leadership by John Wooden.  His Father gave him a notecard when he finished elementary school with the following instructions on it that was the 7 Point Creed as a guideline for living each day:

  1. Be true to yourself
  2. Help others
  3. Make each day your masterpiece
  4. Drink deeply from good books, including the Good Book.
  5. Make friendship a fine art.
  6. Build a shelter against a rainy day.
  7. Pray for guidance and give thanks for your blessings each day.

Good words to live by.

For the Christmas Eve Eve effort, I handed out a copy of a book by Andy Andrews – The Traveler’s Gift, as a token of my appreciation for the attendance and the push all year.  If anyone else in the region would like a copy, just PM or text me and I’ll be happy to get you a copy.  I think it’s a great book and has helped my along the path.

Many thanks again for allowing me to lead the group this morning.  It was an honor.

Merry Christmas to all the Gastonia Region PAX and your families.  I’m grateful for each and everyone one of you.  Keep pushing the rock.

Until the next one.  Aye!


Four Corners or 4 quarters or 2 gallons

Compared to the last few workouts, it was quite balmy this morning so I was expecting a good crowd and was not disappointed when 11 others showed up in the gloom for an unknown workout.  I had posted a pic of the Heat Miser & Snow Miser last night in preparation for the one week countdown to Christmas and must be reminded what the real meaning is (even though I love those two characters from Christmas shows from my youth).

After getting my 100 LBC’s in before the workout (thanks Pizza Man), I was ready for the short disclaimer and let’s get after it.


Short warm up with 20 IC SSH’s

The Thang

Let’s mosey and take the long way to the back soccer field at Martha River’s.  Whoopee was impressed and hoped this would be the entire workout but alas, it was not.

Time for some Four Corners:

Run to 1st corner – 10 Merkins; Run to next corner – 20 LBC’s; Run to next corner – 30 Squats; Run back to starting point – 40 Flutter Kicks (while we all planked, Spiderman decided to perform an excessive amount of Flutter Kicks so we all planked for an extended period…..well played)

That was so much fun we decided to do it again in reverse direction and order:

1st corner – 40 Flutter Kicks; 2nd corner – 30 Squats; 3rd corner – 20 LBC’s; back to starting spot – 10 Merkins

Nice work.

Time to escalate it as in Four Corners Escalator:

Run to first corner – 10 Merkins; Run to next corner – 10 Merkins, 20 LBC’s; Run to 3rd corner – 10 Merkins, 20 LBC’s, 30 Squats; Run back to starting corner – 10 Merkins, 20 LBC’s, 30 Squats, 40 Flutter Kicks

Somewhere during these sets there was much discussion about was this four corners or 4 quarters or a gallon, etc.  Not sure as this sounded like Midoryama math but we persisted regardless of what it was called.

Not it was time to de-escalate the workout and reverse the direction again:

Run to 1st corner – 40 Flutter Kicks, 30 Squats, 20 LBC’s, 10 Merkins (Gastone struggled to follow the instructions for this round); Run to next corner – 30 Squats, 20 LBC’s, 10 Merkins; Run to 3rd corner – 20 LBC’s, 10 Merkins; Back to starting spot for the last 10 Merkins.  This sounds relatively easy but I was struggling by the time we reached the last couple of sets.

A Martha River’s Stroganoff Q could not be complete without a visit to one of the Picnic Shelters so we moseyed to the closest one for some in-cadence work as follows:

Dips X 20

Step Ups X 20

Derkins X 15

Squats X 20 or 17, or 16…..not really sure

It will be fun, let’s do it again:

Dips X 15

Step Ups X 20

Derkins X 12

Squats X 20 (Clavin requested 25 but YHC decided against it)

Plenty of time left so let’s squeeze in one more round:

Dips X 15

Step Ups X 20

Derkins X 15 (This about broke me)

Low & Slow Squats X 20

Time to mosey back to the starting spot.

Just enough time for an IC Set of Flutter Kicks X 51

Announcements.  Several prayer requests.  Name-O-Rama.

The Moleskin

In Sunday School yesterday, we somehow got on a discussion about the current state of our society, politics, etc.  Not sure how we got there.  After listening for a few minutes, I could not keep my mouth shut.  First, I strongly believe that our society is not as bad off as the media makes it out to be, we are chugging along fine day to day.  I believe the 1% of bad apples get most of the attention but I see more good day to day than bad.  I do believe there are societal pressures to relax some of our traditional values and not stand our ground because it’s “2017”.  This is where I injected myself into the conversation at Church yesterday.  I believe F3 is a great example of a group working to lead and uphold what is right and continue to work on being better each day.  We all have work to do (especially myself) but holding each other accountable each and every day is a small thing we can do to continue down the path.  I have found myself wanting to be better so I can look my kids in the eye each day and know I am doing what I can.  Some of the places this feeling originates is in the gloom at Gashouse, the Black Knight, the Storm, Downtown, at Folsom, the Fighting Yank, Midoryama, Goat Island, the Coconut Horse, the Pub, in the middle of the night on a dark road during the BRR, the Palmetto 200, the Tuna 200, carrying the Flag during the Christmastown 5k, in the rain, the cold, the heat, etc, etc, etc.  I’m grateful for that giant rock we are pushing each day.

Until the next one.  Aye!


It’s Much Colder than Whoopee Expected

It was nice to see Whoopee tweet asking if anyone would be in the Sunset Beach area over Thanksgiving since I would be at Ocean Isle Beach with the family at the same time.  I immediately responded that I’m in……..not sure it was the best idea.

After some early recon, we agreed to meet at the Sunset Beach park near the Sunset Beach bridge on the mainland side.   Can you tell I’m stretching out the text of the backblast?

We arrived at the exact same time.  It was dark.  Whoopee immediately declares, “It’s colder than I expected.”  Hmmmm…..there’s an app for that.

Having only driven past this park in the past, I was not sure what we were getting into as it was not lit at all.  Regardless…..let’s get after it.

Short mosey around the walking/running path for some warm up:

SSH X 10

LBC’s X 12

The Thang

A photographer shows up about this time (apparently to take some pics of the sunrise), it was still dark and I think we scared him pretty good, especially in my F3 Ninja gear.

Mosey over to a memorial for local veterans for the Pledge and our first round of IC work:

Merkins X 15

LBC’s X 25

Squats X 15

Rinse & Repeat

Mosey around the length of the path back to the Memorial for round 2:

Dips X 15

Flutter Kicks X 25

Lunge Walk along the path for….I think about 20 miles

Rinse & Repeat

Mosey around the length of the path plus some to get to the other side of the park near the waterway for Round 3:

Derkins X 15

Freddy Mercury’s X 25

Step Ups X 15

Rinse & Repeat

Mosey around the length of the path back to the waterway side location to finish off with a set of each of the previous exercises IC:

I believe it was during this Mosey that we realized the  photographer was dressed like a Teletubby, specifically Laa-Laa (the yellow one).  He really was decked out like this.  If you are not familiar with the Teletubbies, Google it…..you will be amazed and probably creeped out as I was when my kids briefly watched the show.

Merkins X 15

LBC’s X 25

Squats X 15

Dips X 16 (lost count)

Flutter Kicks X 25

Lunge Walk another 20 miles

Derkins X 15

Freddy Mercury’s X 25

Step Ups X 15

I believe it was just before the last set of Freddy Mercury’s that the photographer’s phone started ringing, it was some glorious bagpipe music and I asked him if he was Scottish.  He replied no and that he just wanted a ringtone that was loud and obnoxious so I replied, “Oh, you mean like Whoopee?”  Whoopee proceeded to count out the reps in a ‘not very accurate’ Scottish accent.  All I could envision was Fat Bastard from Austin Power’s fame.

One last Mosey around the park path and we’re done.

I just realized we did not officially do the COT even though we did have an informal prayer request section.

The Moleskin

Not sure I would have ever imagined getting in a workout such as this during a Thanksgiving Holiday trip to the beach with the family.  I have ran before but not really gotten in a workout like this before gorginig myself with food.  Thanks for the push Whoopee.

I have said this before, but I am very grateful to F3 Gastonia, F3 Nation and all my F3 brothers.  You guys have changed my life in a positive way.

We all have the struggles of leading families,  work, community, etc. but we also have a lot to be thankful for.  I know I do and I do not remember this enough.

I’m looking forward to the next workout.  (Probably tomorrow)

Until the next one.



Agent P & Vikings

As YHC waited in the gloom in the Schiele parking lot, I began wondering what I would do if no one showed up.  I hope that I would actually get through part or all of the planned workout but I’m not sure.  Luckily, 4 PAX showed just before the start time so I didn’t have to fight off any urges to head back to the house.

It was cold but not nearly as cold as the previous week so we got after it immediately with some IC warm up:

SSH X 12

Imperial Walkers X 12

Freddy Mercury’s X 12

Mosey to the flag in front of the Museum for the Pledge

The Thang

Mosey up to the parking lot at Grier Middle School for some Stroganoff 5’s:

Bear Crawl across parking lot – 5 Merkins – lunge back to other side (that’s one)

Rinse & Repeat 4 more times for a total of 5 sets.  Short Sale was moving through this quickly and actually completed 6 sets in the same time YHC completed 5…..kudos.

Mosey to the steps at First Presbyterian Church for the Viking 1000.  The night before I had posted some pre-blast pics on Twitter depicting Agent P (from Phenias & Ferb) and a Viking image.  The plan was to wear my Agent P shirt and ‘Viking’ winter hat from the Warrior Dash several years ago (which I had never actually put on).  Earlier in the morning I discovered my giant head was more than the hat could handle so I improvised to call this next exercise the Viking 1000.

Partner up for some cumulative rep work:

Partner 1 does the exercise while Partner 2 runs to the top of the steps, performs 5 merkins and returns.  This continues until all the reps of each exercise are completed between the two (or one group of 3):

Flutter Kicks X 200

Mountain Climbers X 200

Freddy Mercurys X 200

Plank Jacks X 200

LBC’s X 200

1000 reps total per goup

This was working out well as we were right on schedule.

Mosey back to the track at Grier Middle.  No Stroganoff Q at Gashouse would be complete without a round of the Wolfpack Grinder.

Squats IC X 10 – Run 1/2 Lap – 20 Merkins – Plank for the 6

Squats IC X 10 – Run 1/2 Lap – 30 Mountain Climbers – Plank for the 6

Squats IC X 10 – Run 1/2 Lap – 20 Merkins – Plank for the 6

Squats IC X 10 – Run 1/2 Lap – 30 Mountain Climbers – Plank for the 6

Squats IC X 15 – Run 1/2 Lap – 15 Merkins – Run 1/2 Lap – 30 Mountain Climbers – Plank for the 6

This was really enjoyed and celebrated by the PAX…….

Mosey back to the Schiele for some quick Mary:

The First Presbyterian bells rang during our set of Flutter Kicks somewhere in the 20’s on our reps.

Great work men.

The Moleskin

Even though the numbers were fewer than normal (maybe the smallest crowd I’ve personally seen at Gashouse), the quality of the work put in was extremely good.  These 4 guys pushed me today to put in the work and made it worth my time.

I greatly appreciate the opportunity to lead this morning.

Until the next one.  Aye!


Quality, not Quanity – 3 Pushed the Rock!

As I pulled in to Pelican’s there was only one car in the lot…..it was Clavin.  In the next 1 – 5 minutes, Timeframe pulled in and we waited…….nothing.  No worries, at F3 we just go.  We would have an impromptu Stroganoff beat down.  There must have been an epidemic of fartsacking that hit the normal PAX overnight but we 3 had the cure.

Quick Warm Up


Appalachian Americans X 10 IC

I was so flustered with the unexpected Q that I forgot the pledge…..my apologies gentlemen.

The Thang

Mosey to the center of the baseball fields for some improvised work:

Merkins IC X 15

LBC’s IC X 15

Squats IC X 15

Mosey around the baseball field and back to where we started

Rinse-Repeat above for a total of 3 sets.

Round 2:

Derkins IC X 12

Flutter Kicks IC X 20

Run to end of one of the spokes and back to the start

Rinse-Repeat once for a total of two sets

Mosey to the covered picnic shelter for some picnic table work:

Dips IC X 15

Step Ups IC X 20

Dips IC X 12

Step Ups IC X 20

Dips IC X 10

Mosey back to Pelicans – Short Plank and we’re done.

Simple workout…..but somewhat painful.  Great way to start a Monday.

Short COT with several announcements and prayer requests, especially for Clavin’s family.

The Moleskin

Occasionally there is a workout where a much smaller number than normal show up (like today).  However, this goes right to the heart of F3 in my opinion, we do the work anyway.  As usual, I was awake before my alarm ever buzzed and the thought briefly crossed my mind to stay right there as it sure was warm and cozy.  Something spurred me to get up and get after it.  As Roscoe put it so well yesterday at the F3 Dad’s event, F3 has helped me develop some ‘better’ habits and getting up this morning was a great example.  As usual, Clavin and Timeframe inspired me and pushed me to work hard this morning and I am grateful.  Keep it up, you never know when showing up might keep someone else from going back home and not putting in the work.

Until the next one.



Folsom serves Stroganoff for Breakfast?

10 gathered in the Saturday morning gloom at Folsom not sure what to expect.  YHC had not Q’d at Folsom since the launch many moons ago so I was excited to get after it.  Not sure what we would do but let’s do it.  It was cold.

Def Leppard showed up in a UNC sweatshirt which required him to perform double reps of everything.  Q’s prerogative.

We did a quick warm up before the main event:


Appalachian Americans X 10 IC

No flag for the pledge so we moseyed.

The Thang

We moseyed to the far parking lot near the baseball fields for some bear crawl-merkins-lunge work.

The original plan was to bear crawl across the parking lot, get in 10 Merkins, lunge back across the lot and rinse/repeat for a total of 6.  It didn’t take YHC very long to realize my mistake so we modified:

Bear Crawl halfway across the lot – Mosey to other side – 10 Merkins – Lunge Walk back to start

Rinse-Repeat for a total of 5 revolutions.

Somewhere in the middle of this we dropped and did 10 burpees (this would be a theme at every 10 minute interval)

Next up was a set of 22’s (Just like 11’s except the reps add up to 22 and we count up/down by 2’s to complete the work)

Merkins & Squats

Run to opposite side – 20 merkins; Run back to start – 2 Squats  (Repeat until the last set is 2 Merkins & 20 squats counting up/down by 2)

This was somewhat more difficult than it looked on paper, partially due to the 8 burpees in the middle at the 6:50 am mark.  Good work here by the group.

Mosey back toward the car location for the 7:00 am mark for 6 burpees.  Let’s keep moving down to the far end of the lower parking lot near the covered picnic shelter for some modified Wolfpack Grinder work:

The Wolfpack Grinder includes an In-Cadence exercise – a short run – an OYO exercise – planking for the 6

Round 1:  10 IC Squats – Run around the full dimensions of the lower parking lot – 40 LBC’s – Plank

Round 2:  10 IC Squats – Run around the full dimensions of the lower parking lot – 40 Flutter Kicks – Plank

Round 3:  Repeat Round 1

Round 4:  Repeat Round 2

Round 5:  10 IC Squats – Run around the full dimensions of the lower parking lot – 30 LBC’s/30 Flutter Kicks – Plank

We crossed the 7:10 am time and got in our 4 burpees.

Meander to the picnic shelter for some IC work:

Dips X 15

Step Ups X 20

Dips X 15

Step Ups X 20

Meander back toward the vehicles, but wait….it’s 7:20 (slightly later)…..time for the final set of Burpees X 2

Mosey back to the beginning parking lot to get in one more set of Flutter Kicks X 51

Good work men.

Announcements:  F3 Dad’s Event at Martha Rivers (yesterday); Kings Mountain/Crowder’s Mtn Hike/Ruck – November 19th; F3 Christmas Party – December 1st

Several Prayer Requests



As always, it was my honor to lead the group through the motions, especially at Folsom, a terrific AO that I have not posted to enough.  I was taking my M, 2.0’s and Mother-in-Law up to Western Carolina on Saturday to see my son who is a Freshman in the Marching Band.  In the past, even early on after starting F3, I would have used that as an excuse to skip the Saturday workout.  I delayed leaving to get in the workout to get my Saturday started off properly.  Guess what, we made it on time with no problem and I had a great day with the family.  This is another example for me why F3 is so great.  I was able to do both the workout and have some great family time on the same day.  We can do both, in fact, F3 allows me to be better when I’m with my family. I appreciate it greatly gentlemen.

Until the next one.



Tuna 200 – Van 1 – The Big Deal

The Tuna 200 – Van 1 – The Big Deal

Van 1 participants began arriving at the GSM International Headquarters around 4:10 – 4:15 am on Friday morning, the 20th, to embark on the great adventure known as the Tuna 200, a 200+ mile trek from Raleigh to Atlantic Beach.

As a precursor of things to come, Boudin was dropped off by his wife around 4:20 am for the trip…….that’s correct, his wife dropped him off.

We loaded up “Red Wolf”, our beloved van, and set off northeast toward God’s Country (Raleigh, home of the Wolfpack).

Hushpuppy was reminded as the driver, he was now in control of a totalitarian dictatorship and was in total control of direction, stops and agenda……..our first stop was Biscuitville. Just what we needed before jogging immense distances.

YHC texted the main group that we were finally on the road around 6:30 am or so and got back some salty responses from Van #2. At that moment, we were already east of Greensboro, but I wanted to get the smack talk & covert operational communication started early.

Somewhere along the journey, we received some grim news that Whoopee’s 16 year old cat was having some issues that morning and the worst was feared. As of this writing, the cat is fine, or at least as fine as a 16 year old cat can be.  During this discussion, Broke mentioned he had a blind dog (or did at one time) to which Whoopee replied, “Did you get him a seeing eye dog?”………you can’t make this mumblechatter up.

We arrived at Thomas Benson Park with time to spare as Broke prepared to start us on the journey to Atlantic Beach. It was cold.  There were pickles.  We almost forgot the team wrist band.  At 0900, the team Broke out of there at about a 5:00 min/mile pace…..we were off.  The running order for Van 1 went like this:

Broke – Madoff – Boudin – Sargento – Whoopee – Stroganoff

Red Wolf set off to chase down Broke and get Madoff to his launching point.

I’m not sure when this discussion occurred but somewhere along the line Boudin asked about dealing with ‘runner’s raw nipples’, for you runners you know what he means. He stated he almost wore one of his wife’s sports bras which elicited zero response from the group……just concern……..this was just the beginning from Boudin on this trip.

It wasn’t long before the temperature started to creep up and even though Atlantic Beach is located well below Raleigh, these routes were by no means flat. Rolling hills for all.

The first 5 runners had us ahead of schedule and had multiple kills as we headed to the first big transition zone where we would meet up with Van #2 and they would complete sections 7-12. The problem now became the heat as it crept up into the low 80’s.  Our last few training runs had been in the 50 – 60 degree range and in the morning.  As Whoopee approached the exchange zone to hand off to YHC (after completing an insane 9+ mile leg), I was concerned with the heat and the 7 miles ahead of me.  As I took the bracelet and headed off, I couldn’t get my Jocko Podcast to work and as I fumbled with it someone passed me (oh hell no) and I finally got the podcast going and back on track, I could see a couple of persons in front of me in the distance so I tried to settle in to a good pace.  Did I say it was hot?

I was good until about the 5.5 mile mark as the heat and hills had taken its toll. I had actually passed 3 people to this point and had another guy blow past me at a quick pace.  However, I could now see him slowing and thought I might could get him before the finish.  My pace was slower now though but he suddenly started walking….keep it up Strog, for heaven’s sake don’t stop.  I was able to catch him and finish relatively strong but I was torched.  I handed off to Kuicwche and Van 2 was on the course.  It took me some time to calm down and get in a good condition to leave, I think I even vomited in my mouth but am not sure.

We then headed for some food and found White Swan BBQ on the outskirts of Smithfield and I wondered how in the world we ended up here. More Tuna 200 mumblechatter.  As I was attempting to remove the route tattoo I was informed by Whoppee that “nutbutter would take that tattoo right off”…..I made a mental note.  It was also during this period that I learned that while at a concert, Sargento and his M were “searching for something like a sperm searching for an egg”.  We didn’t ask for more clarification.  After food, we headed to the next big transition zone to rest and wait on Van 2 to arrive.  Nice Church; people trying to rest/sleep everywhere; real bathrooms inside the Church; met an F3 guy from Raleigh that grew up in Gastonia and went to Ashbrook H.S., small world.

Dolph arrived as darkness started to settle in on us and handed off to Broke for his longest run, a 10 miler……good Lord, why are we doing this? Short time sharing some thoughts with Van 2 group before we headed off to chase down Broke for our next transition.  It was dark now so we would all be in our night gear, reflective vest, blinkers and head lamp.  Surprisingly, we saw more than one runner from other teams without all the night gear that was required.

Boudin “The Big Deal” arrives on the scene. Somewhere during his second leg, Boudin stopped to help a damsel in distress.  It was dark and some of these sections were a little scary so one of the female participants came back to Boudin during his night run (when he saw her running back to him he immediately thought he was running the wrong direction) and asked about running together to the finish as she was a little frightened and Boudin obliged as the gentlemen he is.  He then proceeded to remind us that he is ‘kind of a Big Deal” and gave the impression this happens to him all the time.  It also may have been during this time that one of our M’s asked about our groupies as they had seen women in the background on one of the video posts online.  We informed her we had not seen them yet but expected them to arrive at any moment.

Everyone picked up the pace during these night sections as the temperature had dropped significantly, Whoopee even arrived to hand off to YHC before I was even up to the line yet. I quickly got to him, turned on the night gear, cranked up the Rush and took off.  The night leg was terrific, cooler, allowed me to catch several other runners and finish with a decent pace (for me anyway).  I did experience some post run cramps after this leg but was able to push through them much better than I did at the BRR.

It was now just into early Saturday morning as Van 2 worked through Legs 19 – 24. We headed forward to the next big transition zone to attempt to get some sleep.  Some of us were able to, others not so much.  It was cold now and cramps kept me from sleeping at all.

We received the warning text that the last runner from Van 2 was on the course so it was time for us to get it in gear for our last legs. Van 2 arrived and not long after, Dolph sped in to hand off to Broke.  Off we went for the third and final legs for Van #1.  The first few final legs were in the dark and all were much cooler sections and all the runners before me continued to blaze the trail with fast times.  There was much relief as each Van 1 runner completed their last leg, including myself.  My pace was okay but my legs were not responding well to the pace my brain was telling them to run.  However, I finished and Van 1 was done.  There is a sense of relief and accomplishment when you know your last section is behind you.  It was now in Van 2’s hands to bring it home to Atlantic Beach.

Van 1 headed back a couple of exchange zones for a shower before finding some terrific food and heading to Atlantic Beach. Atlantic Beach is a terrific finish as the finish line is on the boardwalk.  We arrived with time to spare to enjoy a beer and some food and wait on Van 2.  They arrived shortly before the glory leg, Dolph, arrived at the finish.  One of the great things about these races is having the entire team cross the finish line just behind the last runner and this was no different.  By this time it was hot again but Dolph and Team Fury brought it home in a fast pace.  Our overall time was 28’09”, not a bad time at all.  I believe it was an 11th overall finish……good work men.

Had some good fellowship at the event after finishing, at dinner and at the hotel on Saturday night and again on the drive home the following day. Some of the group stayed for some fishing on Sunday morning and I heard it was a successful endeavor.

Other mumbechatter heard during the Tuna 200 (must ask in person for more details):

“I lost her but she came back to me.”; “When your chatting, you don’t think of the suck.”;

“The blue shirt really makes my eyes pop.”; “I owe you one. Actually, you owe them two.”; “They’re youthish.”; Why did we drive 2 miles out of the way for a bathroom stop after passing 5 – 6 other places to stop?


How do you describe how it feels to finish a 200+ mile relay race? I’m not really sure other than to say how grateful I am to F3 and each person who has ever posted to a workout, 2nd F or 3rd F event with me.  Each of you has impacted me and inspired me to be better.  Not only had I never done anything like the Tuna 200 (or BRR or Palmetto 200) before F3, I had never even heard of them.  I don’t know how much longer I will be able to continue doing such crazy events but I will as long as I can.  I appreciate the journey I have been on over the last 2 ½ years through F3.  I can’t say for sure that I have become a better person during this time, but I know I have tried to be and want to be because of my involvement.  You men are good and I appreciate the push.

Until the next one, let’s keep pushing the rock. Get someone else out there as you never know who might need it and how you might personally have a positive impact on someone you have not yet met.



Older posts Newer posts

© 2018 F3 Gastonia

Theme by Anders NorenUp ↑