Two Years Since

THE SCENE: What a scene! It’s definitely still Summer.

Two years ago today, I showed up to my first F3 workout at Sea Isle Elementary. I saw no cars as I approached the school. Upon passing the school and turning around, I saw a truck pull around back, so I followed. What I saw was a dozen or so men standing around in a dark parking lot in the middle of a tropical depression.

Irma had made landfall as a Category 3 hurricane in Southern Florida, then slowly churned through the state, into Georgia, across Alabama (hurricanes really DO hit Birmingham), and finally into West Tennessee. 

Around the same time Irma was making landfall, my friend Jared told me about a new workout group in Memphis. Our mutual friend Rob (AKA Granola) had been and told Jared about it. My fitness had been very inconsistent. I’d run or lift for a couple months, then stop. Ride a bike for a few months, then stop. I never really enjoyed any of it. Group fitness did not appeal to me, but nothing else was working. As an introvert, I had some apprehension about showing up in a dark parking lot, in steady rain, with a bunch of strangers. Jared had promised to be there, and indeed, he was, along with two other new guys. I got out, joined the circle, and tried to do what the Q said to do.

Today’s workout was heavily inspired by that workout, which happened to be Four Eyes’ VQ. I added some things, because we’re all a bit fitter these days, and I left some things out, because the ankle scratchers are still the worst. You can read more about that day here:


During the Disclaimer, YHC noticed Four Eyes’ shoes were untied. YHC instructed Fourest to tie them while we all held plank. Once the shoes were tied, we took a quick mosey to the Sea Isle Elementary rear parking lot, where it all began. 

Toms: “You meticulously researched the original backblast, didn’t you?”
YHC: “You know it.”

SSH x20
Imperial Walkers x16
Windmill x10
Cotton Daisy Pickers x10
Four Eyes did “Split Straddle Hops”, but I don’t know what those are, so we skipped them!


Just as we were approaching the playground, one of Memphis’ Finest was checking out the area. At first, I assumed we’d been reported for being on the school lot. We’d been kicked out of there in the past, but that seemed like an awfully quick response time. He was shining his flashlight around. YHC and Photoshop approached him. 

Officer: “Have you seen a man and woman walking around?”
Photoshop: “No.”
YHC: “No, just a single female dog-walker.” 
Officer: “Alright, if you do, give us a call. Sorry to bother you all.”
YHC: “Sure thing, no problem.”

Such a gentleman. Even apologized for interrupting my weinke!

Partner up! Snookie and I teamed up (half of the 9/12 quadruplets). I don’t know how he did at this routine last time, but I know I sucked at it. Today, we knocked it out! 

Partner 1 started on exercises. Partner 2 ran to the dog park fence (RIP baseball!), executed a single star jump (shouting “I’m a star!”), and ran back. 
Burpees: 50
Overhead Claps (holding Al Gore): 100
Merkins: 150
Big Boy Sit-ups: 200
Squats: 250

During the merkins, a couple was approaching on the track. They had a dog or two. They never passed us. The Officer didn’t say anything about a dog, so we assumed it was not the fugitives.

There was some chatter about teeth brushing. I don’t know what that’s about. Everyone brushes their teeth!

Flutter kick until all-in. 

Next up, P1 executed 5 burpee box jumps (burpee in front of a bench, then jump onto the bench) while P2 flutter kicked. Flip-flop for 4 rounds total.

Mosey back to the shovel flag. Around halfway, we stopped for some shoulder taps.

Shoestring (I think): “No one does these anymore.”

Alternated Carolina Dry Docks and wall sits. 
10 CCD, wall sit, 10 Overhead Claps
9 CCD, wall sit, 9 Moroccan Night Clubs
8 CCD, wall sit, 8 OHC?
7 CCD, wall sit, 15 Cherry Pickers (7 is too few!) (insert obligatory complaints about patterns from Gus)
6 CCD, wall sit, 16 Cherry Pickers to 0615

16 PAX, one Irish Goodbye

Sua Sponte Leadership – This is when a man leads “of his own accord.”

From the Q Source: “In F3, a Sua Sponte Leader is a man who has been freed to Lead. He is a Leader who exercises Individual Initiative (I2) by taking action in furtherance of his Group’s Articulated Purpose without specific instructions. He initiates Movement toward Advantage for his Group in the absence of explicit authority because he is that rare man who will Lead with or without another Leader to direct him. He is That Somebody.”

Are you That Somebody? There are plenty of opportunities to lead that way in F3. Are you leading that way at home – in your marriage, in your parenting? Are you leading that way at work? In your community? Stop waiting for orders and get to work.

We balled up, offered thanks to the Sky Q, and asked his blessing on our day. 

During my first workout, I could barely get through the BOMBS routine. I was partnered with Jared (two FNGs should never be partnered together!), and he definitely did 75% of the reps. I don’t remember doing any burpee box jumps, so I assume I was just laying on the ground hoping to die. I didn’t, and in the COT, Jared was trying to get me named Bean Counter. When I said I was from Martin, Gus or Bruce or both suggested Soybean. Jared named himself Phat Pat somehow. Snookie got named Snookie cause he’s from Jersey. The other FNG was named Way Way Back because of station wagon road trips, I think. 

At F3, I’ve found what I was looking for in consistent fitness – the workouts are usually fun and the accountability keeps me posting. What I didn’t know about myself two years ago was how isolated I was from meaningful male relationships. Most of my best friends are men I’ve met in F3 in the last two years and the number of men I’m in relationship with has grown massively. That’s what really keeps me engaged and it’s been a huge encouragement for my life in general.

Today was fun. I enjoyed the company and the mumblechatter. Thanks to Photoshop for bringing coffee and doughnuts. Thanks for showing up. Keep posting!

VAPE tonight. VAPE forever!

Well, there goes my workout…

THE SCENE: Pleasant.  If it were July.  In the Serengeti.  But it’s not.
F3 WELCOME & DISCLAIMER- given twice 

  • SSH x30 IC
  • Arm circles forward x10, backwards x10 IC
  • Michael Phelps x10 IC
  • Windmills x10 IC

While we are still in the dog days of summer, might as well keep up those beach bods.  So arms and abs…  But start with a little cardio-

1 mile Indian Run around the track

Finish up and go to get CMUs… only they are gone.  All of them.  Somebody must have had a lot of dead bodies they needed to stay at the bottom of a lake.  Or maybe the city took them out of their park, probably a better explanation.  So that shot the rest of my CMU based workout.  But not to worry, F3 is more prepared than the Boy Scouts.  So with ruck weights and random CMUs in trunks (for those emergency CMU situations… like this one… it’s a real thing), we got enough to continue almost as planned.

On with the show!

Partner up for a Mini Dora

  • 50 CMU overhead press.  Do a set of 5 while partner holds CMU straight out, then switch
  • 100 CMU curls.  Set of 10 while partner holds CMU at 90 degrees, then switch
  • 150 CMU chest press.  Set of 15 while partner holds legs 6″ off ground, then switch

Big Dora- one partner performed exercises while other partner moseyed with CMU about 50 yards and back

  • 100 BBSU
  • 200 Shoulder taps (2 is 1)
  • 300 American Hammers (1 is 1)

Flutter kick for 1 minute until 0615

Ups (QIC), Tomb Raider, Gus, Gepetto, Pop Tart, Warden, Photoshop

Irish Goodbye- Farmer, and 1 FNG (not named because he left early)


Romans 5:1-5

We all struggle and suffer at times in our lives.  The Bible says several times we should “rejoice” in our suffering, not because we should enjoy it or that it’s fun, but some good can come from it.  In this passage it mentions perseverance and hope.  Going through one difficult period allows us to better handle the next one (which will come), or maybe help someone else through their tough times.  Pax encouraged to support those who are struggling.

Huge TClaps to those who saved my bacon with the magical disappearing CMUs.

YHC suggestions for our our no-name FNG who left- Voldemort (he who shall not be named), or Red (“Why do they call you Red?” “Maybe it’s because I’m Irish”…. Name the movie…)

Bears, Beets, Battlestar Galactica… No wait, Berm, Block, Bear-crawl, Blaster

THE SCENE: Pleasant temperature with high levels of H20 in the air. Kept everyone hydrated thankfully.
F3 WELCOME & DISCLAIMER Fully disclaimed

SSHx15 IC, Daisy Pickers x 10 IC, Squats x 10 IC, Shoulder complex stolen from Gus to get the shoulders warmed up for the cruelty to come.
Variation on Doracides:

  • Partnered up and grabbed 1 CMU per group. Mosey 1/4mile to the Berm or “Hillock” as Photoshop calls it, trading out carrying CMU with partner on the way. This was all the long distance running done for the day. Some men were happy but soon regretted it when the workout began… myself included. The Merkin mile doesn’t sound so bad after today.
  • Upon arrival we warmed up with 3 rounds of Blasters? (suicide runs). To clarify, we started about 5yds from the bottom of the berm and proceeded to sprint 5yds to the bottom of the berm, back, 10yds to the top of the berm, back, and 15yds over and down the backside of the berm and back to the start. This counted as 1 round. Meanwhile, partner PAX holds CMU straight out in front or above head until the runner returns. This was not only to warm up, but also to allow PAX to understand where each stopping point was located for future reference.
  • Once completed we began the real workout, a variation on the Doracide. PAX 1 would do bear crawl suicides over the berm while PAX 2 completed specified reps. As partnered teams PAX completed 100 thrusters w/ CMU, 200 LBC’s w/ CMU, and 300 Bicep Curls w/CMU. PAX were to face forward the entire bear crawl, which meant bear crawling backwards up the berm. Burned the glutes more than expected.
  • Mosey back to the parking lot (Thanks to my partner Puddle Jumper for the Irish Goodbye, left me to carry the CMU all the way back alone)
  • We arrived back at approximately 0613

Only 2 minutes to spare so we did a minute of Flutter Kicks and a minute of Planks

14 PAX (1 Irish Goodbye – Puddle Jumper, 1 Willy Loman – Wilson from Cleveland) Laettner, Mayberry, Photoshop, Tomb Raider, Beauty Shop, Flatland, Snookie, Lipton, Decoy, Yardsale, UPS, Big Combo (VQ)
1 Timothy 4:8 “Physical training is good, but training for godliness is much better, promising benefits in this life and in the life to come”

We are taking care of our health and training physically, but we need to put just as much effort into our spiritual and mental lives as well. Those matter more in the long run and will benefit how we treat our families and those around us.

Really enjoyed my VQ. Excited to see 14 guys show up and crush the workout. Ready to Q again!
9/2 is Labor day, bring 1-5 FNG each! Let’s grow this community!

9/6 is first official Iron PAX workout. Berm will have Iron PAX workouts every Friday from 0530-0615. SHOW UP

Berm 7/17/2019

THE SCENE: Holy smokes it was hot and humid

Done and Done


  • 25x SSH
  • 15x Slow Daisy Pcikers
  • 25x Imperial Walkers
  • 10x Forward Arm Circles
  • 10x Backward Arm Circles


Intervals using the seconds app

2 Rounds of the following

  • SSH for 40 seconds
  • 15 Second Rest
  • CMU Curls for 1 min
  • 15 Second Rest
  • Right Arm CMU Merkins for 30 Sec
  • Left Arm CMU Merkins for 30 Sec
  • 15 Second Rest
  • CMU Overhead Press
  • 15 Second Rest
  • Bent Over Rows for 1 Min

Merkin Mile half way around on the track

Reverse Quarter Pounder with coupons, Back peddal to start

  • 100 SSH with bricks in each hand at 100 Yard
  • 75 Mountain Climbers at 75 yard line
  • 50 Squats with bricks at 50 yard line
  • Irkins using bricks at 25 yard line

Finish it off with a bear crawl 50 yards and sprint back


No time for that…………………


7 PAX – No FNGs


Use F3 not just to get in great shape , but to make meaningful friendships. These  friendships allow us to have accountability to grow as leaders and men. Take the time to reach out to new friends, get to know someone better, find an accountability partner


Convergence 8/17 at the Mothership

Ruck The Berm 7-10-19

THE SCENE:  Humidity – check

SSH x 40, Daisy Pickers x 20, Runners stretch

Mosey to the parking lot.
Partner ruck workout.  PAX team up in groups of 2.  One team member completes the exercise while the other team member walks ahead with the ruck.  When finished with the exercise the PAX runs to his team member, transfers the ruck and walks ahead while the other PAX does the exercise.  For each exercise, each team member will complete 5 sets.

  • Burpees x 5 (50 total per team)
  • Overhead Claps x 10 (100 total per team)
  • Merkins x 15 (150 total per team)
  • Big Boy Situps x 15 (150 total per team)
  • Squats x 15 (150 total per team)

Burpees x 5
Shoulder taps x 50
American Hammers x 20

7 PAX (0 FNG) – Bruce, Laettner, Ups, Mudpants, Iceman, Photoshop, Big Top – QIC
We all face temptation.  We are bombarded with things that look appealing. Maybe the temptation is that it looks like an easy way to get something you desire or something you need.  In Proverbs 1:19 we are told that such ill gotten gains do not satisfy, instead it “takes away the life of those who get it.”  See temptation for what it is, a temptation, not a genuine satisfaction and be strong to stand against it.
The Ruck the Berm Warrior award definitely goes to Photoshop today.  He did a 2 mile solo ruck before the workout.
Be mindful of new PAX and make sure to welcome them and create a welcoming environment.

A couple of miles…and some other stuff

THE SCENE: 73 degrees and 93% humidity.



  1. 25 SSH IC
  2. 15 Daisy Pickers IC


  1. Merkin Mile – 25 Merkins each 1/4 mile
  2. Stop at CMU’s
    1. 25 Temp Curls IC
    2. 25 Skull Crushers IC
    3. Switch CMUs / Rinse and Repeat
  3. Squat Mile – 25 squats each 1/4 mile


  1. 25 WWII Sit Ups IC
  2. ABCs

11 PAX – 3 FNGs (3 Leaves, Big Combo and McGavin) Bailout, Lipton, Photoshop, Ups, Shy Guy, Frosty, Puddle Jumper, Beautyshop



He said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten of the tree of which I commanded you not to eat?” The man said, “The woman whom you gave to be with me, she gave me fruit of the tree, and I ate.”—Genesis 3:11-12

Nothing quite gets under my skin like someone who messes up and passes the buck.  I have been that guy before.  We have all blamed other people. Actively, passively, or mentally, we’ve passed the buck in the game of blame.

Due to the increasing loss of confidence, we allow self-pity to drive us and others toward imminent failure. And in the end, we blame.  We blame because it’s our route to the justification given the lack of responsibility we have not taken. And in the end, who’s to blame? Well, the first man ends up blaming the woman and thus God—“The woman who you gave.” Gentlemen, this is a path that results in a dangerous move. Perhaps accepting responsibility would be a better choice?

Man up!  Accept responsibility for your family, team, calling, spiritual growth, and sin.

More running than usual because YHC hates, but needs, running.  Good mumblechatter throughout.


Math Class at the Berm

THE SCENE: Warm, wet, and dry, all at the same time.
F3 WELCOME & DISCLAIMER- Welcomed and disclaimed.  I am not a professional.

SSH x30 IC

Hillbillies x10 IC

Good Mornings x10 IC

Mosey to the track and grabbed 1 CMU.  Catch me if you can- 1 pax moseyed ahead with CMU.  Other pax did 5 burpees then had to go catch the pax with CMU.  Waited until all in, different pax grabbed the CMU and repeato.  Everybody took a turn running with CMU, 45 burpees total.  CMU indian run for the last 1/4 mile, 1 mile total.

Everybody grabbed CMU and mosey to the gym.  Did sets of 6 push/pull exercises back to back-

  • Pull ups/merkins
  • CMU Rows/Overhead press
  • Curls/Skull crushers

First time- 10 reps each exercise, followed by a 50yd bear crawl.  Wait until all in

Second time- 20 reps each, and 50 yd lunge walk

Mosey back to startex

LBC x20 IC, American hammer x15 IC
9 Total- Chaperone, Tomb Raider, Photoshop, Drifter, O’Reilly, Yardsale, Beauty Shop, Snookie, Ups
A little preaching to the choir, but simply- do hard things.  Want to be better, figure out what it takes to get there, then do it.  It could be fitness, your marriage, work, spiritual life.  Sacrifice or regret.  Push yourself, step out of your comfort zone, sacrifice something, and you won’t regret the effort.  Kudos to everyone who showed up and did hard things this morning.
Comment of the day- when we started the second set of exercises, Chaperone had an astute observation- “You know, by my calculation, 20 is twice as many as 10”.  I believe he was correct.  This was a hard workout (didn’t look that bad on paper).  I think the 1 mile run with burpees gassed everybody pretty good, then the lifting workout wore everybody down.  YHC was gassed too but must have had some serious Qdrenaline flowing.  Tomb Raider said he was very close to splashing which I will forever carry as a badge of honor.  Great job with everybody pushing through and great encouragement.

Mudpants Revenge

THE SCENE: Not as nice as last week
F3 WELCOME & DISCLAIMER: Work hard don’t die.

Frankenstein IC x 4
Hilly Billy IC X 4
Daisy Picker IC x 4
Maybe something else too


:45 sec AMRAP / 15 second rest / 3 rounds per station (what else?)

  1. Bulgarian Lunge L
  2. Bulgarian Lunge R
  3. CMU Step up
  4. Calf Raise L
  5. Calf Raise R
  6. Shoulder elevated hip thrust – L
  7. Shoulder elevated hip thrust – R
  8. Kettle Bell Swing
  9. Skater Slide
  10. Feet elevated hip thrust – L
  11. Feet elevated hip thrust – R
  12. Goblet Squat with CMU

No time.
8 PAX (No FNG), Laettner, Drifter, Tomb Raider, Mudpants, Ups, Frosty, Big Top, Yardsale
One of the seven virtues is LOVE. There are a few words in Scripture that teach about love: eros (passionate love), phials (brotherly love), and agape (love love). The Word says the Creator IS love. What does this mean? It means our culture’s definition of love which is merely passion, merely a feeling, is not a sufficient definition. The Creator’s love is an action, it is the sacrificial sending of His son. In light of what the Creator has shown us and also done for us, we are called to love in the same way.
VQ’s by Early Bird and Little John

7 of Sweaty Diamonds

F3 MEMPHIS – 22 May 2019


AO: Bermuda Triangle “The Berm”

QIC: Geppetto

Conditions: 74°, overcast, many percentage points of humidity. Perfect conditions for a beat down.


  • Welcome: I am not a professional
  • You are participating at your own risk
  • You are responsible for your own well being
  • You are here voluntarily, and you are not paying to be here
  • Know your limits and do the best you can, all exercises can be modified and are only suggestions.

*The mission of F3 is to plant, grow, and serve small workout groups for the invigoration of male community leadership.


  • Mosey around the building
  • SSH IC X 20
  • Arm Circles IC X 10 forward and 10 reverse
  • Windmills IC X10
  • Mountain Climbers IC X 20


  • 7 of Diamonds (alternate Bear Crawl & Walking Lunges from spot to spot – hold Al Gore or Plank til all in at starting spot)
    • 7 Burpees at each corner
    • 14 4-count Flutter Kicks at each corner
    • 21 Merkins at each corner
    • 28 Side Step Squats at each corner
    • 21 Plank Jacks at each corner
    • 14 Carolina Dry Docks at each corner
    • 7 8-count Body Builders at each corner


  • American Hammers IC X 15 and then we mercifully ran out of time.


8 PAX – Judah, Gus, Lipton, Photoshop, Ups, Big Top, Lancelot & (QIC) Geppetto


Reflections on life, death, and using life right. My go to passages of scripture lately have been from John 14 & Colossians 3.

John 14:1-3 (KJV) Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.

Colossians 3:15-16 (NASB) Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body; and be thankful. Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you…


It is easier to get through the difficult times in life, and it is richer and more rewarding to go through the good times when traveling with brothers. It was good to make puddles of sweat in the early morning humidity with the few good HIM who came out to the Berm this morning.



  • Memorial Day Convergence (5/27) at the Barracks – Gus on Q, his last as Nantan
  • Memorial Day Cookout, 5-8 pm, hosted by Speaker
  • Check schedule for changes at Blue Collar

Flying Objects Lost @ The Bermuda Triangle

THE SCENE: The ground was moist.  They air was moist.  We were moist when we finished.  (My M’s favorite word, “Moist”.)
F3 WELCOME & DISCLAIMER: Welcome and Disclaimed

  • SSH IC x 30
  • Imperial Walkers IC x 20
  • Mountain Man Poopers IC X 15
  • Daisy Pickers IC X 15

Counted off 7 PAX.  PAX in turn would accept hand held luminescent orbital discus, call an exercise, then PAX sprint to the discus.  How every many seconds the PAX took to get to the discuss would determine the rep count.    If the throw fell short of YHC standards, then alternative transport mode would ensue.  Bearcrawls, crabwalks and power skips occurred.  Buprees, merkins, monkey humpers, lbc, arm circles are just a few of the exercises that were performed.

Completed during Tha-Thang

7 PAX & 0 FNG : Bailout, BigTop, Judah, Laettner, Lil Nicky, Searcy, Ups

After a 1.5 hour conversation last night with my 12-year old daughter, I have discerned that two of the most important skills as a father are patience and listening.  Apparently…I had neither skill last night.  I would repeat exactly what I heard her say, word for word, as I did not understand and I could not get it right!

Lesson…build your patience and practice listening.

I love it when PAX that have not done this workout do it thinking we are just going to play frisbee.  This work out involves so many sprints and reps that is usually smokes me.  I think that occurred for most of the PAX and it is fun to watch.

Lot’s of Berm Q dates to fill.