BACKBLAST: Thursday 7.15.21 “SAGA’s Birthday Beatdown @ AO Mastodon

Thanks to all the HIMs who came out to celebrate my first year of F3 life. The day was full of baptisms in the gloom due to the plentiful rain, fun will balloons, and a beatdown on Hoffa.

WOR: to the tune of “Don’t Worry Be Happy”

Birthbees / Mt. Climbers / Abe Vigodas / Arm Circles

The rest of the beatdown was completed to the childhood songs of Harry Connick Jr.

THANG 1: SAGA’s Balloon Extravaganza

What is a birthday party without balloons? Thus the requirement for the PAX to entertain SAGA while he watched with glee. Four groups of four lined up behind the pull-up bar. First PAX does three pull-ups with a balloon between his knees (other PAX are in a row doing squats, merkins and side straddle hops). The balloon was to be passed without using hands and if it fell to the ground penalties in the shape of burpees were completed.

As a final party trick, SAGA had two contestants from each row positioned with a balloon between their F3 chests and the race was on to see which pair could pop their balloons first. Let me just say, there are many things that are more fun without alcohol and this is one of them. Brother’s got to hug!

THANG 2: 45 to 1

Honoring both SAGA’s hospital age and his F3 age the following were completed:

  1. 45 squats / 45 sit-ups / 45 merkins : 1 redrum
  2. 45 coupon curls / 45 coupon kettle swings / 45 skull crushers : 1 redrum
  3. 45 coupon rows / 45 overhead press / 45 goblet squats : 1 redrum
  4. 45 burpees : 1 redrum

CoR/NoR/Cot: 17 PAX in attendance: @Aloha @Banks @Beaker @Cookies @Da Vinci @Hotbox @Jolly @Panda Express @Panhandle @SAGA (Q) @Shiplap @Sparrow @Squatty @TBTF @T-Bone (respect) @Tortuga (respect) @Whittler

Prayers for Cuba & Haiti, @Whittler’s coming move, @Banks’ house selling, @Archive’s job interview, @Hotbox future opportunities

Bananas were awarded and the ways of the force that I first learned from @Sparrow’s “Choose Your Own Adventure” continue for another year to come…

MOLESKIN: Be content: what if you already have what to want?

BACKBLAST: 6.26.21 “SAGA’s Summation of Les Misérables” 5:30AM @ AO Tar Pit

WOR: Mt Man Poopers / Arm Circles / Abe Vigodas / Merkins / Mt Climbers

THANG 1: Dropped off coupons under the trees in the park and moseyed down the sidewalk and around the circle in front of the Lake Ellyn dock area…

THANG 2: misery

While listening to Disc 1 of Les Misérables we entered into the grand narrative of pain and redemption. We moved through the following exercises in reps of 5 / 10 / 15 / 20 while running our THANG 1 loop before starting the next round. Once done with 20 reps we started over at 5 to continue the story of our lives!

LBCs + Blockbees + Overhead Press + Coupon Curls + Coupon Rows + Block Merkins + Skull Crushers + Flutter Kicks + Mosey…

CoR/NoR/Cot: 8 PAX in attendance: @Big Mac @Hotbox @Jolly @Katniss @Noodles @Panhandle @SAGA (Q) @Sparrow

Prayers for @Sparrow and his week-long trip to Armenia today.

BACKBLAST: Tues 6.15.21 “SAGA Is A Four Letter Word” @ AO Mastodon

WOR: Birthbees / Tappy Taps / Mt Climbers

THANG 1: Manrise for beauty and bros

10 burpees at top of Hoffa to take in the view of the AO (call out to 3rd-F)

Mosey to lamppost by parking lot

THANG 2: 11s – SAGA rhymes with MABA (a bit of January in June!)

At the lamppost we divided into three teams – goal was to stay together as a whole PAX: call out to 2nd-F)

10 squats + 1 burpee

9 squats + 2 burpees

8 squats + 3 burpees…until 1 & 10)

10 merkins in cadence

THANG 3: Sometimes you are on your own

Race to the bottom of Hoffa while trying to catch SAGA on his scooter (shoutout to @Sparrow @Gummi Bear @Hotbox)

LBCs in cadence

THANG 4: more 11s up and down Hoffa—SAGA is a synonym for PAIN

10 squats at base + 1 burpee at top

9 squats at base + 2 burpees at top

8 squats at base + 3 burpees at top…until 1 & 10

Flutter Kicks on top of Hoffa in cadence

Mosey to base of Hoffa…

THANG 5: Ring of fire—descent into HELL

In a circle, all PAX doing burpees while the Q begins with 20 squats and goes into burpees and passes squats to the next PAX who does 20 squats and so on around the circle…push ‘til the end, hit that wall and go over it…

10 merkins to show you still got some in you

THANG 6: Manrise to top of Hoffa—we’re all in this together #F3

10 burpees

American Hammers in cadence

Mosey to flags

CoR/NoR/Cot: 18 PAX in attendance: @Aloha @Beaker @Bloomer @BOGO @Captian Crunch @Cheese (respect) @Crack @Da Vinci @Gummi Bear @Hotbox @Jolly @Panda Express @SAGA (Q) @Sherpa @Shiplap @Sparrow @T-Bone (respect) @Whittler

Prayers for @Tortuga’s travel and his M, @Whittler and decisions about work, @Gummi Bear’s sister Lindy and her recent move

MOLESKIN: You can do hard things and you can do even more hard things when you’re with a PAX. The gift of F3 in fitness, fellowship, & faith—we never travel alone when we travel with the PAX—so much for which to give thanks…

BACKBLAST: 6.1.21 “RAMBO” @ AO Mastodon

WOR: 20 Mtn Man Poopers / 5 nipple scrappers / bat wings

Moleskin: You can do more than you realize. After hearing two recent stories from my 2.0s about nearing failure but pushing through, I was reminded how much more we can go even if we think we are at our end. So, what is a trial you are currently facing—when you get to that point when you want to give up, think to yourself that you are only at 60% and there is a lot more in the tank…

ONLY THANG: R.A.M.B.O. @ Hoffa with coupon & Rambo soundtrack (it was the thing that emotions are made of:

Redrum (murder bunny up Hoffa / 10 blockees at top / rifle carry down)

Abs (oyo choice) x 50 reps

Merkins x25 reps

Burpees x10 reps

Oyo choice w/coupon x50 reps

Run across the “enemy bridge” and back (aka, run from Hoffa across the two near bridges and come back to repeat above)


19 PAX in attendance: @Babe @Banks @Beaker @Big Mac @BOGO @Captain Crunch @Cheese @Da Vinci @Getaway @Jolly @Katniss @Ralphy @Panda Express @SAGA (Q) @Shiplap @Sparrow @T-Bone @Tortuga @Yankee (welcome FNG!)

Moleskin reprise:

When you hit that wall and think you have given 100%, remember you are only at 60% and keep going…

BACKBLAST: Wed 5.5.21 “SAGA’s Feast: The 100 Yard Dash of Salt & Pain w/Elevenses” @ AO Tar Pit

WOR: Side Straddle Hops / Arm Circles / Tappy Taps / Merkins / Mt Climbers

THANG 1: SAGA’s 100 Yard Dash of Salt and Pain

Feast begins at the endzone.

ROUND 1: 10 blockees + sprint to 10 yard line and back

ROUND 2: 20 skull crushers + sprint to the 20 yard line and back

ROUND 3: 30 goblet squats + sprint to the 30 yard line and back

ROUND 4: 40 derkins + sprint to the 40 and back

ROUND 5: 50 coupon curls + sprint to the 50 and back

ROUND 6: 60 overhead press + sprint to the 60 and back

ROUND 7: 70 lunges (one-is-one) + sprint to the 70 and back

ROUND 8: 80 bent over rows + sprint to the 80 and back

ROUND 9: 90 LBCs + sprint to the 90 and back

ROUND 10: 100 air squats + sprint to the other end zone THEN 10 burpees and back…

pick-up the 6

THANG 2: Elevenses

Rifle carry to 10 yard line & do 10 squats + 1 blockee

Continue rifle carry to the 20 yard line and do 9 squats + 2 blockees…

…all the way to the end zone where you do 1 squat + 10 blockees

Rifle carry back 100 yards

MARY: 3min of flutter kicks & low plank

CoR/NoR/Cot: 9 PAX in attendance: @Babe @Da Vinci @Hotbox @Jolly @Milk Duds (respect) @Panhandle @SAGA (Q) @Shiplap @Tortuga (respect)

Prayers for @Dr Phil’s brother who had a severe stroke, @Babe & @SAGA churches dealing with disciplinary issues, @Hotbox’s M and 2-year-old, Cooper’s recovery from brain surgery (@Bloomer’s son)

MOLESKIN: #sword-swallowers—if you can’t remember the verse, at least remember the 3Gs… 

“For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not as a result of work, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good work which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.” – Eph 2:8-10

BACKBLAST: Wed 4.7.21 “HERO WOD” @ AO Tar Pit

Sgt. Zachary D. Tellier, 31, of Charlotte was a combat infantryman with the 4th Squadron, 73rd Cavalry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, at Fort Bragg. He died Sept. 29, 2007 of wounds sustained while on a ground patrol in Afghanistan. In April, Tellier’s unit was on a mounted patrol when one of its vehicles drove over and detonated a bomb, which set the vehicle on fire, officials said. Tellier pulled two paratroopers to safety, suffering severe burns to his hands. He was awarded the Bronze Star with valor for his actions. Tellier also had received two Purple Hearts. After he was burned, Tellier jumped up in the turret to return fire, said Sgt. Michael Layton, a member of his unit. A lieutenant made Tellier get out of the vehicle because of his injuries

WOR: Motivators / Goofballs / Tappy Taps / Mt Climbers

THANG 1: 5 rounds for time… w/a @Jolly here or there

ROUND 1: 10 Burpees

ROUND 2: 10 Burpees + 25 Push-Ups

ROUND 3: 10 Burpees + 25 Push-Ups + 50 Lunges

ROUND 4: 10 Burpees + 25 Push-Ups + 50 Lunges + 100 Sit-Ups

ROUND 5: 10 Burpees + 25 Push-Ups + 50 Lunges + 100 Sit-Ups + 150 Air Squats

THANG 2: round the track we go for a SAGA mile:

10 burpees + lap / 10 merkins + lap / 10 sit-ups + lap / 10 lunges + lap / end w/10 squats

CoR/NoR/Cot: 8 PAX in attendance: @Banks @Big Mac @Milk Duds(respect) @Noodles @Panhandle @SAGA (Q) @T-bone (respect) @Tortuga (respect)

Prayers for @T-bone’s M’s friend, Caroline, whose father died in Africa and she is unable to be present / @Noodles and his job search / @Bloomer’s son Cooper and his healing and recovery after surgery / Ms & 2.0s

MOLESKIN: The gift of a PAX and those who have gone before us and gave their lives to secure our freedom. We too are called to daily give our lives for others.

remember #sword-swallowers:  

“For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not as a result of work, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good work which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.” – Eph 2:8-10

#3rd-f opportunities: Exodus World Services + $ to get a gift for @Bloomer’s son Cooper

4.7.21 BACKBLAST: “Help Hotline” @ AO Tar Pit

WOR: Motivators / Goofballs / Tappy Taps / Mt Climbers

ONLY THANG: Partner WOD on track with a bit of 80s music for support—each PAX did both exercises in the list below before moving on.One PAX at end zone doing exercise while the partner PAX went 50 yards and back as follows:

1. squats + farmer’s carry both coupons to 50 yard & back: switch
2. merkins + rifle carry to 50 yard & back: switch
3. blockees + sprints to 100 yard & back: switch
4. curls & rows + lunges to 25 yard & back: switch
5. overhead press (50) + LBCs (both at end zone): switch
6. mosey 2 laps (1st lap w/1 coupon to pass back-and-forth // 2nd lap run/race)

REPEATED all above until time ran out (a few PAX completed a full two rounds of all reps).

Ended with a victory lap 400 sprint!

CoR/NoR/Cot: 14 PAX in attendance: @Banks @Da Vinci @Dr Phil @Hotbox @Jolly @Katniss @Noodles @Panhandle @SAGA (Q) @Shiplap @T-Bone (respect) @Tortuga (respect) @Whittler + we welcomed an FNG: @Milkdud (respect)

MOLESKIN: remember #sword-swallowers

“For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God,” – Eph 2:8

The story you tell yourself is the story you live in.

Guard from the life too simply summarized, live the epic as it unfolds.

4.1.21 BACKBLAST: “A Fool’s Errand” @ AO Mastodon

the jester and his court

After some pre-blast un-HCing among the PAX and thinking some tom foollery was going on behind his back (which indeed it was), SAGA waited in the shadows to make sure he would win as the ultimate fool. Seeing the PAX all gathered, he appeared as a light in the gloom and entered the AO as the Mastodon Jester dressed for April 1st. He cued up the beatdown soundtrack of Jesus Christ Superstar ( and with a nod to it also being Maundy Thursday in Holy Week he invited the PAX to lay down their lives for their brothers (Maundy comes from the Latin word “command” & refers to Jesus’ commandment to the disciples to “Love one another as I have loved you”).

WOR: Motivators / Goofballs / Tappy Taps / Mt Climbers

THANG ONE: Cooties Cooties, I got my COVID shot

Two team relay: 1 PAX does 2 pull-ups while rest of PAX does squats and cycled through the team for 3 rounds to see which team won

50 shoulder taps to make sure the PAX are vaccinated (1-is-1)

50 merkins to make sure the vaccine worked

Mosey to…

THANG TWO: Carousel of Foolishness

Timed Challenge @ ball diamond—1st round: tried to beat other team / 2nd round: tried to beat their own team record + other team. Winning team time through the following was 3min 26sec…

1st = 25 merkins / 2nd = 25 burpees / 3rd = 25 squats / Home = 25 star jumps

Team in dugout switched between dips & planks (or whatever miscommunication SAGA had determined was appropriate in the moment).

When you want to get off but the carousel won’t stop: 25 merkins to remind you of your foolishness. Then, mosey to…

THANG THREE: “Remember, Philip, you’re going to die!” (legend has it that this is what King Philip’s jester told him every day he entered the court)

Teams started at lamppost at the base of Hoffa and ran over the bridge stopping at each lamppost until they reached the 8th lamppost: 5 burpees at first lamppost & then 10 squats at next lamppost – repeated same reps at following lampposts in same order. PAX were instructed to pick up the six on their team if they had completed everything (helped with reps to get them to the finish line)—first team to 8th lamppost won, except that we all die and so 25 more merkins + 50 LBCs + 25 burpees + race Tortuga back to the flags.


13 PAX in attendance: Archive, Beaker, Captain Crunch, Cookies, Crack, Da Vinci, Hotbox, Jolly, SAGA (Q), Shiplap, Sparrow, T-Bone (respect), Tortuga (respect)

Moleskin: remember #sword-swallowers

“For by grace you have been saved through faith” – Eph 2:8

This famous quote from Jim Elliot’s October 28, 1949 journal entry, written the autumn after he graduated from Wheaton: “He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain that which he cannot lose.”

See his journal housed at Wheaton College @

Whimsy will save the world—make sure in the seriousness you are also quick to play. The world needs laughter alongside the sorrow. Be good air for others to breathe...

3.13.21 BACKBLAST: “They’re, Their, There: How SAGA Spells HURT” (aka: SAGA’s Hill of H.U.R.T.) @ AO Mastodon – 7AM (end of Glory Week)

Pre-Blast reprise for context: On February 2, 2021 a very unfortunate thing happened to SAGA in the quotes channel of Slack – he thought this was a safe place, he thought acceptance and tolerance were before him, he thought “modify as necessary” should also extend to his disability in spelling – It was there announced that Tortuga, Jolly, and Cookies must pay for there insensitivity and this should extend to all the PAX who stood by and let him be afflicted with such correction. Having thus lived with being upset for over a month and the FACT that he did not feel cared for and knew it would be a few more years before he would gain actual respect, he has decided he would do what our current culture has taught him to do: he would become angry and let everyone know of his oppression! He should not have to put up with this kind of abuse (he sees the way you all look at him with that disapproving glare in your eyes—you should be ashamed of yourselves). The PAX have begun to murder him with there words so he has decided to murder them with his beatdown. He tried to understand why their so mean to him. What had he done to deserve such blatant rejection? He has tried to love them equally and find ways to support they’re causes. He must now speak his truth—you all have hurt me and must pay the price of you’re offense. You’ve experienced Shiplap’s HOUSE of PAIN—now it’s time for SAGA’s HILL of HURT. What kind of fire comes out of the furnace when coupons are thrown in?

WOR: Glory Week playlist began with Bruce Springsteen’s “Born in the USA”

Motivators / Mountain Man Poopers / Mountain Climbers / Rochamburpees: Choose a partner. Both in chillcut plank position (elbows & toes). Play Rochambeau (rock, paper, scissors) while in chillcut. Round 1: loser does 1 Burpee, winner does 1 Merkin. Stay in chillcut and play several rounds, adding an additional Burpee/Merkin every round. EC: every tie, both do round # of Merkins.

Brought coupons to bottom of Hoffa w/flags…as Springsteen’s “Born to Run” began we completed a Glory Day mosey around the field w/flags & accomplished 20 burpees when two flags went down. Planted flags at the top of Hoffa & explained the workout with Glory Week inspired music at the top and bottom of the hill.


H = Hoffa Hill Manrise Sprint + 10 burpees at the top to celebrate your manliness

U = Upper Body (R1 = 50 overhead press / R2 = 50 curls / R3 = 50 rows) – REPEAT

R = Redrum (murder bunny up Hoffa, 10 blockees, rifle carry down)

T = Thighs (R1 = 50 squats / R2 = 50 lunges / R3 = 50 jackhammers) – REPEAT

6 minutes of Mary led by Springsteen’s “Oh Mary Don’t you Weep” as the PAX called out exercises: crunchy frogs, LBCs, flutter kicks, canoe, reverse planks, hip raises.

Back to the parking lot to the tune of Springsteen’s “Glory Days”


19 PAX in attendance: Banks, Beaker, Cookies, Babe, TBTF, Jailbreak, Katniss, Captain Crunch, Wet Burrito, Double Beef n’ Cheddar, Bloomer, Archive, Tortuga (respect)), Sparrow, Da Vinci, Jolly, Hotbox, SAGA (Q) + my 2.0 FNG was named: Stupe

Prayers for Archive and M as they navigate sleepless nights with the wee one, also lifted up Tortuga’s M and my M as they face mental and physical challenges, gratitude given for the lives we have to steward.

Hotbox & Tortuga led the way in reciting James 1 for the PAX.

Beaker drove to Aurora and brought us some delicious German doughnuts to enjoy during our coffeteria & stenciling festivities of 777 Glory, 8-ball, PAXademy, pull-up 500, FNG Drive, etc.

“Redrum” submitted to the F3 Exicon.

Announcement: 2nd-F gathering on Wed 3/17 @ 7:30pm @ Bank’s house

3.4.21 BACKBLAST: “Where Love & War Meet” – PAXademy award for best drama

The heavens declare the glory of God and the sky above proclaims his handiwork.” ~ Psalm 19:1

WoR:We entered the gloom with a rousing call to a beatdown via this PLAYLIST: which carried the following constellation of 14 PAX into orbit: Sparrow, Archive, Da Vinci, Bloomer, Tortuga (RESPECT), Beaker, Hotbox, Banks, Cookies, Babe, Panhandle, Jolly, Katniss, SAGA (Q)

  1. 7 Motivators
  2. 10 Squats – 3 count
  3. Tappy-Taps
  4. Sun Gods – 3 count
  5. 5 Half-Moon Push-Up – OYO

Thang 1: Mosey – orbit to the “asteroid belt” – halfway we paused for 5 half-moon pushups on an asteroid.

“I don’t want a minute of easy happiness until this earth knows that God is alive! We must bow down before the living God and weep aloud for having killed him up to now. We are born for trouble, born for battle. Shame on us Christians who are always wanting to have it nice and soft, with a bit of God in our lives!…God calls out to us, “Share in my business!” and we are fooling ourselves unless we do this.” – Christoph Friedrich Blumhardt

Thang 2: Shooting Comet – 100 yard dash on road in triads — there and back

Thang 3: Asteroid Belt

  1. 10 Half-Moon Pushups
  2. 10 Dips
  3. 10 Derkins

Thang 4: Death Star (modified) – 5 stations out in shape of star. Run to each point of the star and perform 30 merkins at each, for a total of 150. – ended with star jumps. At this point we had made it to Jupiter and gave thanks for Hotbox and his M (who walked down the aisle to this song in the suite).

Thang 5: Ursa Minor aka Little Bear, aka Little Dipper (Bear Crawl 360) – i.e. bear crawl while spinning.

Thang 6: Ursa Major aka Big Bear, aka Big Dipper – Bear crawl for 14 and then burpee into a star jump (in honor of Polaris in the ursa minor constellation).

Thang 7: Moon Gods – Start in side plank on elbow and edge of lower foot. Bring top foot into the air as high as comfortable and move in circular pattern. Switch sides and repeat!

Thang 8: Mosey to Manrise (x3) – threw in some burpees cause they are fun.

MaryHeels to Heaven – heels up at 90 degrees. Count cadence lowering the heels down to 6 inches, then thrust them back up to 90 degrees bringing your 6 off the pavement, thus shooting your heels to heaven.

ENDED ON URANUS – which is funny!

CoT w/prayers for our M’s & a closing Moleskin:

O extravagant God,
in this ripening, red-tinged [spring] autumn,
waken in me a sense of joy
in just being alive,
joy for nothing in general
except everything in particular;
joy in sun and rain
mating with earth to birth a harvest;
joy in soft light
through shyly disrobing trees;
joy in acolyte moon
setting halos around processing clouds;
joy in the beating of a thousand wings
mysteriously knowing which way is warm;
joy in wagging tails and kids’ smiles
and in this spunky old city;
joy in the taste of bread and wine,
the smell of dawn,
a touch,
a song,
a presence;
joy in having what I cannot live without —
other people to hold and cry and laugh with
joy in love,
in you;
and that all at first and last
is grace.

—Ted Loder, Guerrillas of Grace