16 exercises, 16 reps each
Leg over block
Jump over Block
Superman on the Block
Nipple Scrapers on the Block
Kettle Bell Swings
(If you remember the other 6 block exercises, please put them in the comments below.)
Broken promises don't upset me.
I just think “Why did they believe me?”.
Merkins to the count of 10.
One person, and only one, says the number after each merkin. Count goes back to “1” if two people talk at the same time.
Heroes and Villains on Hoffa Hill
(This was ok, but not as strenuous as expected. I probably won’t do it again.)
Nipple Scrapers to 15
First Nations runs with two flags, two columns.
Circle of Trust
10 @Da Vinci Merkins.
“End on a Nipple Scraper” – @SAGA
It is my opinion that the majority of male friendships develop gradually. Rarely do you say “You and I are going to be friends, so go ahead and tell me your life story now, so that I’ll know the details moving forward.” Sometimes years go by before you find out your friend knows how to fly an airplane, speak Spanish, or catch catfish with his bare hands. Those are important details.
Today, we hit friendship head on, sharing relevant personal details voluntarily, instead of waiting for a back alley run in with a polish street gang to teach you which of your friends is a closet bilingual. Relationships were built.
Begin workout: Warm ups, with special attention to calf stretching.
20 calf raises + two squat thrusters 18 calf raises + four squat thrusters. Etc.
Ruck to Dan Taylor Alley, DTs up to five. Ruck back. 10 merkins
Along we the way we shared important details for future friendship.
17 PAX made it out for a standard 7:00 start at MASTODON (Fruit Loops, Sparrow, DaVinci, Archive, Noodles, Wet Burrito, CATS (the Musical), Jazz Hands, Cookies, Panhandle, Bloomer, Tortuga, Smokey, Double Beef n’ Cheddar, Loafers, Big Mac, Captain Crunch). The goal was to have a good memorable time and work out like animals.
Warm O Rama:
Motivators IC x 7
Goofballs x 15
Goofballs #2 IC x 15
Bat Wings (IC x 20 on each of the following: Forward Arm Circles, Backwards Arm Circles, Seal Claps, Overhand Claps)
Duck walk to the Tennis Courts
Thang #1: Animal Travel
Bird Dog IC x 20
Bear Crawl one tennis court
Orangutan one tennis court
Inchworm one tennis court
Lizard crawl one tennis court
Crunchy Frogs x 20
Crab walk one tennis court
Orangutan one tennis court
Alligator Merkin one tennis court
Lizard Crawl one tennis court
Duck walk to the other tennis courts
Thang #2: the primate house
Howling Monkeys, circles of 8-9 PAX each.
Repeat Thang #1 and Thang #2(but three times around the Monkey circle with one round of Gorilla Humpers)
10 Minutes of Mary:
J-Lo #1 IC x 15 each leg
J-Lo #2 IC x 20
Flutters IC x 50
Flutters IC x 50
Lest one think there was no method to the madness, these exercises were all core and back focused, giving a good work out to the stabilizers that we depend on to not hurt ourselves. With any luck we all escaped injury this time around and helped work those muscles that will keep us from injury in the future.
COR / NOR / COT: Prayers for strength, courage, and endurance, for the week ahead — for unity for our nation and our people and healing for our president — that we may be examples of brotherly love and faithful witness amidst trying times — for TAR PIT, it’s growth, and our finding of the people who most need this in their lives.
Every ENDEX is a new STARTEX. 14 Ruckers (Triple XXX (Family Restaurant), Wet Burrito, Cookies, SAGA, Smokey, Noodles, TBTF, Gummi Bear, Tortuga, DaVinci, Shiplap, Banks, Archive, Captain Crunch) Some old hands, some new recruits, some returning, some just waking up out of habit at this point.
All woke up slightly earlier than usual to commemorate three years of consistent effort at AO-MASTODON and to connect that with the breaking of new ground at AO-TAR PIT. Shovel flag in hand, they shouldered their rucks and started the trek. Having expressed their joy and affection in the heart-language of concrete blocks on Thursday, today they chose that brotherly, common language of time-under-load called “ruckership”.
Across differences of life experience and opinions about acceptable coffee-drinking pace and concerns about the Q’s sense of direction, the conversation flowed freely in the Gloom as the PAX rucked double-file. Work, unemployment, parenting, gardening, and the whole round world was ranged in our broad collection. YHC marveled at the assortment of interests and talents on display in such a narrow subset of individuals as had descended on F3 Wheaton in the past year. The miles ticked off quickly as the fellowship sped on in merriment.
Having received intelligence of a potential large object that could be “returned” to the dig-site of our mascot, we made a quick detour to try our strength against a discarded remnant of Perry (a broken chunk of telephone pole). While our heart was in the attempt, and even as the best among us were digging deep to soldier on at all costs, we ultimately saw wisdom less than 200 yards later. Nails, bulk, and the inability to get enough men underneath the load convinced us to let Perry repose in the Gloom only slightly nearer to our destination than before. We did however manage to bring a considerably smaller but no less symbolic relic of Perry along with us, and traded off carrying the more manageable load.
Crossing the new AO we wandered out the other side on to side streets and down dirt paths (even as the PAX’s doubts began to mount once more). But we had arrived at that forgotten remote spot where Perry had been unearthed years before. Our resident historian-bard, DaVinci said a few appropriate words to mark the occasion, and we set our relic adrift on the waters as the dawn rose.
Returning to the TAR PIT, Archive lead us in a prayer of gratitude and hope, as we asked for blessing on this AO and to the PAX who would labor there in the Gloom. Then, flag planted, and mindful of the time, we celebrated the moment with some Thrusters IC, before beginning the return trip to be present for the beatdown that was soon to take place at MASTODON.
The route home was direct, but hilly. YHC, unable to shake his one year of cross-country training, took it upon himself to charge up every hill of significant speed, exhorting the rest of the PAX to do the same. Flagging energy, but excellent pace saw the PAX quickly returned to their starting-place, to be greeted enthusiastically by the PAX who held down the day’s regular schedule. Partnering up, they moved seamlessly from Rucking to Blocks, to cap off not just an historic day, but an historic month for F3 Wheaton. And all before breakfast.
The PAX spent, they sat down to feast on burritos and (eventually) donuts and coffee. The energy of the day seemed a good omen for the group as we turned to our dual objectives of growing into two AOs and weathering the deepening Gloom of another Chicago winter.
As Shred-tember continues the valiant HIMs of F3-Wheaton have been making their mark. In order to survive the remainder of the month and keep pushing, they paused to limber up and catch their breath for the road ahead. And also to get one more coveted EC point.
Panhandle, Wet Burrito, Banks, DaVinci, and Crunch followed the flow set by their trusted yogi, Yoo Toob Vedayo. Mainly a reprise of the previous weeks to stretch out those legs and hips, YHC did add some slight modifications for warmth (it was 51 degrees at the start) and some upper-body spice with some extra sun-salutations and Crow-pose practice.
All in all another good day of limbering up despite the chill. We’ll see how next week goes as we round out Shred-tember!
COR/NOR/COT:prayers for Mrs. DaVinci on her birthday! — for Panhandle’s friends, one awaiting a cancer diagnosis and another with a court hearing — for the health of the group and Archive’s family in particular as they await testing results
While Crack had to bail to wake up early and move weight around like a crazy man, Crunch managed another ruck-day take-over in which 9 PAX (Archive, Shiplap, Big Mac, SAGA, DaVinci, Gummi Bear, Panhandle, Sparrow, Captain Crunch (QIC)) woke up early and moved weight around like crazy men. At least Crack had the excuse that he was paid. For the rest of us, grit was its own reward. The brief was very simple, with the added benefit of prepping for IPC on Wednesday.
Motivators (no ruck) IC x 7
Don Quixotes IC x 15
400m ruck + shuffle
25 Ruck Merkins
50 Squats (after round 1, down-graded to 30 squats, but with good form)
Repeat the above 4 times, circling the park
The circle completed at the hill, where we marked off the distance from one fence to the other. AMRAP of the below (we ended after about 2 rounds):
20 Lunges (each leg)
Bear Crawl Ruck Drag (30m)
20 Overhead Press
Rucked to the flag for a quick set of Flutters IC x 40
COR/NOR/COT: Prayers for the people, property, and emergency workers in California and for an end to the fires. — for integrity in our work, home and personal lives — for Wheaton’s campus and the general health of our city.
MOLESKIN: On the heels of two 6-packs, finally having gotten consistent about bedtimes, waking times. (after 3 years) Really appreciating the gauntlet being thrown down this month and the opportunity to be as regular as I’ve wanted to be with my morning routines. Still approaching that 100 merkin hurdle on IPC week 3 with some trepidation, but we’ll see how Wednesday goes.
After a long week of solid posts and getting after coupons, squats, and general exertion, YHC invited and guilted various PAX down to the AO for some active recovery. The recipe was the same (see previous lists), but except for myself and Big Mac the players were all different! 6 PAX (Gummi Bear, Crack, Big Mac, SAGA, Tortuga, Captain Crunch) posted for the typical jog and some good time stretching out.
Nicely cool but no breeze. The clouds gave us a slight misting at the end as we wound down, which was well timed as a soft closing to our week. The feeling after was very chill and loose among all the PAX (check the Name-o-rama vid!).
COR/NOR/COT: Prayers for flexibility and grace with others and sustainable effort through the weeks — against injury and over extending — for the wisdom to know when to rest and to abide
Jumping at the long weekend’s opportunity for some extended ruck-work, the nine met at AO-Mastodon at the customary time to begin their trek to breakfast. (not exactly a shortcut to breakfast, but it was perhaps “second breakfast” for some.) Flag in hand, they filed out 2 by 2 to at a brisk, but conversational, pace. (Just outside the AO, penalty burpees were awarded to the whole group for the only flag-drop of the journey. Whether from punishment or patriotism, vigilance was maintained the rest of the morning.)
We rucked to good conversation down Jewell Rd. and up the Prairie Path to Geneva Rd., heading over to the beginning of the Geneva Spur. Our destination: The (soon* to be properly renamed) “Hopewell” Mounds. A short trek on a narrow path and we found ourselves at a nondescript spot with a sign. Thankfully, local guide DaVinci filled in the picture we lacked with historical background and a brief description of the people who had come thousands of years before us and lived by and migrated on the rivers that we now crisscross with our own journeys.
After a brief reflection, the bugs and the time turned our path homeward, and the fellowship began breaking. Gummi Bear and DaVinci began their trek directly back to the AO as the remaining 7 headed south, to pass by Sparrow’s residence and wave at his family.
Despite the Q’s best efforts to foul up his navigation, we did manage to make good time back to Wheaton, saying farewell to TBTF and Panhandle after navigating Lincoln Marsh, and proceeding on to downtown meeting, now 5, for a good hearty breakfast at Egg’lectic’s tent dining on Hale St.
Overall about 8 miles covered before breakfast, with a total time under weight of 128 min, including stops (16 min/mile overall average).
COR/NOR/COT: Blessings on the group, healing for the aches and pains of the PAX — gratitude and intercession for the Ms that made the trip possible — for those working and those unemployed amid the pandemic — for courage and durability as we look to the winter.
After a good breakfast, Tortuga headed south and Noodles parked downtown, leaving the remaining 3 to make the return mile back to the AO.
Great conversation the whole time. After this ruck and HotBox’s Q, I feel like I’ve gotten to know people a lot better and can more appreciate the depth and richness of the collective story we are building. An encouraging day at the start of a new year of school and the rounding out of the 3rd year of F3 Wheaton. Thanks, HIMs of Wheaton!
Back by popular demand and bodily necessity, 10 sore PAX (DaVinci, Sparrow, Shiplap, Wet Burrito, SAGA, Compost (FNG!), HotBox, Banks, Bloomer, Captain Crunch) arrived for an EC recovery day. The day was slightly chilly and misty so they got warm and then got limber.
Run a quick half-mile, including the hill. Get a lather going. Then head to the tennis court for some good traction and a non-lumpy surface.
Straight leg forward fold (note how far you can stretch)
Seated forward fold (hips then round back)
Begin in Child’s Pose, extending arms in front of you
Plank to Down Dog to Forward Fold
Extra: Hands interlaced behind your back, stretch knuckles to sky and lean forward slightly
Table / Mountain (Cycle x 4)
Forward Fold (toe-touch)
Table Pose (straight back, bend knees if needed)
Forward Fold (toe-touch)
Mountain Pose (hands raised but open in a Y-shape)
Plank (knees if needed) / Up Dog / Down Dog
R Leg Lift then forward to Low Lunge to
Crescent Pose (arms raised but open, tail-bone tucked in, abs engaged)
Split Prep (hands down, forward leg straight, rest on back knee)
Walk hands forward and lift back knee, then raise forward hand high Low-Lunge+T-Plank (hold)
Lower back knee, reach high hand back for a quad stretch (hold)
Both legs back into Cobra
(Switch legs and repeat)
Move R foot forward to Low Lunge
Turn out back foot 90 degrees and move into Warrior 1 (hands raised) (hold)
Warrior 2 (hands forward and back)
Reverse Warrior (move forward hand high, back hand rests)
Table Top to Kneeling (toes curled is slightly easier)
Half-Camel pose (hands out straight in front, then rotate gaze and hands straight up)
While still looking/reaching up, reach behind with your R hand to touch your R heel (hold)
(repeat this motion with the other hand)
Full Camel – work both hands back to your heels and open your chest to the sky
Lying down, place R foot on left knee, raise left knee and pull gently towards your body with both hands
Half-Happy Baby – place your R hand in the arch of your R foot, keeping the 90 degree bend at the knee, straighten the opposite leg to the floor, and pull R knee gently towards the ground.
Advanced Circuits (if time allows; attempt with caution)
Low-Lunge position, but elbows down alongside your front leg (or just reach your hands down as far as you can)
Side Lunge – rotate your straight leg out on the heel, hands planted for support
Bridge(+Wheel) and Plow
Bridge on your back, bring you feet right below your knees. Lift your hips (inhale, then squeeze your glutes and abs before you engage your back muscles) and hold for 10 seconds. Repeat 3 times.
Wheel (crazy): from bridge, place your palms flat on the ground (by your ears, fingers toward your toes, elbows close) with your core engaged, then push upward with your arms, stabilize and then hold
Shoulder Stand / Plow: From your back, lift your legs up and support your lower back with your hands (elbows on the ground). Work your weight onto your shoulders, pointing your legs as high as possible. For Plow, slowly move your legs over your head to touch your toes to the ground (if possible). Hold.
Spinal Twist (closing)
Grab your R knee in your opposite hand and pull it across your body, straightening your right arm out away from your body. (hold)
(repeat this cycle with your other leg)
Pull both knees to your chest and rest in an egg shape, rolling slightly on your back
Corpse Pose (hold for a while, relax, breathe)
Straight leg forward fold (note how far you can stretch)
Seated forward fold (hips then round back)
COR/NOR/COT:Prayer for the recovery and health of the group as they hit it hard this month. — for JazzHands’ battles with insomnia and other PAX as they fight the fartsack and attempt to live out their best intentions.
The PAX (Big Mac, Wet Burrito, SAGA, DaVinci, Archive, HotBox, Crack, Crash, Shiplap, Bloomer, Panhandle, Banks, C3PO, Tortuga, Gummi Bear, Captain Crunch) met in the Gloom on with a chill in the air. The Q had just finished re-watching our performance on IronPAX and felt it was time for a word of exhortation and a chance to practice on what he preached.
Arm Circles / Seal Claps / Raise the Roof
(a long-winded speech on the evils of Bad Form and the virtues of a different path)
Jog to North baseball/soccer field
The PAX broke into two teams and were charged with calling out bad form in the other team as we did reps to failure. Subsequently, very good form was used by all and no penalties were awarded.
Form Fight!(Team Call Out x3 Penalty: Each member does 5 Burpees)
Slow Ranger Merkins – To Failure without breaking form
Slow Deep Squats – To Failure without breaking form (or most still standing after 2 min)
Plank – To Failure without breaking form
No Mercy Mile(as per usual we only had time for 400m)
Bear Crawl (100yd)
Jog (100yd, 25 Merkins at half-way) (Individual call-out penalty +5 reps)
Lunge (100yd) (Individual call-out penalty: go back three stones)
Jog (100yd, 25 Squats at half-way) (Individual call-out penalty +5 reps)
Not Enough Mary
T-Plank (on elbow) hip-dips
Flutters IC x 25 (Straight. Legs. Pointed. Toes.) no time for more… 😥
(jog back to flag)
COR / NOR / COT:For the integrity to watch our form in all aspects of life and choose to do things the right way no matter how hard — the courage to lovingly call a brother out and encourage good form.