F3 Knoxville

The Gift of Today

THE SCENE: Beautiful, sunny, low 60s

-20 Side Straddle Hops (4-ct), in cadence

– 10 Imperial Squat Walkers (4-ct), in cadence

-Bolt 45s

– 10 Cherry Pickers (4-ct), in cadence

– 10 Windmills (4-ct), in cadence

– Little of This and then That


Mosey to Area 51.

DORA!  PARTNER UP! One partner runs to fire hydrant near the Area 51 Loading Dock (this was modified to the big tree half way down… the fire hydrant was a bridge too far…) and does 5 squat jumps and runs back while the other starts the exercises.  Each pair shall complete the following:

  • 100 Big Boy sit-ups
  • 100 Lunges (doing both legs counts as 1)
  • 100 Merkins
  • 100 Smurf Jacks

Mosey to Grassy Field southwest of Admin Building.


  • Run around cones in rectangle.  On the long side, do Bernie Sanders, on the short side do Bear Crawls.  Stop at midpoints and corners for exercises:
    • At midpoints (long side only), do 20 Carolina Dry Docks
    • At each corner, do 20 mountain climbers (2-ct)

Rinse and repeat, but replace the exercises with the following:

  • At midpoints (long side), do 20 Bobby Hurleys
  • At each corner, do 20 Plank Jacks

Mosey to Intersection of Circle Drive.

  • 25 American Hammers, 20 Flutter Kicks, 20 E2Ks left side/right side.

Mosey to AO.

Ring of Fire, Captain Thors, and we ended with 31 Candy Corn


We did the 31 Candy Corn in honor of Quikrete, aka Grady Pitstick, who joined our PM PAX last year and passed away last November.  He would have been 31 today.  Tomorrow is not guaranteed to anyone. Take advantage of today.  Always take the opportunity to reach out to someone who might need a little support, a little encouragement, or just a smile and a friendly greeting. It may mean more than you think.

Prayers to Sparkler and his family on this day.
Goliath at the Gorge this week-end. Good luck, brothers!

Hidden Figures and a Farewell to 90!

THE SCENE: Hot as heck… again… temps in the mid-90s and a blazing sun overhead.  This is OCTOBER??!



  • 10 SSH (4-ct, IC)
  • 10 Baby Arm Circles Forward/ Backward (4-ct, IC)
  • 10 Moroccan Nightclub (4-ct, IC)
  • 10 Tempo Squats (4-ct, IC)
  • 10 Cherry Pickers (4-ct, IC)
  • 10 sec high knees/ 10 sec butt kickers
  • 10 merkins (OYO)


  • Mosey to shady grass field by closest parking lot to Lyons View entrance.   Partner 1 Hops to first cone, Bear Crawl to second Cone, then Duck Walks to third cone and sprints back, and trades off with partner 2, who is working on the following exercises (cumulative reps):
    • 90 BBS
    • 90 LBCs
    • 90 American Hammers (2-ct)
  • Mosey to CMU pile
    • 30 Curls/30 Overhead Presses/30 Rows.  Try to complete in 90 seconds.  Rinse and Repeat x3.
  • Mosey to Cardiac:
      • Partner 1 run to first corner do 30 reps, Partner 2 do 30 reps, then run to catch up with Partner. Then do the last 30 together (15 each) “Patty-cake” style. Exercises:
        • 90 Merkins
        • 90 Shoulder Taps (each shoulder = 1)
        • 90 Bottle openers (?) (each arm = 1)

MOSEY TO grassy area at the road intersection: 30 BBS

MOSEY TO shady northeast corner of perimeter drive around admin building: 30 LBCs

MOSEY TO AO: 30 American Hammers (2-ct)

90 squats

9 strong! 0 FNGs!


I recently watched the movie Hidden Figures, which is about three young women who worked “behind the scenes” at NASA in the early 1960s and did the calculations that enabled John Glenn to launch into space.  It’s pretty obvious that we did a lot of exercises totaling 90 reps. This was to celebrate the last afternoon workout in the 90s. But did you realize:

    • We did 9 exercises and 10 reps per exercise in the Warmup?
    • We did 9 different exercises during Tha Thang?
    • I’ve spoken 90 words so far?

So we had some Hidden Figures in our Workout, and we also have Hidden Figures in our lives. These might be co-workers who do tasks that “keep everything moving”, which for me would be the data analysts that crunch the numbers so I can perform my modeling and write my reports. Maybe it’s a secretary, or dispatcher, or just someone who brings a positive and enthusiastic attitude to work every day. Maybe it’s someone at church who does a lot of unnoticed things that make events special… At my church up in Chicago there’s a woman, Fern, who washes and irons the tablecloths for special events and organizes cabinets, and there’s Anne, who stitches hats out of leftover yarn to pass out to homeless shelters.  Maybe it’s a Friend that you don’t see very often, but is always there when you need them, to offer words of encouragement, a shoulder to cry on, or a hand to help you up. And then there’s our relationship with God, who is Hidden from our earthly eyes, but is always with us in our time of need.

Seek out those Hidden Figures in your lives and thank them.

Thankful that Jinxy’s heart procedure and diagnosis were favorable! Thanks to Sparkler for taking the lead on the Asylum PM obstacle construction for HH.


Serenity Now!

THE SCENE: Low 90s… again…

F3 WELCOME & DISCLAIMER  Check!  Still not a professional.  Shame spiral…


– 25 SSH (4ct, IC), 20 Moroccan Nightclubs (4 ct, IC), 15 Windmills (4 ct, IC), 10 Imperial Squats (4 ct, IC), 5 PCMBs (12ct, OYO)


  • Mosey down Roadshow Run to close to the base of Everest, in a shady spot. EVEREST PYRAMID :
    • Do the exercise, then run 1/3 way up Everest 5 times. Exercises will be the following (all single count)
      • 20 Iron Mikes
      • 20 Iron Mikes, 20 Mountain Climbers
      • 20 Iron Mikes, 20 Mountain Climbers, 20 Merkins
      • 20 Mountain Climbers, 20 Merkins
      • 20 Merkins
  • MOSEY to Intersection of Trail and perimeter road (all 4-ct, IC).
    • 20 American Hammers
    • 20 Flutter Kicks
    • 20 Bicycle Kicks
  • MOSEY to stop sign at northeast corner of Admin building drive.
    • 20 American Hammers
    • 20 Flutter Kicks
    • 20 Bicycle Kicks
  • DORAS: Partner 1 Bernie Sanders to end of Guard Rail, then runs to tree, 3 Burpees for extra credit, then runs back. Partner does the following:
    • 100 Big Boy sit-ups
    • 100 Bobby Hurleys
    • 100 Merkins

No time.
8 Strong.

Ronald Niebuhr: Niebuhr was one of America’s leading public intellectuals for several decades of the 20th century and received the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1964. Graduated from Elmhurst College, which was in the town I grew up in in Illinois and where my dad taught for 35 years.  He was a public theologian; he wrote and spoke frequently about the intersection of religion, politics, and public policy.  He was also one of the founders of the theory of Christian realism, which had three biblical presumptions: 1) the sinfulness of humanity, 2) the freedom of humanity, and 3) the validity and seriousness of the Great Commandment, which was a combination of two Bible verses that expressed the requirements to Love Thy Lord With All Thy Heart, AND, Love Thy Neighbor As Thyself. These form the core of the Christian lifestyle.  He also believed in the importance of balance of power and political responsibility.

Niebuhr believed that the perfection of the Kingdom of God cannot be realized on earth because of a corrupt society and the innate sins of man. Human perfectibility is an illusion. How can there be heaven on earth when there is so much corruption, poverty, etc.?  This was not a man who wore rose tinted glasses.  He saw the flaws and sins of humans both politically and in society, and he realized that although we should always do our best to contribute to solutions, that the imperfections of humanity would never allow paradise during our mortal lives. He is credited with writing the Serenity Prayer, which has always connected with me.


God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
Courage to change the things I can,
And wisdom to know the difference.

Living one day at a time,
Enjoying one moment at a time,
Accepting hardship as a pathway to peace,
Taking, as Jesus did,
This sinful world as it is,
Not as I would have it,
Trusting that You will make all things right,
If I surrender to Your will,
So that I may be reasonably happy in this life,
And supremely happy with You forever in the next.


Prayers for several PAX and their family members who are going through challenging times.

Hot as Blazes

THE SCENE: Upper 90s… soul-witheringly hot.  Felt like an ant under a magnifying glass.

-20 Side Straddle Hops (4-ct), in cadence

– 10 Cherry Pickers (4-ct), in cadence

– 20 BBS

– 10 Baby Arm Circles Forward, Backward (in cadence)


Mosey to intersection of road in front of Asylum and Lyons View entrance road.

  • AIKEN LEGS: 20 squats, 20 Bobby Hurleys (instead of box jumps), 20 lunges (2-ct), 20 split jacks (2-ct)
    • Run two lights, Bernie backwards one, do 5 merkins. Keep going to base of Everest.
    • 20 BBS, then run up to the base of the Summit
    • 6 x 20 seconds Carolina Dry Docks * (10 second break between all sets)
    • 6 x 20 seconds American Hammers
    • 6 x 20 seconds Peter Parkers*
    • 6 x 20 seconds BBS
    • 6 x 20 seconds Mountain Climbers**
    • (We did stargazers in here somewhere because the Q was gassed…)

* = run up small slope to the north of the workout area, **= run all the way up Summit

Mosey to AO.

No time
9 strong.
I recently attended a workout where another Q was talking about how there’s always someone struggling worse than you are, and it can help you if you make it your goal to lift them up and help them out, and raise them up.  I tore my ACL in soccer my Junior year of college, and was in the dumps for months.  The rehab work was grueling, I was uncertain I would be able to play at the level I was accustomed to again for my final year of college, and my course work was particularly challenging that semester.  I decided to go to Louisiana for a Habitat for Humanity effort over spring break after I heard about it through some classmates.  We built gardens for the Chitimatcha Indian Tribe down there on their lands outside of New Orleans, and although they appreciated our help in terms of the physical labor, they were so grateful just to have some people show up with some energy and positive spirit to be with them.  The tribe is very poor, and had very high alcoholism and suicide rates, but the effect of having a bunch of college kids from Wisconsin travel several thousand miles during their spring break to give them a hand and share some fellowship seemed to have an incredible effect on them.  It had an incredible effect on me, as well, being with these wonderful people, seeing how challenging their lives are, but seeing what generous and friendly souls they had in spite of their humble situation.  When I returned from the trip, all the self-pity and darkness that was brewing and I felt more than renewed to face my own path going forward.
Good luck to Nature Boy as he starts his new semester at UT this week.
Trucking to the Pound, Sept. 14.  Order shirts this week!!

A Lesson in Humility

THE SCENE: High 80s, more humid than the past few days, light breeze and some clouds made it almost bearable

The initial plan of 40 burpees was scratched by the PAX’s generosity in donating to a certain cause.

20 Side Straddle Hops (4-ct), in cadence, 10 Copperhead lunges/ 10 Copperhead squats/ 10 Steve Earles/ 10 Copperhead Merkins (all 4-ct, IC), 10 Windmills


Mosey to Stop sign at northeast corner of circle drive, 20 Rocky Balboas on the curb (4-ct).  Mosey to CMU pile

  • Battle buddy up.  Grab CMU, 1 per pair
    • Partner does modified suicide (HOP to first cone, run back, BEAR CRAWL to second cone, run back, BERNIE SANDERS to third cone, run back), while partner does the following (additive between partners) with CMU:

Mosey to base of Cardiac

  • Cardiac PYRAMID :
    • Run to first turn of Cardiac and back
      • 10 Copperhead Squats
      • 10 Copperhead Squats, 10 Mountain Climbers (2-ct)
      • 10 Copperhead Squats, 10 Mountain Climbers, 10 Shoulder Taps (2-ct)
      • 10 Mountain Climbers, 10 Shoulder Taps
      • 10 Shoulder Taps
    • Lunges until 6 catches up.
    • Run up Cardiac, at each turn do 5 Burpees. At Top, do 5 Burpees and 20 bench dips.

Mosey to where path intersects parking lot:

  • 20 BBS/20 LBCs/20 American Hammers (2-ct) (OYO)

Mosey to tree/shaded area at stop sign where we did the Rocky Balboas

  • 20 BBS/20 LBCs/20 American Hammers (2-ct) (OYO)

Mosey to AO.

No time for good ol’ Mary.

15 strong, including Gobbler (untagged) and FNG Deuce.

I’ve always been a bit of a perfectionist, but particularly when it comes to sports.  Everyone says “I like to win” or the reverse, “I hate losing”, but I tend to take that to another level.  It’s gotten a bit better as I’ve gotten older, but I still have an incredibly hard time moving on when I lose or fail at something competitive.  I was playing in Steam’s kickball charity tournament last week, and we lost a tight game that I felt we could have won if I had just sold out and dove for a ball in the outfield and made the catch, or gotten a “hit” when I was up with two outs and the bases loaded.  It bothered me the rest of the day and all night.  Had a hard time sleeping.  Now, this was not the Super Bowl, the World Series, or an important match in any way, shape or form… This was a CHARITY. KICKBALL. TOURNAMENT., but I still thought I let the team down.  When I was in college, I seriously considered going to a sports psychologist, because if my team lost at anything, whether it was soccer, basketball, or even if it was just playing darts at the bar, I felt it was my fault, and would go into a deep, intense funk.  And when this happens, I try to tell myself, “It’s just a game”, but that never works for me.  Almost nothing does.

The only thing that helps is if I take a deep breath, I consider how lucky and fortunate I am to have the gifts that God has given to me in my life, and to consider how %^&*$!! ARROGANT it is to get mad when things don’t go my way.  We’re human.  We’re flawed.  We fail. Grow up and deal with it.

I’ve missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. 26 times I’ve been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed.  I’ve failed over and over again in my life.  And that is why I succeed.” Michael Jordan

Philippians 2:3-10 – (Writings from the apostle Paul, who is asking his readers to turn the focus from themselves to others.  Humbling, self-sacrificing lives leads to exaltation from God).

Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, 4 not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others. 5 In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus: 6 Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; 7 rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. 8 And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death– even death on a cross! 9Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, 10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth

Paul frequently addressed Jesus as divine.  Paul is pointing out that Jesus could have pulled out the “God Card” and demanded that every person grovel at his feet, but instead of treating others as his servants, he himself becomes a servant to the people.  He lived among us, suffered our mortal pains, came to this world in a humble way, and left it suffering a horrible, humiliating death on the cross. We have no right to wallow in self pity when we fail, or when we fall short in how we perform.  We try our best, we give every effort to succeed, but when we fail, we must accept it with grace, learn from it, and move on.  I will continue to try to take this lesson to heart.

Insert any personal comments, notes, devotion content, etc.
Third F this Saturday, with the convergence at Big Ball at 7:00 AM and 3rd F afterwards at 8:30 AM.