F3 Knoxville

Devils Tower

THE SCENE:  60 and raining.  Perfect for a heavy beatdown.
F3 WELCOME & DISCLAIMER:  Administered. 

  • Overhead claps
  • Moroccan nightclub
  • Cherry pickers
  • Mountain climbers
  • Tempo merkins


Mosey under the roof at the senior center.  Ready to take on The Devils Tower.

There is a tower of 12 CMUs.  Each man grabs a CMU and performs exercises per the Q.  Exercises included;

  • CMU Curls
  • Thrusters
  • Goblet Squats
  • Alpos
  • Shoulder press
  • Flutter kick chest press
  • Tri
  • Upright rows
  • Heavy Freddy
  • Uneven Merkins L
  • Uneven Merkins R
  • Walking Lunge
  • Heavy LBC
  • CMU Curls
  • Single arm row L
  • Single arm row R
  • Blockees
  • CMU Swings
  • Burpee Jump Overs

Bear crawl with the CMUs to my truck and put it away.  Back to the Devils Tower – and repeat it all again!




Me and 5 of the best men I know


Let’s talk about remembering well

The Native American tribes of the Kiowa and Lakota have a legend…  A group of girls went out to play and were spotted by several giant bears, who began to chase them. Trying to escape the bears, the girls climbed atop a rock, fell to their knees, and prayed to the Great Spirit to save them. Hearing their prayers, the Great Spirit made the rock rise from the ground towards the heavens so that the bears could not reach the girls. As they tried to climb the rock, the bears left deep claw marks in the sides.

This story is the fanciful origin of a massive butte that protrudes from the prairie in the Black Hills of Northeastern Wyoming.  Some call it Bear Lodge Butte – but it is better known as the Devils Tower.  This massive rock stands 867 feet from summit to base.  Chaco and Whipper might tell you that it is one of the finest crack climbing areas in North America.  It was on this day 114 years ago – Sept 24, 1906 – that President Teddy Roosevelt named the Devils Tower our nation’s first national monument.

The Word that I want to share this morning is about the importance of personal monuments – relics – souvenirs – mementos.

Seven times in the book of Joshua, the people of Israel erect stone monuments.  They have different occasions each time, but the purpose is always the same.  They build to commemorate God’s faithfulness… or as a witness to the unity that is established with another tribe….or as a reminder to serve the Lord and live in obedience with the Torah…or as a reminder of their potential for unfaithfulness…  The purpose of the monuments is to prompt them to revisit those ideas from time-to-time.  During the building of one of those monuments, Joshua tells the tribesmen that they are doing this; 1) so that you will always have a reminder of what happened here, and 2) so that your children will one day ask about the monument and you’ll have an opportunity to tell them the story and lessons learned here.    

Monuments serve as aides to our memory.  They are tangible connections to something once experienced.  As life happens and memories fade, a monument prompts us to remember what was once so vivid. 

Almost two years ago, I took a weekend away with two good friends.  We stayed in a cabin in the Cherokee National Forest and spent three days engaging each other in very intentional conversations about life, and in prayer.  We took stock of our lives and each felt a strong sense of recommitment to be better fathers, husbands, friends, and followers of Christ.  I will forever look back on that weekend as a pivotal moment in my life.

One afternoon during that weekend, the three of us each decided to have some quiet time.  We sat around the cabin reading and praying, and at one point we each ended up walking alone through the woods.  As I walked and reflected on the changes that I was feeling in myself, I noticed a lone white rock on the ground – it stood out in a surrounding of dried leaves.  I picked up the rock and put it in my pocket to be a reminder of that weekend away and what it meant in my life.  (Interesting sidebar: As I sat down for dinner that evening, I pulled the rock from my pocket and set it on the table.  My two friends stared at me, then at each other – then they both took a white rock from their own pocket and set it on the table.  Unprompted and unbeknownst to the others, we each had picked up the same memento from our walk in the woods).  To this day, this white rock and a photo of my wife are the two things that sit on my bedside table.  The rock serves as a reminder of that time which was so significant in my personal journey.  I can’t tell you how many times it has brought me back to that weekend and reminded me of the change that started there.  Occasionally, my kids have asked me about it, and I have shared the story with them.

Here’s the punchline.  When you have a significant moment in life… a MILESTONE, an AWAKENING, a RECOMMITMENT – I encourage you to commemorate that memory that with a monument.  It could be a rock – or a photo – or a tattoo.  Whatever it is, place it somewhere that you’ll see it often and be reminded of what was once so vivid to you.  Remember and revisit that time, because, “remembering well is as important as doing well” (hat tip, Jonita Mullins).


Good to have new daddy, Mathlete, back out in the gloom.

If your wife snorts at the idea of a tattoo to commemorate your significant moment…tell her that KickFlip put you up to it.


IPC Week 4 available at JUCO tomorrow

Hardship Hill next Sat!

A Time for Everything

THE SCENE: 50 and gloomy – Perfect 1st day of the autumn!
F3 WELCOME & DISCLAIMER: All the good stuff…

Projectivator (Project Special) 5X, SSH IC 9x, imperial squawkers IC 9X, tempo merkins IC 9X, mountain climbers 9X
THA-THANG: Little Bit of Everything…

@ Senior Ctr Back Wall: 22: 3-5 Handstand push-ups or as many as you want/remainder 15-17 plank jacks (4-ct)
@ Pool Wall: 9 Wall-ups
@ Parallel Bars: 11 Dips/11 Lunges
@ Friendship Bell: 9s Box jumps/BBS
@ K2-5: 3 burpees at bottom, 3 sprints (regular, Bernie, bear crawl or regular), 3 burpees at top
Lap around the ORAU Pond
Bear Crawl across bridge
@ Friendship Bell: 22 Monkey humpers (4ct)
@ Shovel Flag: 22 Pickle pounders (4ct)

Pax choice for Mary (22 of everything): Hello Dolly, Starfish (1-ct), Side crunches (11 on 1 side+11 on the other), Freddy Mercury, LBC, Leg lift (22 sec), and a couple others I’m forgetting…

Use the TAGS on right-side to record PAX (BE SURE TO INCLUDE YOURSELF) in attendance. Be sure to select the AO in CATEGORY above TAGS and then delete these notes!
CIRCLE OF TRUST/BOM: “A Time for Everything”

Ecclesiastes 3:1-8
1 There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens:
2 a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot,
3 a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build,
4 a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance,
5 a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them, a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing,
6 a time to search and a time to give up, a time to keep and a time to throw away,
7 a time to tear and a time to mend, a time to be silent and a time to speak,
8 a time to love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace.

Today is the 1st day of autumn in the longest, most challenging year yet. What time is it for you? What does this new season mean? What do you need to start? What do you need to stop?


Hardship Hill

The Monsters Men Fear

THE SCENE:  65 and clear.  Perfect for an IPC beatdown.

Warmup OYO while we talk through the workout.


IPC Week 3




Me and 6 of the best men I know


I have a routine that I follow when I leave the house in the morning.  I make a cup of coffee, pack my lunch, grab my stuff, and I’m out the door.  In one hand, I have my duffel bag with a change of clothes and my lunch – in the other hand I have my morning coffee.  I leave through the back door, walk across the deck and down the steps, turn the corner around the house, and get into my car which is sitting in the driveway. That’s my routine…and it almost never changes.

A few weeks ago – on a Tuesday before F3 – my routine did change just a bit.  For a reason now long forgotten, I didn’t make coffee that morning.  That meant that I had something I almost never have when I leave the house – a free hand.  And I used that hand to do what I almost never do – shine my phone’s flashlight to light the dark path through the backyard and around to my car.  I remember having a sense that morning – a sense that I wanted to see within the darkness – like something was there that I needed to be on a high-state of readiness for.  A skunk? A raccoon?

I used my flashlight to shine across the deck, down the steps, across the yard, to my car.  Nothing…my instinct was clearly misfiring.  I turned off the flashlight, put my bag in the backseat, got into the front seat, and turned the key in the ignition.  Then, in the bright glow of the headlights, I saw…A PERSON STANDING IN FRONT OF MY CAR AND STARING AT ME.  For a moment, my blood froze, and I was stiff with the shock.  It quickly thawed when I realized that the wild-eyed pajamaed person was my 7-year old son.  He’d heard me leaving the house and ran out to say “goodbye” and “have a good day”.  Sweet kid – but he startled me half to death at five in the morning.

Driving to meet you guys for the workout that morning, I was reminded of a couple of things.  The first was a bit of scripture that I am working with that 7-year old to help him memorize; “2 Timothy 1:7, “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but one of power, love, and sound judgment.”  The second thought came from a book that I read him each night for a few weeks earlier this year, Sails of Capri.  In the book, the characters fear sailing their small ship into a cove which is said to be cursed.  Local myth was that man-eating sea monsters lived in a cave within that cove.  The reluctant adventurers finally sail into the cove and into the mouth of the cave, where they discover a breathtaking blue grotto (the real Grotto Azzura in Capri).  One of the main characters reflects about their adventure with these words, Most of the monsters men fear are in their minds.  They would vanish like smoke if we would only let them”. 

Let’s talk about monsters that we fear.  No – not bats, or snakes, or spiders…  Here are the five most common fears that men have.  

  1. Failing.
  2. Being Incompetent.
  3. Being Weak (or Being Perceived as Weak).
  4. Being Irrelevant.
  5. Looking Foolish.

I can relate to each of those.  When I’m being honest with myself, I’ll admit that those fears manifest in a facade of coolness or disinterest.  Ultimately, what those fears cost me is deep intimacy in relationships.  Why wouldn’t I be silly with my kids or dance with my wife?  Fear of looking foolish.  Why wouldn’t I lean in and be a better mentor of that younger man at work?  Fear of being irrelevant.  Why the heck do I find it so hard to consistently lead my wife spiritually?  Fear of being incompetent.  If you are like me, the irrational fears that you harbor are keeping you from enjoying your relationships to their fullest potential. 

Yet… “The cave you fear to enter holds the treasure you seek.” – Joseph Campbell.  When I do allow myself to be unguarded with close relationships, I find that the fear was all in my mind and that my loved ones delight in the most unguarded version of me (bad dance moves and all).  The closeness that I crave was there all along – masked by insecurities which ended up being paper monsters.

When I saw that apparition in the dark a few weeks ago, I was afraid.  Then it turned out to be my son, and I realized that there is nothing more precious to me than that figure standing in front of me (which I first feared).  Likewise – when you courageously step through your fears and experience healthy relational intimacy (which you thought was a monster) – it may, in fact, lead to something that you cherish deeply.

Most of the monsters men fear are in their minds.  They would vanish like smoke if we would only let them”.

Here’s 2 Timothy 1:7 again, this time from The Living Bible translation, “For the Holy Spirit, God’s gift, does not want you to be afraid of people, but to be wise and strong, and to love them and enjoy being with them.”

Be willing to let down your guard with those closest to you and experience relational intimacy.



Do it again this Friday at JUCO – Wanderer is hosting IPC Week 3, his VQ!

Hardship Hill

The T & Chaco Special

THE SCENE: Cool and Muggy
F3 WELCOME & DISCLAIMER: Yep. Yep. And yep.

  • Side straddle hops
  • Tempo squats
  • Moroccan nightclub (cuz that’s what we do)
  • Tempo merkins
  • Downward dog stretch
  • Cherry Pickers

THA-THANG: The T & Chaco Special

  • Round 1: 5 minutes of STARFISH alternating with 5 minutes of 4-PT SQUATS (This is the T Special: 4 single-leg squats – squat with other leg out front, then out to the side, then back like warrior 3 pose, then behind squatting leg like a curtsy)
  • Round 2: 5 minutes of SHOULDER TAP PLANK alternating with 5 minutes of FRONT LONGEES (as in Jeff Longee (Chaco) – pronounced like [lunge-ee]. See what I did there?)
  • Round 3: 5 minutes of V-UPS (while transferring yogurt container from hands to feet) alternating with 5 minutes of MERKINS.


Chaco, Kickflip, Mathlete, Snaggletooth

TOP Secret – We’d have to kill you.

It was a good old time…

KICKFLIP Q on Friday – IPC @ JUCO!


THE SCENE: 68 with 99% humidity (no joke)
F3 WELCOME & DISCLAIMER: regular + CV19 + cell phone for emergencies

• Projectivator x6
• LBAC (fwd/bwd) x10
• Tempo Merkin x8
• Carolina Dry Dock x8
• Cherry picker x5
• Mosey to Half Wall – 10 Wall-ups
• Mosey to RC

THA-THANG: CMU Relay (not partnered)
With 1 CMU, 15 of each exercise (one at a time), then CMU bear crawl to other side of parking lot (island to island)
• Combo: Overhead Press/Tricep Extension
• Curls
• Side-step (4-ct)
• Lunge (each leg)
• Heavy Freddy (4-ct)
• Hello Dolly (4-ct)
Complete 15 of each exercise (one at a time) then Rifle Carry CMU back to starting parking lot island for next exercise.
• Single-arm Row (each arm)
• Alpo
• Jump Over (2-ct)
• Squats
• Flutter Kick (4-ct)

Mucho Chesto:
10 of each merkin movement – 2 rounds

Mosey back to Shovel Flag

PAX Choice: Rainbow Drop or Roll-over (elbow plank touching each hip to the ground), Pickle Pounders, Star Fish (diagonal V-ups), Flutter Kick doubles (8-ct!!)

4STRONG: Chaco, Dart Gun, Whipper, Snaggletooth



We took a moment to be still, be quiet, slow down breathing, be thankful for the morning, for the health and strength to workout, the blessings in our lives. We took a moment to slow down, and become aware of God.

“Exercise daily in God – no spiritual flabbiness, please! Workouts in the gymnasium are useful but a disciplined life in God is far more so, making you fit today and forever.” (I Timothy 4:8, The Message Translation)

Prayed for Chaco’s girl as she cares for her nonagenarian father, Whipper’s octagenarian aunt finishing chemo, and dad’s friend needing intervention, Dart Gun’s father-in-law in a stressful job.

IPC @ JUCO tomorrow