F3 Knoxville

Press On

THE SCENE: Insert info about the weather, etc.

20 Side-Straddle-Hops, 10 Burpees, 10 Windmills, 10 Tempo Merkins, 10 Tempo Squats, 10 Wide Arm Circles forward and 10 Wide Arm Circles backward.
Mosey to the stop sign at the Northeastern Corner of the Admin. Bldg.  We will be moving to different cones on a counterclockwise route past the admin bldg and back to where we start.  The cones will tell us the exercise and how to move to the next cone.

  • Cone 1:  20 Hello Dollies (4 ct).  Sprint to Cone 2
  • Cone 2:  20 Big Boy Sit-Ups.  Bear Crawl to Cone 3.
  • Cone 3:  20 Jump Squats.  Run to Cone 4.
  • Cone 4:  40 Shin Lifts on steps.  Run to Cone 5.
  • Cone 5:  20 Flutter Kicks (4 ct).  Run to Cone 6.
  • Cone 6:  20 Dive Bombers.  Run to Cone 7.
  • Cone 7:  20 Merkins.  Hop to Cone 8.
  • Cone 8:  20 Iron Mikes (both legs = 1)  Bernie Sanders to Cone 9.
  • Cone 9:  20 Bicycle Kicks (4 ct).  Run back to Cone 1 to rinse and repeat.

Mosey to plaza at Outdoor Colosseum area to gander at East Tennessee.

Mosey to semi-circle area close to soccer fields and housing area.  We will do following along each small fence pole along the semi-circle:  Bear Crawl for 3 poles and do 3 hand-release merkins, lunge for 3 poles and do 3 squats, run for 10 poles.  Then start again until semi-circle is finished.  When semi-circle is finished, complete a full circle by going to street and going back to starting spot to Rinse and Repeat.

Mosey to Playground. We will do elevens at benches, starting with 1 Bench Jump and 10 Bench Dips.

Mosey to Pavilion.  We will do 20 Picnic Table Pull-ups, 20 Decline Merkins and 20 seconds of regular Pull-ups at the Baseball Dugouts.

Mosey to CMU pile.  Each man grabs CMU.  We will do 20 Overhead Presses, 20 Curls, 20 Squats, and 20 Rows with the CMUs.  Replace CMUs.

Mosey to start of Mini Cardiac.  Bernie to Park Sign, Sprint to top crosswalk, then walk to AO.

19 men, no FNGs.
J.K. Rowling’s book, Harry Potter, was rejected by 12 different publishers before being accepted by Bloomsbury Publishing.  Can you imagine being one of the reviewers who rejected Harry Potter?  Talk about regretting a decision!  John Grisham’s first novel, a Time to Kill, was rejected 30 times before it was published.  Still, it wasn’t widely read.  After he published hits like The Firm and The Pelican Brief people finally read Grisham’s first book, A Time to Kill, and people ended up loving it.  Stephen King’s first published novel, Carrie, was also rejected 30 times.  Nobel Prize winning author William Faulkner was famously rejected by many publishers.  He kept every rejection he ever got.  Now he is considered one of the greatest authors of all time

The message we can learn from so many authors is this:  Don’t Give Up.  Keep pursuing your vision.  Our brother, Crawdad, has already received praise for what he has recently written.  I hope he keeps on writing.  For those of you who have important goals ahead, whatever the task, don’t let falling short get you down.  Maybe that is what it takes to finally get to your goal.  Myself, at age 62:  I have never mastered the pull-up!!  I am pretty good at push-ups but, perhaps because my arms are so darn long, I can’t do a pull-up.  I recently bought a pull-up bar that I have wedged between two slats in my basement.  I figure that doggone bar may reject me 100, 200, maybe 1000 times but one of these days I am going to do a pull-up!!

When times get tough we sometimes can lose faith in ourselves and faith in God.  As a Christian, I love these words from Paul in the bible.  From Philippians 3: 13-14:

Forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead,
I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.”

Don’t lose faith.  Press on toward your goal men!

Prayers for Choir Boy’s wife and Lillydipper’s wife, prayers to end racism and dissension in our country, prayers for Mermaid’s friend who hurt his back.
Workday at 8:45 am, August 8 at Mooreland Heights Elementary School.

Hold Thy Tongue

THE SCENE: Rained heavy immediately before the workout and ended up with dry but humid conditions, temp in low 80s.  The AO was at northern ball field parking lot due to rainy conditions before we started.

20 Plank Jacks, 10 Pinto Twists, 10 Tempo Squats, 10 Rockettes, 10 Cherry Pickers, Little of This and That
Mosey to parking lot with islands on south side of northern ball fields.  Do 20 Hello Dollies.

Next we will do Christmas Candy Canes in July.  We start on one end of parking lot and go around and 1/3 of the way back down.  Thus, the diagram of the travel is in the form of a candy cane.  We will do the following runs with stops at each island to do the following exercises, running back to the start of the candy cane once the full route is complete:

  • Sprint, stopping to do 3 Burpees at each island.
  • Bernie Sanders, stopping to do 10 Squats at each island.
  • Sprint, stopping to do 10 Merkins at each island
  • Grapevine left or right stopping to do 10 Big Boy Sit-Ups at each island.

Mosey to Pavilion at northern ball fields.  Do 25 Picnic Table Pull-ups, 25 Bench Dips and 25 Decline Merkins.

Mosey to CMU Pile.  Each man grabs CMU.  We will do the following exercises.  We will Sprint to end of parking lot and Bernie Sanders back after each exercise.

  • 20 Overhead Presses
  • 20 Curls
  • 20 Rows
  • 20 Squats with CMU at chest

Replace CMUs and mosey to center of parking lot.

20 Flutter Kicks (4 ct) and 40 Baby Crunches.
13 men, no FNGs.

Proverbs 10:14

Wise men store up knowledge,
But with the mouth of the foolish, ruin is at hand.

Proverbs 13:3

The one who guards his mouth preserves his life;
The one who opens wide his lips comes to ruin.

Some of us are extroverts and some of us are introverts.  Some of us are talkers and some of us prefer to say little.  I tend to be on the talkative side and sometimes get in trouble because of it.  I haven’t experienced the ruin talked about in the verses above but I have sounded mighty foolish at times.

In groups settings, it helps me to listen closely to the words of those who generally keep silent.  I find that, if they do speak up, what they have to say is usually doggone important.  Back in my college days, I belonged to a fraternity.  We would have fraternity meetings weekly.  All members had the opportunity to speak.  I don’t mean to tell you that those who spoke often did not have good things to say. But, members who seldom spoke often gave us wonderful pearls of wisdom when they did.  I particularly think of two fraternity brothers:  Mark Williams and Blair Jones.  They were some of the shier guys in the fraternity.  When they did speak at our meetings you could sometimes her a pause in the air – that was because our guys were truly contemplating what they said.  What they said was on point and meaningful, frequently giving us perspectives we had not considered.  Mark Williams is one of my best friends today. I still can count on him for advice and council.

Why do I bring this up?  Partially for my own benefit.  Being a guy who sometimes speak too much, I need to remember to store up knowledge and guard my mouth, as the aforementioned Proverbs allude to.  But I also say it for the benefit of those of you who are not extroverts, who are not likely to speak before large groups.  Don’t be afraid to share what you have to say when we gather together at the end of our workouts.  Don’t be afraid to Q a workout and give a message at the end of it.  You are the wise men who have been holding your tongues and storing up knowledge.  Give us the benefit of your words of wisdom.  We will grow because of it.

Prayers for Pacman and his daughter.  Prayers for wives of Lilydipper and Choir Boy.  Prayers for the City of Portland and the peace that is needed there.  Prayers for Title 9 who is now in Eugene, Oregon.

Wanna Bet?


The epitome of fake gloom muggy, humid nastiness.


Welcome to F3. Fitness, Fellowship, and Faith. I am CRISPR, your Q for today. This is a free workout and you’re here on your own volition. I am NOT a professional. I do not know your injuries or capabilities, so feel free to modify as necessary. Safety is the #1 priority. Remember we are under social distancing rules, so keep your distance from others.


15x Side Straddle Hops, 10x Windmills, 10x Imperial Walkers, 7x Cherry Pickers, A little bit of this, little bit of that, 10x Rockettes


Mosey to The Bowl. Black Jack (Round 1):  Do 1 Hill Run, then 20 Gas Pumps, then 2 Hill Runs, then 19 Gas Pumps, and so on.

Mosey to steps of Admin Building. Deck of Death (4x):  When a “Flipper” gets to a station, they flip to the next card, and do the exercise (2-Ace, where J=11, Q=12, K=13, A=14).  If you’re not a “Flipper”, just do the card facing up when you arrive. If a deck has been finished, keep going until all are finished.

Mosey to field by AO. Black Jack (Round 2):  Alternate between Jump Squats and Plank Jacks.  Do 1 Squat, then 20 Plank Jacks, then 2 Squats, then 19 Plank Jacks, and so on.

Black Jack (Round 3):  Alternate between American Hammers and LBCs.  Do 1 American Hammer, then 20 LBCs, then 2 American Hammers, then LBCs, and so on.

Finish up with some Catalina Wine Mixers and a Wave of Merkins.  Do an “Obama” (4 count bear crawl with 4 merkins) back to the AO.


25 HIMs including one FNG – Furby


Something that’s been on my heart lately Is whether or not to keep my kids home this fall or to send them back to school. I know this has been on a lot of people’s mind and we’re all wondering if we’re making the “right” decision.  As I’ve been wrestling with this decision I’m trying really hard to remember the lesson I learned from a book called “Thinking in Bets” by former World Series of Poker Champion Annie Dukes.

Essentially, we all confuse DECISIONS with OUTCOMES. For example, many of us know a guy who always buys his wife flowers remembers every birthday and anniversary shows up for all their kids’ events and provides financially and emotionally for his family, but ultimately winds up in a divorce.  Does the outcome of a divorce mean that his behaviors bad decisions just because they resulted in a bad outcome?

In her book, Annie Dukes describes the difference between, decisions and outcomes in a poker example. Imagine going all in because you’re holding 4 Kings, but then on the River card the guy across from you backs his way into a Straight Flush and wins the pot.  Was going all in with 4 Kings a bad decision just because it ended with a bad outcome?

I’ve used the phrase “make good decisions”, but how do you do that? Annie Dukes suggests one way to make better decisions is simply to ask, “Wanna bet?”

Consider this…  Every F3 workout ends in a “Name-o-Rama” where we give our birth name, age, and F3 name. At the end of every workout I say my birth name is “David”. But, if I said, right now, “Wanna bet $100 my birth name is David?”  How does that change what you previously knew to be absolutely true?  I guarantee you’ve already started questioning yourself. Maybe my name is Andrew David Smelser, III and I just go by David as not to be confused with other family members?

By just asking that simple question “Wanna bet?”  You’ve gone from knowing something with 100% certainty to something less than 100%. And, now that you’re less than 100% certain your brain can accept new information, options, and possibilities to come in which allows you to make better decisions.

I encourage us all to ask ourselves, “Wanna bet?” and to know things with less than 100% certainty so we can make better decisions for ourselves and for those around us.

Everything You Need To Know You Learned in Sunday School and Kindergarten

THE SCENE: Sunny, around 70, and humid

SSH x 42 (21 on a 4 ct)

Arm circles forward x 21 (4 ct)

Arm circles backward x 21 (4 ct)

Overhead clap x 43 (single ct)

Little of this and that and that and this

Some standing Michael Phelps

Mosey to Rocky Mtn High (every light do a burpee) – 7s – incline merkins with a clap at the top, imperial walkers (4 ct) at the bottom

Mosey to Everest (every light do a burpee) – Do 42 merkins at the bottom, run to the top where the rock pile used to be and do 43 merkins

Mosey to Grinch Hill – 7s – squats at the bottom, captain thors at the top

Mosey to Tree of Life – Hokey Pokeys – 21 each leg, Rowkins (or merkin rows) – 43

Mosey to Small Pavilon (Crawdad dubbed it the Stirrups since Hands was the one who introduced the location to F3) – 7s – pull-ups and merkins

Mosey to Pavilon – 7s – pull-me-ups on the picnic tables and box jumps

Mosey back to the AO via Baby Everest


Not much time left for Mary, but we did 43 LBCs and then merkins until the last 30 seconds or so ran out

19 total, including Veggie and Jumbo but their tags don’t show up
Talked about the divisiveness that is prevalent in the world today.  We need to be part of the solution, not the problem.  Some things to consider:

“You should always go through life working on the assumption that the other guy might be right.”  Senator Howard Baker, Jr.

“I appeal to you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and create obstacles contrary to the doctrine that you have been taught; avoid them.  For such persons do not serve our Lord Christ, but their own appetites, and by smooth talk and flattery they deceive the hearts of the naive.”  Romans 16:17-18.

Read the Sneetches by Dr. Suess and pay close attention to Sylvester McMonkey McBean.

Don’t be McBean.  Be the person who helps find equality and common ground, not the person who takes advantage of situations and profits off of others.

Remember what you learned in Sunday School and Kindergarten and the world will be a better place.

Prayers for Title IX, Mrs. Lillydipper, Lulu’s mom/Veggie‘s grandmother, and Mrs. Choir Boy.


The Giving Tree

THE SCENE: Mid 80s, cloudy, humid as all get out.

Welcome to F3, Fitness, Fellowship and Faith. F3 is a free workout program designed to improve fitness, share some camaraderie, and foster male leadership in the community.  I’m Pele and I will be your Q today.  I am not a professional, and I do not know your fitness level or injury history.  Please push yourself, but modify the workout as necessary to avoid making any existing injuries worse.  The goal is to get better together!  Some additional COVID-19 considerations: keep your distance between you and other members of the PAX and any other folks that we pass during moseys, etc. to 6-10 feet.  We will be splitting up into groups smaller than 10 if necessary.  We need to set good examples and be good neighbors out here at this public park, especially with so many folks out and about.


-Motivators, 7-CT decreasing

– 10 Windmills, 4-ct IC

– 25 Grady Corns , 4-ct IC

– 10 Imperial Squat Walkers 4-ct IC


MOSEY to Coliseum circle in front of admin building:

Modified KRAKEN with 4 cones (“X”s on sidewalk).  Do 5 reps of each exercise, then run around circle PLUS ONE cone, do 10 reps, etc. increasing the reps by 5 at each cone until you finish with 20 of each at the last cone.


MOSEY to the dingy little parking lot to the south.  Get a BATTLE BUDDY for THREE BY FIVES.  One partner will be in the “bullpen” slowly running back and forth, while the other partner runs to the Stop sign and does two exercises, then runs back.  Start with 5 reps of both exercises and increase by 5, for three trips doing 5x/10x/15x of the exercises.  The three sets of exercises are:

  1. Peter Parkers (2-ct) / Half-Burpees
  2. Star Jumps / Iron Mikes
  3. Gas Pumps / American Hammers

Mosey to the edge of the lawn in front of the admin building.  25 AMERICAN HAMMERS (4-ct, IC)

BERNIE to the steps of admin building

40 CALF RAISES on steps, OYO

AYG back to the AO.

No time.
14 strong.

The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein was one of my favorite books when I was a child.  It was about a boy and a tree, and their special relationship.  Early on, the boy swings from the branches and eats apples provided by the tree and loves the tree so much that he carves “Me + Tree” into the bark.  As he gets older, he still comes to the tree, but less often, and not so much for friendship, but because he wants things.  Apples to sell.  Wood (which he chops down) for a house and boat.  The tree is happy to give everything for the “Boy”, but is also sad because they spend less time together, and the Boy leaves as soon as he has what he wants.  When he is an old man, he comes back to the tree one last time.  But the tree has nothing left to give, as it is only a stump.  The old man says that’s all he wants, just a place to sit down.  The tree has is able to give him this last gift.  And for that, it is happy.

Some see this story as an allegory for selfless Christian love.  Pope Francis recently said the following about how natural entities do not benefit from their own qualities themselves, but rather provide for others (from Jan Neece, Lilydipper’s wife’s FB page):

 Rivers do not drink their own water; trees do not eat their own fruit; the sun does not shine on itself and flowers do not spread their fragrance for themselves.

Living for others is a rule of nature. We are all born to help each other.

No matter how difficult it is…Life is good when you are happy; but much better when others are happy because of you.”

From Tank’s FB page… (Matt 22:34-40)

34 But when the Pharisees heard that He had silenced the Sadducees, they gathered together. 35 Then one of them, a lawyer, asked Him a question, testing Him, and saying, 36 “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the law?”

37 Jesus said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the first and great commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets.

Challenge for today: go show some love to a random person today by being kind and doing something for them.

Prayers for Mrs. Lilydipper as she completes her chemo.  Happy 18th Birthday to Curveball’s daughter.  Prayers for Steam and his dad as they lead the effort for some community improvement efforts in Johnson City.