F3 Knoxville

Improv Rain Murph Prep

THE SCENE: Raging storm at the beginning, tapering into drippy wet, 60s

Projectivator, TN Rocking Chairs, Tempo Merkins, Grady Corn, Newton’s cradle

  • Mosey to the back porch and do 3 sets of modified Murph reps
    • 15 pole rows
    • 10 merkins
    • 15 squats
  • Then 2 sets of another pair, followed by 2 sets of Murph reps then a lap around the building
    • 10 Iron Mikes and 10 BttW shoulder taps
    • 10 Hand Release Merkins and 10 Flutter-Dollys
    • 10 Derkins and 10 Box cutters
  • By this point, rain had pretty much cleared, so we moseyd to the pool wall
    • 2 sets of 10 Wall-ups and 10 Bobby Hurleys
  • Mosey to playground and do 1 true Murph rep set including pull ups
  • RTF

I think we did some…

“The Big Lie in the church today is that you are nothing more than ‘a sinner saved by grace’. – John Eldredge

C.S. Lewis cautions us against the words “just” or “merely”, because they serve to exclude other possibility. To be ‘just’ saved by grace is to remain a helpless infant. You are purposed to be much more. Humanity was created in the image of God so that we would become rulers of creation. To be saved is to gain access to the energizing Spirit of the Creator of heaven and earth, but it does you no good if you don’t choose to draw from it. And the Lord delights when you rely on Him for your power.

If I fail to use my chance to grow strong from the Source, I am the least of those who suffer because of it. There is no one to fill your place in the battle line. Every man who chooses comfort or apathy or fear is a gap in the bulwark. Will the enemy win because of my lack? We are certain the answer is a resounding “NO”. But the Lord does not coddle us with irresponsibility. He respects our agency by allowing real consequences. So be assured that your choice will be respected, and all that comes with it.
Not a huge divergence from my original plan, but definitely a little tricky to adapt to the weather, which totally surprised me.
Hardship Hill, Dragon Boat, Flag handoff at Juco May 19th, Rampart May 27th.

The Rule of Lurches

THE SCENE: Cool spring morning, don’t get much better. Waxing crescent

  • SSH
  • Hairy Rockettes
  • Imperial Squawkers
  • Tempo Lunges
  • LBACs
  • Grady Corn
  • Moroccan night clubs
  • Cherry pickers


  • Mosey to the recruiting center, grab a block
  • CMU pyramid (5, 10, 15, 20, 15 10, 5)
    • Curls
    • Lunges (each leg)
    • OHP
    • Squats
    • Extensions
    • Rows (each arm)
    • 1/2/3/4/3/2/1 pull ups
    • 1 Irkie Dirkie
    • Stopped at 0600
  • Grab a battle buddy and a log
    • Lurches – together, lunge step forward, at the top golden arch to the other shoulder
    • To the top of the parking lot
    • 5 power merkins each
    • To the bottom of the parking lot

We definitely did a little

I would like to propose a few types of rules that people live by

Rule of War – Do it to them before they do it to us

Eye for an eye – Don’t do worse to them than they did to you

Silver rule – Don’t do to others what you don’t want them to do to you

Golden rule – Do unto others what you would have them do to you

God’s rule – Love your neighbor as yourself (Leviticus 9:18)

Jesus new commandment – Love one another as I have loved you (John 13:34)

Now, if I were a preacher, this could be a whole sermon series, but since I am not, I just want to hang out around last step. When one reads “Love your neighbor as yourself”, it lands as the highest demand that you could make on someone. In fact, I think most people don’t really distinguish the top three tiers of this list. But I think there is actually a lot going on up here at the top.

My eyes have been most opened to this as, over the past ten years, I have attempted to be a father to my son. Being a father has demanded from me an enormous amount of growth, which I frankly didn’t think I needed before I started. When I was married without children, I pretty much had the whole “love your neighbor” thing down. I was a pretty charismatic guy who knew how to steer a situation toward good outcomes, and pretty much did right by all, at least on a comparative scale. And having a baby made it tougher, cause it was exhausting, but I had served on a submarine, so sleep deprivation was kinda normal already. But then the boy turned two and things went downhill. For some reason, he didn’t obey my every word, in spite of my very good imitation of the way good parents act on TV. As the years went on, I descended into a mindset of figuring out how to force my son to behave, and as my methods escalated, I started realizing that I didn’t like the path I was on. But I was caught in a mental trap, on one side an intense responsibility to “raise him right” and an intense reality of how things were actually going.

Eventually, I arrived at the realization that the difference was the rule. For most people, I lived in the golden rule zone, treating them the way I wanted to be treated. But with my son, I was operating on the next level up, I was loving him as myself. Trouble is, I didn’t love myself very well. While on the exterior I was all relaxed and friendly to others, internally I was a slave driver. My son had the unfortunate experience of actually being loved by me more. Pride played a huge role in this, leading me to have low expectations of others while demanding more and more of myself, primarily in the form of external performance. But with Paul, I expected everything, even more than myself because he had the full attention of potentially the greatest dad ever born.

And that’s the genius of Jesus’ new commandment. Rather than allowing my own, twisted internals to set the standard, the expectations are nailed to a cross. I need to stop trying to make a better version of me and start acting like Him.
Ran out of time for my planned work at the wall. Maybe next time.
Hardship Hill, Forg3, Dragon boat race

Queen for your Queen

THE SCENE: Cool and Clear, brisk for Spring but totally perfect, waning gibbous overhead

  • Hairy Rockettes
  • Cheerleaders
  • Moroccan nightclubs
  • Grady corn
  • Cherry pickers
  • Mountain climbers
  • Tempo merkins
  • Pickle pounders
  • Pickle pointers


  • Mosey to the Friendship Bell
  • Bicycle race 3:04
    • 20 4-ct freddies, 5 rowboats x5
    • 10 4-ct mountain climbers, 5 pickle pounders
  • Another one bites the dust 3:37
    • Mucho chesto at songs pace
    • 10 Catalina wine mixers
  • Hammer to fall 3:40
    • 20 4-ct American hammers
    • 20 imperial squawkers
  • Headlong 4:33
    • 20 drydocks, run
    • 20 basilisks, run
    • 10 dive bombers, run
    • 10 speed skaters, run
    • Repeat to end of song
  • Breakthru 4:09
    • 20 squats
    • 20 Lunges
    • 20 step ups
    • 20 dips
    • 20 hello Dolly’s
    • Repeat to end of song
  • Flash 2:48
    • Indian run around the loop
  • Mosey to the pool wall
  • I want it all 4:01
    • 6 Wall ups
    • 6 BttW shoulder taps
    • Wall sit until they say “I want it all”
  • RTF

No time, and I had Bohemian Rhapsody all ready to go…


In F3, we spend a lot of time talking about working out, but there is another part of fitness that we rarely talk about, what I would call the silent majority of fitness, the queen. Exercise is awesome, but without the right supplies, it won’t make the change we are hoping for. Trouble is, there are so many different aspects and topics and controversies that can muddy the water. So I just wanted to touch on some of the basics that I think are generally agreed upon.

  • You can’t out-king your queen, or another way I have heard it said, you can’t outrun your fork. There is not an amount of exercise you are capable of doing that will allow you to eat whatever you want. Your ability to consume calories Completely outpaces your ability to burn them
  • In – out = accumulation. That’s it. There are no tricks to understanding your weight. If you eat more than you burn, you will accumulate.
  • Drink water. Signals from the body can be confusing, and it common to try and address thirst by eating! Before you eat, drink water to make sure you are actually hungry. Also, you will feel way better and it will help manage the stunning amount of salt in the American diet.
  • Quality protein. We 90s kids were raised in a world that seemed to think protein was outdated, so we have bad habits about eating primarily carbs. An exercising man should eat about 1 g of protein per 2 pounds of body weight. That’s more than the nutrition facts imply, unless you weigh less than 100 lbs. Try to center your meals on a food that is high in protein, which my rule of thumb is 25% or more of the calories from protein. If you don’t want to do the math, more grams of protein than fat is a good place to start and pretty much avoid things made with grains.

Something different for each song was kinda fun, but it was too much briefing. Shoulda made a sheet or something.

Testing is Purifying

THE SCENE: A crisp, wet 50, Almost new moon

  • Projectivators
  • Hairy Rockettes
  • LBACs
  • Tempo Squats

March Metric Workout

  • Mosey to the recruiting center
  • Everybody get a block and line up along the parking lot
  • 15 minutes of work, change exercises every minute, count total reps as you go, move a parking lot line every 50 (everything is with a CMU)
    • OHP
    • Goblet Squats
    • Bent over Rows
    • Big Boy Situps
    • Curls
    • Lunges
    • Derkins
    • LBCs
    • Tri extensions
    • Deadlifts
    • Thrusters x5
  • 3 minute rest, then DO THE WHOLE THING AGAIN
  • Put up the blocks and head back to the flag

No time

The prospect of being tested doesn’t usually make me excited. Thanks, I expect, to our public education culture, most of us associate testing primarily with being judged, usually based on a comparatively short and only vaguely representative sample of our performance. Too often, it seems that the circumstances of the test have more to do with the outcome than our preparation.

Consequently, most of us avoid tests when we can. Our experience says that we get better outcomes when we rely on more controlled vehicles like 1001 take home worksheets. We don’t like the risk if failing. But I am here to tell you that this perspective is a wound and scar that is crippling your growth, and it’s time to start stretching it out.

This model of testing is shallow and unhelpful. Perhaps unsurprisingly, I think the model presented by the bible provides insight. In the preblast, I quoted Psalm 66 v. 10 “For you, God, tested us; you refined us like silver.” Here and in many places, “test” is the Hebrew word is Tsaraph, which is directly related to the process by which impurities are removed from silver or gold, what we would call smelting. Through heat and pressure, the precious metal is separated from the dross and purified. So while evaluation is one aspect of testing, by its nature, it is also a means of purification. It is through repeated testing that gold becomes pure, and likewise, it is through repeated testing that we grow, develop, and become stronger. And, in truth, we want to be tested. From our youth, we seek out challenges. Easy is boring. It’s only under the weight of time with nagging fear and doubt that this inclination gets slowly crushed out of us.

Tsaraph – 1) to refine, try, smelt, test 2) to find out who is qualified for battle, as with Gideon in Judges 7:4 3) to smith, as in shaping metal (Jer 6:29-30, Is 40:19) 4) to refine by means of suffering (Ps 66:10-12)

Is 1:25 – “And I will turn my hand upon thee, and purely purge away thy dross, and take away all thy tin.”

Zec 13:9 – “And I will bring the third part through the fire, and will refine them as silver is refined, and will try them as gold is tried: they shall call on my name, and I will hear them: I will say, It is my people: and they shall say, The LORD is my God.”

Mal 3:2-3 – “But who may abide the day of his coming? And who shall stand when he appeareth? For he is like a refiner’s fire, and like fuller’s soap: and he shall sit as a refiner and purifier of silver: and he shall purify the sons of Levi, and purge them as gold and silver, that they may offer unto The LORD an offering in righteousness.”

Finally, I want to show how this directly connects to the F3 leadership process, Q4.5, here is an excerpt:

So where does Failure fit into the Leadership development equation? What does it add to a man’s Leadership Foundation? If he already knows what a Virtuous Leader does and is–and is able is able to do and be those things himself–why must a Leader also Fail?

The reason is that Failure is a crucible. It is the forge by which a Leader is purified through the burning away of his me-first self-regarding nature. It matures him. Without Failure (and lots of it), a Leader will retain too much of who he was and keep doing what he did, rather than being fully transformed into what a Virtuous Leader is and consistently do what a Virtuous Leader does.

We were late getting back. In September (ouch…) probably gonna need to get right over to the recruiting center and warm up on the way.
Wild at Heart, Escape from Haw Ridge, Hardship Hill

Pi and other Universal constants

THE SCENE: Cold for March. Actually, cold for anytime.

  • Projectivators
  • Tempo Squats
  • Grady Corn
  • Moroccan Nightclubs
  • Tempo Merkins
  • Mountain Climbers
  • Newton’s Cradle


  • Mosey to the bell
  • Pi = 3.14159265359
    • 3 burpees
    • 14 Merkins
    • 15 Squats
    • 92 LBCs
  • e = 2.71828 18284
    • 27 dips
    • 18 Merkins
    • 28 Lunges
    • 18 Wide Merkins
    • 28 Split Squats
    • 4 burpees
  • Mosey to the Pool wall
  • Golden Ratio = 1.618033988749
    • 16 Wall-ups and 18 Pull ups, divided as you think will be golden
  • Planck’s constant (J/Hz) = 6.62607015×10−34
    • 6 diamond merkins
    • 6 Catalina Wine Mixers
    • 26 shoulder taps
    • 34 seconds of PLANK
  • Gravitational constant (m3/kg s2) = 6.67430×10-11
    • Find another body, as a team do 66 BBS, 74 Squats, and 30 wall-ups
  • Avogadro’s Number (mol-1) = 6.02214076×1023
    • 60 LBCs, 22 Tie fighters
  • Speed of Light (m/s) = 299,792,458
    • Dash 299.792 meters, 1 millionth of a light second

We did some.


One who is faithful in a very little is also faithful in much, and one who is dishonest in a very little is also dishonest in much. If then you have not been faithful in the unrighteous wealth, who will entrust to you the true riches? And if you have not been faithful in that which is another’s, who will give you that which is your own? No servant can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money. – Luke 16:10-11

When I read this first, I was planning to talk about the first bit, the struggle that I have with being faithful in little things. And that’s a good thing to ponder, to be disciplined in the details of our lives because how we deal in these small things inevitably forms our response to the big things, i.e. you perform the way you practice.

But the middle verses struck me. Nestled between these two classically quotable lines, there are two strange questions. “If then you have not been faithful in the unrighteous wealth, who will entrust to you the true riches?” This clearly implies that when Jesus says “a very little” he means wealth. Do I think of my wealth as “a very little”? NO, I don’t. A massive portion of my waking hours are consumed by my wealth: acquiring, distributing, and managing. Even if it doesn’t steal my allegiance, it still feels like a big responsibility. The follow up is no less baffling: “And if you have not been faithful in that which is another’s, who will give you that which is your own?” This plainly indicates that my wealth is not my own, an idea which is oft floated from the pulpit but difficult to really embody. It leaves me wondering, What would it be like to have something that is actually my own? Because evidently, I have a twisted idea of what that even means. The sense in which my wealth is “not my own” seems to me the same sense in which everything else is given me by God. So again, what frame of reference do I even have for what might be “my own?”

Timed out pretty well. Plan was on the complicated side, so I missed a couple things I had wanted to do.
Cardinal Widow House Painting, Escape from Haw Ridge April 14th, Hardship Hill Memorial Day, Wild at Heart Retreat.