F3 Knoxville

The Light and the Dark

THE SCENE: Pleasant but cool, upper 40s, partly cloudy, persistent chilly breeze


Check, with an extra emphasis on COVID


-20 SSH, (4-ct), in cadence

– 10 Rockettes (4-ct), in cadence

– 10 Windmills (4-ct), in cadence

– 5 baby/5 big arm circles forward, and backward (4-ct), in cadence



  • Do 25 MERKINS, 25 BBS, and 25 BURPEES on the way up, whenever you want and in whatever order you want.

MOSEY to stop sign on northwest side of Admin circle road.  Get a Battle Buddy.

  • Partner 1 will run up to big tree and back. Once he reaches the tree, Partner 2 will run up to join him, give him a COVID high 5 (no touching), and Partner 1 will return to the bottom. Rinse and repeat three times. The method of running will vary:
    • Lap 1: run
    • Lap 2: Bernie
    • Lap 3: Karaoke left/right (switch halfway)
  • When not running, do the following exercises for all three laps:
    • TOP: 20 APOLO OHNOS, 20 TEMPO SQUATS, R&R until partner arrives
    • BOTTOM: 20 CDDS, 20 MTN CLIMBERS R&R until partner arrives

MOSEY To little hill north of northern parking lots:


MOSEY to CMU Parking Lot, grab a CMU, line up young to old (old closest to Pavilion)

  1. Slow LUNGE to far end.
  2. Run to Pavilion, do 10 bench pullups, 10 decline merkins, 10 Bench Dips
  3. Run back to CMU
  4. Rinse and Repeat so CMUs are back at start point. When done, put up the CMUs and go to the middle of parking lot and do Imperial Squat Walkers until 6 catches up.

MOSEY to AO Four corners Abs.  Sprint the long sides, Bear Crawl the short side.  At the four corners do 10 V-UPS, adding 10 more reps at each corner. (we only got to two corners before time was up.)

No time.

26 strong

New Year’s resolutions…  I’m not big on them myself; they are usually unrealistic and just set me up for feelings of failure or disappointment when I slack off of them after a few weeks.  But I do try to “recalibrate” at the start of a new year, and just focus on improving a few things that need tweaking in my life.  For me, one of those things involves improving my relationship with God.  As many of you have probably been doing, I’ve been watching streaming services on Sunday morning.  While I love the convenience of doing that, I’ve also found—stop me if this sounds familiar—that it’s easy to be distracted, to not be all “there”, to not be intentionally present.  In F3 workout terms, I wasn’t using GOOD FORM during my time in worship.  I was modifying.  During one recent service, I realized after the service had ended that I couldn’t remember anything in it.  I had been checking my phone for some “important” emails that I was waiting for, making (and then eating) breakfast, and even playing with my cats while the service played on my computer screen.  I realized right then that that just wasn’t good enough.  That’s just not respectful.  Can you imagine having a deep conversation with your friend, spouse, child, or colleague and having them act like that?  I sat back down, turned off my phone and the tv, and watched the service again.  By limiting distractions, putting my mind in a place where I’m more “present” and committed to spending that time with God, and focusing more on the messages of the church I can improve my relationship with God.

If you’re looking for a worthwhile goal for the new year, then I encourage you to do the same.  To tie in with a message that Pusher gave during his BOM recently, sometimes it’s a little difficult to figure out how best to communicate with God and to show him your love, voice your worries and concerns, and thank him for his Blessings. I loved Pusher’s suggestion to talk to God like you would talk to someone sitting next to you in a car. Just have a conversation with him.  And Pusher’s concern that he voiced to his pastor that he didn’t know how best to pray reminded me of these lyrics from a great Singer/Songwriter:

I went to see a preacher, to teach me how to pray. He looked at me and smiled, then that preacher turned away. He said if you want to tell Him something, you ain’t gotta fold your hands. Say it with your heart, your soul, and believe it, and I’d say Amen.

  • Jon Bon Jovi, “Bang a Drum”

So if you find yourself struggling with how best to pray, K.I.S.S. (Keep It Simple, Stupid).  Say it with your heart, your soul, and believe it.  God will hear you.

In closing, in honor of Martin Luther King Day, I would like to close with these words from the great man himself:

“Returning Hate for Hate multiplies hate, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars.  Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that.  Hate cannot drive out hate, only love can do that.” (hat tip to Title 9)

Praying for some brothers who were assigned to protect national and state capitols; congrats to J-Lo for completing the Highway Patrol program.  Prayers for Lilydipper’s barber who passed away from COVID and his family.

CSAUP at the Asylum Jan 30, 6:30 am, show up at 6:15 to register.  Ends at 9 am sharp.  Sign up with a battle buddy or solo.  Breakfast included.

It all started with a BLIMP… Part deux

THE SCENE: Couldn’t ask for better winter weather…

4 sure


20 SSH 4ct

2 Burpees

20 Imperial Walkers 4ct

4 Burpees

20 Tempo Squats 4ct

6 Burpees


B – Moseyed over to the Dragon and knocked out 10 Burpees

L – Moseyed over to Death Valley or Super Bowl and broke up into team 1 & team 2.  Team 1 sprinted to the other side of the bowl and touched a tree then sprinted back while team 2 lunged in place.  Then team 2 did the sprint while Team 1 lunged in place. We did 2 rounds.  Already started to hear some groaning!  Lol

I – The Bowl was such a hit we stayed and around to do Imperial Walkers & Sprints. (2 Rounds)  More Groaning!  Lol

M – Continued in the Bowl since no one had spilled Merlot yet…  This time with Merkins and Sprints(2 Rounds)

P – The Bowl was getting too easy so we shipped out to the base of Everest.  We knocked out 20 Plank Jacks 4ct.  Then Team 1 lined up for an All You Got(AYG) up Everest,  Team 2 gave them a 10 second head start and was challenged to catch Team 1!  As if Everest didn’t suck without someone chasing you…

We knocked out some exercises at the top of Everest then proceeded back to the AO.

Team 1 LBC’s while Team 2 ran up Baby Cardiac then swapped

Team 1 kept feet and head 6 inches while laying on their 6 while Team 2 ran up Baby Cardiac then swapped

Welcome FNG Stucco!
Blood Drive & CSAUP


THE SCENE: Cloudy and Chilly, low 40s.


-20 SSH, (4-ct), in cadence

– 10 Cherry Pickers, 4-ct, IC

– Little of this and that/ Michael Phelps/ Arm Circles

– Bolt 45s


MOSEY up Serpentine sidewalk and back down Baby Cardiac to CMU parking lot.  For a warmup.  Battle Buddy up, and each pair gets a piece of chalk.


We will work together to accomplish a difficult task in the CMU parking lot/Pavilion area, which will be completing a high number of reps of various exercises, all together, as a PAX.  As we complete the reps, we will cross off the markers to track progress.  If we do not complete all reps with 5 minutes left, we end with 20 Burpees, otherwise, we will do Stargazers.

The Tasks will be broken out as follows:

CMU Pile:

– 500 Curls (Marker indicators 20 reps each, 500/20 = 25 markers)

–  500 Overhead Presses (Marker indicators 20 reps each, 500/20 = 25 markers)

– 500 Squats (Marker indicators 20 reps each, 500/20 = 25 markers)


  • 50 Sprints up Baby Cardiac (Marker indicators 2 trips each, 50/5 = 25 markers)


  • 50 Suicides (Marker indicators 2 suicides each, 50/5 = 25 markers)


– 500 LBCs (Marker indicators 20 reps each, 500/20 = 25 markers)

–  200 Big Boy Situps (Marker indicators 20 reps each, 200/20 = 10 markers)

– 200 American Hammers (2-ct) (Marker indicators 20 reps each, 200/20 = 10 markers)


– 500 Jump or Step Ups (2-ct) (Marker indicators 20 reps each, 500/20 = 25 markers)

–  200 Decline Merkins (Marker indicators 20 reps each, 200/20 = 10 markers)

– 200 Bench Pullups (Marker indicators 20 reps each, 200/20 = 10 markers)

We ended up with more guys than expected, so we easily finished all the reps, and rinsed and repeated quite a few of them.  Ended with a final sprint up Baby Cardiac.

Flutter Hammers, E2Ks, Box Cutters (all 20 reps, 4-ct IC)

20 strong. Jetlag not tagged.


Quite frankly, I considered dropping my Q today, after witnessing the disgusting, inexcusable acts against our Capital building, the house of the people yesterday.  I was so disheartened, so sad, so ANGRY that I thought it beyond me to lead a Q after that.  But then I reconsidered.  If I just dropped the Q, that would be an abrogation of my responsibility. I would be putting the burden on someone else.  I would be turning away instead of being out front during a conflict.  Part of F3 is to foster leadership.  I don’t consider myself the world’s greatest leader, to be honest.  I’ve always been more of a Doer than a Leader.  But I’m trying to improve myself in that regard, and turning away is not what leaders do.

So, I Q’d today, but I scrapped my original workout and my BOM.  I’ll save it for next time.  I wanted to focus on doing something together.  Something collaborative, where we work towards a common goal.  We need more of that as a nation, because right now, guys, we are a broken and lost community.

One of the things I really appreciate about F3 is that it is apolitical. It has some pretty clearly stated goals, is very inclusive, and refrains from taking political stances.  I loved the National F3 response in the wake of the racial protests this past summer.  Their response was, “We have no response.  Our ethos speaks for itself, and we will continue on that mission.”  So I will honor that approach, and won’t go down a rabbit hole today voicing my opinions about what happened yesterday. With one exception…

One of the things that angered me the most of what I saw yesterday was the carrying of flags that invoked the name of Jesus, our lord and savior.  I’m not a biblical scholar, and I don’t pretend to be able to channel what Jesus would do or say in witnessing the ugliness of the mob yesterday, but I feel pretty confident that He would be sad, disgusted, even angry.

In the Sermon on the Mount (found in the Book of Matthew) Jesus Christ laid out the central facets of the way of life He taught His followers. One of the central themes of the Sermon on the Mount is Christ’s expectation that His followers be characterized by peace—not violence or war.  Jesus taught, “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God” (Matthew 5:9). Christ’s followers should be characterized by living a way that leads to peace, not by violence and strife.  The apostle Paul wrote that Christians are to do whatever possible to “live peaceably with all men” (Romans 12:18), and many scriptures support the basic truth that Christians are to “pursue peace with all people” (Hebrews 12:14; see also 2 Corinthians 13:11; Galatians 5:22; James 3:17).  And with regards to hatred of fellow human beings, Jesus likens hating another man with breaking the 6th Commandment (Thou Shalt Not Kill) and says, “But I say to you that whoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment.” (Matthew 5:21-22).

I saw a lot of hatred in the faces of the mob yesterday.  I felt more than a little of it creeping into my own heart.  Hatred for our fellow humans, especially for our fellow Americans, is not the path of a Christian.

In closing, just some humble words of advice… I’ve heard it said recently that the biggest threat to our democracy and to peace between us isn’t Russia, Iran, the Corona virus, Republicans, Democrats, etc.  It’s the spread of disinformation on the internet and social media.  I tend to agree with this statement.  Please… before you form a definitive opinion on something, before you pass judgment on someone or something, and before you forward something on, share, post, like, whatever… just do a little research on it.  Take a look at multiple sources of information that are neutral, that are reliable, that can be substantiated, that don’t have an agenda.  Falsehoods, exaggerations, and us-vs-them mob mentality largely fueled what happened yesterday.  We need to start respecting and working cohesively with each other, like we did in the workout today, or we are lost.

Prayers for friends and families of the PAX that are healing from injuries, or dealing with deaths and sickness from COVID.
Asylum CSAUP Jan 30, 6:30-9:00 am. Asylum shirts are now available on Mudgear!

Adapting with CMUesday in the Fake Gloom

[ The Scene ]

SUNNY. Little warm. Character building weather.

[ Welcome/Disclaimer ]

  • Welcome to F3: Fitness-Fellowship-Faith
  • My name is Steam and I am honored to be your Q this evening
  • I am not a professional, you’re here on your own volition, and if you need to modify anything we do this evening feel free to do so BUT push yourselves and the men around you.
  • You will not get left behind and you will not leave the same way you came in.
  • FNGs?
  • I’ll have water, med gear, and my phone on me the entire time in my ruck so if you need to put something in there before we get on the mosey feel free to do so

Before we begin tonight we’re going to have a 1 minute moment of silence in honor of our fallen brother from F3 GrandStand in Myrtle Beach.

Jacob Anchor – codename Hightower –  End of Watch on October 3rd 2020

Very active in F3 GrandStand and a true HIM that led a life of service to his family and community.

Join me now in honoring our fallen brother.

[ Warm o Rama ]

(1) SSH: 15 x 4

(2) Happy Feet: 10

– quick feet —> 1 burpee on command

(3) Windmill: 10 x 4

(4) Baby Arm Circles: 10×4 F & 10×4 B

(5) Rockette: 10×4


[ The Thang ]

(Mosey to CMU Pile)

  • Every stop sign = 25 up/down merkins
  • Everyone get a CMU

[ Pause for Reflection for/from the Q ]

Apparently baseball season is back. When I was planning this Q – that did not come across my mind. Which means a couple things: (1) I, as the Q, did not accurately scope out the scene pre-Q. (2) We’re going to have to adapt. Halfway through the evolution of PT that you will see below, some of the PAX running were confronted by a middle aged man who was blatantly overreacting to our presence in the specific area of the park where the morning AO meets (parking lot) and was pretty aggressive in making his feelings toward us being there clear. So what do we do when that happens. Let’s start with what we don’t need to do: We don’t need to add fuel to the fire, we don’t need to confront or engage the individual, and we don’t need to push that individual who is already upset/mad/pissed off/irrational. Frankly, it’s not worth our time in that moment. So what do we need to do: We need to be peacemakers. Being the bigger man man sometimes means choosing to walk away. We’re called to be at peace with all men. We can do this without diminishing our dignity or the other party’s. This man was being irrational and approached our men in almost a rage. Pusher made the excellent point of just walk away, it’s not worth it. However – this all could have been avoided if I, the Q, had recognized that we may have needed to avoid this certain area of the park when we were mosey’ing to it. So from me, the Q – I apologize for not using discernment when leading us there. This was a learning lesson wisely pointed out by Jinxy at the COT. 

[ End Pause for Reflection for/from the Q ]

– PAX takes CMUs to the field by the playground and lays them down in two lines facing each other

– PAX execute 25 Big Boy Sit-ups with CMUs on their feet for stability

– PAX run to CMU pile and execute 10 burpees

(Rinse and Repeat 4)

***Encounter with the upset man in the parking lot***

– Q calls audible – replaces CMUs — circle the men up — brief AAR of what just happened — Mosey back home to the PM AO

– PAX mosey back up the street to the PM AO — every stop sign = 25 up/down merkins

– PAX encounter last 2 stop signs in the same 50 feet or so = 50

– Q leads PAX in 50 up/down merkins but stops when PAX reaches 45 — tells everyone to drop down to their knees and look up — “Breathe. It’s going to be okay. We’re almost there.” — Execute the final 5

– PAX mosey back up the hill to the PM AO — wagon wheel and pickup the 6 — circle up by the flag

[ Mary ]

– 25×4 Hello Dollys

– 25×4 LBCs

– 25×4 flutter kicks

[ COT ]

  • # off = 21
  • Name o Rama
  • FNGs = 0
  • BOM

I found myself at a place I don’t find myself at very often last week.

I found myself at a place that looked exactly like a scene in Lord of the Rings where the main character drops down to his knees, realizes the place that he’s in, and utters the words “I can’t do this.”

What a place to be right?

So a couple points with this:

(1) Own where you’re  at.

  • If you’re tired – own it. If you’re struggling, own it.  I’m tired/struggling mentally, I’m tired/struggling physically, I’m tired/struggling mentally, I’m tired/struggling spiritually, I’m tired/struggling sexually (we’re men we can handle that), I’m tired/struggling emotionally – own that place.
    • What I mean by this is this: We have all been tired and struggled in all of these arenas at some point in time in our lives. For me specifically, last week I was really tired and struggling mentally. I was tired and struggling emotionally. I was physically tired. I was struggling spiritually. I was struggling sexually with lust and loneliness and losing my sexual battle with porn and felt the complete weight of that. I was exhausted. The enemy was exhausting me, because I was exhausting myself. We’ve all been there. Maybe in different forms or fashions, but nonetheless, we’ve been there.
  • I’m tired. I’m lonely. I’m stressed. I’m not where I want to be. Own it.
  • Own it. Don’t accept it – own it. There’s a difference there.

Why do we need to own it?

(2) Just because we’re in a certain place does not mean this is our final resting place. Just because we’re here doesn’t mean we are destined to stay here.

  • Life is hard. It’s dark. If you’re in a place you don’t want to be in – own it and realize this is not where the story ends. You weren’t meant to stay here.
  • Just because this is where you are right now does not mean this is where you’re going to stay.

You were created for so much more than the situations and places you find yourself in.

(Hey and guess what – you have brothers that toe the line with you in the gloom and fake gloom – that I KNOW are ready to lock shields and toe the line with you outside the COT too. Let them in and seek wise counsel from them)

Why? Because point number 3

(3) God is about to do something awesome in your life. God is about to do something AWESOME in your life.

Believe that.

Regardless of where you are, what your status is, God is on the move in your life whether you realize it to not.

We need to believe this to be true.

  • God is about to do something great in your life but it is directly tied to your obedience.

What does this look like? Something like this I think.

(Gather men around carefully)

I saw this on my morning walk as the sun was rising and I was praying just for a good day. Sometimes we just need to pray for a good day.

And I came across this gate in a field with the door opened. And I truly believe this is such an excellent picture of how much God loves us and how he calls us into freedom in Him.

And I don’t know who needs to hear this besides me but here we go:

So when I saw this this morning and took this picture — I noticed a couple o things.

  • One of the gate doors was flung wide open
  • The other side of the gate door was closed, with a trash can blocking some of it.
  • And if you were with me this morning, we could have walked right through the open side of the gate. But we would have had to make a choice to do so. However it would have cost us something as well.
  • I think this picture screams the invitation that God gives to us:
    • An invitation to walk out of or walk through whatever you’re going through or wherever you’re at.
    • There is a God above that opens jail cells, doors, and gates — but it’s going to require something of you.
    • Notice the trash can sort of in front of the closed side of the gate. When God opens a gate or a door or a jail cell – whatever that may be in our lives – we’re going to have to leave something behind and leave the place that we currently are at to enter into the place He’s calling us to be. Maybe its an identity we’ve been holding onto or a relationship we’ve been in, or an idol – anything that would prevent us from walking through the gate/door that God is calling us to. 



Here’s what I want to leave you with:

Jeremiah 1:17 – 19

Get yourself ready! Stand up and say to them whatever I command you. Do not be terrified by them or I will terrify you before them. Today I have made you a fortified city, an iron pillar and a bronze wall to stand against the whole land – against the kings of Judah, it’s officials, it’s priests and the people of the land. They will fight against you but will not overcome you, for I am with you and will rescue you, declares the Lord.


Stay in the Fight!



THE SCENE: Light rain, temp in low 60s.

20 Side-Straddle Hops, 20 Plank Jacks, 10 Windmills, 10 Rockettes, 10 Baby Arm Circles Forward and Backward, 7 Wide Arm Circles Forward and Backward.
Our AO for the day was the pavilion at the Northern Ball Fields.

Mosey to semi-circle roadway that goes by soccer fields.  We ran high knee for 10 stakes, did 10 squats, then butt-kicked for 10 stakes and did 10 squats.  We continued that pattern until the end of the semi-circle roadway.  We then returned to the start with the same pattern but this time doing squat jumps instead of squats.  We, finally, went back on the semi-circle, this time doing Bernie Sander for 20 states and 5 Imperial Walkers, repeating that pattern to the end of the semi-circle roadway.

Mosey to parking lot by southern ball fields.  We did suicides up parking lot, running to each of the large light posts along the parking lot.  When we got back from each cone we did 20 Squats.  We rinsed and repeated.

Mosey back to the street but stop at curb before stop sign.  We did 10 tempo merkins by curb.

Mosey to parking lot with the islands that is located south of the Northern Ball Fields.  We divided into three groups.  Two groups positioned themselves on islands on the opposite end of the parking lot.  While the third group ran from one end of the parking lot to the other, the groups on either island alternated between doing 10 incline merkins on curb and 10 bench dips on curb.  Once the running group got to the island then they started the exercises while the group that was there ran to the other end.  This pattern continued until all groups had run from one end to the other two times.

Mosey to Pavilion.  At pavilion, we ran to benches, did 10 bench jumps and ran back to pavilion.  Rinse and repeat.

Finish at Pavilion.

17 men, no FNGs.

Galatians 6:17

From now on let no one cause trouble for me, for I bear on my body the brand-marks of Jesus.

I’m going to talk a little bit about the importance of scars, the importance of wounds.  As men, we sometimes take a bit of pleasure in showing our scars to one another.  Sounds weird, but I think there are good reasons for it.  By sharing we show one another that we have been wounded and have that in common.  We also show we were tough enough to take it.

Our brother, Pusher, has told me of a tradition in the Philippines where boys are circumcised at the age of ten.  Think about how painful that is for a ten-year-old.  For two weeks after the circumcision that boy, in fact, wears a dress because the touch of pants to the circumcised area would be too painful.  Filipinos realize that they could change the age of the circumcision – to circumcise at that age is certainly not a medical necessity.  But in the Philippines it is a rite of passage.  The boy fears the moment, fears the pain, but in enduring it makes a major step toward manhood.  He can walk proudly, knowing he has endured it.

The Aborigines have an interesting rite of passage that I read about.  At the time of puberty the male or female meets overnight with the same sex members of their community who tell them stories of manhood or womanhood.  Afterwards, the male or female meets in a ceremony with their father and mother.  Both the father and the mother each take a sharp claw from an animal and cut the skin on the chest of the child.  The cuts form permanent wounds that will remain on the daughter or son’s breast for the rest of their life.  It is a symbol of recognition: “I have been wounded by my parents and I must accept that fact.  In accepting it, I can become a woman or a man.”  I love that – my parents love me but they have also wounded me and I need to man up to that.

I can remember my cousin and I talking, at about college age, about the types of women we would like to marry.  Of course we talked about physical beauty.  But we also talked about the character of the woman we wanted to marry.  We both agreed that we would rather marry a woman who had been wounded by some hardships than marry a woman who never had faced hardships and was completely innocent.  Our scars give us character.  They also help us to empathize with the pain and hardships experienced by others.

I accept that I have been scarred by life.  I cannot deny it or escape it.  I am not the Innocent Man that Billy Joel sang about.  But, as a Christian, the ultimate example of empathy for me is our Lord Christ.  I expose my scars to Him.  For, He was willing to take on the scars of the Cross to save humankind from our sinfulness.  In recognizing this, in baptizing myself to this, I am given the ultimate rite of passage.  And, as Paul states in Galatians 6:17, “from now on let no one cause trouble for me, for I bear on my body the brand-marks of Jesus.”

Prayers for Helga and his wife who is having surgery, for Steam’s father who just had total knee replacement surgery, and for Steam as he considers a new job.
Hardship Hill on Saturday, October 3.