Welcome to the long-awaited Makeshift Marathon 2020 PreBlast. Before we get into it, a little housekeeping…
Disclaimer: This is not an official event and is not sanctioned by F3 or FiA. There will be no road closures, medical professionals, safety personnel or public safety officials. Race organizers will not be held liable for any accidents, injuries, illnesses, deaths or medical emergencies experienced during or after Makeshift Marathon 2020. Participation is at your own risk. By registering for and/or participating in this event, you agree to these terms and conditions.
Good times! When a PreBlast leads off with a disclaimer you know you have something exceptionally #CSAUP on your hands.
So, what is this? Simply put, a contingent of local runners who had their Fall races canceled put their heads together and developed their own race in Waxhaw/Marvin/South Charlotte. Several options are available, including a full marathon, marathon relay (any number of teammates), half marathon and 10k. Ruckers are welcome. There will be aid stations with water and participants will have the opportunity to have their own fuel/hydration waiting for them at each station.
Why? For the love of the sport, and to provide like-minded family and friends with the opportunity the race like it’s not 2020, while raising funds for a good cause.
Who? Open to members of F3, FiA, family and friends. Please do not advertise/share on social media.
When? Saturday, November 14th at 7AM. In the event of inclement weather, the make-up date is Sunday, November 15th.
Where? Parking and race start/finish are in front of Kohl’s on Rea Rd. & Tom Short Rd in Waxhaw (601 Sherman Pl, Waxhaw, NC 28173).
Click HERE to register.
Click HERE to sign-up for a volunteer timeslot
Eight men gathered under the house that Haggis built for Stonehenge. For YHC, it was my first time back in quite a while having been a DaVinci man for some time now. But Stonehenge started it all for SOB and it is awesome to go back. We had a good go of it:
Warm Up: Mosey to Wells Fargo lot for 20 SSH IC, Arm Circles, 5 burpees OYO, minimal yoga, 20 mountain climbers IC.
Mosey to Lochness for Part 1 of the main event. 5 rounds of pull ups: max, max-1, max-2, max-3, max -4. In between, get enough “recovery” to be able to complete the reps. Round 1 = a lap with stops for 15 jump ups and 20 low slow squats, then 15 jump ups and 10 split squats. (It was here we encountered a a couple of party goers enjoying a pinch of the wacky tobacky. They wouldn’t give us any.) Round 2 = a lap with stops for 20 flutters and 10 slow dollies, then 20 American Hammers and 10 LBCs (the tokers had left.) Round 3 = a lap with stops for 10 derkins/10 dips IC, then 10 inclines merkins/10 dips IC. Round 4 = run a lap and meet up for Mary.
Mosey to Bagpipe Hill for Part 2. Partner up. Partner 1 backwards bear crawl up hill toward the BofA sign. P2 run backwards up the grass hill, then run to catch your partner and flapjack. Go until you reach the Bank of America sign. Next round – P1 forwards bear crawl up the hill, P2 10 jump squats, run to catch your partner and flapjack. Go until we reach the bridge.
Finish it up with a mosey home and three stops for 10 “low slow CDDs” IC and 20 big boi sit ups. 2 minutes of planking back at launch. We covered just over four miles total.
Announcements: Blood drive Friday October 23.
Another year, another BRR… Most of you reading this have participated in the granddaddy of all relay races at least once (I mean, if you haven’t are you even truly considered F3?). Once a glorious tradition among the PAX of South CLT, in recent years this CSAUP has dwindled in popularity. In part this is likely due to burnout as the “core” PAX of most teams had run it 3-4 times. Other PAX have moved on to different goals (Boston Marathon, Ultra’s, Orange Theory Splat Points, underwater basket weaving world records). One team, however, continues to run strong as a geriatric derby horse desperately working to avoid the glue factory. Up ‘N Over may not be the fastest team at BRR, we certainly aren’t the best looking, but by god we have staying power!
As the glorious contender entered its 7th (8th?) year, something was a little… different. The team was coming off its first year “sub-30” and seemed to have a solid core of strong runners looking to return to Grayson Highlands to achieve even greater mediocrity. Sure there were questions, would Turkey Leg ever admit he was actually “on the team?” Would Joker realize his dream of a celibacy pledge? Would Udder figure out that midriff baring shirts are intended for late 90s Brittany Spears only, never ever for beer loving weekend warrior dads with a penchant for profuse perspiration??? We would find answers for these and more!
Then the great equalizer of 2020 flipped the game board and our well laid plans were scattered asunder like so many checkers. Covid pushes Boston marathon to September, and there goes our itinerant substitute Turkey Leg. City of Charlotte creates a thinly veiled excuse to poach the greatest Chief off Staff the energy sector has ever known prompting Joker to succumb to his Plantar Fascia. Sprockets stood fast on the fact there is only one time during the show during which we dance, and bowed out after his rookie year. Thus 9 became 6 and the annual dance continued.
You see, Up ‘N Over has a time honored recruitment tradition as injury or burnout has had us replacing 1-3 team members every year. Thus the hype machine was un-crated and off we went. We had an early success in replacing the speed of Sprockets with an equally spry but younger rookie known as GrassHopper. Then Alf stepped out of the shadows of retirement to assume “some short legs,” which prompts many altitude reference jokes. Finally, in the 11th hour, in our time of need, the greatest BRR veteran of them all, the great Slim Fast himself stepped into the ring to anchor the team and we were 9 again!
During the same time as our media blitzkreig, COVID-19 was ravaging the nation one news report at a time. Races were dropping like flies as race directors succumbed to the pressures of local governments, relatively reasonable fear of become “cluster” events, and a healthy dose of celebrity fear mongering. We all watched for e-mails from the great Ken of Blue Ridge Endurance, but the crazy man kept up with the craziness and soldiered on. Throughout the summer we received update of shifting legs, reducing the field, health guidances and general safety precautions, but the race soldiered on. Voodoo kept the team focused on our goals and held numerous calls so we were all in the loop and comfortable with the dynamics. We settled on a 3 van format, committed to pre-race quarantine and accepted we would have to wear masks/gaiters around other runners on and off the course.
The race weekend was, actually, much like race weekends from years before. Granted, only 56 teams on the course made it feel smaller, but somehow more intimate as well. F3 showed up incredibly well, probably half the teams sported the moniker. The fast guys still passed us like we were standing still. Udder still lost what few marbles he possesses shortly after the sun dipped below the range. The biggest change was the shortened, or missing, legs as we were forbidden from running on the blue ridge parkway. 11, 12, 35 and 36 were all impacted, with 35 being completely eradicated as a result. We had to shuttle runners between a couple of EZs as a result and several runners had significantly shortened mileage.
As the dust settled at the end of the race, we had completed the trip from Grayson Higlands to Asheville yet again. We had come together as a team. We had survived torrential downpours, hellish climbs, malfunctioning equipment, and toxic fumes unleashed upon unwitting team mates. This race was special, it was a once in a lifetime experience. For YHC it was such an important event, to have something even a little normal in this time of significant change and uncertainty. We answered the call of the mountain yet again, and again we emerged the stronger for it. This CSAUP will continue to be a fixture on my fall calendar, until Up ‘N Over ceases to exist, or they kick my annoying posterior out once and for all.
I’ve included an assortment of discordant observations below, and encourage my fellow UNOs to sound off in the comments below with their own observations and thoughts:
-Rookie BRR participant Grasshopper CRUSHED the gnarly 6 spot which includes the indomitable “Nipple” climb on leg 33 AND the 10.5 mile climb around the base of grandfather. His runs included over 3k of climb, the most of the relay, and ran those legs well enough to be in the top 5 finishers of the weekend on each.
-Hoover continues to impress with his ability to carry his Yeti-like frame around the mountains with remarkable strength and consistency. It was remarked more than once, if he was of similar frame and size of the 115 pound youngsters who set course records out there, he would beat them handily with his fearsome abilities.
-Alf performed incredibly well, despite not having much time to train up as he committed to the race less than a month out. He ran all but one of his legs sub 8:00/mile (and the one he missed the mark on was 8:01/mile). Yes he had “only” 14 miles in the 7 spot, but every mile on BRR is hard fought and this was a job very well done.
-Slim Fast is not only an incredible runner, but an encyclopedia of BRR. He knows the course like the back of his well traveled hand and shared that knowledge freely throughout the race. It was an awesome experience to have him part of the 2020 vintage of UNO
-VooDoo continues to impress as he took his running abilities to the next level to dominate the challenging 4 spot, including leg 31 which is, in my opinion, the gnarliest leg on BRR.
-For the first time in 5 runnings of BRR, rain was a MAJOR factor in the race. At times the rain was limiting visibility to just a few feet. Blinkies shorted out, shoes were full of moisture, showers were not even considered. Overnight runs are usually a nightmare of tired and exhausted runners shuffling about in the inky blackness past surly dogs and scary abandoned buildings. This year, the lonesomeness was exacerbated by few runners on the course and the INSANE AMOUNT OF WATER EVERYWHERE…. rough
-The Trail of Tears may not look too bad on paper, only ~300 feet of climb on a 9 mile run, but good lord it challenged YHC. After 2 miles of descent the climb was unrelenting for over 6 miles of constant low grade hill. The darkness makes the hills feel eternal and you’re left with just your internal narrative to keep you from losing your grip. Having run 31, 33, grandfather and several other “named” routes on the course, I firmly support the notoriety of this storied leg.
-For YHC, the BRR was even more important this year than in years past. For various reasons which we’ll not get into during this ‘blast, I really needed to get away from life for a while. For 20+ hours, I was able to turn off everything else and focus on the run, on my teammates, on the spirit of competition and wonder. I am so incredibly grateful for those hours, and for the men who supported me through them. BRR is the best worst experience of my year every year and I highly recommend it to the veterans and uninitiated alike. As they say “all other races are just a warmup.”
Qing Swarm two days after IPC and the night after Clyent Dinner and IPC relay, ugh, soreness is at it’s worst 48 hours in…. let’s go!
7 pax today including 2 non regulars which was great to see
DiCCS were given (Disclaimer, Cell phone, CPR, Safety)
Mosey to alley/breezeway on the side of the High School
Mosey back to the high school lot for some four corners:
Mosey to the corner of the high school lot by the stadium, grab a lifting rock:
Short Mosey to back side of high school
3 minutes left, fast mosey back to COT
A little over 5 miles in the books
Great to see Atlas and Fuse Box at Swarm. Atlas usually has Friday morning obligations and with a free morning didn’t take the easy way out and posted the full hour. Fusebox fresh off his 10k Monday morning doubled up the distance this week and hit Swarm and got in about another 5 miles, well done.
My soreness from IPC (have fun tomorrow) is so bad I wanted to cry the entire 1 mile warmup.
There were ZERO squats or leg exercises today due to massive soreness from IPC and to keep those who are doing IPC tomorrow fresh.
Ice 9 and Wolverine had their own secret club meeting way out in front of everyone on the 4 corners
Wolverine was also laying on a “clutch” mat outside of the high school while doing big boys. Not so clutch if that’s the COVID mat….
the lightest lifting rock a good sized rock and killed it on the lifts/400m, or maybe he was just saying himself for that glory
Deflated may be running in secret with his third wheel gang but the man has developed some speed. I was definitely chasing you today. Hopefully your 5 item knee surgery goes well next Thursday and you can be back soon.
It was definitely a lighter crowd today with a lot of the Swarm regulars sandbagging in other workouts (you know who you are) or just completely no showing (TT, etc).
I know this is a Swarm backblast but I just wanted to say that although I am sore and tired from the IPC and IPC relay the IPC relay has been one of my highlights of F3 the past few months. The second F alone makes it. Getting together with 15+ guys every week to compete as a team and make fun of other regions has been pure gold. If you’re not participating you’re missing out. There are two weeks left and I hope to see you out.
Thank you for the opportunity to lead today.
It’s hard to believe it’s been 19 years. Today we reflected on innocent lives lost and the heroes who ran into those buildings to rescue and save those inside. In memory of the fallen, we conducted this morning’s workout in silence. Only my cadence and commands were heard as we took time to reflect and remember.
Mosey across 51 and over to the Charlotte Catholic deck. Up stairwell #1. CoP on top level.
Warm-Up Exercises in cadence:
Mosey back down the stairs to the entrance
WAVE 1: Catch me if you can (Partner Up)
Back down Stairwell #1 and across to the stadium fence. 9 WWII Sit-ups, 11 Leg Lifts, toes all the way to the fence (2 Sets).
Mosey over to Stairwell #2
WAVE 2: Deck Routine (Same Partners)
Back across to the stadium fence. 9 WWII Sit-ups, 11 Leg Lifts holding the fence.
Getting close to 6:00am so we detoured from the schedule to avoid the incoming teacher vehicles and headed over to the rock pile on McMahon St. It was at this point that Hops blew a wheel coming in hot to the rock pile. Wisely opted to walk it off rather that push through. Mermaid, being the solid Site Q he is, left no man behind and took off with Hops.
WAVE 3: Rock Work
AYG down to Hwy. 51 and then mosey back to Launch Point
Mary until time is called
Called time and COT.
Site Q Note: Not only did Amber VQ earlier this week, but he actually wrote a blackblast to go with it! In the words of Deniece Williams…..”Let’s Hear It For The Boy!”. Stellar example! Here you go men:
A strong group of 21 showed up for my VQ and it was really time to make everyone feel like they are 33 again. With the humidity turned down and the anxiety of our Clemson football brethren inching one step closer to the day Trevor Lawrence sits out for the year, the team was ready to work.
For the workout, we started in our circle of trust/death (to each is own) with some imperial walkers and some side shuffle hops.
Next we moseyed to the hills where we Triple nickeled with jump squats and Fred Mercury or Mercisons. Shoutout to Slingshot for leading the way up the hill.
Following the brutal 5 hills, we lunged down the flat into a side shuffle basketball style which Hopper swiftly abandoned for the grapevine.
Next we moseyed to Hope Church where we faced the toughest challenge yet. It was lifting time, and some were serious about their arm day. 10 Curls, 10 OH Presses and 10 OH Tricep Presses, followed by a run down to the church entrance for 10 Merkins and back……5 times. Some barely made it out, but we never leave brother behind.
We moseyed back to wall where we dodged some near fatal slips and sat against the wall for a good old classic wall sit. So that we didn’t leave the rest of the legs unsore, we followed with some leg raises on the fountain and then back to the launch for a circle of trust / death abs workout.
In short, it is an honor to lead this amazing group of men who help make each week go by much easier and continue to challenge me to be a better man, dad, husband and brother. While my only wish that didn’t come true was to have an FNG attend my VQ, I suppose wishes can still come true in the future.
*FUN FACT* Big Ben runs faster backwards than he does forward. Who would have known.
DICC’s given at 5:29 and time to mosey.
Opening mosey around COT parking lot over to the front of the middle school for warm up.
20 x SSH
20 imperial walkers
Various stretches for the “respects”
Mosey down the path to Rudy/Transporter shed. Start at shed and mosey back up path towards COT. Stop at side walk on the left and complete 20 speed skaters. Hang left at side walk and run over to middle school cafeteria area for 20 step ups. Mosey down bus path to Rudy shed and complete 20 donkey kicks. Circle back for six and finish together. Rinse and repeat for round 2.
Mosey over to high school parking lot for 7’s. 1 merkin at the top of the parking lot and 6 Bobby Hurley’s at the bottom of the parking lot. Run backwards back to the top of the parking lot. Continue until you do 7 merkins and 1 Bobby Hurley.
Mosey back to COT. Done!
Thanks to a great group of guys who joined me way too early this morning in the gloom. I tried to go easy on the shoulders and upper body since IPC will crush those tomorrow. I hope I made it worth your while to wake up that early. We did 3.5 miles this morning so ALL of you guys are capable of hitting the 4 that we usually do at ignition or swarm. Get out of your comfort zone and try it at least once.
Good morning gents – a few things running through my mind this morning; 1) I really have to do IPC tomorrow? that’s going to suck!! 2)I have to lead Diesel and I can’t mail it in – need to offer a challenging workout for others, and 3) 9/11. The first two were a good reason to hit the reset button on going gang busters each workout; sometimes you need to slow things down; work on form and mobility and just think about each exercise: Be in the moment: – Not racing to the next set of 25’s.
Add in 9/11 – the theme here is “slow down” life, stop and smell the roses, be thankful for what you have::: down life/ the paces. I don’t have a heroic story about 9/11- but I do have a story about chance and luck on that day:
I was living in New Jersey, working in sales covering NY and NJ. On the days that I had appointments in NYC, I would meet my sales engineer (Ed Marino) in the concourse of the Towers (after a good 1:30 commute). Luckily that day we did not have a meeting in NYC, and LUCKY for me I didn’t lose any close family or friends. The next month was a blur; kind of reminds me of the first month of Covid – like the world was turned upside down.
Come October and I get RIFFED – No customers to call on so no sales. October, November and December – not a lot of prospects out there. Oh wait, we’re having a baby? So a mortgage, wife, 1 child and then another one on the way>>>>perfect timing.
I landed a gig at the end of January>>>>my second son is born in September… How Lucky am I??? Right. Who rolled the dice for me and said “no meetings on 9/11”?
So today I did not want to disappoint the Pax at a workout, but I did want to Slow things down; appreciate the morning, the brothers at your side and all the wonderful things that you have in your life..
So what did we do?
Start off with some dynamic stretches: Windshield wipers, side shoulder, child pose,….
Tabata – 40 secs of work/20 seconds slow down
step ups/Russian Toe Taps/Cinder block clean/cinder curls/ punch outs/lateral lunge to squat/Catalina wine Mixer/dying cock roach/walk out merkin
Tabata round 2
Yoga to finish
Everyone should put MASH/Diesel in their rotation. I know we all want to be front of the line, run faster, lift more… that’s fine – something to strive for. It’s OK to slow down every once in a while. You may not get faster; but you’ll meet a new set of Pax, you’ll hear some stories, you’ll reset and recharge.
Thanks to the Mashers/Diesel for letting me in your circle.
Shake said there was a need for a Q today yesterday when we were at Dromedary. I hesitated, why, honestly, I have built a pile of excuses in my head. I am hurt, school could run late tonight, I don’t really have a plan…. Excuses, all excuses, and leaders don’t make excuses, they figure out get shit done and don’t make excuses. So when I finally put my big boy pants on I decided to text Shake and the good news is I didn’t lose my opportunity to step up.
DICCS given, BURPEE train to start the Q. I think I got about 10 in and then we moseyed over to the apartments for 30SSH,10 SLOW Merkins, some stretches.
Mosey to the Animal Hospital, cross and 10 jump squats every other light till the tire shop. Head to do Shopping for pain. Every DOOR, 3 Burpees of the first building, circle back to start 10 Mary Catherine’s at each door all the way to the end of both buildings. Head back 3 Merkin Shredders at EACH Business. Run one more time with 1 Burpee again at each Sign. Head back as time was tight, hit the lights back with 10 Calf raises at every 3rd light, then mosey to the bottom of the hill. Time was up so my chase the rabbit up the hill was null.
Moleskin: HOW BOUT THAT CHATTERBOX!! I first worked out with this pax about a month maybe two month ago and he walked half the time, for the last couple weeks he is killing it, by far one of the most drastic improvements i have seen in a long time,,, NICE WORK. I also told Dana he almost made my backblast,,,, I was running back at a pretty good clip but my legs were burning but as I strive to do I didn’t want that OLD man Ice 9 (almost a respect) to beat me back as he was on a solid clip back while I noticed a yellow shirt breathing down my neck, I thought it was Dana and I was like Damn, Dana has gotten super fast, that said, it wasn’t Dana but good ole Deadwood with his yellow shirt, not to say Dana doesn’t get his props as well, if you don’t know Dana is half the man he was a couple of years ago, he has completely different looking man and my expectation is that he will be breathing down my neck shortly. Couple of other side notes, Shake was certainly pushing himself, Bayo certainly has some wheels, Premature is taking the bull by horns, Rockwell and recalulating didn’t give up on proper form while I saw some others did. Sugar Daddy and Snider are a force of positive that I always appreciate. Carb was fairly quiet this morning but I saw him put the work in. Dasher on the other hand was not and clearly a beast as he can carry a conversation with Ice while they are doing burpees?? Great morning, Shake thanks for the opportunity to lead, men, don’t hesitate when you have an opportunity to step up, don’t listen to the excuses in your head, press on and lead, this applies to all areas of your life, not just at 530AM.
Prayers for Premature’s wife Kelly
Christ Closet Folding party at 630 tonight.
Well, the race is on
And here comes pride up the backstretch
Heartaches are goin’ to the inside
My tears are holdin’ back
They’re tryin’ not to fall
My heart’s out of the runnin’
True love’s scratched for another’s sake
The race is on and it looks like heartache
And the winner loses all
Artist: George Jones AKA The Possum
Album: I Get Lonely in a Hurry
12 or so Spartans. Madison, Stone Cold, Orange Whip, Full House, Airwolf, Cage 49er, Christmas , Retread , Benny, Boondock (that’s my boy), Horsehead (that’s me).
The plan was to get some milez without going far from home base, or diving into sketchy construction or fast-moving traffic. The mean streets of Matthews can be an interesting place to run at times.
49er took the gold for the team of Average Joes trying to hold off the speedsters. Speedsters Boondock and Orange Whip took co-silver, passing everyone else.
O’ Tannenbaum took the booby prize for showing up late and searching for Bobby Fischer all morning. Shocked.
Orange Whip holding a free keg party this weekend, sponsored by an unnamed donor. No video recording, although apparently that’s how he got in this situation to begin with. I hear the keg is full of IPC.
Stone Cold, who is allegedly injured and can’t run, skipped the final Mary in order to do some additional running. Makes perfect sense.
Enough internet confabulation for today – gotta make the donuts. Two Qs in a week is enough for this Horse.