Author Archive Egypt

A Farewell to Arms

In the early summer of that year the deer were still hungry from a hard winter that offered too much cold and not enough food, and they were not timid but instead watched us plaintively as we passed in the near-moonless sky, or they darted in front of us without warning, on roads named Blue Ridge, or Old Bell or Mountainview.

We were a patched-together crew of Horsey veterans and first-timers, from the regions affectionately called Metro, South and beyond, with faces fresh for the challenge the course promised. We moseyed in together, ‘moseyed’ being a subjective term that for one man means a certain pace and for another man, something else altogether. But the leader waited for us all at the top of the hill they call Blue Ridge, and he gave his instructions, and all followed.

It was a simple plan, but the simplest and best plans often mask the amount of work that went into their creation. Down the dark descent of Mountainview, only to face quickly its steep and unforgiving grade before a hard right onto Old Bell, somehow, again. The incline up Old Bell looking no more threatening at its start than a white midsummer wisp of cloud, but delivering a punishment on the men’s legs like that of a tornado spun loose of its skyward roots.

To the end of Old Bell the men ran, then back out and right onto Wilby for more deer. Down again, up again, and to the corner at Mountainview, where the one they call Chester lives, or simply stands, or simply is. Down the northerly end of Mountainview and then up, up again, for in this country it seems the roads always move up, and the downs don’t quite make up for it, not quite. But they were men of honor and of valor, and they did not complain. Not one.

The leader waited on them all to finish this first pass, then asked for five hand-release burpees. This being somewhat counter to the normal approach for a summer Monday at the McHorseArse, the men could have complained. But they were men of dignity and strength, and they did their burpees, and they moved on.

Reverse course, on your own. 5 more burpees at the flag. Reverse again and do it all over. The same downs and ups, but there being the distinct feeling each time of more ups than downs. The leader among them struggled mightily to keep the one they call Lee (TM) in his sights, and almost resorted to walking toward the mythical Yucca at one point, but the voice in his head said no, no Lee is not walking, and the one they call Hollins is not walking and the one they call Horeshead is not walking (though maybe Horsehead was walking a little bit, but that is between him and his Maker, and is not for other men to know or judge, for Horsehead is a #HIM and this is his namesake), so the leader did not walk.

The one they call Hollins was running with his shirtless friend, the one they call Nabisco, whom some call Cowboy, but we do not, unless it is in jest. And toward the end, as we all were in our individual pain boxes of varying degrees, Hollins announced that he was suffering from some internal malady, a physical sign that all men have known in their gut and must address immediately, and alone. And so Hollins went away. But we knew he was a capable man and a man who knew where and how to remedy his situation, so we did not follow him.

With only minutes until the time to meet the rest of the crew, the leader approached the corner where so many before him have reported of mysterious sightings of the one they call Chester, and where he was certain he earlier saw Chester leaning against an idling pickup truck, but the truck was no longer there, so he assumed Chester had left. But now the leader saw the man again, standing alone without shirt, pants or socks, but with cigarette and bowl in hand. And the leader looked away, and tried mightily to focus on the road, and the pain and the sweat at the blinking light from the one they call Lee (TM) ahead of him. But he could not burn the image from his head, just as one cannot unsee the horrors of war when one has witnessed them first-hand.

The men, being men of their word, assembled at the neon flagpole at the allotted time, paid their respects, and proceeded back down the hill, to the flat section of Old Bell, and to the gravel lot still dusty for lack of rain. There they looked again for the one they call Hollins, but he was nowhere to be found, for his situation must have required indoor attention. They drank from weathered water bottles or plastic cups, and some dried off with frayed towels, but some did not. The one they call Grave Dancer provided a quality prayer, for it was honest, and brave, and true.

“Lightpole, 10-count”

13 or 14 started at Carmel Rd. Park, we picked up 2 or 3 more at Carmel Middle, and by the end, we had 16 for an on-the-move mash-up of arm, leg and ab work.

The Thang

  • Fast mosey down Camilla, left on Brandermille Place (F3 Lane), for whisper-count COP in the cul-de-sac: SSH x15, Seal Jacks (x15), Mtn Climbers x15, Copperhead Squats x15
  • Fast mosey to CMS entrance. Somehow sync up with Swiper and his posse. 7s of burpees and dips
  • Partner up. P1 runs to end of the school; P2 does 10 step-ups, 10 wide-arms, 10 LBCs. Repeat-o x2
  • Mosey past the clipboarders and their 80s hair band jams, ignore Hamlet’s complaints about the wet ground on the football field, and head onto the CMS track
  • Run the straight, then backward run it.
  • Taste of Yasso: 2 laps at pretty much AYG pace (800 meters). Do that 10x, with equal rest after each set, and that’s a full Yasso 800. Your time in minutes and seconds is a good predictor of your marathon pace (e.g., an average 800 pace of 3 minutes 45 seconds suggests a marathon time of 3 hours 45 minutes). Alas, we only did one 800, at faster than true Yasso speeds, so I don’t think Chalet really can nail a 2:55 marathon (though he’s welcome to prove me wrong), and I’ve already shown I’m not really a 3:10 guy.
  • JITFO, then run a lap together, stopping at each corner of the oval (yes class, ovals have corners) for burpees and squats (5 and 10, alternating)
  • Regroup with partner. P1 runs 100 yards and back while P2 does 10 each of wide-arms, squats, LBCs
  • Mosey to the teacher parking lot for 6MOM: Dolly, Freddy Mercury, Boone left and right, Slow flutters, hold ’em 6 inches (Lightpole, I mean Brady Bunch, with the 10-count)
  • Head home, stopping at each speed bump for 10 CCDs and 10 jump squats
  • 1 minute left…10 90-degree-turn squat jumps, 10 merkins. Finis.
  • 3.22 miles

What else happened

  • We run all the way down F3 Lane, and none of its residents are out there today. Cannoli, Boomer, Eye Chart and probably someone else – you’re lucky it was wet and we had sympathy on your yard.
  • Never seen a Pax go all refusenik on SSH or Seal Jacks, but Silent Bob hates Seal Jacks. Said he simply doesn’t like them, and they’re “too noisy.” I don’t think that qualifies as irony, but it’s close
  • Kirk didn’t wear gloves because he knew YHC had the Q, and I never call Bear Crawls. That’s one observant Pax right there.
  • I thought we were intersecting with early-arriving custodial crew at the entrance to CMS, but it turned out to be Swiper, and maybe Lewinsky or Scratch n Win (it was dark still) darting around and waiting for us. I guess if we had gone north from the park instead, they would have just gone to Caribou for a medium iced mocha frappe.
  • Hope you enjoyed a taste of the Yasoo 800 workout. Do the full thing at full effort and tell me you’re not ready to hurl at the end.
  • Thanks Run Stopper for the takeout. Congrats to Lewinsky on the upcoming birth of a baby girl – first child for him and Mrs. Lewinsky (something just doesn’t look right about that).
  • Bro-Lympics coming up Feb. 24th. Talk to Aquafresh or visit, or somesuch
  • Smoky Mountain Relay April 20-21. A51 team looking for a good guy who also can run a long way.
  • Thanks for the opportunity, fellas. Was great to make jokes about dry spots with you (never gets old).


The Sandlot

So, it’s been a few days, but I’m pretty sure 11 dudes showed up, and I know we spent time on the baseball field and on a really dark street, and this is probably close to the rest of it:

COP in main lot, respecting the natural circle that #DMZ pax always form at 0528: SSH x20, plank jack x15, seal jack x15, squat jumps x15, mericans x15

Mosey through Carmel Rd Park, and to the immaculately-maintained baseball field that Hannibal somehow didn’t even realize existed. Divide into 3rds for 10 sumo squats jumps at 2nd base, 5 pull ups at the 1st base dugout, and 5 at the 3rd base dugout. Marvel at the Pax’s ability to do pull ups using the shingled roof of a baseball dugout. Thanks Titan for the inspiration, probably 4 years ago. Repeato until the Q calls time.

Repeato, but with dips at the dugouts, until Q calls time.

Head over to #@Church @CharlotteCLT, cross Colony. Think we’re turning right on Tufton Brae for a brief COP in the cul-de-sac before heading to Mill Pond for the #MainEvent. Quickly realize the road is going on, and on. Stop at the end, where it changes names and doglegs left, for COP: wide-arms, flutter, Michael phelps. Ask someone if this road ever ends; One Eye says yes, and he seems trustworthy, so we head left in search of the end.

Find the end. Learn later that road is called Loch Lane. COP of something down there, then run back to the midway point. AYG back to the end, with 5 burpees at the start and finish. Return to the end of the Loch, with 5 burpees at each driveway on the right. Turns out there aren’t many, so that was easy. Return with 5 hand-release mericans at each driveway on the right (new right). There are more, so it’s not as easy.

Regroup for COP: diamonds (yes, Orlando, the index fingers and the thumbs are supposed to touch), Boone left and Right, and more squats. Mosey out, head south (!) on Carmel, to find Tufton Brae and prove YHC isn’t insane. He’s not, and the street is even shorter than he thought. COP with something I can’t remember.

Head home, stopping for some People’s Chair and air presses at @#C@@#%%Clt#NC, then back to the sandlot for 5 pull ups and 10 jumping lunges. AYG back to base. 2.4 miles.

Thanks for the keys, OneEye. My glutes were still sore on Wednesday, which suggests we did more squats than usual. Or that I have a weak ass. Or both.

Jamboree, I hope you thawed out eventually, though I doubt you would have admitted you were cold.




Bucket o’ Pain

The moon was big, almost full and orange, a site FNG was ready to roll, and Kirk was nowhere to be found. Swiper asked for clarification: “So, we’re going to run to HT and then stay there?” Yes, exactly. Let’s go.

The Thang

  • Run the modified HT mile, going ATW to Colony, then right, and right into the shopping center. About 0.87 miles point-to-point (#roundup)
  • Find Kirk jammin’ to N’Sync and staying warm in his sweet ES350. Lucky for him, we actually went where the PB said we would. Otherwise, it was Koko Fit for him.
  • Swiper grabs the first sheet out of the bucket. Announces exercise to the now-5 other Pax in attendance.
  • Run to the entrance to the high-end pizza joint (#notPapaJohns). Complete 10 reps of the exercise OYO.
  • Run back to the bucket. Rabbits continue with more of the same exercise until the 6 arrives.
  • Someone else grabs another paper. Rinse and repeat, but running to the entrance of Maria (Maria) Bonita, with 15 reps.
  • Rinse and repeat, running to the entrance of HT, with 20 reps.
  • Rinse and repeat, starting again at Brooklyn with 10 reps
  • Kept it up until 6:07 in the a.m., then sprinted 0.87 miles back
  • 3.7 miles total. Somewhere around 300 reps of various exercises – arms, legs, abs, all of it.


  • Kirk took great issue on the Twittersphere with YHC’s questioning of the HT “mile,” then skipped it entirely. Odd approach. He did run it post-workout, to get back to the ES, so he gets partial credit for the workout.
  • Welcome to site FNG MAD. Said he’s been posting at other A51 workouts, but wants to work on his running, so chose SOFAWIB today. Smart move, brother. Keep up the strong work.
  • One Eye clarified for YHC how the HT, and other SOFAWIB miles, really works. Apparently there’s some out-and-back, pole-dancing, tip-your-waitress component to it. Today, we just ran to a point (keepin it simple).
  • Great to work out with Run Stopper again. Fastest burpees in F3 Nation (body designed for it)
  • If anyone’s unsure what to get Kirk for Christmas, just stop by the Mole Hole.
  • In other news, Swiper went way off-trail and did not brush his teeth before posting (based on what he said – YHC absolutely, positively did not verify this)
  • Things you only know if you get up really early in the morning: HT sells newspapers by the dozen, but also receives a single, plastic-wrapped paper on its ‘doorstep’ (bathroom reading?). And the night watchman at Koko Fit Club gets to use the elliptical machines all he wants.
  • Thanks to RT for the take-out. Remember to bring turkeys or $10 for the CRM collection, and sign up for the Joe Davis 5K and/or 10K recovery run happening early January.

SOFAWIB PB: Apparently / Buckets o’ Pain

So, last week’s PB motivated YHC to skip his weekly #crunchybabycrack of Ring Run, and instead post much closer to home at the wildly popular SOFAWIB.

And apparently, when you show up at SOFAWIB and increase the attendance by 25%, you get invited to Q the following week.

And apparently, you’re required to write a pre-blast, or Swiper hijacks your Q. So here I am.

  • Run the HT “mile,” keeping these SOFA nutjobs honest on what a mile is (hint: it’s not 0.67 miles).
  • One Eye or Cold Cuts (really anyone other than Kirk) grabs the first sheet out of the orange, paint-splattered Home Depot bucket. Use approved “outside voice” to announce exercise to the dozens of other Pax in attendance.
  • Run to the entrance to the high-end pizza joint (#notPapaJohns). Complete 10 reps of the exercise OYO.
  • Run back to the bucket. Rabbits continue with more of the same exercise until the 6 arrives.
  • Someone else grabs another paper. Rinse and repeat, but running to the entrance of Maria (Maria) Bonita, with 15 reps.
  • Rinse and repeat, running to the entrance of HT, with 20 reps.
  • Rinse and repeat, starting again at Brooklyn with 10 reps
  • Keep it up until we run out of paper (not likely), Sundancer passes out, or it’s 6:08 in the a.m.

0530 under the light of the SUPERMOON, @ Ye Olde Providence Elementary by the Marsh.




Qing on PBo time…

…and to steal a line from a recent Nash BB: Times I saw on the clock: 0509, 0526. At 0509, OK, I’ll get up in a minute and get my Q-face on. At 0526, Holy crapola, the workout starts in 4 minutes, and I live 2.5 minutes away, by Maserati. Time to get moving.

Fly in HOT to the Carmel Rd Park lot at 0534, no one around. Quick headlight scan of the Church @ Charlotte lot in case they’re hanging out there. Nope, these are chiseled Carmel Road Park pax, which means only 1 thing: They’ve vacated this awesome city park/church AO and are heading to the home of the Cougars (#cougarpride!).

YHC found them, as expected, 1/2 way down Camilla, having stopped at each speed bump for 10 burpees. Park the #swagjeep in the principal’s spot at CMS, apologize profusely, and wrestle the Q back from One Eye, who was planning on 41 more minutes of burpees.

The Remaining Thang

  • Circle up for Cross-Fit Merkin Spiral of Death: 1 X-fit merkin together, 10 squats IC. 2 X-fit merkins, 10 wide-arms IC. 3 X-fits, 10 jumping lunges, keep the pattern of increasing # of X-fits and 10 of something in cadence: Remainder was Freddy Mercury, Dolly, Michael Phelps, Carolina Dry Docks, WWII sit ups, flutters and plank jacks.
  • 7s of jump-ups and merkins
  • Fast mosey to the South Park Youth Association Girls’ Field Hockey (TM) field.
  • Line up on sideline – sprint across and back, backward run across and back. Partner wheelbarrow across and back, partner carry across and back, lunge walk across, karaoke back, repeato the partner wheelbarrows (crowd pleaser).
  • Partner sprint across and back while other does 10 merkins, 10 Russian Twists. complete 3x
  • Mary on the wet grass, since Hannibal said his clothes were still too dry: Blue Devils to heaven, scissors, protractor, Boone left and right, LBC x30
  • Mosey to CMS entrance, resist tempation to pile in the #swagjeep and head home. Run back on Camilla, stopping for 2 Megaburpees (5 merkins on each) at each speed hump. Dolly in the lot until 0615

Nekkid Man Moleskin’

  • YHC has slept thru an excessively self-promoted Q before (1-year anniversary of Armor), and joined a few workouts in-progress, but this is the first one I’ve joined in-progress as the Q, and been able to use almost all of what I had planned. Expected to do this stuff at Carmel Pres and the CCDS track, but Carmel Middle and the SPYA field worked just fine.
  • Cobains to the Pax for the odd start. T-claps to One Eye for stepping into the temporary leadership void, and listening to the one word his brain could produce on such short notice (‘Burpees’!!). YHC did run back to his parking spot and complete the burpees along the way (#Qtegrity).
  • This may have been the quietest group of Pax I’ve ever led through a workout, including when there were only 2 people in the driving rain. There was plenty of opportunity to heckle a Q who shows up 5 minutes late, but these reserved, or more likely just incredibly kind, gentlemen said nary a word. We could have done the Spiral of Death in someone’s backyard and not awoken an infant or dog with mumblechatter. Clearly Film Fest’s alarm malfunctioned too.
  • Announcements: Surprisingly, not much. YHC announced the CLT Marathon / Half in a few weeks, which he may or may not be doing. Chappy is running his usual no-train marathon at Kiawah in December. Just avoid stepping on wherever Dredd did last year.


Don’t Forget the Disclaimer

19 Pax were curious to see if we really would try to run a 16-mile roundtrip in 45 minutes, and instead kicked the teeth off the Gaywind Hill (hee hee..).

The Thang

  • Carmel to the front yard of RTS, after retrieving a hobbled One Eye Ankle who stumbled on Pothole’s namesake but bounced right back: SSH x20, Mtn. Climbers x20, Dolly x15, Merkins x10
  • Book it to the other front yard of RTS for dips and squats on Commodore’s benches: sets of 10 of each, then 8 then 10. Shake it out, then sets of 6-4-6.
  • Fast mosey down S. View to the reconstructed brick wall for some People’s Chair, with air presses, then 15 wide arms / Larry Craigs / Ann & Hopes (0% of the Pax got that joke. Where’s Film Fest when you need him?)
  • Continue to Rock’s favorite street in all of Charlotte. Left on GAYWIND (snicker, snicker…), down to the bottom of the Southpark Lurker. 35 LBCs, 7 Boone lefts and rights (always 7), Michael Phelps x15
  • Ladder to 5 up and down the Lurker: burpees at the top, squats at the bottom.
  • AYG up the hill that leads back to S. View. Back to the wall for more people’s chair, with left foot up, then right foot up. 10 diamonds.
  • Continue toward home, regroup at entrance to Hartmill for 15 squats, something I forgot, and 10 Prisoner squats.
  • Mosey to Thornridge, backward run up the hill, mosey down and collect the 6, backward run up the hill again. COT in the intersection (because that’s really safe): LBC x15, Rosalita x15, Protractor for a while
  • Right on Camilla, 6 burpees at the speed hump, back to the parking lot, 6 burpees at the Jeep, over to the C@C parking lot, 6 burpees, and 1 mega burpee OYO.
  • COT, with communal Lord’s Prayer for the takeout


  • Fun group out there today. Lots of regulars, a few site Kotters, Mr. Dan Hart, and an FNG.
  • 3.3 miles total. And according to my incredibly unscientific calculations, that hill on Gaywind (hee…ha…please stop…) is a 12-13% incline. It’s like BRR in a Box.
  • I’m not used to having FNGs lately, and was remarking to One Eye that I should have mentioned the disclaimer before we launched. Not 10 seconds later, as we’re crossing Carmel, One Eye steps into a pothole and lands on a combo of asphalt, sidewalk and grass. Should have mentioned the disclaimer.
  • Brother is tough, though. Finished the entire workout and beat my butt on the Gaywind (HA HAAAAA!) ladder, as did Benefactor and 14-year-old ‘Bout Time. Strong work.
  • Pothole saw all this go down, so I expect that thing on Carmel to be filled in by lunchtime.
  • Welcome to FNG Gypsy. Guy has lived in about 35 different places in his life, just landed in Charlotte 10 days ago, and showed up today after meeting Reboot at church not 24 hours prior. That’s some hard-core Gypsy livin’ right there. And he’s already found us on Twitter. I expect to see him Qing by Friday.
  • T-claps to Reboot for achieving such a strong EH – from first meeting, to the guy showing up, saying “Corbin said he’d meet me here” – at a workout that Corbin has never attended – all in less than 24 hours. Hall of fame material.
  • These are tough times for our nation and our world. As we intoned this morning, “Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.” We have a role in that delivery as well. Reach out to others. Be kind to strangers. Thank a police officer. Connect with someone who doesn’t look like you or come from the same background. Engage. Expand. Help stop the madness. Love > Hate.


Putting the ‘S’ Back in LSD

In the days of the original Wagon Wheel singer, that S stood for “sergic,” as in “Lysergic acid.” Fortunately for us, it’s a much simpler, 4-letter word in F3 land: Slow. And we can do slow.

14 guys with 26.2 on their mind and 1 with 13.1 on his showed up at the Cap’n Jack statue very early (for a Sunday morning, anyway) for the first running of the Wagon Wheel.

The objective: run a long way (that’s L), pretty darn slowly, even if it’s hard to shut down your testosterone-fueled rabbit urges (that’s S), for some prescribed distance (that’s D). Egypt was told his job today was to “MANAGE THE FREAKIN PACE” (yes, in all caps), and Egypt doesn’t ignore things in all caps, so he managed the pace. The Slow mantra stems, in part, from OBT telling us it’s best to train with some long and slow runs, and OBT’s run like 3 (three) marathons, so Egypt listens to his advice.

He told the assembled baker’s dozen that the average pace would be north of 9 minutes, probably south of 9:30, and that he would not give chase to any rabbits that decided to break away. He kept his promise, thanks in large part to the steady partnering from Birthday Boy Uncle, Furyk, and (when he wasn’t sprinting ahead to catch up with the showoffs) Fishwrap, letting the breakaway pack do their thing. It’s a free country, and a Sunday morning, afterall.

Course was lovely (though those damn hills are still there), weather was ideal, pace was good. The breakaway pack reported finishing at 9-even, though they did inadvertently (or so they claim) cut the route short by about 1 city block at the end (it’s Brevard, not Caldwell, boys. Come on, the streets are even in ABC order uptown – even Uncle knows that). The instruction-followers finished their 13.08 miles in 2:01.:04, which is exactly a 9:15 pace. Exactly.

Pesci, Egypt considers himself redeemed from past transgressions now.

Word on the street is that Silent Bob posted for the half-marathon training run at 0630 (7.5 miles), only to find himself alone. Which brings to mind the ancient question: “If Silent Bob runs for an hour by himself and says something, does anyone hear it?”

Pleasure to lead you this morning, gents. Oh Dredd, next week it’s 14 miles, so you might want to get at least 1 in this week to prepare.