Author Archive Horsehead

The Taxidermy Vending Machine

11, including a FNG who was somehow smookered into a pre-workout run with Dollywood, gathered for an event that everyone has had on their calendars for quite a long time.

The ArboWIB.


Run from the worst AO in South Charlotte #Gummy to somewhere even worse, do a quick almost-planned workout, and run back. The workout consisted of 2 miles of weaving around like a snake doing escalating exercises while Smokey looked for his hat. It was fantastic.


This has been in the works for like, forever. Well, at least since yesterday. The workout component was mostly planned at 5:15Am while driving by the Arboretum. Anyway, I think it was a success. I got around 4 miles and a good sweat going, especially on the mile run back.

Before we started, Header and TR were discussing all things Jeep. TR installed some weaponized paint scrapers on the side of the Great Pumpkin, as well as an oil slick and smoke screen emitter #spyhunter. He was last seen driving up a ramp into the back of a moving van. Factually, I believe that the paint scrapers are some sort of aftermarket footpeg device that you are supposed to use to stick your leg out of the side of the moving vehicle so that giant bugs can fly up your underwear leg before it is amputated by another vehicle. Either option sounds a bit dangerous for my tastes.

Double E rolled in with his new Fire Engine giant truck with the mini-bed completely filled with ancient computer parts. He was in search of a giant pile of America Online CDs that he had buried at the Middle School back in 1999 and a paid license for Netscape Navigator.

The covert-ops construction going on at Petco forced a slight audible on the laps. It looked like they were installing some new Taxidermy Vending Machines near the entrance. In goes Fluffy, out comes Stuffy.

Smokey’s general practice of wearing a filthy cap for COP and then dropping it on the ground during the workout didn’t pay off this time (like it ever pays off). A dutiful ArboJanitor scooped it up and it was headed for either the dumpster or his collection before our quick-thinking brother bribed it back off of him with a lukewarm bottle of Night Train that he found in his glove box the bushes.

Welcome FNG “Ghost Town” who left as mysteriously as he arrived. For those unaware, Ghost Town In The Sky is somewhat of a counterpart to Dollywood as far as terrible theme parks go. However, it has been closed down since the early 2000s. Good memories.

I attempted to make a couple of Strava segments. Somehow, stinking JRR Tolkien automatically got 1st place on both of them even though he was not there. For some reason, I am not surprised. Gummy takes 2nd place of those who used Strava.

Thanks everyone for participating in this experiment.


Death Valley Preblast – The ARBOWIB

Tomorrow, we unleash something that has never been done before. Well, except that it has, and it failed miserably #SOFAWIB, and I never once posted there.

Howevs . . . given that working out at the Arboreteum ABC store draws forth such fond memories of #Jevlar days bygone and knowing that introducing another AMRAP workout on a Wednesday makes no sense whatsoever, I present without delay:

The ArboWIB (seriously, somebody come up with a better name)

  • 5:30AM Launch from SCMS – 1 mile to the Arbo ABC store
  • AMRAP loop consisting of things I will tell you to do tomorrow.
  • 6:05 AM, run 1 mile back

Why hasn’t nobody thunk of this before?


To Not To Recover

6 cowpokes plus a couple extras chose to not recover today, cause ya know, it’s horsey season. Things got more awkward than Kawhi Leonard’s laugh when Brady asked “where are you running today?” Ummmm, up? I’d pretend I didn’t know where he planned to go, but full disclosure, I did run his alternate route (around a legit gold mine) a few months back…BEFORE horsey season. Lots of folks (including Chester) seemingly spooked by a faulty forecast for rain. The six guys that came for the hills got em. Short warmup jaunt up Old Bell to the bottom of Blue Ridge. Repeat the Blue Ridge hill to the non-luminated flagpole x5. Carry on around Mountainview up to the yucca x5, down and around Chester’s casa to Sardis and Wilby for 5x back up Wilby. OYO hills til 6:10 and back to the flag for the pledge.

Some observations. Never met Taff before today. 10/10 beard on the guy. Throw in the accent and the pickup truck. Did we just become best friends? Dude was grinding.. 

Prohibition and Egypt were twinsies in their matching 2015 Chicago Marathon shirzeys. It was cute. Pro disappeared for a while heading towards Chester’s house. Rough neighborhood to go unaccounted for in… Egypt was pushing the pace all morning with Federalist right on his heels.
Horsehead got snatched up like Jessica Simpson’s Maltipoo by an abnormally large screech owl swooping down from the trees.

Chester was M.I.A. Felt like you got cheated and only part of the experience. Lord willing, he’ll be back next week.

Brady and Funky Cold ran around for an hour and ended up back in the parking lot at the end. Parking’s getting tight in the Horsey lot. Get there early next week for prime parking.

Tater Tot on Q next week. Saddle up.


What Goes Around . . .

Nothing in life is so exhilarating as to be shot at without result.

Winston Churchill and, possibly, Bugs Bunny

I deciphered 11 from my voice recording, and Sparta claimed 13, with a total count of 21. None of these numbers add up, which seems about right for what happened today, so we’ll go with it.


Warmup meandering around the campus to get things flowing.

COP behind First Baptist Matthews. SSH, IW, and some “Sharon Towers” that should probably be renamed to “Plantation Estates” for this locale. We also Petered and Parkered if I recall correctly.

Crazy 8s: Run a big figure eight with eight merkins on one end and eight LBCs at the other. Do it . . . .wait for it . . . eight times. After you finish eight rounds, pick up the six to make nine. Then get on your six for three sets of Mary. Whew.

Mosey over to the new Fisher Price picnic tables, but not before we attempt Boondock’s Rail Slide challenge. Hands on the one handrail and feet on the other, attempt a spider man side-shuffle from one end of the other. Lots of lounge-walkers refusniking this jewel. I suppose that’s a taste of my own medicine.

Joker 10/20/30 on the tables – Squats (with butt level gauge), Little Haze, and Farrokh Bulsara

Finally, suicides in the big lot. Assorted merkins for first set, and burpees for the 2nd (which I was baited into by Sardine, who then promptly refusniked them #troll). Couple of AYG gassers to deal the fatality blow. Boondock smoked us on the gassers, but Smokey was not far behind. Seems about right – a 13 year followed by a 50 year old man, and then the rest of us. You know who else can move, Lois “Freight Train” Johnston. We tried to bait Benny into a foot race on Slack, but I don’t think there’s anything else to prove here.


I’ve skinned the thang a bit already, so just a few more observations here.

  • Somehow, Big League Chew staggered into COP after running with the Sparta whippets. I think he saw Gypsy’s decked out shovel flag and got snookered into thinking he was at some sort of log-carrying Ruck-o-Matic festival, but boy was he in for a surprise. Well, at least that’s what I think happened. It’s on the internet now.
  • There was a fair piece of Refusniking from the Peak51 gentlemen today, mostly surrounding the suspicious handrail crawling and all things burpees. I suppose I deserve this a bit. Modify as needed.
  • I read somewhere that folks were getting all serious-like with their workouts and complaining that people were actually talking amongst themselves during such. You know where talking don’t belong? Urinals. That’s where. So unless you’re pulling up beside to me to take a wee (and you’d best skip a space if one is open), then feel free to chat my ear off as long as you can keep up (which ain’t hard). These are my rulez though, and may not apply to your workouts. If you have a problem with that, take it up with Gordon Shumway, who’s really in charge #Alftan
  • Here’s my take about the Moderate workout sites. These guys can handle anything you throw at them, as long as you don’t run all over creation and string everyone out. Keep it in the lot and go as hard as you want and they’ll be right there.
  • Great crew. Slim has inspired a lot of guys to do more than they ever thought possible with his encouragement (and suspect representation of BRR terrain), and Sensei has reinforced that with his actions. Geraldo and Lois probably did something that I’m also sure was important so keep that in mind.



HR Zone 5

Do what you can with what you have

Teddy Roosevelt

Do what you can with what you have, unless you’re in the bathtub

Bill Watterson

I hate you.


Is this a running workout?


I read every backblast and I am even more confused about this site.


I have no idea why I am here.



Hairball (after the Q mentioned some optional exercises between the intervals)

I didn’t get to bed until 7:30PM, last night. This should be a 45min workout.

Chelms aka George Burns

9 went against their better judgement and posted at the season-opener of HorseyMcHorseArse, the workout that can only be underperformed by its name.


Run to the lighted flagpost, give instructions (so Hairball doesn’t have to wait on the rest of us), and then take the long loop as a warmup.

After that, 3 out and back loops from the flag – repeato till 6:10. 15 merkins/15LBCs after each loop (optional)

  • Chester
  • Manhole
  • Top o’ the Mount

Run back

4.5-7.5 miles of badness, depending on speed and hand cleanliness.


I suppose the BRR may be headed the way of the Mud Run. Anyways, I still think that a weekly dose of horrible hills does the body good so we’ll keep Horsey going for another season and see what happens.

Missing a lot of the regulars from years past today. Perhaps the perfect 65deg conditions were too inviting. Don’t worry, 90% humidity will be upon us soon and this thing will get even better.

Hairball was pawing his foot during instructions and took off like the 3rd monkey in line for the ark as soon as we lifted the gate. He said something about “Adam” holding him back and not letting him run without a shirt. “Smothered” That was all I got before he faded away. Strava maps do show a strange entrance into the wooded area, so perhaps he was abducted by aliens and this was not the real Hairball talking.

Maybe seemed confused about a few things, which is not surprising given his confession of reading every single McHorse backblast for the past 3 years. We tried to get Chester to peek for him, but there were no confirmed sightings. We did smell a wisp of Pall Mall aroma and saw some lights turn on, so there is hope. Keep hope alive.

Benny seemed to be enjoying himself and took option C between the intervals, which was to roll around on the pavement and talk to the flagpole. I think they forged a friendship, but I’m not sure how deep it goes.

During the trip up to the Top O’ the Mount, my HR monitor turned purple and started flashing wildly something about Zone 5. I think that means that I reached a new fitness level and can enter some warp zones now. I’m hitting the pipes and going 1-2 to 4-2 to 8-1 next time.

My post-workout tweet was “liked” by somebody in Chester, England. With Chelms at the workout and Trump allegedly at Buckingham Palace today I’m thinking that there is some sort of connection here that may involve the Mona Lisa and the Resolute Desks (although I heard the 2nd one wasn’t in the palace anymore). Still digging here.

Hairball on Q next week. Gonna be easy.

Until next time – Horsehead

P.S. If you want to run a 5K race on any day of the week this summer, Gypsy can hook you up.


8 curious individuals who either don’t check the Q schedule or have a blistering penchant for schadenfreude showed up. I think we all made it back. Parts of me did, anyway.


  • 1 mile warmup to CC Church.
  • 7s around the medians, Nascar style
  • Hill suicides to the imaginary fence
  • 1 mile down Spooky Retirement Trail
  • Awful hill loop by the big white house on Talbot X2
  • Back to launch for some gassers #timekiller
  • 5 and some change except those who know who they are


Pretty fast crowd this AM with Smoker, Orange Nip, and Skunky out front. I led by explanation, not by example, as I was in the cavern of pain for the final throes. Strong, sweaty work by all.

There was a pretty good chunk of material out there today, but I ain’t got all day, so I’ll just hit the high points.

Awena Nodoors is rolling around Myrtle Beach Polo Club style already. He’s checked out of his day job and has the kids watching Kirk Cameron movies on repeat all day at school. I hear things. Don’t you love it when hundreds of people ask if you are ready for summer?

Not to be outdone, Orange Nip jogs up with the beach body tank T on, flexin the guns. He was pretty proud of himself, strutting around like a rooster after some giggling females gave him a shoutout mid-workout. We didn’t have the heart to tell him that his favorite nipple had already shorn clean off and he was leaving a red streak right down the front of his camisole. He’ll claim that this was after the catcalls, but who you gonna trust?

If you participated in the mid-pack festivities, which I took a large sampling of, you were privy to Stone Cold’s Uber experience that featured two guys in suits, a barefoot driver, and a mysterious dog named RubyQ who nestled in the backseat with the riders. Apparently the dog was rescued from a crackhouse, or maybe the driver was? Either way, it seemed like a fantastic experience. 4.5 stars.

I’m not mentioning any names, but if you have workout clothing that you have been wearing for multiple years that reeks like a dead liquified armadillo then please do us a favor and hit up your local Ross or Marshalls for an upgrade. Sometimes you can’t wash out the demons, you just gotta make it go away.

Tweetsie declared his entry into the New River 1/2 Marathon in a few weeks. Blistering heat, ridiculous elevation changes, and bears. Sounds lovely.

The Coca Cola 600 is coming up, and it reminds me of a story. My BIL and a friend took my nephew and some other kids to the race a couple of years ago and whilst amidst the huge crowds trying to get in, my nephew decided that he needed to use the Port-A-John. He finally gets a turn, and then proceeds to take an inordinate amount of time to complete his activity, which everyone initially assumed was a quick #1. When it dawned BIL that the kid was taking a leisurely #2 on the filthiest toilet known to man, he started screaming through the plastic vents at him – “WHAT ARE YOU DOING! NOBODY DOES THAT! WHO DOES THAT!” The outcome was a slightly shaken up family unit, but no long term damage from what we can tell. Anyway, the moral of this story is something profound that I have forgotten, but it was funny..

This buy-one-get-one Breakfast Pizza from QuickTrip is not gonna eat itself.

Best Wishes,


better than this backblast

17 at Kevlar for #FunFriday.


  • Run around to pick up Fault Line’s FNG, culminating in some lackluster COP with even more pathetic counting.
  • Run around the medians doing exercises at each one. Do this a few times. Themes of 7.
  • Suicides at the trees on the other side of campus. More exercises. Continue the theme. Farting (also in 7s).
  • Partner work on the hill.
  • AYG to the Orange Jeep. Touch it with your body.
  • More Mary than any of us were comfortable with.


General tip for backblasts. If you are typing up multiple pages listing each and every side-straddle-monkey-humper and mileages to three decimal points, please stop.

Speaking of backblasts, it was publicly proclaimed by others that this backblast would outclass the workout. I think it was a little presumptuous, because it was before my strained cadence count to 10 merkins let the cat out of the bag, but you guys will have to be the judge here.

Sorry I did not meet the exact requirements sent to me by several others over text message last night for 4+ miles and no running whatsoever. Texting me photos of your injuries and other demands may help next time so I can better cater to each individual requirement. I did feel that one text inquiring about shoe selection was out of bounds. Are we comparing outfits now? I can’t believe you are wearing those heels with that top!

Remember “You Can’t Do That on Television” from the Nickelodeon glory days? The slime was the best part. It was not the best part of this morning, however, when I sat down in somebody’s giant snot hocker on the pavement. Like, gross . . .totally.

Cottontail drives a giant Cadillac with chrome rims. I notice these things.

Welcome FNG “Red Baron”. Lots of material here, with a hospital name pretty close to Rob Lowe, a construction background, Missouri heritage, and aviation hobbies. He hung in there pretty good, especially being one year away from double-respect.

Rosencrants and Guilderstern are dead, and so is this backblast.


Everyone’s least favorite Monday Summer workout, HorseyMcHorseArse, will be launching soon. We may move it out a week to accommodate some Memorial Day workouts (although what is more patriotic than pledging allegiance to a flag illuminated with Christmas lights). Stay tuned.


Oh the Humanity!

I’ve taken a few hours to gather my feelings, and I think that the best way to describe how I felt this morning involves a flightless turkey being dropped out of a helicopter. To quote Les Nessman “hitting the ground like a bag of wet cement.”

But it’s not all about me. 9 other guys showed up and got after it.


Warmup run to the bottom of the sneaky big hill at the end of Whitefriars Ln (behind the MARA ballfields). Run back out of the neighborhood, turning around at each dead end or cul-de-sac like a giant suicide run and going back to start. Imagine that you are a Roomba. 6+ miles of this goodness and then run back to launch.


Welp, that sucked. I’ve done worse, but the combination of my current running fitness level and that route hit me like a 2X4 between the eyes. Maybe it’s my exclusive Captain D’s diet. I’m looking to switch it up. I keep getting fish grease on my Patagonia Power Vest and everything tastes the same now.

You know who’s not on a Captain D’s diet. Tiger Rag. He only eats pine bark shavings and sunshine. Looking good too. He’ll be ready for McHorse in no time.

Speaking of McHorsey, I hear that there’s a new group of squatters who have taken the place over. Something about Mr. Furley’s Beast. Or was it Mr. Roper? Anyway, whatever is going on out there is probably weird and that’s a good thing. We’ll have to work something down come Memorial Day. I hear Baracus wants to be Site Q this year.

Funky Cold dusted everybody today. He had a cell phone belt holster filled with Billtong. If you ask him what the difference between Billtong and Beef Jerkey is, he’ll punch you right in the nose. There’s a place out in Indian Trail that sells fresh billtong, as well as lawn and garden supplies. Look it up.

I enjoyed running with Shake & Bake, until he dropped me like a Floater. He said I was his 87th victim. Still like that guy though.

Gypsy dressed like Bert from Sesame Street for some reason. He couldn’t pull off the Bert impression though. Gotta have the eyebrows to make that happen. I know a guy. Don’t hate.

Christmas doesn’t speak. He just goes.

Didn’t get to hang out with Arena or Madison. They also dusted me. I pretty much tanked this one. I will have my revenge soon.

ProTip: Change your Siri to a female British accent and you will immediately feel like James Bond.

Goodnight Moon,


The Day the Music Died

A long, long time ago…
I can still remember
How that music used to make me smile
And I knew if I had my chance
That I could make those people dance
And, maybe, they’d be happy for a while
But February made me shiver
With every paper I’d deliver
Bad news on the doorstep;
I couldn’t take one more step
I can’t remember if I cried
When I read about his widowed bride
But something touched me deep inside
The day the music died

11 for the Skunk, matching the Hawks Nest crew in attendance. That’s where the similarities stop. We’re like Rocky IV training in the shed over here while they caper about on fancy track #7 like Ivan Drago in his state-of-the-art fitness lab. Pay no attention to the fact that Dolph Lundgren is a 3rd degree black belt with a masters in chemical engineering who put Sylvester Stallone in the hospital by punching him so hard during filming that steroid juice shot out of both of his ears. Focus on the important things, like being awesome.

Still focused? Good .

The Thang:

Warmup KBCOP

  • SSH
  • IW
  • 10 Swings
  • 10 Good Mornings
  • 20 Swings
  • 10 Goblet Squats
  • 30 Swings
  • 10 Lawnmower
  • 20 Swings
  • 10 Snatches
  • 10 Swings

Run while partner does KB stuff. Run to the big rock and pull a #banksy on the 1st round, and run the dirt track on the 2nd. 3 or 4 sets of this.

11s on the field, burpees and swings.

Finisher KB Complex

  • Single Arm Swing to Clean to Snatch sets
  • Swing to Squat to Squat Thruster sets

25 Flutters + 25 Dollys


The general theme of this workout was Header complaining about the lack of personally curated music. Apparently, he is accustomed to members of his Soccer entourage following him around with a shoulder-mounted boombox whilst he gets his sweat on. He left disappointed.

I did give it a try though. Little does he know that while everyone was doing that awful burpee thing on the field, I snuck into his #MomJeep and pilfered through a big shoebox that had JREBZ MIXTAPEZ scrawled across the lid. I found some interesting jewels, but couldn’t get the Fisher Price working so we missed out on:

  • Chin Music plays the Best of Bryan Adams
  • Bryan Adams plays the Best of Chin Music
  • Down Home Gaither Family Beat Boxin
  • Song of Solomon, narrated by Big League Chew (rated M for Mature)
  • Hip Hoppin Soccer Floppin by the Wiggles
  • The Unabridged Christmas Shoes album, by NewSong

I was told that while I was snooping around, Baracus flat out refuseniked everything on the field and just jogged around harassing folks. I apologize on his behalf.

Lois was only a half-ninja today. Scorpion Wins, Flawless Victory.

Overall, I feel like this workout had the proper ratio of runnin’ to liftin’, like a Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup. Too much of either, and you’ve got one of those filthy Reese’s eggs with way too much of that sketchy dry peanut butter that only tastes good when you don’t eat it by itself. Nobody ain’t got no time for that.

Remember, call BR-549 for a fantastic deal on some great vehicles.


Sneaky Snake

Boys and girls take warning
If you go near the lake
Keep your eyes wide open
And look for sneaky snake

Now, maybe you won’t see him
And maybe you won’t hear
But he’ll sneak up behind you
And drink all your root beer

Tom T. Hall

The don’t write em like that anymore. We used to have an old Tom T. Hall 8-track that dad kept in the 1976 Ford Explorer. When we weren’t piled 10 deep under the camper shell in the back, we had a listen and it was good time.

Oh yeah, we did some F3 today. 11 guys for Peak51, plus some runners and ruckers.


  • Warmup COP
  • Sneaky Snake in the lower lot. 1 merkin, run a figure 8, then 7 jump squats. Took longer than I thought, but it sure was worth it. Lois tried to name it the Crazy 8, which makes more sense, but I have overruled this because Tom T. Hall does not have a Crazy 8 song.
  • 10/20/30s in the Alley with derkins, step ups, and bicycles.
  • Suicide sprints with some more exercises. Smokey dusted us.


Although we did receive some pre-game commentary from Swiss Miss and Booyah, neither graced us with their presence. Fine . . . live vicariously though this backblast that I know you are both reading.

Lois mentioned hurting a bit, and referenced his entire right side as the source of pain. I believe that he is secretly Harvey Dent and the disguise is starting to wear off. I’m not sticking around for the quarter to land.

Sometimes it nice just to work out in a little parking lot without the need to lurk around busy streets or cover a lot of ground. We still got in 2.5 miles and a good sweat and I didn’t have to worry about Sensei and Slim Fast clotheslining any Matthews powerwalkers with their towel nunchuck (although in their credit, they had already done a 3 mile warmup run and only took out three people).

Drop Thrill drove all the way in from the township of Fort Mill just to see us.

Tweetsie just returned from Australia. I have gained all of my Australian knowledge via Steve Irwin (RIP), Bill Bryson’s travel books , and Crocodile Dundee movies so I’m really the expert here but at least he confirmed that Vegemite is pure trash and should not be consumed.

Styx is a poor man’s Rush.

Rush is mostly bad, at least the singing parts. YYZ rips though.

I feel like this backblast is getting progressively worse, like the Pirates of the Caribbean Movies.

Reach out to those guys who have dropped off or need a nudge. We need to get them back out. Don’t assume that somebody else has reached out, this is how guys go dark. Pick up the phone and initiate some contact.