Author Archive Joker

Planning is Overrated

13 men did manly things.

  1. Jog to the rock pile… curls, overhead press, tricep extension… two sets of each
  2. Jog down to the courtyard area… standard warm up… SSH, IW, Squat, Merkins
  3. Jog to the “side road” on the far side of the church complex… for a mixture of 300-yard sprints and recover jogs… with some squats and merkins sprinkled in
  4. Jog to the small interior parking lot… split into two teams… alternate hot laps around the parking lot with dips, incline merkins, LBCs
  5. Jog to the launch parking lot for three sets of People’s Chair, then close out with a round of merkins


Yes, it’s true… I planned the workout during the drive this morning.  My primary objective was to keep us moving, and we ended up covering 3.2 miles.

Great to see a mix of old timers and new-ish guys.  Even one FNG… Butterball.

I know Bulldog would haver rather that we do 1,000 merkins, but I’m just not conditioned for one of those arm/chest blaster workouts yet.    This was my fist visit to Kevlar in over a year… site is going strong.  Some things never change… Bulldog still has a British accent; Big League Chew still sounds like Barry White; Horse Head is still a country boy savant.

Great to workout with you lads today.


Sparta – 11/7/2019

Pax – Joker, Gypsy, Arena, Cage, Christmas, Full House, Retread

Workout: 5ish miles of running, with a few LBC, merkins, squats, dollys, flutters and planks.

Good group of guys this morning.  As usual, the PAX were entertained by my multiple layers of clothing.  As far as I’m concerned, 52 degrees in the dark is very cold. 

Stood Up at Davie Park

It’s been so long since I’ve done a backblast I clearly have forgotten how to post one.  Anyway, there were men at the workout.  Strong men.  Men that like to run and jump.  It’s been over 24 hours since the workout, so my memory of exactly which men were at the workout has already begun to fade.  I think there was a Fletch.  A Smokey for sure.  Smash was there.  Stone Cold was there too.  Puddin for sure.  Uncle Leo, yep.  And Snowflake.  If I’ve missed anyone I’m sorry. As far as what we did.  We worked out for 45 minutes.  There was running involved, going to/from Davie Park, and while on the side road at the park.  There were merkins… 100 I believe.. nothing too excessive.  Dips and pull ups… 40ish and 20ish, respectively.  And about 200 squats.  Stone Cold won the biggest truck award.  Fletch won best beard.  Puddin had the best sweat.  Uncle Leo with best bed head.  Smash with loudest idling vehicle.  Snowflake with best pre run.  And Smokey with best KEnny Stabler lookalike. 

Royal Wedding

A dozen men ended the week with a solid workout.

Warm up jog to campus down the back road across the street to the parking lot area near the retention pond near Fullwood Lane

Standard warm up, but out of order… Merkins, Imperial Walker, Side Straddle Hop, Flutter, Dolly

Mosey to the back road

Run to every other light post… 10 merkins… to the end of street

Rinse and repeat

Backpedal to every other light post… 15 squats

Mosey to the benches… merkins / dips / derkins combo… three sets

Mosey to the closest building… wall sits with some arm raises… three sets

Most to the lower parking lot across the street from the middle schools for some team racing

Partner 1 runs the big loop with partner 2 does merkins / squats / LBCs… flap jack

For round two, mixed in some backpedal as part of the loop

Mosey back to our start/finish



As you might expect, Bulldog is a big royal wedding fan.  Which, I googled it, is scheduled for Saturday morning from 7-9AM EST… so, don’t expect to see Bulldog at a Saturday working… he will be drinking tea [or a pint] and enjoying the show.

I tried to give our exercises royal family names this morning… but I ran out pretty quickly once I got beyond Prince Harry.

Random observations from today… Pop Tart has serious hair envy for Spicoli’s long locks.  I’m sure it reminded Pop Tart of a young [much younger] Pop Tart, during the heavy metal [or John Tesh] days of his youth.  Speaking of Spicoli, his hair was a real challenge during the backpedal and drekins… time for man bun my friend.  Don’t worry, none of the older guys will give you a hard time about it [?].  Always great to see Cotton Tail… a regular at Kevlar [and the old days at Skunk Works]… and, as expected, he delivered an exceptionally strong prayer at the end… preach it man!  By the way, did anyone notice Bulldog was wearing a long-sleeve shirt? As usual, I couldn’t quite keep up with Rhapsody… it must be his black shoes. I thought Cage was trying to break into one of the school buildings, but I was reminded he works at Covenant Day… still, with this black hat, he looked like a cat burglar.  Night Court was on hand, and was close to making a citizen’s arrest.  Harley came to grind things out… he’s always game for anything… running, lifting, pushing, pulling… he’s all good… never complains.  Which brings me back to Bulldog… he tried to play a Jedi mind trick on me this morning, and I swear it almost worked… real subtle stuff like, “we should probably move on now… we should probably move in now… you don’t want to do that… you don’t want to do that”…. it was hypnotic for me… until someone pulled me out of the trance.  After all, Alex Guiness [aka Obi-Wan] was a Brit after all.  Always good to see and hear Horse Head.  Every workout should be required to have a Horse Head.  Tackling Dummy is a big dude.  Next time we do flag football, he’s my first pick… I’ll be Brady and he can be Gronk.  Fault Line and Orange Whip have a good thing going at Kevlar.  Great site and great group of guys.  I’m sure Bulldog would have like more merkins today… he loves his guns.  And Pop Tart’s Garmin was working backwards today… the more we ran the lower his mileage total.


Shirts vs. Skins


  • Jog out of parking lot and right turn onto Strawberry Lane for a warm up run to the dead end
  • Standard warm up… merkins [couple of sets], imperial walker, side straddle hop
  • Mosey to the nearest “street with a hill” for a round of 7s… merkins and squats
  • Run back on Strawberry Lane… with a short intermission for additional merkins
  • Head to the SCMS track, and split into two teams of seven for relay races
  • First relay race… backpedal [200M per runner]
  • Second relay race… forward [200M per runner]
  • Mosey back to the parking lot



I pulled in at 5:29:59… and I could tell that Smokey and Dollywood were thinking I would be a no show. I wouldn’t let you down boys!  I just like to roll in on two wheels [in my hot rod 2008 Honda Civic] and get straight to work.

I’m not much of a workout planner, but I gave it some pretty intense thought from about 5:29:00 to 5:29:59… and away we went. Even though we didn’t venture too far off campus, it was good to stretch our legs out a bit and stroll up and down strawberry lane.  We used our inside-voices early during the workout, given the proximity to the fine citizens on strawberry.  This gave us all a chance to listen carefully to Header’s morning story.  Header always has a morning story, an afternoon story and a nighttime story… the guy likes to tell stories.

The 7s on the hill were a good way to get the heart pumping. Laronda set the pace with a couple others keeping him honest.  As we made our way to the track, I settled in on a relay race format as the right choice.  I decided shirts vs. skins would be an effective way to keep track of who was on which relay team.  It was effective, but maybe a little strange.  [Too bad Bulldog wasn’t at today’s workout, as I know he would have been calling for shirtless partner exercises circa the 2013 July 4th workout at South Charlotte Middle Schoo]l.  Then, too add to the vibe… my boy Mickey decided that his workout shorts were just too uncomfortable… and that the only solution was to get rid of the shorts.  I didn’t get a chance to talk to Mickey much, but I appreciate a man who cares about comfort.  Thing is, Mickey ended up on the skins relay team, so he eventually ended up with neither a shirt nor shorts.  It was a heck of a sight, seeing Mickey come around the turn-3 bend in nothing but his briefs.  Mickey, you are an instant legend.  And this is yet another example of why F3 works best as an all-men workout group.  My guess is that the Y frowns on men working out in just their drawers.

Great group of men this morning. Some old timers like Smokey, Chin Music and Puddin.  Some really old timers like Harley, Header, Mall Cop and Bugeater. Some young guns that keep me strong… Laronda and Dollywood.  And some new guys [at least to me]… Lewinsky, Hammer, Scratch & Win and Mickey.  Truly enjoyed the workout… probably more so when it was dark… but nothing says second-F quite like dudes running around without shirts [or shorts].


Running with the Kenyans

15 men ran around in circles and did some other stuff…

Easy jog down to the track

Standard warm up at midfield… SSH, Squats, IW, Merkins

Stretch it out a bit on the field… butt kickers, high knees, shuffle left, shuffle right, back pedal

Hit the track…

1/4 mile all-you-got, regroup for 20 merkins, plank and a bit of Mary

1/4 mile all-you-got, regroup for 15 merkins, plank and a bit of Mary

1/4 mile backpedal all-you-got, regroup for 10 merkins, plank and a bit of Mary

1/4 mile backpedal for first 200 memters, then forward AYG for last 200 meters, regroup for 20 merkins, plank and bit of Mary

1/2 mile Indian Run

Mosey to the playground for station work… pull ups, dips and squats… three rounds or so

Mosey back to the parking lot… finish with 10 burpees


  • I wasn’t very talkative at the start of today’s workout… all business at first… maybe I miss wearing my Wooly Vest… but there wasn’t much time to talk once we hit the track
  • Lot’s of speed out there today, with young guys in their 20s with full heads of hair and no pre-arthritic conditions moving at a fast clip. Dollywood – aka whiskey tea cup – gets a special call out, primarily because I wanted to incorporate whiskey teacup into the backblast, but also because he has exceptional backpedaling speed… must be all the years of soccer where he’s developed fast twitch fibers that move in any direction.
  • Today was the first Indian Run I’ve ever done on a track.  It didn’t really make any sense, but I enjoyed it and hope you did as well.  I particularly enjoy how the Indian Run format gives me a chance to heckle everyone on a rotating basis.
  • I don’t think we had any actual Kenyans with us this morning, but I just noticed the book Running With the Kenyans laying around my house the other day… it’s a good book… not a five star rating from Joker, but worth reading for sure
  • The rain started to fall right at 6:15AM.  Perfect timing.
  • Thanks Yeti for the opportunity to lead this morning.

Run Far To Run Fast

8 men gathered at McKee Road Elementary school and here is what we did:

Run 2 miles to JM Robinson Middle

4X400 Relay Race

Run 2 miles back to McKee Road Elementary School [with five sets of 20 merkins sprinkled in along the way]

Finish with pull ups and squats


  • As usual, I didn’t do much pre-planning for the workout.  In fact, once were about 1/2 mile into our initial run off campus, Cold Cuts says to me, “You don’t have any idea what you are doing, do you?”  He was partially correct.  I did know we were heading to JM Robinson Middle, but hadn’t decided exactly what we would do once we arrived.
  • Using my mental math skills – while running – I determined that with 8 men we had just the right number to do a 4X400 race on the track at JM.  So, as soon as we arrived, I quickly separated the PAX into two teams… and it was go-time.  I was thinking the winning team might come in at just under 6 minutes, but there was more speed than expected, with the top team coming in at about 4 min and 48 seconds.  If we can shave about 2 minutes off of our time we’ve got a shot at the world record.  Everyone was hustling around the track for their segment, but I must say that Picasso’s performance stood out.  He dropped at hot lap at about 1 min and 12 seconds.  Don’t let the guy fool you, he’s got at least one good lap in him at a moment’s notice.  Ocho Cinco recorded the fastest segment, clocking in at about 1 min and 4 seconds.
  • This was, I believe, the furthest we’ve ever ventured off campus for a McKee-based workout.  It was a long way to go just to run one lap – per person – around the track… but, gotta keep things fresh after 5 1/2 years at McKee.  Next time maybe a 0.0 workout.


Angry Q

15 men gathered did this:

1000 meter sprint

1000 sprint… again

SSH, IW, Squats, Slow Merkins, LBC, Dolly, Flutter

Lap around school

Station Work at playground – pull ups, incline merkins, decline merkins, dips, squats

Parking lot work… shuffle right, shuffle left, karaoke right, karaoke left, backpedal, bear crawl, lunge walk… with descending merkins between each circuit

LBC, Dolly, Flutter

Finish with burpees X 10, then X 5


Oops, I forgot the disclaimer… and oops, I forgot the standard warm up.  I know Alf enjoys it when I get out of my car at 5:30 to lead the workout, then say “go” immediately for an AYG 1,000 meters before we’ve done nary a side straddle hop.  Back when I was a young lad, one of the things I enjoyed the most about F3 workouts was the unpredictability.  Guess what… this requires more work as time goes by.  I’m as guilty as anyone, give that on most days guys can guess at least half of my exercises before I Q a workout.  So, this morning was an attempt to bring back just a bit of mystery.  Of course I couldn’t help myself on the station work.  After all, who doesn’t benefit from three solid rounds of pull ups, dips and squats… it’s meat and potatoes [is that the Dan Quayle spelling??].

Thoroughly enjoyed the workout this morning guys.  I think the grumblings at the beginning were a good sign.  A few random observations…

-Pound for pound, O’T may be the fastest man in F3 in terms of running sideways and backwards.  It’s a gift he has… just need to figure out how to really put it to use.

-Pop Tart claims to have retired from the beer mile.  Maybe, but I suspect he will still be drinking beer and still be running miles… so, why not just combine the two from time to time.

-I think I’ve seen Smokey at about every workout over the past few weeks.  Smokey likes to run, he likes to compete, and he likes to wear his Tennessee ball cap.  Rocky Top baby!!!!

-Squid, by far, demonstrates the best form in F3.  It’s like he goes into a zone where he is oblivious to cadence, but he absolutely nails the form.

-Alf loves Mondays.  I mean, the guy just like to get his week started off at 5:30 at the Matrix, even though he’s got the day off.  I’m putting you on the Matrix Mount Rushmore.


That’s All They Needed

15 men worked out at McKee Road Elementary School.  We did:

-Who needs a warm up, right?  I exited my 1982 Ferrari and we got straight to work… running the standard 800 meter course


-Another 800 meters at full speeed

-Then the required warm up… SSH, IW and Squats

-Then one more full speed 800 meters

-Then some time on the wall

-Then a medley of merkins… wide arm-regular-military-diamond-fingertip-diamond-military-regular- wide arm

-Then some station work at the playground… pull ups and dips, pull ups and dips, pull ups and dips

-A bit more running… close with Mary.

I would have been on time for the workout, but when I came downstairs at my house this morning I could see that my 15-year old son went to bed last night without cleaning up after himself in the kitchen… brownies weren’t covered, pumpkin dessert wasn’t put back on the fridge, orange juice was open and on the counter, vegetable tray was without the lid and not put back in the fridge… so, I had to stir him up and get him take care of things before I left for the workout.

Good work out there this morning guys.  Squid’s form was a perfect 10.  Pop Tart was looking a bit like Mrs. Doubtfire with his Halloween wig.  McGee’s shirt was too small.  O’T was sweating excessively, given the mild weather conditions.  And Paper Jam with the one-liner of the workout.. “That’s all they needed” [you had to be there].

Planning is for Planners

It had been a long time since I put on my Q spurs, but when Abacus sent out a note on Friday asking if anyone wanted to take the reins at Area51 this past Saturday I decided to go for it.  While I hope to never “mail it in” with my Q duties, I really can’t say that I’m much of a workout planner.  I like to be inspired in the moment.  Unfortunately for the PAX, that usually means that I revert to some of my old favorites… including station work at the playground.  I did my best to change things up a bit on Saturday, so hopefully it wasn’t too predictable.

What we did…

  • Joker arrives in parking lot at 7:01AM… a wee bit late for the workout Q… 13 guys were assembled in a circle, probably asking, “well, who wants to lead today?”
  • Once I parked my BMW [inside joke], I jumped out and started running immediately… thankfully, everyone followed
  • Started with a standard warm up… SSH, IW, Squats.  Noticed that Pop Tart was his normal chatty self.  Listen, the guy has a lot on his mind, and he likes to share.
  • Noticed during warm up that McGee was wearing branded F3 apparel.  A very unusual sight.  It was a yellow F3 shirt, and he reminded me that years ago there was an idea that workout Qs would wear yellow shirts.  #F3Trivia
  • I think the next thing we did was run over the Knox Road.  We partnered up, then we did the following:
    • Partner 1 runs to end of Knox and back [roughly 1/2 mile] while partner 2 does merkins; flip
    • Partner 1 backpedals to end of Knox then runs back while partner 2 does dry docks; flip
    • Partner 1 does karaoke to end of Know then runs back while partner 2 does squats; flip
    • Partner 1 does bear crawl for 100 yards then runs back while partner 2 does… I don’t remember actually; flip
    • During this part of the workout we ended up in front of Cold Cuts house.  Cold Cuts had an early morning softball game, so he wasn’t at the workout, but we did heckle him as he left his house.  He tells us it’s his daughter’s softball league, but we noticed him carrying a pink softball helmet that said “Cold Cuts” on it, so he may be in a local women’s league.
  • Ran back to the school for some station work… sorry, couldn’t help myself… pull ups, merkins and dips… you know the drill
  • To the parking lot for a series of speed laps… did 3 or 4, at full speed
  • Spent some time doing People’s Chair
  • Finished with Mary

Other observations

  • Huggy Bear is still wasting away… could be in skinny jeans by XMAS
  • Donkey Kong is in his 30s now… I remember when he first came to F3, as a young lad
  • Squid has impeccable form, especially with his pull-ups [slow a steady, with periodic bicep kissing]