Author Archive Soft Pretzel

What the?!?!? How many?!?!

Amazing turn out for the Brave today.  A revival!  Get those men on Q ASAP.

The Thang:

Run together up Community House and turn in for a brief warm up: LSS x 10, MC x 15, stretching.  Continue up CH and stop for Peter Parkers + circle back for 6.

Make a right and arrive at Enhaven Elementary.  Groups of 5 do three rounds of: Pull Ups (AYG – pull up group acts as time), Dips AYG w/ step ups mixed in, and Big Boi sit ups AYG (not American Hammers which we all now know are ineffective thanks to Midriff.)

Next: Maximize our mileage without leaving anyone for dead.  Out and back on Endhaven with a half mile turnaround for the fastest guys – Fire Hazard, Midriff, Sweetwater, I’m probably missing someone.

Run to parking deck next to the Hampton Inn.  Run backwards up each ramp followed by 20 lunges each time, 3 ramps total.  Finish with CDDs at the top.

Run back to launch with circle backs + Olaf and I did a bunch of exercises by ourselves at one point.

Moleskin: Great job by the men getting out of their comfort zone to post at this workout.  That is what it’s all about.  Thanks Olaf for a tremendous take out.

Announcements:  SOB Pool Party August 27.  Check Slack for details or call Tag Along.

The Bunnies are Back

Anyone who did IPC last year remembers the thrill of Murder Bunnies.  Basically reverse hiking a cinder block from between your legs to out in front of you, jumping forward while hunched over, and repeating many times to advance across the field or parking lot.  We did that today!  Why? Because it is a High Intensity exercise and NOE is a High Intensity Workout.

The Thang:

9 men grabbed their cinder blocks and went to the next parking lot for space.  Warm Up = 15 SSH, 15 MC and 15 LSS all IC.

Thang 1: 20 overhead press, murder bunny across, 20 overhead press, rest 30 seconds.  20 curls, MB back, 20 curls, rest.  5 “blockees”, MB, 5 blockees, rest.  20 squats, MB, 20 squats, rest.

Thang 2: Use the HIIT cadence Wild Turkey has taught us and do 3 exercises in the same muscle group, 30 sec on/30 sec off, or 40/20 depending, then rest for 1 minute and repeat.  First round was incline, narrow grip merkins on the block, then decline wide grip merkins, then alternating merkins with one hand on block one hand off.  Second round was straight leg deadlifts, rotating lunges, and sumo squats (all with block).  Round 3 was situps with OH block press, flutter press with block, and LBCs no block.

Thang 3:  About 8 minutes of station work.  2 stations were murder bunnies, one was farmer’s carry with two blocks, one was burpees, rest was PAX choice with block – curls, triceps, OH press, etc.  Time.

Moleskin:  Huge shout out to Midriff for hiding another 8 cinder blocks next to Blakeney Target last night.  I retrieved them and put them back in their spot for future DaVinci and Firestarter.  If you plan to move them for Maul/NOE, here’s a pro tip – do it the night before because at 5:15 am, you will need to awkwardly waive to all the construction guys working the Target project as they see you taking stuff out of the woods.

Humbled as always,

Soft Pretzel

Check Your Splits

Couch to 5K training took another step forward today at the Maul.  8 PAX for 1.5 mile pre-run and 14 enjoyed the addition of interval training to a bootcamp.

Warm-Up: Disclaimer given and circle up for 20 SSH, 15 IW, 10 merkins, 20 MCs, and 10 low/slow squats, all IC.

Thang: YHC tracked 400 meters or ~.25 miles on the watch.  PAX were instructed to run their 5K pace which of course was rejected in favor of faster! 3 intervals with ~2 minutes of Mary recovery in between.  Great to see guys give it their all and keep track of their splits to chat about later.  Rousey and Wingman had a couple strong runs and DL showed up big on the last one.

Mosey to St Matt’s with two stops for merkins IC x 10.  At the church, select a rock and form a circle.  PAX choice as we went around for rock lifting exercise mixed with called exercises from YHC to keep the heart rate up.  I can’t remember everyone’s but want to highlight two of them:

  1. Odd job calling the alternate hand merkins and then destroying everyone with his speed and endurance for it.  Awesome job!
  2. Jerry World called the partner rock twists which were a great and difficult exercise.  A definite keeper.

Put the rocks back then mosey back to almost launch.  Find the steep hill close by and AMRAP hill sprints with 10 merkins at the bottom.  Left enough time for about 3-4 rounds of Mary.

Announcements:  B-L-O-O-D D-R-I-V-E.  Seriously if you are able please give.  Sounds like we are short at this point.  Pre-Runs will continue at the Maul to keep preparing for Impact Local 5k which is….December 4!  Happy Hour next Thursday.


Quick recap of a great morning with 20 PAX (!!) at Firestarter + a couple of runners for COT.

The Thang:

Short mosey to let the late arrivals catch up and warm up: 20 SSH, 20 IW, 10 merkins, 10 mountain climbers all IC.

Mosey to Old Navy for storefront pain stations.  Run from Old Navy to Target stopping at every store for 10 merkins and 10 squats.  Seven stops total I think.  Mary to wait for the Six then 10 eight count burpees IC.  Coming back, same format and switch to CDDs and backward lunges.  Finish again with Mary and 10 ECBs.

Partner up and go to the small wall behind Old Navy.  P1 runs to the stop sign and back (~100 yards total) while P2 does as many wall climbs as possible.  Repeato so each guy goes twice.

Mosey to the AT&T store.  Bear crawl across the parking lot, 20 squats, bear crawl back, 20 squats.

Mosey back to the fountains to close out.  P1 runs the lap while P2 does a called exercise.  No prescribed number of reps, just each PAX focusing on form as many as possible.  Diamond merkins, wide arm merkins, dips, and merkins.

Mary and… time.

Announcements: Spots still open for F3 Dads Camp at Camp Thunderbird.  Last Call and Body Shop looking for Qs.

Strength Speed and Courage

And sweat, lots of sweat.  That would be the theme of today.  And maybe some queasy and light headed feelings.  We got after it.

Warm Up: Mosey to where there are usually bus fumes but its summertime so: 20 SSH, 10 IW, 10 merkins, 10 LSS all IC.

The Thang 1: 1 pull up/5 jump squats, 2 pull ups/10 jump squats, etc.  Go as high as you can until you can’t hit the next set of pull ups, then run a lap, start where you left off and go back down the ladder.

Thang 2: Use the covered sidewalk with posts that are about 5 yards apart.  Bear crawl with a stop at each post – 1 merkin, 2 merkins, etc. until your form breaks and you can’t get the number of reps for that set.  Brexit takes the crown on this one.  Not sure he made it to ten but maybe??  Recover with a jog to the end and Peoples Chair.

Next, bear crawl back with stops for – 2 plank jacks, 4 plank jacks, etc until you can take no more.  Midriff wins high honors as he was still fighting well into the time the rest of us were doing LBCs at the end of the walkway.

Finally, lunge walk and stop at each post for 1 burpee, 2 burpees, etc up to 7.  PAX were instructed to go at your own pace to get to 7.  This was not easy.  Respect to everyone for completing.

Thang 3: start at the bottom of Devil’s Backbone (legacy Arsenal term – look it up.)  Sprint to the top, 20 merkins or until your form breaks.  Jog down, sprint up, 15 merkins.  Same thing for 10 and 5 merkins.

Finish with three sets of dips x 10 IC alternating with Mary and 60 seconds of plank back at launch.

Announcements: Shovel flag party this Saturday at 2 p.m.  Few beers, few laughs, you should come.  Also, SIGN UP for Crane Relay or we won’t be able to do it.  Need more PAX.

Pursuit – Rain, Rain, Go Away

10 Pax – 8 ran, 2 rucked.  Route was ~6 miles and we did repeating intervals: 4 minutes at marathon or long distance pace x 2 minutes at threshold or 5/10k pace.

Stupid Shoulder Day

Cold and damp greeted the PAX as they climbed out of cars in the MRHS lot this morning.  What was waiting for them was probably much worse.

Warm up: Mosey up to the porch area with picnic tables.  Stretching, 10 IWs, 5 seal merkins, 10 man maker merkins, and 5 8 count burpees all IC with demos to show everybody the exercises for later in the workout.  20 squats IC.

The Thang: Grab a bench. 10 side step ups per side.  Then the Jack Webb of derkins and hip slappers.  Went up to 5 derkins/20 slappers before coming back down.  Honestly I can’t believe I brought this back out.  Seriously hard.  20 squats OYO until YHC could breath again.

Mosey to the back of the school.  Mary for the six and a set of Morrocan Night Clubs to loosen the shoulders up.  Then the killer… at each street light, do one 8 count burpee, 2 man maker merkins, 3 seal merkins and multiply the reps by the street light number.  So 1,2,3 then 2,4,6 then 3,6,9, etc.  We made it to 5 until it was obvious that we should not continue.  Mary for the 6.

Mosey to the globe and the next set of street lights.  This time the exercises were jump squats, lunges, and squats in the same counting format.  This one not as bad.  End at the front of the HS and Mary for the 6.  Kudos to Bottlecap here for calling some very good plank/core work that I will absolutely steal for my next Q.

Partner up.  P1 runs the lap while P2 does: 20 flutters, 20 dollies, 20 LBCs on repeat.  3 rounds.

Finish with some running and burpees.

Announcements: Furniture giveaway for Christ Closet.  See Shop Dawg.  Its 10-1 this Saturday.  Rice and Beans Wednesday nights.  See Centerfold.  Sign Up Genius for cooking meals for F3 Pax (whose name I missed, sorry!)

Leg Day, My Leg Day

YHC arrived at NOE this AM (ok I’ll stop) with the plan of using the variety of hills to get in a good leg workout.  Many PAX had apparently gotten one yesterday – sorry!  Anyway, off we go.

Warm-up: Mosey through the parking lot to the end.  Stop 1: 20 IW, 10 windmills, 20 mountain climbers and 10 merkins all IC.  Stop 2: 20 flutters, 10 slow dollies, 20 LBCs.

Line up at the base of the large retention hill.  Do an exercise IC followed by a hill sprint each time.  Called exercises were 10 speed skaters, 10 lunges, 10 squats.

Mosey the back of the shopping center with speed bump stops for 10 gas pumpers IC and a long lunge walk.  Finish behind the movie theater and grab some wall.  People’s chair with 50 air presses then sprint the hill.

Mosey to the Murderhorn and head to the bottom.  Go up it together alternating forward run, backward run, and side shuffles.  At each street light stop for 20 merkins: regular, seal, stagger right, and stagger left.

Mosey back past COT and around to a long straightaway.  Each time, run to the end, 15 merkins, run back, run to the second island, 10 merkins, run back, run to the first island, 5 merkins.  2 rounds with round one being diamond and round 2 being wide arm.

Finish with a “Jack Webb” of broad jumps and squats.

Mosey back, one minute elbow plank and 15 seconds of “Have a Nice Day.”

Announcements:  Please consider contributing to our collection for Roof Above.  Details and collection can come from any SOB Site Q.  New workout in Steel Creek starts this Saturday.  Udder is Site Q and you can check out his posts on Slack for details.  Snooze Button and The Appetizer have recently been very successful, especially attracting FNGs – let’s keep it up!

Moleskin:  Great to see Happy Meal this morning and others I typically miss on Thursdays.  Great group and AO as always and was honored to lead.

Better Together

17 gathered in the very chilly gloom and YHC attempted to show the 1st F virtues of togetherness.  Here is how it went:

Mosey to the Burton’s parking lot and try to forget the fact that we lost half the PAX crossing the road.  My bad.

Warm up: 30 SSH, 20 IW, 10 MNC, 15 LSS all IC and finish with five “up downs.”

Next part was a bit of an experiment.  PAX were advised to keep up to the best of their ability as YHC ran… slow at first, increasing speeds steadily and going ~200-800 meters each time in random directions around the shopping center.  We did four rounds and each time finished with Mary.  1) 20 big boi sit ups, 20 AH IC, 10 pistol crunches IC; 2) 20 Freddie Mercury, 10 side crunches each side, 10 LBCs all IC; 3) 10 dollies IC, hold 6 inches while *YHC gives a speech for like 2 minutes*, 30 flutters IC, 4) elbow plank until the six arrive.

*My speech was on the benefits of running together.  I told the story of Makeshift Marathon, when Tiger Rag ran the half with me and pushed me to a pace that was about 20 sec/mile better than my last race.  Sometimes I try to duplicate that pace on my own now and I fail miserably.  It’s a miracle really… how much more we can do together than apart.

Special call outs for Mic Check and Rousey for pushing up front and big time respect for Big Ben – the guy gave it his all and kept pace much of the way!

Next legs.  20 squats IC, lunge walk 30-40 lunges, 10 single leg Romanian dead lifts per leg, about 75 speed skaters IC because nobody was counting during the cadence, 10 broad jumps, backward lunge walk 30-40 lunges.

Mosey to the neighborhood behind the shopping center and gather at the entrance.  YHC completely misuses the word “permutation” in an effort to explain what we’re doing next, which is this: increasing number of merkins at each driveway until no PAX can do the prescribed number of reps.  We made it to 14 with Rousey taking the title of last man to tap out.  So that’s 105 merkins on the way up if you did them all.  Can’t say where everybody came in but hopefully we all got as many as we could.  Mic Check was of course hammering them and One Star as well.  The way back down the ladder was a bit of an S Show as cars and barking dogs kind of chased us off course.  We regrouped though and I would estimate another 50-60 merkins at least.

Run backwards up the hill to the rock pile and grab a rock.  OH presses and tricep extensions until the six arrive.  Then the PAX split up with half going up the hill for 3 sets of pull ups and squats, the other half staying and alternating curls and squats.  Awesome job by T1000 banging out the pull ups!  Then finish off with another three rounds of alternating OH Press and Tricep Ext.

Run back to COT with stops along the way to gather PAX.  20 peter parkers IC, then AYG dips at the fountains.  One minute late for COT.

Announcements: Time to step up for Roof Above.  Choose a site you post at and get with your site Q to coordinate your donation!


Seven PAX emerged at the 0515 point to meet a sharp wind and the endless opportunity of pain that is Cuthbertson HS/MS!  Here is how it went:

Warm-up: Mosey down to the basketball court and circle up for 25 SSH, 20 IW, 15 Moroccan Night Clubs, and 10 low slow squats all IC.  YHC receives “situational awareness kudos” for no hands on the wet ground.  Thank you and you’re welcome.

The Thang:

Start under an overhang in between the picnic benches.  15 merkins/15 big boi sit-ups (single count).  Run as a group down the hill and circle for 15 squats.  Run back up the hill to repeat OYO four times, each time subbing out the merkins as follows: diamond, wide arm, stagger right, stagger left.  The hill provided some good cardio and kudos to Gerber and Dasher for pushing the pace.

Mosey to the traffic circle for a one leg burpee fest.  5xright leg, run around the circle to the other end, 5x left leg and repeat for a total of three sets.

Mosey down to the big parking lot and line up across with each PAX in his own parking space.  10 speed skaters IC, sprint to the second light, mosey back.  50 high knees OYO, sprint to the second light, mosey back.  Then side shuffle one way, flapjack, run backwards.  Finish with 10 jump squats, sprint to the second light.

Mosey back up to the school for old school Jack Webb.  Then mosey around to the long hill for new school Jack Webb.  Pause for three rounds of PAX choice Mary.  New School Jack Webb = 1 merkin, 4 paces of bear crawl, 2 merkins, 8 paces, etc.

Head back toward COT and stop at the benches.  Another three rounds of PAX choice Mary, hard lap around the traffic circle, then 20 derkins/20 dips, 15 derkins/15 dips, 10 derkins/10 dips.

Mosey back to COT in time for wall sits and donkey kicks and…. “have a nice day.”

Moleskin: Chastain lead us for COT and various announcements were made.  Morning turned out awesome after some initial weather concerns.  YHC is not a regular at Swarm and am thoroughly impressed by the PAX each time I post!  A real honor to lead – thanks Dasher!