Paradise Island Backblast: No White Flags

September 2, 2020 |AO – Paradise Island | Regency | 62 Degrees

PAX: 21 – Icy Hot, Jeeves (Respect), Hashtag (Hate), Slow Pitch, Biff, Vandelay (Respect), Fire Walker, Merch, Gunner, Tenderfoot, Stretch, Two Step, Wait Time, Tater Tot, LPC, Blue Chip, Roadhouse, Convoy, Finkle, Sampras (Hate), Sparty

QIC: Sparty

YHC woke up at 03:30 and was ready to go this morning! So, might as well show up early for the Pre-Run. As Sparty rolled in to a vacant lot at 04:30, he started to wonder if anyone else would show…And like always, Mr. Reliable Fire Walker pulled in, with Roadhouse and Tater quickly behind. It was a great morning in the Gloom for a 3 mile mosey. Roadhouse and Tater dominated the mumblechatter as Fire Walker and Sparty offered a listening ear for the morning. Upon returning to Paradise, a group of fine looking men had gathered in excitement for the morning beatdown. PROMPTLY at 05:15, Sparty greeted the PAX with some fumbled words, but quickly recovered with the traditional F3 Welcome. He assured the PAX that we would be back on our traditional route today, so feel free to run as quickly as you would like. The disclaimer for today was that, “today will be fun and challenging at times. Things may get a little weird at times, but I encourage you to follow my lead and try to play along. And hopefully it all comes together in the end.” There were a few chuckles, and then we started our mosey.

YHC led the PAX to the first Pain Station stop in the parking lot right by the path. Sparty looked back and noticed there were a handful of HIM far behind that were still coming in. The PAX held a plank until the 6 was in. Initial though was disbelief that so many guys showed up late, but he knew he needed to keep an open mind and welcome everyone. At the first stop, Sparty asked the PAX to “be free and spirited as we would be utilizing the whole body with our exercises.” Music started to play:

Given to Fly (Pearl Jam)

  • SSH – 10 IC
  • Goofballs – 10 IC
  • Flying Sun Gods – 10 F, 10 R IC
  • Burpee GoofBalls – 5 on Down

PAX took off on the next mosey which goes around the lake and we arrived at the parking lot near Pacific St. Our man Jeeves was a little further behind and Sparty was encouraged by a PAX member that the Nan’tan said to get started. Pain Station #2, YHC told the PAX that “they are now starting to lose balance and strength to stand up.” Music started:

Just Breathe (Pearl Jam)

  • Bear Crawl Across the lot
  • 5 1-leg Burpees
  • Audible – 2 rounds as YHC didn’t want the PAX to fall behind time wise.

It was time to Mosey again as we headed for the dock. Two Step lead the way in his beautiful red “running shoes.” Along with LPC, we started to get nervous upon arriving to Pain Station #3 that there may be goose poop all over the ground. We persevered and it was time for the PAX to “get on their 6 as they now are physically out of sorts and find themselves stuck on the ground, and more than likely have shit themselves on the floor.” Music started:

Brother (Lord Huron)

  • Starfish Crunches – 20 IC
  • Gas Pumpers – 15 IC
  • American Hammers – 10 IC

All the HIM gladly stood up knowing nothing actually happened and they were just pretending. It was now time to mosey to the flowerpots. It was at this time that Sparty passed by Paradise Island’s Humble Site-Q when he shared a passionate, “I like you” with Sparty. YHC quickly responded with, “I Love You, man,” and took off running. When the PAX arrived to the flowerpots, Sparty was extremely confused at why all the men were standing in the middle of the road waiting for the 6 rather than at the flowerpot with him. As the 6 arrived, the PAX swiftly walked over to join Sparty. “You now cannot move anything below your waist.” Music started:

Wiser (Old Man Canyon)

  • Dips – 30 count
  • Derkins – 30 count

Sparty was happy to hear Blue Chip and Wait Time push through the pain on the last 5 reps rather than quit (nice work men). Before “taking the hill,” Wait Time and Tater let YHC know that they were going to take our man Jeeves back towards the flags rather than up the giant hill. Thank you for your leadership and awareness for the 6! The rest of the HIM made there way up the long hill. Two Step passed by Sparty but not before he acknowledged that YHC is “very intentional” with his workouts. I appreciate you noticing my good friend! As the PAX arrived one-by-one to the top of the hill, we waited in a plank position until the 6 was in. “You now cannot move at all and are restricted to a wheelchair.” Music started:

Rivers and Roads (The Head and the Heart)

  • Hold Al Gore for roughly 90 seconds

Sweat was pouring off Sparty’s brim as he smiled as a few of the PAX members (Gunner in particular) encouraged the PAX with a “No White Flags Men” comment. LPC second the comment! As time expired, it was now time to make our way back down to the shovel flags. As we reached the bottom of the hill, it initially looked as though Wait Time and Tater were standing over Jeeves dead body on the ground on the side of the road. YHC let the me know it was time to get back to camp. Everyone crossed the street without being hit by a car, and we waited for the 6 to come in while holding a plank again. As the crew gathered, Sparty announced, “I know this isn’t normal for us, but now you can’t even talk. So I ask that we walk to the shovel flags in silence.” YHC started “Rivers and Roads back up as the PAX briskfully made their walk back. Sparty was emotional. This had been a powerful morning thus far and the culmination of the events with this walk and beautiful music overwhelmed his emotions. He only hoped the PAX had felt some of it as well. Upon arrival to the flags, Sparty didn’t want the mode to be somber, so he gave TClaps to the PAX and told them they all did great today.

Numbered off: 21

Name-a-rama – Jeeves hasn’t posted in a while and slipped up a little bit. Slow Pitch was speechless for a moment before he remembered his name. And there was a distinct difference between Stretch and Two Step as they stood next to each other.

Announcements: IPC – there will be a Pop-up location in NW Omaha if anyone is interested. And then we will be at Stinson on Friday, and Combine on Saturday (6am). Jeeves asked about The Combine, and YHC was happy to answer him with explaining that the Hardest Working AO is at Kiewit Middle School. Labor Day Murph options – Triple Murph times of 5am, 6am, and 7am. Also, Titan Alley will have a 6am option.

Prayer Requests: Continue to pray for Slick and his M! There may have been more, my apologies if I’m missing them

COT: I started with first asking the PAX if any of them did not know who Steve Gleason was. Jeeves was the only one that spoke up, and I briefed him on the SG story summarized to about 30-60 seconds. Today I wanted to take you all through a journey of the deuteriation of the body as someone with ALS might experience such as our man Steve Gleason. He was fun, wild, athletic, and venturous, and that’s why we started the way we did. Then slowly, he started to lose mobility in his body and I hope you were able to get a sense for that today as we progressed through the workout.

Steve has always been very inspirational to me and here are some more incredible things about him. He started “No White Flags” and was given 2 options/routes he could go with starting the foundation: 1. Raise money to find a cure for ALS, or 2. Improve the life of people living with ALS. He chose the latter. He has been very instrumental in the advancements of technologies that are used today for people living with ALS, and has even had bills passed through Congress to help these people. The second, and maybe even more important thing he wanted out of his foundation is that he wanted to give people living with ALS a “Purpose.” So he has helped impact the lives of others living with ALS helping them do things they always wished of doing, and after their diagnosis, probably would have lost out on the chance of this opportunity. He provides that to them. Giving others a “Purpose” in their lives is what his “Purpose” become. Isn’t that exactly what we’re doing here? If we are truly living 3rd, we are helping provide a purpose for other people. I think this connection is extremely powerful. This “Purpose” he has been living with is more than likely what has kept him alive for so long!

The last thing I want to share about this story, which you all should watch his documentary “Gleason” at some point this weekend, is that the documentary didn’t just start with a film crew that said, “Hey let’s film this guy’s life.” The origin of the documentary is that Steve was completely aware that when his child(ren) were born, he would never be able to hold a conversation with them, and more than likely would die before they were adults. So he started doing video diaries for his son to share special messages, topics, or conversations to help him in his life. It was his way of being able to give of himself, to his son. I am a terrible gift giver. So this year I started a new thing that for my kids’ birthdays, I will write them a letter sharing with them a piece of myself. Life is fragile and I have no idea how long I’m going to be around. So I want to take this opportunity I have today to share with my children the pieces of me that I hope they can learn from. Try it out for yourself. It’s a powerful experience.

Prayer: LPC took us out with strong and elegant words.

Sparty,

Aye!

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