AO: The Oracle
PAX- Vandelay, Pothole, Scrapper, Sampras, Patton, Kingpin, A-Bomb, FDIC, Convoy, Huffy, Pancakes, Panty Hose, Khakis, Tomas, Mac and Cheese, Nemo, DaVinci, FNG- Sunshine
64 degrees, cool air, dark…
As I drove to the Aldrich this morning, my mind wandered. I was thinking about the workout I planned. I was thinking about my COT. I was nervous… I wasn’t sure if either would hit the mark. I felt off…
As I took the turn from 156th street onto the frontage road, two cars had turned in right before me. For some reason, this calmed me and gave me hope. People were coming. And then as I pulled into the parking lot, I saw a small group waiting for me. Now I was ready. I had to be.
The first silhouette I saw in the darkness was Nemo. This got me jacked up. I love that kid and have not seen him in weeks. Then I started recognizing others in the group; Patton, Convoy, Khakis, Sampras, Vandelay, A-Bomb. What a great group of men to lead today.
As the time approached 6 AM, we had a good size group waiting for the call. 18 HIMs standing in a circle, waiting for someone to lead them. That someone was me…
I started with the usual cadence, Welcome to F3, it stands for Fitness, Fellowship and Faith. Core principles… mission… etc. Do we have any FNGs? Yes… there was one. Steve… for now. Get ready to dance Steve.
We started with a mosey from the shovel flag, across the street, into the parking lot to the east of Aldrich. We circled up for Warm-a-rama.
SSH’s (Jumping Jacks) 15 IC
Big Ones 15 IC
Alternating Shoulder Taps 15 IC
Goofballs 15 IC
Sun Gods 10 each
After Warm-a-rama, we moseyed down to the school and I had the PAX line up against the wall. Before we did some wall exercises I gave some background to why we were about to do what we were about to do.
My dad is the strongest and coolest person I know. He has been a superhero in my eyes for 41 years. I always describe him as the toughest human being alive. Here is his resume; high school football linebacker, US Marine, carpenter for 40+ years. He drinks scotch and smokes Marlboro reds. He lights those cigarettes with a match, no lighter, every single time. Everyday when he got home from 8-10 hours of hard labor, we would challenge his three sons, me the youngest, to see who could do the most inverted pushups. He would then plant his hands on the floor and throw his legs against the wall. Once positioned, he would start to lower himself to the floor and then raise back up, again and again. None of us could ever beat him. He was Superman.
Back to the workout, once I shared the reasoning behind the wall workout, we started with donkey kicks. 15 of them and then hold on the last one. As we hit 15, the group held, my dad’s voice was in my head, DOWN! We did five inverted push-ups or as I call them, Rob Mainellis. Then we did wall sits and counted down the line and back. Next up was fifteen Chicken peckers and then Australian Mountain Climbers. We finished the wall with another round of Wall Sits. As we set off for our mosey, I couldn’t help but smile, thinking of my dad.
We moseyed down the path and under the bridge until we reached a clearing. It was a perfect spot for the Thang. I needed a long stretch of grass for what we were about to do. I took the five cones that Vandelay brought for me and jogged down the grass, dropping a cone every 20 yards. Then I jogged back to the group, they were waiting patiently but anxious.
I had everyone line up like they were on the goal line of a football field. We were going to start with 10 Merkins. Then lunge for 20 yards to the first cone. At that cone we did 10 burpees. Then a bear crawl to the next cone. 20 air squats. Then lunge to the next cone. Supermans for a 15 count in cadence. Bear crawls to the next cone. At this cone, we did a 60 second plank and we counted off in the group to 60. It was fun, sloppy at times, but felt like a team. We lunged 20 more yards and then jogged back to the beginning to the do it all over again.
We ended up doing five rounds of that. The merkins got tougher, the burpees felt impossible. The Supermans were surprisingly difficult and the planks felt like forever. One of the highlightswas when Patton who was right next to me, called on himself to give the group a 10 count. The best part tho was that we did it all together. Every rep, every count, every bead of sweat. There were 19 of us and we did it all together while we battled whatever it was we were battling. Whether it was struggles at home, problems at work, managing anxiety or fighting through doubt. We battled and we got through it. ‘
After we finished, we moseyed back to the basketball court. There was a group that was far behind and in true F3 fashion, the PAX went and picked up the 6. Once we were all in, we circled up and did some Mary. 15 flutter kicks. 15 low dollys. And in honor of my boy Slick, 50 American Hammers. (we love you Slick and miss your luscious locks).
After Mary, we knocked out Name- a-Rama, named our FNG (welcome Sunshine), and did prayers and announcements. I followed that up with a COT (see below) and FDIC led us out in prayer. In all, it was a pretty good morning.
Final days of Queen Service challenge. T Claps to those men who have fought and lost weight and battled demons along the way. You inspire us. Good luck with your final weigh ins.
Huge shoutout to those guys who have done the Iron Pax Challenge. It sounded awful and great at the same time. With a history of competition and descension, F3 Omaha came together to make it a great event. Huge T Claps to Hard Hat for organizing.
For my COT, I went back to my dad. When I was younger he was the strong dad, the cool dad, the dad that looked like was made of brick. When I found out I was having a baby in August of 2017, I was soft and weak. I hated it. I googled “dad workouts” and found one that stood out. I read through it and thought it was impossible. I laughed it off and continued to be weak and soft.
Well, that workout was the workout we did it today boys. The merkins, the burpees, the squats, the supermans and the planks. That was the workout that seemed so out of reach for me over 3 years ago. And today, we conquered it.
With a dad for a hero, I have always been hyper aware of how I am with my son, Bodhi, and how he sees me. And candidly, I have fallen short many times. I have not been the man I want and need to be for him.
And then last Sunday something happened that opened my eyes. We were watching the Bears game and they had missed yet another field goal. I got up from the couch and screamed, “C’mon man!” loudly at the TV. As I walked away, I heard the words echoed in the sweetest and most angelic voice I have ever heard. “C’mmmnn ma”. I looked back and smiled, maybe even teared up a little. Because in that moment I realized the influence I have. Not just on Bodhi, but on anyone.
What I want you to realize is that you have influence. You have power. And whether it is your child, or a co-worker or anyone in your life, you have the ability to impact them. One person can change a room. One person can life someone’s spirits. One person can move mountains.
And after what I have seen here this morning, I have no doubt, that you can be that one person.
Steve Jobs once said, “We’re here to put a dent in the universe. Otherwise why else even be here?”
My challenge to you is this, look around and see where you can out a goddamn dent in the universe, and put your head down and do it!