AO: The Woodshed | Elmwood Park | 42 degrees

May 28th, 2021

PAX- Safe Ride, Tenderfoot, Second Chance, Jack Rabbit, Two Step, Buns of Steel, Stitches, Pony Express, American Picker, Bovine, Convoy

Q: Roadhouse

The text arrived on May 13th at 2:42 pm. It read, Roadhouse, Pony Express here. Hoping to get you to lead a workout at the Woodshed soon. Thoughts?

Wow. So many thoughts raced through my mind. I was flattered at the request. I was nervous about a possible Q at a site that I had not been too that much. I was creeped out and curious how Pony got my number. After some reflection I responded very simply. I’m in!

The 28th came quick and I woke that morning excited about the Q. I pulled into the lot at The Shed at 5: 01 AM. I had only posted at the Woodshed twice and wanted to explore the huge expanse that lay before me. I had some ideas but needed to finalize the locations. I moseyed around Elmwood looking for some ideal spots for my beatdown. Come 5:25, I felt like I had a plan.

At 5:26 there were two of us, me and Convoy, standing at the shovel flag. Ok… guess its going to be small crew today. Luckily for me, the Thang was a two-man grinder. We had the numbers… over the next 4 minutes ten more PAX members rolled into the parking lot. We were at twelve. A perfect number.

I welcomed the group and started into the F3 intro. I limped through the five core principles, butchered the mission statement and though I clearly didn’t need to tell them at this point, let them know I was not a professional.

We started with a  mosey to the world famous grotto for a little warm-a-rama. We circled up and started with some silent Side Straddle Hops. We would count for 8 and then do 12 in silence. The goal was to all end at the same time. We did not… The punishment was five burpees. We knocked out some imperial walkers and some sun gods. And I always like to get something sexy early in the workout. So we ended with some pickle pushers with encouraged eye contact.


Silent SSHs  20 IC

5 Burpees

Imperial Walkers 15 IC

Sun Gods 10 each

15 Pickle Pushers

After Warm-a-rama, we moseyed up the steps and headed to the Pavilion.  I had an idea that this would be a great spot for some wall work. In hindsight, this was the worst decision of the day. We got things started with some donkey kicks. And on the last one I instructed the PAX to keep those feet up as we transitioned right into Balls to the Wall. Next up, without a breather, was chicken peckers and we ended with Australian Mountain Climbers.

The group was gassed. A few collapsed to the ground. Others took a knee and due to all the blood that had rushed to my head, my decision making became questionable. I suggested to the group that we do it again. There was an overwhelming groan from the PAX and we started at the top. By the time we got to Australian Mountain Climbers I had to modify and quit the exercise after 4. We all crumbled to the ground with a collective thud. I asked Convoy for a 10 count though I wanted to ask for a 100 count.


Wall Work X2

10 donkey kicks Hold for

10 Balls to wall

10 Chicken Peckers

10 Australian Mt Climbers

We gathered ourselves and moseyed through the park. We arrived at hole #2 on the golf course. It is a short Par 3 over water. In the middle of the pond there is a gorgeous fountain and on this crisp morning, it looked stunning. We partnered up for a two-man grinder. One guy would run up to the top of the hill and do 5 burpees. The other would stay at the bottom and do a list of exercises AMRAP.

The Thang:

Two-man grinder up the Hill

Top of the Hill – 5 burpees

Bottom of the Hill – AMRAP

Copperhead Squats

Heels to Heaven

Cherry Pickers

Bonnie Blairs


Carolina Dry Docks

Bobby Hurleys

Starfish Crunches

Air Presses

Hydraulic Squats


Overhead Claps

The grinder became a great venue for some mumblechatter. The topics were all over the place. We talked about babies, making babies, how good Tenderfoot was looking these days, NFL football, would Aaron Rodgers play for the Packers this year, and much more. It was so great to get to know this group of guys better.

I called Omaha and we moseyed back to the shovel flags. We circled up and did some American Hammers, Rancid-Style. The number was 12.

The name-a-rama went smooth and included an odd wink from YHC.


Safe Ride had 2 announcements but for the life of me I cannot remember what they were. I feel terrible about this. Sorry brother.


I recently had coffee with a colleague and she said something to me that resonated. As we talked about life and tried to solve the world’s problems she said, “ a lot of times, it just comes down to showing up.”

And it got me thinking. We are all busy and have a lot going on both personally and professionally. We get burnt out and we may not want to do some of the things we are asked to do or need to do. But most of the time, all we have to do is Show Up! Show up for our kids. Show up for our families. Show up at work. Show up for the workouts.

So as you navigate this hectic and crazy world and hesitate to say yes and question what you need to do and what you can skip, just remember that at the end of the day, a lot of times, all we have to do is show up.

I love you guys.


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Our mission is to plant, grow and serve small (free) workout groups for men for the invigoration of male community leadership.


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