If you’ve taken even a quick glance at your Twitter feed today, you can see the power of our PAX and the positivity, hope and support that the entire F3 nation has shown towards our brother, Double Down. Here in our own backyard at The Mutt, it was no exception and to be a part of it was humbling. Twenty-six PAX came out this morning to work DOUBLE to show DD we would never let him DOWN in his fight. Today was one of the best mornings I’ve ever had in F3, and that is saying a lot.
PAX: Snowman, Waterboy, Windshield, Pope(!!!!), Glen Ross, Left Eye, Geppetto, Sprinkler, Escort, PED, Sump Pump, Maize, Pepperoni, Mad Cow, Backdraft, Plumb Bob, Fridge, Deuce, Tiger, Hamm, BUSCHHHHH, Digiorno, Blueprint, Wham-O, Zoolander (Q), Grinder (Q)
Last week, Zoo reached out to see if I wanted a Co-Q for today. Without hesitation, I said yes. I figured if you add his crazy to my crazy, we’d end up with one hell of a beatdown. At very least, it made sense to have DOUBLE the Qs to honor Double Down and that gave us our theme for the day – DOUBLE everything and don’t let any PAX DOWN.
I arrived to the Mutt early to plant the flag and get loose. As the PAX started rolling in, I made my way around the circle welcoming guys and giving fist bumps, when I look over and see a guy dressed in all black with his dark hair slicked back. I did a DOUBLE take. Was this Double Down’s twin? Nope. Even Better. Pope was back in the gloom! Knowing what he has endured this past year and to see him back and ready to post with his brothers lifted my heart to the sky. I thought I was pumped before, but this took it to a whole other level.
After disclosures, we started with our customary lap around HT. When we reached the large lot, instead of circling up for COP, we DOUBLED DOWN and did another lap around the school. Once in COP, we did 10 Abe Vigodas(IC), 10 Hillbillies(IC), Downward Dog, Runner’s Stretch (because, as Zoo asked and I confirmed, we were about to do some running) and 10 Grass Grabbers(IC). We then DOUBLED DOWN and did the same set again, but this time a little quicker.
After COP, Zoo had us count off by 2’s, but instead of 1, 2, we were either DOUBLE or DOWN. The Doubles lined up behind me and the Downs behind Zoo and we started an Indian Run out of the parking lot, left on Cherrywood, and left down Elmwood to head to the infamous BLAME HILL. A few weeks ago, Zoo took the Mutt PAX on a jaunt down to this large and daunting hill that we had never used before. It’s by far the toughest hill anywhere near the Mutt. A few trips up and down that morning and the whole PAX was smoked. On that day, we nicknamed it BLAME HILL, but today we went back and renamed it something more permanent and more fitting: DOUBLE DOWN HILL.
Before continuing with the workout recap, let’s talk more about Double Down. From the first time I posted with him, Double Down has been one of the kindest, most welcoming and supportive HIMs I’ve come across. On top of that, the guy’s a beast. I’ve got ten years on him and he can still run circles around me. It’s guys like him that show what you can achieve by living right and working hard, and I, like many other PAX, have respected him immensely from the start. When we reached the bottom of the hill this morning and I explained what we’d be doing there, I left the PAX with this before we started our Thang – in my last text with DD, he said he was ready for today “thanks to the F3 Brotherhood”. I asked the PAX to use that as their motivation to push themselves to the limit today and reiterated that NO ONE would be let DOWN or left behind. Everything we did today, we were going to do together.
With that said, here was our Thang – Spell “ACE” and “SPADE” doing the following exercises: A (Angle Grinders), C (Copperhead Squats), E (E2k – look it up), S (Squat Thrust Jumps), P (Plank Jacks), A (American Hammers), D (Double Merkin Burpees – crowd fav, right Backdraft?), E (Elevator Leg Lifts). For each “ACE” exercise, we ran up the hill, doing 10 reps at the top, then ran down the hill, and DOUBLED DOWN, doing 20 reps. When we moved to “SPADE”, in interest of time, we shortened the reps to 5 at the top and 10 at the bottom, then modified D and E slightly more because 6:15 was nearing and we had to get back to the school. All reps were completed and by the time we got back to the flag, I think that everyone had their fill. We circled up for announcements and intentions, then Zoo led us out in prayer.
Pope said that he chose to make his F3 return at the Mutt today because we had the least hills (HA!). While I’m sorry that we let Pope down on that one, I am proud and honored that I was able to spend the morning getting better with him and 25 of the best men I’ve ever known…the 24 others that were there with us and the one we all held in our heart: Double Down. This morning was all the proof anyone could ever need that this is more (much, much more) that a workout.