This backblast is for you Big D.  Four years ago there were only a handful of F3 Raleigh Monday AO’s and North Hills was becoming problematic not just in terms of PAX numbers (i.e. consistently over 18 posting, but also with the neighbors complaining about the many cars parking on the street and chatter before the workout).  Maize was our area Nantan and knew something must be done.

YHC and Wilson stepped up and turned our attention towards North Raleigh, an underserved part of Raleigh at that time and looking at the map, we scoped out Williams Park on the corner of Lead Mine and Lynn Road.  Conveniently closer than North Hills Park, this was a Win-Win and in January 2012, we officially launched “The Crucible”.  Prior to this site, there was nothing between some Brier Creek workouts and the core sites near the Beltline and ITB.  We hoped an AO a little further north would begin to draw new PAX from the woodworks and indeed it has.  Williams Park is a great site due to its strategic location, the many options available both onsite and in the extended neighborhoods that offer some great field trip opportunities for the QIC who dares to venture the PAX offsite.  And in those field trips, you can thank Wilson for finding Rangecrest just a couple months after the site opened… and if you’ve never posted at The Crucible before, Rangecrest is one of those hills that makes you want to spill merlot just staring up the steep incline.  Over the years, we’ve attacked this hill many times over with 7’s, toting rocks – affectionately known as “Rocks over Rangecrest”  [note:  the PAX have to haul their rock from the park to the hill which is about 3/4 mile run], and in all kinds of weather.

We’ve also added a pre-run at 520am which in and of itself has generated it’s own lore recorded in the backblasts of old.

January 8, 2018 – first workout of the year and the last day of the Arctic cold blast we’d had for awhile.  Temps were hovering just below 20 degrees.  Here’s what went down.

PRE-RUN (3 PAX) – just over 2 miles but man was it cold.

MAIN EVENT:  7 PAX slayed the fartsack and were better for it.

Warm-up:  SSH, Imperial Walkers, Mountain Climbers,  Indian run to the top of Rangecrest

Teeter Totter:  to understand this exercise, just know that Rangecrest is a hill shaped like a bell curve and we were at the top.  PAX split into 2 groups.  Group 1 stays at the top and does AMRAP of called exercise.  Group 2 runs down one side of Rangecrest and back up.  Flapjack.  Group 2 then runs down the opposite side of Rangecrest and back.  Flapjack.  Group 1 now runs down the other side of Rangecrest that Group 2 just did and after returning, Group 2 runs the opposite side.

We did this until each group had run at least 3 times.  Called exercises on the hill were:

  • Merkins
  • LBC’s
  • Flutter Kicks

Due to time, we headed back to the park running through the neighborhood mixing in a backwards run uphill and a final sprint of about 200 yards.

Fellowship jog to the side of the school with the small field and steep hill near the basketball court.  Same groups.  Group 1 does AMRAP exercise while Group 2 runs across field, up the hill, does 5 burpees and returns.  Flapjack.  We did this rotation 3 times.  Called exercises were:

  • Merkins
  • Reverse LBC’s
  • Freddy Mercury’s

Mosey to the pavilion and find a picnic table.

  • Left-Right step ups x 20
  • Dips x 20
  • Incline Merkins x 20

Repeat x 15 and x 10.

Mary – LBC’s and Hammers.

COT / Announcements / Prayers


  • The pre-run cold was just a slap in the face, especially when cars kept driving by with trailing winds.
  • the numbers were down…the cold has been taking it’s toll, but this solid 7 stayed together and got after it.
  • Sign up to Q if you’ve not done so before.  Co-Q if needed to gain some experience.
  • F3 Thin Place just started – Chong Li is organizing.  We’re studying 8 spiritual disciplines as discussed in blog posts on The Art of Manliness – Spiritual Disciplines over several weeks.  Meetings are every other Monday from 730-9pm.  next one is 1/22.  Ping Chong Li (Joe Bennett) for more info.