Beyond the Wall

Taste of the South

YHC hails from the Midwestern state of Indiana. I lived there most of my life. I was born in Indianapolis in 1986, at St. Vincent’s hospital on 86th street. After a few days there, my parents took me home to E. 186th street in Westfield, where I lived until I moved to West Lafayette to obtain a degree from the best university in the state of Indiana – I’m speaking of Purdue University (which, most recently, was in the news for being the winner of the old Oaken Bucket – the most prestigious rivalry trophy in these United States of America, land of the free, home of the brave). I lived in God’s Country until I graduated, and then quickly married my M before she came to her senses. After the honeymoon, I was Indiana another week to pack everything I/we owned. On January 30th, 2010, I looked in the rearview mirror of the 20-ft Uhaul truck as we crossed the Indiana/Ohio state line. For the first time in 23 years, I was no longer a resident of the greatest state in the Union.


In hindsight, I realize I may have thought more highly of my home state than the rest of the humans in this country. But you can’t blame me for that. I had never been to North Carolina before.

For the last 7+ years, I’ve been fighting the perception that Indiana is a “fly-over” or “drive-thru” state with little more to offer than corn and soybeans. As a matter of fact, a quick Google consult shows that Indiana’s top exports are vehicles and parts, industrial equipment, electronics, and pharmaceuticals. So suck on that, USA. Alas, try as I might, over the last few years my resolve to fight the good fight has waned dramatically, what with political issues placing the state squarely in the crosshairs of hyper news agencies, the cold and devastatingly cold winters (I know what I said), and the fact that IU and Notre Dame are still a part of the fabric of Indiana. How could Indiana ever stack up to other states like, oh I don’t know, North Carolina? I started spending more time trying to lure people away from Indiana than I did trying to defend the honor of my home.

But then 2014 happened.

I had started doing this thing called “F3” with a bunch of old farts in Cary, North Carolina. Soon, I was hooked. Posting at these workouts 4 or 5 days a week was the norm and anything less than that was disappointing. It was just one more thing that made other states so much better than my home. But then, it was time to visit my home for the holidays. Still relatively new to the F3 universe, I didn’t really know the boundaries of F3 nation. I was shocked to see, I mean really REALLY shocked to see that…F3 was in Northwest Indiana? Really??

And that’s when the little ember, still barely alive deep within me, started to burn once again. Slowly, at first. But surely, no doubt.

I posted to a Saturday workout with complete strangers at a church in Crown Point. I can’t tell you much about the workout other than that it was cold as balls and we did 11s with cinder blocks on a steep ass hill – the only hill in Crown Point, as it turns out. But as we closed out the COT, I couldn’t deny the facts.

There is more than corn in Indiana…

Slowly. Surely. Burning brighter, burning hotter. Slowly. Surely.

Then late 2016 happened.

As F3 Nation started garnering more attention from local and even national news agencies, the growth we were seeing in our very own Carpex region was starting to take off. I follow a multitude of F3 folk on the Twitter machine, and one of said followees retweeted something from the F3 Expansion account.

F3. Was headed. To Indianapolis.

I was reeling. Was this real? Was this all a dream? This couldn’t be a dream, though. It had to be real. It was real. And it was fantastic. My excitement level burst through the ceiling/roof. I started trying to EH everyone I know. And I mean EVERYONE. I even told my sister to bring back her pixie haircut, don some baggy clothes, avoid waxing her upper lip for a few months, and POST!! She didn’t. And that was the right move. But that goes to show you what this all meant to me. I was just so pumped that I’ll have a place to post any time I visit home.

But it was more than that. It wasn’t just about a workout. It was about my home. The state I love, and subsequently left, and then doubted. It showed me that I had been wrong in my thinking. I never should have doubted the greatness of Indiana. Of my home. And it was only through F3 that I was able to finally see my foolish thinking.

The fact is, Indiana is the greatest state in these blessed United States of America. (please read that as “Bless-Ed”, not “blest”. It makes a difference to me. It really does. If you read it as “blest” the first time, go back and re-read it. You’ll thank me later.) And as I huddled in the gloom Thanksgiving morning with 6 other Tibetan Tiger-killers, that once nearly-extinguished ember had worked it’s way into a roaring inferno deep within my soul.

So yeah. Indiana is pretty great. Y’all should check it out some time.

Saturday at Sahm Park, November 25th at 0700, 40+ degrees, and 5 Gloomfighters hit the road for a Taste of the South beatdown.


SSH x 20
Good morning x 15
Mountain climbers x 15
Merkins x 20
Windmills x 15


I haven’t been to Sahm park in probably 10 years, so I had to do some recon via Google Earth. As with all parks in Indiana, Sahm Park is home to basketball courts and parking lots, among other things. That’s all I needed.

We ran to the basketball courts for Inflating BLIMPS:

B – 5 burpees
L – 10 lunges, each leg
I – 15 Imperial Walkers
M – 20 merkins
P – 25 plankjacks
S – 30 squats

Inflating – start with 5 burpees, run to other end of court, 5 burpees + 10 lunges, run to other end of court, 5 burpees + 10 lunges + 15 Imperial Walkers, etc. etc.

F3 Indianapolis did not like Inflating BLIMPS.

Next, Lazy Dora:

100 Merkins as a team, one partner working, other holds plank, flap jack when needed
200 squats, other partner squat hold, flap jack when needed
300 LBCs, other partner 6 in leg hold, flap jack when needed

Next, run to the parking lot for Dora 123:

100 Merkins as a team, one partner working, other backward run to the end of the parking lot, regular run back, flap jack
200 squats, other partner runs, flap jack
300 Dying Cockroaches, other partner runs, flap jack

Still 20 minutes left, eh? No fear…this is right in YHC’s wheelhouse. Improv ain’t nothin to me. Spotted a playground with swings and benches. That’ll do.

10 Australian pull-ups on the swings, 10 dips, 10 left/right step ups
Repeat for 7 or so minutes

10 Australian pull-ups, 10 derkins, 10 box jumps
Repeat for a few minutes.

Head back to the basketball courts for two quick sets of wind sprints (to encourage a little merlot, perhaps?), then gather for an Indiana Run (I know what I said) back to the cars.


Short on time, we knocked out a 10-count of LBCs


Count-o-rama: 5 behemoths – 2 RESPECT, 1 hate, 2 meh
Name-o-rama: Still 5. Cosmo, DC, Darius (because he likes to Ruck…), Brickyard, and YHC
Announcements: This was muuuuuuuuch shorter than the announcements in Carpex, y’all.
Prayer requests: Safe travels for everyone, and there was one more I think (but I traveled 800 miles and slept twice since then, so I’m not going to remember…).


  • I pulled up to the lot at Sahm Park at 0652, where three empty cars were already parked. The shovelflag confirmed I was in the right place, but no one else was around. I remembered one of the heroes from Thursday’s workout mentioning some of the guys ruck starting at 0600. Impressive. Just as that memory entered my mind, I looked out my window and saw three warriors in the distance strutting toward me. A streetlight shown behind them so I could only make out their silhouettes in the pre-dawn gloom. I’m not kidding when I say my first thought was that scene in “Blackhawk Down” toward the end of the movie when the soldiers are running out of the city on foot, finally able to get to safety. It was a pretty badass sight and I wish I would have had my camera to capture it. Three HIM, crushing the pull of the fartsack, “warming up” for a Callahan beatdown. I was looking forward to meeting my new heroes.
  • Immediately after getting out of my car, I hear one of the “heroes” complaining about being downwind as one of the others crop-dusted the area. Yup, this is F3.
  •  Two of the F3Indianapolis regulars are RESPECTs. I felt right at home.
  • F3Indianapolis hadn’t done BLIMPS before. You’ll thank me later.
  • The groans and moans came out quicker than I had anticipated. Music to thine ears.
  • I may have even torn one of the RESPECTs’ hamstrings.
  • He’s fine.
  • None of my EH attempts worked. My old friends don’t know what they’re missing!
  • This backblast is already over 1,500 words.
  • That’s how you know I haven’t Q’d in awhile. I got all these thoughts that just gotta come out and I can’t stop won’t stop don’t try to stop me I’ll fight you
  • I should go.

Thanks for the Hoosier Hospitality (that’s not an IU saying, by the way. I’m a Hoosier by birth, Boilermaker by the grace of God).



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