Your WOD and Etymology for Flag Wavers


Which way is up?

Today’s Cabal Fang WOD is as follows:

Medicine Ball Tabata: 24 x :20/:10, cycling through Squats (bounce ball off wall as you go down), Sit-ups (bounce off wall at top of each), and Push-ups (both hands on ball). Bike: 24 x :20/:10. Ride AFAYC for :20 and rest for :10, staying in the top 3 gears for the duration.

Now for some word talk.

Etymology is the study of words and word origins and should not be confused with Entomology, which is the study of insects and bugs. What’s “bugging” me is how some people are unwilling to let go of some words and symbols as definitions grow and evolve.

Imagine you met someone who still wanted to use the word “faggot” for a small stick, like we used to in Shakespeare’s time. This person would be misunderstood around the campfire, and depending on who was in attendance, hilarity might not ensue. He or she would quickly learn to employ another word in the common usage (like say “twig”) or else risk being perpetually misunderstood. Likewise with “motor carriage” and “talkie.” How many times would this person have to hear, “Dude, they’re called cars and movies!” before learning the modern words?

I love movies, and I call them movies so that people will know what I’m talking about. I love and am proud of what’s great about the culture of the Southern United States — the food (collard greens!), the hospitality, the architecture, the charm, the flora and fauna, and most of all the people — but I wouldn’t dream of waving a Confederate flag around because in the common usage it means treason, slavery and bigotry. I don’t want to be misunderstood.

I have a few friends who I’m pretty sure aren’t bigots, or even closet bigots, who just can’t let the old symbols, words, and phrases go. I hate to see them being misunderstood.

I really hope that’s what’s going on. But when folks just keep rationalizing the old symbolic language, even in the face of changing definitions and the evolution of societal norms, it makes you wonder if they really are being misunderstood at all.

1 Mile Dry “Swim” #CABALFANG #WOD


1 mile dry swim: Set timer for 60 x :20/:10 and complete 15 cycles of Prison Push-ups, Swimmers, Flutter Kicks, and Front Plank (a Swimmer is like a Superman except that you move arms and legs as if swimming). 30 minutes total.

Note: Add a 30 minute bike ride and a 30 minute run and you’ve got the “dry Triathlon” that call the Psyathlon.

Your #CabalFang #WOD and a Couple of Videos

wpid-20150701_073632.jpgFirst, your workout of the day:

PTDICE: Set timer for 15 mins and complete as many sets as you can of 25 Prisoner Squats, 25 Neck Crunches, 12 Prison Push-ups, and 25 Leg Lifts.  Animal PT: Set your timer for 10 mins and complete as many sets as you can (from end to end of your room/mat and back) of: Tiger Push-ups, Inchworms, Octopus Walk, and Crab Walk.

Second, the videos.  Last night at my martial arts club we wrapped up knife month by practicing live cuts vs. pool noodles.  Those little devils are harder to cut with a 3.5″/9 cm blade than you might think!

FYI, I’m the old guy in the white t-shirt, and the man in black is my buddy Charles.  On stage Charles is hilarious.  In a fight, very much less so.

Let it Pass my Children, Let it Pass

wpid-20150625_180107.jpgTime is malleable.  In the hands of a toddler, an ice cream cone lasts a year.  A seven-year-old’s scraped elbow stings for a century.  Teenage heartbreak is an endless, inescapable salt flat stretching a thousand miles in all directions.

As adults we assuage and calm our children when they struggle with the endings.  Tears come with the melting of the cone and the scraping of the elbow.  We hold them and talk them through the barrenness of freshman breakups, knowing it will pass soon enough.  Though our hearts may ache for them, we know it’s not the end of the world.  We’ve been there.  We know the way.  Older, wiser, we hold their hands and let it pass.

All things come to an end, and more often than not, that’s a good thing.  Too many ice cream cones will rot your teeth and make you fat.  Scraped elbows teach care and caution.  That boy was a bad influence, that girl was destroying your self-esteem.

This week we broadened the definition of marriage and a hero named Bree Newsome took down an outdated, offensive flag.  Some adults are shouting and pouting, stomping feet at the melting cone, terrified of antiseptic on raw skin, suffering through breakups with adolescent angst, behaving like children when sunset arrives, unable to see that a better day is dawning.

Relax my children, process your lessons.  Just breathe and let it pass.

Form, Resistance Bands #CABALFANG #WOD


Your Cabal Fang WOD and book recommendation are as follows:

Form: Spend 15 minutes working on some aspect of your form — deconstruct and rebuild a particular strike, maneuver, or technique. Resistance Bands Tabata: Set timer to beep every 30 seconds and complete 8 circuits of 30 secs each of Bicep Curls, Squat w/ Military Press (press up as your butt goes down), and Seated Rows. Should take about 10 secs to transition between exercises, which means you’ll be working :20 on and :10 off for 12 mins total. Note: Watch your form on the Squat Presses. Thrust pelvis forward to prevent swaying and stress in your lower back.

Today’s book recommendation is the Timaeus of Plato. See the connection? Timaeus concerns the world of forms and the creation, properties, and nature of the universe.

This #WOD is No Joke


This sandbag workout looks easy on paper, but trust me when I say it’s no joke.*

Perform all exercises with a sandbag. (I’m 50+ years old and weigh 142 lbs. I used a 20 pounder. Select your bag weight based on your size, age, and fitness level.) 6 x 10 of Curl ‘n’ Press, Goblet Squats, Walking Push-ups, Lunge Press. Take as many 12 second rest breaks as you need to finish. I got done in 18:30.

Exercise notes:

  • Curl ‘n’ Press: Stand straight and hold bag in both hands with arms straight, bag at groin level.  Curl bag to chest level and press overhead.
  • Goblet Squats: Stand with feet slightly wider than shoulder width and hold bag in both hands at chest level.  Keep back straight and squat low until elbows touch knees.
  • Push-ups: Place bag on floor, get into Push-up position with one hand on bag. Push-up, then hand walk and place other hand on bag, Push-up, etc. alternating sides.
  • Lunge Press: Stand straight and hold bag in both hands at chest level.  Step forward into a front lunge, pressing the bag straight overhead as you do so. Step back into ready position as you lower the bag to chest level.  Alternate sides/feet.  This is a tough exercise and a super gauge of fitness.

* As always, warm up thoroughly before you begin any workout (10 mins minimum).  During exercise, monitor your heart rate and keep it within safe limits. You can use the old traditional formula (220 – age = theoretical max beats per minute) or you use this fancy online one that’s way more accurate.  I’m not your coach, I don’t know your body, and I’m not responsible for your health.  You are.  Proceed at your own risk.

Stretching and Meditation #CABALFANG #WOD


Intense exercise takes its toll, both mentally and physically. It’s important to take days off, and spend some of those days off stretching and clearing your head.

Take a walk or engage in some form of very light exercise for 10 to 15 minutes. Then spend twenty minutes on a thorough stretching routine, followed by 10 minutes of meditation.

Before meditating, quiet your mind by saying a prayer, invocation, affirmation, etc. (lately I’ve been performing the LBRP).  If you are an atheist, pray to Truth, to Justice, to Hope, to Mother Nature, to your own Better Self, etc. Prayer is relaxing and beneficial, and you shouldn’t have to miss out on the fun just because you don’t believe in a deity.

Wisdom of Raven CoverIf you don’t know where to start with the whole meditation thing, my little ebooklet Wisdom of the Raven explains the differences between meditation, contemplation and prayer, and shows how to get started  in each.  Get it at Smashwords, Barnes & Noble, or iTunes for just 99 cents.