I very recently came up on my "postiversary" - it was about one year ago when I first decided to crawl out of bed at youmustbekidding o'clock to go work out with the guys of F3 for the first time. Even though I dropped in unexpectedly, the decision certainly didn't come out of the blue. I'd been carrying some extra weight, and was feeling tired and run-down pretty much all of the time. I'm usually the one responsible for handling the laundry in the house, carrying the full baskets up two flights of stairs was starting to wind me. So I picked a pleasant late-April morning and rolled up to Arrowhead at 5:16 am.
Just in time to see a bunch of dudes running away. The 5:15 workouts start promptly at 5:15.
So I ran them down as best I could and, huffing and puffing the whole time, did something that approximated the workout that the rest of the PAX was doing. Some time later, Sprinkles confessed to me that they didn't think I was going to make it. I'm not sure if they thought I was going to die, or just not come back! But in 2021, I came back about 90 times, in heat, rain, snow, and bitter cold. And I learned something along the way:
Getting in shape, fitness, dropping a few pounds, "The First F" in F3 lingo - whatever it is you call it - got me to those first few workouts. But after a while, I realized that just getting in better shape wasn't going to keep me coming back. I've had gym memberships before, and I've never stuck with them for more than a few weeks. But here I am, one year later and still a "regular." While it was the First F that got me out of bed for that first workout, the community of guys that comprise F3 is what keeps me coming back.
In the book Social, Matthew Leiberman breaks down research that was done back in 1985 and again in 2004. In 1985, 59% of respondents said that they had 3 or more friends, and 90% claimed at least one close confidant. By 2004, less than 40% claimed at least 3 close friends, and 25% said that they had no one in whom they could confide.
Think about that: 1 out of 4 people walking around have no one to share life with.
It's no wonder Sad Clown Syndrome is everywhere you look.
We all need a circle of guys around us. We are social creatures, and 2020 taught us that we all suffer when we can't be together. We need each other for a million reasons - we need other men to lean on, to push us, and to make us be better men. Sometimes it's a deep conversation and prayer after coffeeteria, or sometimes you just need an extra set of hands to move that bookcase.
Whatever it is you need, you'll find good men here. And if you roll up for one of our workouts at ridiculously-early o'clock, we'll be here. And you'll be welcomed into the community. I know I sure was.