Park WOD & Vet Ruck March

We began a Friday morning Ruck March for 800m headed to Rehm park located in Oak Park, IL. Weights on the rucks are going up per week to increase the training effect for us while getting the body ready for our annual Ruck March.

The Chicago Veterans Ruck March is a great event that runs from a northern suburb of Chicago – Glenco, IL. Following this route we have the Lake Michigan on or left during the March all the way south bound until we reach our destination in Chicago 20 miles away at North Ave beach.

Twenty miles rucking on beautiful tree lined streets, lakefront to our east, sunshine (*cough) most of the time, breezy (*cough – at times) cool air, and fantastic people all around the neighborhoods we travel through providing moral, and logistical support.

Veterans, and active members of the military participate along with ROTC students from both HS, and universities. Gold star families, families of military personnel, and civilians that support the cause. We’re united to stop Military suicide from 20 suicides a day to zero. Not a short term goal, but a long term goal and vision.

We’d love to have you join us as we take on the Ruck March for the third year participating on this wonderful, and emotional day. Veterans must seek the help of other veterans, and support staff to make looking or asking for help not a stigma or as seen weak in any matter, shape, or form.

If you know someone who needs help, or you’re the one reading this and truly need help please reach out! There are thousands of people that can help. Truly there are people that want to listen, and assist you.

Here is a page full of helpful links to assist you.

Chicago Vets Partners

Our Team page if you would like to support us

Team RuFF

#dol #sua #semperfi

Hope to see you guys soon!

Catching up

Man oh man. Update of events begin with having to deal with my dog having stress induced allergies. Yes, vet stated it however I believe it’s the breed. He’s a bully and a great dog to begin with.

They’re more prone to skin allergies than other breeds. That is what the vet stated also. He was stressed for a bit due to change in venues for his humans.

Along with the change comes along interior design updates for our new digs. Since we’re lacking in a pantry we’ve made adjustments to our interior also. Giving us options not readily thought of from having more closet / storage space before.

Having more to do means being busy indoors as well as outdoors since I’ve managed to pick up more classes to teach at the gym

There were and will continue to be mornings that just brighten my heart so much and I must give God the glory for his beautiful gift. It’s such a spectacular view that is always inspiring regardless of the place I find myself in.

Frosty closed field

Well today the weather man had forecasted warmer temps. However it’s meant to be warmer later in the day more like close to 12 hours after we got up to do our workout.

So, we lugged our rucks and a sandbag(sb) to our destination 1/2 a mile away. Our warmup was mostly indoors and plain old mobility for what was to happen at the field.

We lugged our gear over to the field and began our WOD on a frosted field. One person decided to wear shorts this morning with temps at 34F/1.11C. I am not keen on putting my bare knee on icy ground and neither was he so lunges were hovered above ground for him but not for the rest.

Breathing began to be a tad labored and thereafter we cleaned and tossed sb for distance covering the area we just lunge walked with sb. Now it’s getting a little interesting since i couldn’t find my light sweater for the WOD, and began with my puffy since the temp was lower leaving the house I thought it’d be ok to do the WOD with it.

Ummm, Nope! I was overheating on the lunge walk, and good thing I wore my Icebreaker’s long sleeve wool shirt and it was just fine. The only draw back is that it didn’t help me breathe better. I’m fighting a small sinus infection and chest congestion, but the sinuses began to drain really good so I’m breathing better now as I write this.

Every once in a while when programming in my minds eye I see the workout(s) line of progression from beginning to end, and view the logistics and transitions. They look great on paper and I say to myself ‘this one is gonna be okay’. Not too bad unless your in the mix doing it.

After the clean and toss it’s time for the trusted bear crawl sb drag. Yes! Your flexors and shoulders will totally LOVE ❤️ you! Trust me. Then it’s off to the 8-count body builders and it shows that many people love just diving down and flopping all over the place to do the burpee. Well with the body builder you have to really slow it down to use proper form on the push up. Strength and endurance kids. It pays off.

Once you think it can not get slower (meaning your momentum) we do step ups with sb, and then lay down for leg levers.

All of the work is completed wearing the rucksack except the leg levers where you hold your ruck in front of you with arms fully extended in a supine position bringing both legs to touch ruck with feet or shins while keeping legs straight for the entire rep to count. As you can imagine – it HURTS! Feel da burrrnnn!

Add insult to it we then moved to hanging knee to chest while wearing ruck. 😂. Yes, it’s intentional. The suffering that is.

Then as a happy go lucky sweaty, out of breath group we tucked the half mile back to the box where we just plopped down and warmed down. More like laid on the floor and called it stretching.

Hope you’ll join us soon.

We meet and warm up at CF Spero



Hi all, sorry for the hiatus from posting. Seems that changing locations from a Forest Preserve to a brick and mortar location does have its pros and cons. Many asked about training indoors, and while we’re more focused on outdoor specific training, we have managed to at least get our warmups and warm downs indoors.

There have been workouts indoors to complement our programming for the ruck community, and have been moving and grooving to the same beat close to a year now. We’ll be One year old next week!

We’re almost out of our onesies! Our terrible twos will begin with a rush. Bringing me to this week, or more like a few more days left in my digs. Moving from one suburb to another is still a tad hectic, with packing and planning. Given what seems like a good time frame for the most part to find a place to move into sounds like fun, and good on paper.

Searching for housing that accepts dogs is not easy to come by. Simply they want you to have a pocket dog, small and weightless. Does not shed, nor bark, and is very quiet when it walks while indoors so as to not bother the neighbors. I am very puzzled when asked what breed your dog is then after telling them the breed they have a long pause then ask if it’s a pitbull? Ugh!

I would like to go away near a mountain by a stream and live, and hunt there without worrying about the idiocy of breed specific legislation and the bias there of.

I’m ranting a bit, sorry. Not sorry. Some people are just idiots that’s all. I’ve always laughed at statements made in memes – a (breed) dog and loving owner. “The more I am around people, and understand them the more I trust my dog”

I think that about sounds mighty legit to me. I’ll be back into giving you more to scrunch your eyebrows to, laugh at or be interested in finding other things to learn or just share random thoughts.

During my 5k ruck this morning I went a little heavier (35#) and 19mph wind right at me for 1.25 mile I didn’t feel cold (35F), but my pace was steady. I wanted to listen to my audiobook, but I forgot my iPods. Oh well. Next time.

My morning sunrise was impressive:

Over it

Meteorologists always claim that ‘this time last year we had…..’. Well as far as I’m concerned with the weather it is now just look outside, and dress appropriately or you’ll pay the price.

However you look at it there will always be room for vanity, and with ear muffs what does a little heat loss from the head mean anyway? There has been, and always will be narcissists in our realm so let them do what they do, and the rest of us dress to go from place to place warm and covered.

Speaking of clothing I love wearing my Icebreaker’s wool long sleeve half-zip a windbreaker or vest or just a fleece sweater for the top. For the bottoms today I wore my Kuhl nylon pants along with my Altra superiors 3.0.

Workout clothing has come a very long way from cotton sweats, and cotton socks to nylon, spandex, Lycra, and very good wool apparel to pick from. With hundreds of styles, and brands you can find everything you need that is also expensive or affordable. Shop wisely.

Running/workout pants that you’d see in the seventies (aging myself) dancing on the tv to get people at home to exercise are replaced with same attire wearing individuals in a regular gym class, running outside, and even in the grocery store.

Now, if only we can get the other spandex/Lycra wearing individuals to start working out maybe we can make the attire look less “stressed” when they wear it so as to not be mistaken for a Mucinex character in real life.

Today was a great day working out at the park. Rucked and carried extra load to the park, and en route we saw the beginning of a beautiful sunrise which was the color of red wine all over the sky.

That motivated us a little more and we dig deep for this one workout which included ruck sit-ups with a press, sandbag man makers, sb tosses, flutter kicks, and a ruck loaded up hill bear crawl to finish.

This weather isn’t bad as long as you’re moving around, and enjoying the company that suffers along with you.

This is how we looked post workout this morning. Happy crew, and hope to see you with us.

A bit of a climb

We looked at the sky, and at 18F said in unison “this feels warm”. Yes, out loud and it didn’t even phase us. Getting up to head outside and get our workout in has made it being in colder temps and make statements like that common between us RuFF regulars.

I mean how often do you really make it outside in below freezing weather while wearing one or two layers to get on icy covered ground for a workout? Turn around the next day and do it again. It is challenging to begin a process as physically demanding as getting up that early (0400) for the general population.

Once you have step one covered then getting yourself outside with us is Huge! You’ll find yourself in the company of others that refuse to do regular things and be okay with it. You will be challenged to do things that inside the gym are uncomfortable.

Today one of the consistent hints was a 200m run between exercises on an icy hill. Like run up there hill, lunges (2 laps) up the hill, burpees, goblet squats, push ups, bear crawl up the hill.

Oh, I also forgot to mention that we were not able to take off our rucksacks for the entire time we rucked to the park, worked out, and rucked back to our starting point CF Spero.

Today the rucks needed to be on the heavier side than usual which meant that ladies had to put extra weight inside them while the guys put extra-extra weight to get this done.

A little confession- my butt cheeks almost cramped while doing the lunges up the hill! Those are tougher than they look. Especially with the extra weight added.

These are pics of Selene getting the last exercise in

Ever wonder

I’ve been sitting on my couch typing, reading, and trying to wrap my mind around the national debt of over two trillion dollars.

Here I’m wondering what it needs to happen for me to be fiscally fit and finally debt free this year.

Slow process, but a defined and steady grind to get it done. It is doable! With that mindset has me marching forward into March while closing up February, and we are going to have a grinder of a Monday workout.

Using sandbags, were lugging them a quarter of a mile then slinging them all over the place, and in the ice on the ground it’s gonna be good. At least I think it’s gonna be icy.

I hope so, or we’re all going to be muddy, and a tad smelly. Not to say what those sandbags will probably look like when we’re done with the workout. I mean, if you’re gonna go and sweat why not get a little muddy in the process?

I’m a kid at heart and love the outdoors more than anything else. So, if you’re like me and willing to give it your all while in the company of others with the same mindset and will to get it done then join us.

We meet at CrossFit Spero in Oak Park, IL

We’re moving outdoors right after a warmup inside the gym so be there!

Hope you make it. 🙂