WOD 122917

EMOM for 14 min:

8 Burpees

8 KB Swings

Post to comments.

“Our Lord loves you and loves you tenderly; and if He does not let you feel the sweetness of His love, it is to make you more humble and abject in your own eyes.”
-St. Pio of Pietrelcino

WOD 122817

AMRAP in 12 min:

200m Run

10 Sandbag Clean and Throws

15 Goblet Squats

Post rounds and Spiritual Training to comments.

“Love is the most necessary of all virtues. Love in the person who preaches the word of God is like fire in a musket. If a person were to throw a bullet with his hands, he would hardly make a dent in anything; but if the person takes the same bullet and ignites some gunpowder behind it, it can kill. It is much the same with the word of God. If it is spoken by someone who is filled with the fire of charity- the fire of love of God and neighbor- it will work wonders.”
-St. Anthony Mary Claret

Run So As to Win

Do you not know that the runners in the stadium all run in the race, but only one wins the prize? Run so as to win. Every athlete exercises discipline in every way. They do it to win a perishable crown, but we an imperishable one. Thus I do not run aimlessly; I do not fight as if I were shadowboxing. No, I drive my body and train it, for fear that, after having preached to others, I myself should be disqualified. -1 Cor 9:24-27

As I reflect on the two years Mike and I have been posting articles here on Intentional Encounter I keep coming back to the same thing – motivation.  Specifically, we’ve long wondered how to best help men (ourselves included) unite their physical lives with their spiritual lives so that we can all grow to be holier, God fearing, men.

And, today, as I came across St. Paul’s words from his First Letter to the Corinthians I couldn’t help but remember this fantastic YouTube video from Fr. Mike Schmitz who, I recently learned, does a little CrossFit himself!  How cool is that?

Anyhow, check it out and ask yourself… have you been working out or training?  Put another way… are you shadowboxing your way through life or are you training with purpose in order to win the ultimate prize?

Until next time… be holy, eat clean, and do more push-ups!


WOD 122717

4 Rounds for time:

50 Jump Rope Singles

20 DB Thrusters

20 HR Push Ups

Post times and Spiritual Training to comments.

“He loves, He hopes, He waits. If He came down on our altars on certain days only, some sinner, on being moved to repentance, might have to look for Him, and not finding Him, might have to wait. Our Lord prefers to wait Himself for the sinner for years rather than keep him waiting one instant.”
-St. Julian Peter Eymard

WOD 122217

4 Rounds for time:

400m Run

10 Burpee Pull Ups

Post times and Spiritual Training to comments.

“What does the poor man do at the rich man’s door, the sick man in the presence of his physician, the thirsty man at a limpid stream? What they do, I do before the Eucharistic God. I pray. I adore. I love.” -St. Francis

WOD 122117

EMOM for 14 min:

Alternating Movements:

7 Buprees

10 Jumping Squats

Post rounds and Spiritual Training to comments.

“Whether, therefore, we receive what we ask for, or do not receive it, let us still continue steadfast in prayer. For to fail in obtaining the desires of our heart, when God so wills it, is not worse than to receive it; for we know not as He does, what is profitable to us.”
-St. John Chrysostom

Forming a Band of Brothers – Part 2

Forming a Band of Brothers - Part 2This is the second part of this “Forming a Band of Brothers” series. Be sure to read part 1 of the series if you haven’t already.

“Friendship is a thing most necessary to life, since without friends no one would choose to live, though possessed of all other advantages” – Aristotle

Do you have true friends?  Who is the guy that you call if you are out of town and your family is stranded in a bad part of town?  Who do you reach out to if your marriage was falling apart?

Many of us don’t have an immediate response to these questions and it is in this silence where the plague of loneliness eats away at our masculine genius in this day and age.  I don’t mean loneliness as if we just sit around twiddling our thumbs all day wishing there was someone to talk to.  No, we are filled with things to do…accomplishments to rack up and likely a Facebook “Friends” list a mile long.

The loneliness I am referring to is the lack of meaningful friendships with other men.  Most of us know what I am talking about when I say meaningful relationships because the thought will bring you back in time to a group of guys you hung with in your teens or young adult life.  They were fun to be with but had no issue with challenging you if needed.  You rolled together and had a bond in which you always had each others back.

As careers began, married life took the spot light and kids were born…friendships, real friendships, faded away.  We no longer have a man who is close enough to know how we are living, give us an “at a boy” when we are killing it or a warning when we need it.  Most of our friendships now can be categorized in three ways.

Old School

Old School is your buddy from the past who you follow on Facebook but only actually talk to a couple times a year at best.  Your bond is real and has strong roots, but it has lacked nourishment for so long that when you get together all that can emerge are repeated conversations from the past.

Co Bro

Co Bro is the co worker that you actually spend a decent amount of time with, but the depth of this relationship is like taking a dive into a kiddie pool.  The relationship is centered on sports scores and political banter and you can relate to him, but wouldn’t count on him for the real stuff of life.

 Casual Joe

Casual Joe is the relationship that is formed from meeting the husband of your wife’s friend or bumping into the same guy at Mass every Sunday.  You have common interests since your lives seem to cross paths frequently, but the relationship is kept at a distance and the surface level conversations about your kids’ activities seem to suffice.

Jack Reacher Syndrome

Another common fault that we experience which fuels the flame of loneliness in men is what I like to call the Jack Reacher Syndrome.  In case you don’t know who the syndrome is named after, Jack Reacher is a tantalizing pop fiction hero.  The books and subsequent movies about him pull you into a story of a genuine bad&*% who has no bank account or personal belongings except the clothes on his back.  He roams the countryside bringing justice to the downtrodden but then simply moves on to the next adventure after waylaying anyone in his way.

The issue with being indoctrinated by stories of guys like Jack Reacher or 007 is that it tends to shine a beaming spotlight onto our own lives and exposes us as anything but masculine.  While there are some good things to gleam from movie characters like Jack Reacher, the pitfall of equating them with what masculinity ought to look like is very troubling.  These characters never set roots.  They usually not only move from town to town handing out vigilante justice, but they also go from woman to woman and never show us what the real manly act of faithfulness looks like.  There is no grind, no deliberate practice seen in their lives.  While the grind may seem boring and mundane, it is essential for greatness.  Add the strength of a brotherhood and men can change the tide of our culture.

Biologically we are created to work together.  Chemicals like serotonin and oxytocin course through our bodies when we feel appreciated or sacrifice for another. When we have a band of brothers to do life with and challenge each other towards manly lives of virtue then we don’t have to settle for comparing ourselves with a counterfeit image of masculinity like Jack Reacher.

There are lots of problems in our society, all of which are serious, but I believe that the loneliness of men in our culture is rapidly adding momentum to these struggles.  Despite what you may read or hear, meaningful relationships are just as important for men as they are for women.  They certainly take on a different character but they are no less critical.

Men simply need other men to bring out the masculine characteristics of God which are built into each of us, so that we may have lives well lived.  In part 3 I will show you practical ways to develop meaningful friendships with men so that you can begin your journey of forming a band of brothers.

“Put on the Armor of God” (Eph 6:11)