Call Us: (701) 317-2243

Russell’s Sunday Sermon: The Beginning


Russell’s Sunday Sermon: The Beginning

I am not a licensed clergyman. I feel as though it may be legally responsible to be forthcoming with that fact.

I am a prophet, but that didn’t require an official licensing process. I was born with these gifts. I can see the future. Or perhaps my prescience is simply a byproduct of effectively playing the odds. But ask Trish Herring. If I tell you to do something, I’m rarely wrong. It’s because I can taste colors.

Dayne Dyer approached me some time ago about the Beartooth Blog. I write a lot of crazy things, primarily centered on fitness, nutrition, health, politics and religion. You’d be amazed how often I can tie all of those topics into a single page. I can’t remember specifically, but I think we originally talked about co-opting some of my meditations as the BTCF Blog. I like to write, I do it for pleasure and my ego is sufficiently broken that I’ll work for free so long as the insanity floating between my ears arrives to the frontal lobes of others. I’ve been egging him on for some time about “increasing and improving his online presence” and the blog seemed an obvious avenue to make that manifest. Young people live on the Interwebs, I told him. You need to be big, virtually. Virtually enormous. Online.

Where the kids are.

I am a prophet and I’m here to make you better.

But Dyer came back, some time later, with a much bigger plan. Telling me that everyone of all ages, walks, stripes and paths were on the Interwebs – not just the kids, the BTCF Blog would be grandiose, a damned-near full-time operation in and of itself. Every day of the week would have its own theme. There would be a technique day. A mobility day. A nutrition day – two of those, I believe. You can’t out-exercise a bad diet, you know. Of course diet and nutrition should have two days! I would be given cart blanche to finish the week with something called “Russell’s Sunday Sermon”.

The Sunday Sermon was a name given to the things I would be writing for BTCF by some combination of Mr. and Mrs. Dyer and may be a subtle inside joke about a litany of personal peccadillos. Let’s say that I’m a heathen and my Sundays are not spent in church. It could be a play on that. It could mean that I am overly preachy in some of my nutrition writings. Get off the soapbox already. Perhaps I need to talk with people and not to people. It could be an amalgamation of those things.

I was not given a topic, as the other days were. It may have proven futile and Team Dyer may have known as much. Asking the Mad Monk to paint between the lines.

Not. Going. To. Happen.

The two years Beartooth Crossfit has existed at the corner of 30th and Grand have flown by. Athletes, members – we generally call each other friends, have come and gone as folks have moved into, and out of, town. Going to the gym is still like pulling up a bar stool at “Cheers”. Everyone knows your name, and if they don’t, they’ll introduce themselves and call you by name the next time you come in. Like Cheers, they may actually hand you a beer. I’ve been known to treat the gym as a literal bar, and drink an adult beverage while cheering a class.

It’s either that or by myself in front of the TV in my basement at home. My doctor tells me that socialization is a healthy step, even if the alcohol may not be.

Originally a three-headed beast comprised of hot-headed 20-somethings, BTCF was originally a trio. Three friends struck out to form a CrossFit gym, a box of their very own, until a visionary was sabotaged by the machinations of smaller minds. A great rift formed when a duo of this young trio felt their energies could best be expended in the service of others, providing training designed by others, in gyms owned by others and leaving The Grand Weirdo, Dayne Dyer, to fend for himself as the owner, operator, lead trainer and programmer of Beartooth CrossFit. I had to take my toys elsewhere during the divorce. I can’t take it when Mom and Dad fight.

This was for the best. The brains of the operation remained behind, unfettered and unrestrained to conduct science experiments on willing, though perhaps unwitting, participants. Experiments that allow us to run 4 hour obstacle races, lift hundreds of pounds, woo members of whichever sex you’re attempting to woo (we don’t judge, all are welcome). Sometimes the experiments tickle a little bit. The Marines have a bunch of sayings about that.

Now, we are a cast of clowns. Athletes, members, husbands, wives – friends. The programming at Beartooth is the most comprehensive that I’ve seen anywhere. It builds, it grows and it cycles. There are goals. There are stages. There are extras. In addition to the extensive and far-reaching mainline programming, Dyer has several sub-programs available for members. There are bankers who run in and run out in the morning, only doing the main-board workouts, and part-time dietitians who work out 3x per day with volumes of additional training.

I’m a certified cardiac nurse, former Doomsday operator, Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist, Graduate Student, former powerlifter, former ultra-endurance athlete with a medical history that includes spinal fractures, titanium plates, amnesia, depression, hyperactivity and iatrogenic hypothyroidism (this list is not complete) who meditates by writing near daily essays about subjects that blend textbooks with dick and fart jokes. There is no telling where these Sunday pieces for BTCF may go. People’s Exhibit A is as likely as anything else, I’d suppose.

Rather than making the first sermon something too soap-boxy about nutrition, diet, health, exercise, politics or religion, I figured I’d go a little further afield. I decided that I’d share stories, history and the reasons that a person would want to come to BTCF, though meeting me is clearly going to rise to the top of that list. I am even better in person. Handsome. Striking. Just the right amount of salt in the salt and pepper hair.

Beartooth Crossfit is where friends meet to share fitness, laughs, blood, sweat, booze, dangerous doses of preworkout and grooming advice. The Grand Weirdo has a Bachelor’s of Exercise Science from an accredited program, in addition to his CrossFit training (not the Communication majors with a weekend interest you’ll find at other gyms), writes the programming and is happy to share his textbooks with you.

I’m happy to talk about politics, religion, nutrition, diet, programming or help you dissect your weaknesses in the squat. Though I’d REALLY like to talk about why capitalism has ruined the American diet or something equally esoteric.

Everyone will be happy to call you friend and welcome you to our club. Come, drink our Kool Aid. I’ll lead you in the prayer.

Remember, I’m a prophet not a priest.

Leave a Reply