Three-day Endurance Challenge Boasts Building of Community Leaders

Folsom, Calif., March 7, 2024F3 South Fork will host “Unshackled” on March 8-10, 2024, F3 Nation’s 45th GrowRuck Training Event (GTE-45).  The event, held throughout Folsom in four distinct phases, aims to teach leadership principles, test physical and mental resolve, and develop “high-impact men” better prepared to serve their local communities.

F3 South Fork, a Folsom, El Dorado Hills, Cameron Park, and Placerville-based region of the greater F3 Nation, brings together men of all ages through a series of daily morning workouts, but GTE-45 brings another element the group hopes will level up anyone who attends.

Starting with a Rally on Friday night, followed by a Saturday-morning workout (King Builder) and a Saturday-afternoon leadership development conference (Grow School), the event concludes with a 17-mile ruck and hike overnight on Saturday and into Sunday morning (Crucible Ruck). 

“We are so excited to hold a national event in our own backyard,” said F3 South Fork GrowRuck Event Host Jereme Shelton. “It’s an opportunity to showcase the beauty of our region, while sharing the values of our organization, and helping men discover what they are truly capable of.”

The four phases target distinct development opportunities. 

  • Phase 1: The Rally is a fellowship gathering to kick off the weekend, where participants break the ice and then bread together in an effort to bond prior to physical activity the following days. 
  • Phase 2: The King Builder is a free, hour-long, outdoor workout open to any and all men in the Sacramento area. It’s an opportunity to break a sweat while meeting new people who could be your neighbors. 
  • Phase 3: Grow School is a classroom-based leadership seminar covering the topic of virtuous leadership. 
  • Phase 4: The Crucible Ruck, the main event, with an average duration of 15 hours, tests each man’s leadership skills through intense physical and mental adversity through a 17-mile ruck hike where platoons must work as a team to accomplish a goal. 

Each phase will be held at different locations throughout Folsom, with the ruck hike itself touring throughout the city and its outer limits, displaying features that have drawn tourists with the likes of the Folsom Historic District, the American River, and even Folsom Prison. 

“The men who complete this epic journey together will be forever changed for the better,” Shelton said. “I completed GTE-25 in Rocklin in 2021, and was on the support team for GTE-38 in Boise, Idaho last year, and they were some of the greatest experiences of my life. I’m a better man for them.”

F3, which stands for Fitness, Fellowship, and Faith, is a network of free, peer-led workouts for men in regions across the world. The mission of F3 is to plant, grow, and serve small workout groups for men for the invigoration of male community leadership. 

“We have a unique opportunity to change lives over the course of three days,” said Mike O’Brien, F3 South Fork’s Leader (Nantan). “Our goal isn’t just to shed a few pounds, but to shed the person you thought you were, and introduce yourself and the world to the leader you never knew you could be.”

This weekend’s event is just one of the many events F3 South Fork puts on. The group also currently offers multiple free workout options at multiple sites throughout the region each day of the week. For more information on F3 South Fork, visit For more information on GTE-45, or to register for this weekend’s event, visit



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