We couldn’t be more excited and proud of this guy for showing up. It only took him about… 2 months and many, many nagging Instagram messages from both Maggie and myself to get him to finally #JustShowUp.
We knew he was intrigued and just needed a little extra motivation to make that first step. David, you were WELL worth the wait and we are insanely grateful every time we get to see your sunshiny face and watch your energy flow through the stadium. You have become such a strong force in this community and you continue to show up week after week, always glowing with grit, determination and positivity.
With that, we’d like to open up the floor to David, who has some beautiful and hilarious words to share with the world. David, take it away…
I love eating tacos. I hated working out. Then I met Tara and Maggie who helped me get on my path to eating tacos AND working out. Here’s my story.
Living My “Best” Life
You tend to eat lots of food and alcohol when you’re single, living the dream, and living your best life. YOLO!!! (that still a thing? No? shit. Ok)
*Now I’m not hating on that life so if that is you and you are LOVING IT then by all means go on ahead booboo!
I tried many times to “get it tight, get it right” by starting off slow by…
- Walking around the block EVERY DAY! That lasted 2 days. Back to lazy Sundays Everydays.
- Eating healthy AF!! That lasted one week. Back to pizza and beers.
- Drinking less alcohol! That lasted one day. Back to drunken weeknights.
What was happening?!?! Why could I not get myself to commit to eating healthy, working out, and let go of that “good life”?
I simply didn’t want it enough.
I had figured out that I loved partying, drinking, eating on a VERY frequent basis more than I wanted to lose weight, look the way I wanted to be, and be healthy. I knew that for me to be where I wanted to be, I had to want it enough. I had to want that body I was looking to have. I had to want to be able to run a marathon. I had to want to eat more tacos without feeling guilty. I had to want to look at myself in the mirror and be comfortable and confident with myself.
Let me stop here and make sure to clarify that a “perfect” or “ideal” state is relative. What one person says is their ideal body figure is different than what you might want. AND THAT’S OK! We all have different genetics, eating habits, body types, etc. so if you feel comfortable being at a certain weight and that is different than someone else’s, do not try and be what someone else wants to be. Be what you want to be.
Getting Mentally Strong
So there I was at the end of summer telling myself “Welp! Another summer came and went and I didn’t get into the shape I wanted to be.” I was mentally and emotionally trying to get myself into that zone. I started following Instagram health and fitness accounts like @MeowMeix, @chris.rocchio_fit, @how2mealprep, @cartergood and more. This was my first step to a healthier life.
All I was doing was:
- Adding these and other healthy food and fitness accounts
- Seeing their posts come in my feed
- Saving them to my collections
- Reviewing these posts on a daily/weekly basis for inspiration
Remember, Remember the 4th of November
So here I am getting mentally and emotionally stronger and I take a walk in my neighborhood on November 4th. I am minding my own business taking a leisurely stroll.
Then ALLADAMNSUDDEN Tara and Maggie run out of Tara’s apartment coming at me kicking, screaming, arms flailing and went something like this…
Tara: HI!!!! What’s your name?
Me: Uhmmm… David?…
Maggie: OMG awesome nice to meet you! What are you doing next Wednesday morning at 6:30am?!
Me: HA! Sleeping!
Maggie: OOOH ok well if you’re free and want to wake up early for a FREE workout, we’ll be at UCLA Drake Stadium if you care to join.
ME: UHMMMM… ok yeah. Uh…yeah sure…
So I went home, told everyone about these crazies in my neighborhood, added @novemberprojectwestla on Instagram and that was it.
I proceeded to stalk them for the next few months. Over the weeks since I met them, I creepily watched their IG posts from the comfort of my apartment as they worked out week after week and said “THEY’RE DOING THE MOST THAT EARLY IN THE MORNING!”
I was too shy to go alone. I had a shit ton of questions about the program and doubts about myself:
- Omg everyone looks so fit. I wouldn’t be able to keep up.
- Is this really free? What’s the catch?
- I don’t have anyone to go with.
- It’s wayyyy too early for me. I don’t do morning workouts.
- [insert next excuse]
- [insert next excuse]
- [insert next excuse]
THEN IT HAPPENED. TWELVE WEEKS AND AT LEAST 60 INSTAGRAM POSTS later I decided to join them. The posts on IG, Facebook, and Snapchat looked fun enough and I just happened to be off that Wednesday in case the workout would “kill me” (spoiler: it didn’t).
The November Project Experience
So I gotta tell you I honestly have not felt this good after a workout like I did with this amazing group. They had me feelin’ some type of way…
I showed up nervous, scared, worried everyone would be FIT AF, I wouldn’t be able to keep up, and
I would come in dead last place. I quickly found out everyone is friendly, no one cares what “place” you are in because there is no ranking. You do you, booboo.
Everyone made me feel welcomed, total strangers said hi to me, gave me high-fives, cheered me on as I worked out. It’s hard not to stay positive and focused on your fitness goals when you have a great group of people keeping you accountable, sharing a laugh, a push-up, or a doughnut.
The first weeks were hard and I found myself saying “shit I’m out of MF BREAF! GO ON WITHOUT ME I’LL CATCH UP.” I’d skip a push up or burpee here and there, I’d walk the stairs while everyone was running, I’d hide in the back when it came time for a photo because I was ashamed of my beer belly. The reality is no one cared. No one is watching you shaming you. They’re there giving you high fives, cheering you on, sometimes total strangers saying “you got this!” as you roll yourself up that last step on the stairs. That is community. That is what makes this group different than any other.
Because of that one fateful night, because me wanting to get in shape, because I wanted to give zero fucks when I went for that extra two tacos, because I wanted to run a full marathon, because I wanted to lose my beer belly… because of these reasons I am now in the best shape I’ve been in a while, I am running faster than I ever have, my endurance is up, I am hiking mountain after mountain, and running race after race.
Anyway, this post isn’t for me. It’s for the next person who is walking their neighborhood and wants to run. It’s for YOU who want to get on it but are not sure how. I’m paying it forward. Add me/DM me at @digitaldavidg, comment, ask me, or just show up and join me Wednesday mornings at UCLA Drake Stadium. I’ll run up those stairs with you.
Thanks, David!! We love you so much!!!!
-RECORD YOUR PR DAY TIMES HERE!
-TOMORROW!! Yearbook Photos are going LIVE!!!!! Get stoked, share your picture, change your profile picture on Facebook, Instagram, Tinder, LinkedIn, share our wonderful movement and be proud of yourself for doing something AWESOME every Wednesday morning!
-NEXT WEEK!! 4th of July WORKOUT PARTY! Friends from #NPSD are joining us along with the entire LAX Tribe!!!! Facebook event HERE!
-#NPSUMMIT, November Project’s Annual gathering, in Milwaukee, Wisconsin on 9/14-16.
This is the BEST weekend of the year in the NP world, you don’t want to miss it!
DISCOUNT CODE: NP20 for 20% off!
GOOGLE DOC HERE (with all NP tribes) #logistics
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