Today, we have a guest blog from Toby Bergmann. All 49 November Project cities are dropping guest blogs today, and we chose Toby for a few reasons. He is one of the few high school students that come to the workouts, and he shows up every single week. Also, he is fiercely competitive. Not many high school students will wake up at 5am to go do a workout before going to school, so we commend his commitment.
Any high school student, or anyone who has experienced high school, can attest to the fact that those four years are beyond riddled with insecurity. The ultimate mission of a high school student is to find a home in which they can grow. I found my home in the last place I would have thought.
The idea of November Project excited me, the group was enthusiastic beyond belief, the workouts pushed my limits, and the concept of working out at 6:14am on a weekday was beyond bizarre to a high school kid. Yet behind the burpees, sprints and bounces, I found a family. One that I could push my limits alongside, work hard alongside, and fail alongside. I felt a strange warmth and connectedness.
My first time at November Project I had one goal, to impress. I was a young and spry sophomore in high school, it was my time to show all these adults that a kid could kick their asses (and no I’m not calling you old). It was about coming first in that sprint, doing the most pushups, or most PR laps. Yet as I started coming more regularly, I soon realised that I could not have been looking at this concept in a worse light. Partially because I could never beat Derek in a sprint, or Andrew in the Green Sally, or Jon in PR laps, but also because this environment was one in which I should not solely focus on building myself physically. It was one in which I could also thrive socially, and through which I could establish a real positive connection.
The highlight of my week comes on a Wednesday morning when I hurry back to my car (late for school inevitably) filled with an excitement that I have heard described as the ‘November Project Feeling’. For me it is a combination of exhaustion, soreness, positivity, and comfort. It is hard to describe. That feeling post-workout of which we are all familiar. As sappy as it sounds, regardless of the weather, this ‘November Project Feeling’ really does change my life on a week to week basis. So much of the positivity in how I look at exercise and the school week altogether, I owe to NP YWG, and for that I am infinitely grateful.
While I may be glanced at awkwardly when I show up to class with my hair awry, in shorts and a t-shirt in early April, I could not feel more proud saying that I spent my Wednesday morning running around the Forks with a group of adults. For no matter our fitness level, age, gender, or level of commitment (yes, that’s you Nick and Nicole), everyone is greeted with a smile, hug, and “I’m glad you’re here” every Wednesday morning at the Forks. Who knew that #justshowup could mean so much and give me a place to call home?
Thanks for that Toby. Quick recap of this morning; we did a Game of Thrones themed workout, and the White Walkers closed in on the final team but no one ended up joining the army of the dead. Thank you to the White Walkers for playing along and doubling up the workout today.
Set your calendars, the Peg City Scramblé (French edition) is on May 30th, and November Project YWG’s 5th Birthday is on June 5th. It just might be the greatest of all time.
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