Friday, April 27th, 2018. Chicago, IL.
November Project Chicago made history by simultaneously changing their PR day from Wednesday to Friday and moving locations to an entirely new place. The Tribe showed up in force to tackle the new challenge. Athletes from New York, Arizona, Tennessee, and Minnesota came to see what the fuss was all about. Chicagoans wore their game faces and set their focus level to ‘laser-frickin-beam.’ At 6:11am, the city shook and the river thrashed as the Tribe’s energy grew from a rumble to a ROAR.
WHAT TIME IS IT?
As if shot from a cannon, the Tribe flew to action — a synchronized burpee storm exploded into flight. Feet pounding pavement. Legs lashing bridges. Ramps ran wildly. The earth was pushed off its axis by the power of the people. Massive stairs were crushed down to mini mounds of marble. Lap after lap the Tribe’s intensity and energy compounded. Cheers of support rang loud. Music vibrated from the rafters of steel mountains further stoking the flame of fitness within. The full bodied burn was real, but the drive and determination of each warrior only shined brighter as time trekked on.
10… 9… 8…
A wave of relief.
A surge of searing satisfaction.
A final push of perseverance.
An overwhelming sensation of success rippled across the Tribe.
The first Friday PR Day in Chicago was just fucking conquered.
High-fives and hugs flowed as winded sighs turned to laughs and praise. Sweat drenched brows unfurled as smeyes grew below. The fatigued but full-hearted gaggle gathered close to celebrate their shared victory. A hairy man emerged waving a wand he claimed possessed magical powers of positivity. “These powers…” he explained, “…are only present because of you all. This piece of wood is merely a symbol for all of what you provide for one another. We share this symbol with those who work selflessly for the betterment of the Tribe, who uphold the Tribe’s values, who commit to personal growth within themselves, and who’s love and energy for you all shines so bright it can’t be stifled.”
A name was called. A person stood. The Positivity Award found new hands to call home and the Tribe erupted with cheers, applause, and blasts of encouragement. It was a moment to behold.
Though it may seem to be this story’s end, it truly is just the beginning.
With no further adieu, the wonderful woman and PA recipient herself, Dani Kruger:
It is beyond difficult to put into words everything that November Project means to me.
My friends, family and coworkers who haven’t come to NP think I’m just a crazy workout lady. They aren’t wrong. I love moving, cycling, lifting, and (thanks to you all) even running. It makes me feel strong and healthy. But that isn’t why I love NP.
I hope it’s obvious to the tribe, that I love NP because of YOU. Our tribe, and the many tribes I’ve visited and gotten to know, inspire me every day with their passion, support, and love for me and for one another. It’s the most special thing I’ve ever experienced. It’s literally magical.
Every time I show up to a workout, you inspire me when you run faster than you thought you could, push yourselves, and cheer for one another (especially on days when you are injured or tapering and not able to do the workout). Every time you give me a high five or cheer for me, it reminds me why I wake up at an ungodly hour and get myself to NP, even when the Chicago weather doesn’t cooperate. The work our leaders put in to this tribe boggles my mind and leaves me in awe. They give us an incredible gift that means so much to all of us and inspires us to be better. At every workout, I’m so grateful that you all show up.
As if that weren’t enough, the love you show extends beyond the workouts. When I wanted to try to run 10 miles for the first time, I decided to do it on a cold December Thursday. TWELVE of you showed up. You ran at the pace I wanted to run, you cheered me on, you made me feel like a rock star. And I am so grateful to you for showing up.
When I thought it would be fun to start making strava art, I organized a heart shape run. You showed up. You showed up again and drew elephants and giraffes with me. Is making strava art cool? Heck yeah. Is it way more fun with a huge group? OMG YES. And I am so grateful to you for showing up.
When my travels took me to Dallas, Austin, San Diego, Montreal, New York, Boston, Minneapolis, and Milwaukee, our bigger tribe hosted me in their homes, climbed mountains with me, spent the afternoon with me at a giant natural spring-fed pool, went to breakfast, lunch, and dinner with me, sent me a Christmas card, let me work from their living room for a full day, and treated me like family within minutes of meeting me. I can’t describe what a huge and incredible gift this was to a person away from home. It’s truly one of the most special things about NP. I am so thankful to all of my friends in other cities. Sean Durkin, who started Tuesday Stairs in San Diego, inspired me to bring this love back home and start Stair Mondays. My tribe got it immediately and it has been such a special way to get to know the group who comes every Monday morning. I AM SO GRATEFUL YOU SHOW UP.
It’s important to me that you realize how much your support for me means not just when I’m being loud, positive and happy. It means all the more to me in the times when I struggle. Less than two days before this photo [above] was taken, I lost a friend very unexpectedly. It was the Monday after the Chicago Marathon, and the workout was full of strangers and happy people celebrating the unbelievable accomplishments of so many. I had no ability to put on a happy face. I spent half the workout breaking down and sobbing. But I couldn’t have been anywhere else in that moment. The hugs you gave me that morning literally lifted me up when I couldn’t lift myself. Every time I have struggled, you have been there for me without judgement, without questions, with nothing but love. And for that, I can’t even begin to express my gratitude.
I’m humbled and honored to have received the Positivity Award. It means so much to me to be able to give an ounce of what you’ve given me back to you. I love each and everyone one of you and hope you’ll continue doing exactly what you’re doing, because it’s beyond what anyone could ever ask for.
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