We are #victorious.
This isn’t a statement of arrogance (c’mon, we’re Canadian after all). But it is a statement of swagger, an expression of our intent, an invitation to our tribe to seek and express their best every Wednesday morning, and every moment in between.
But hold up, we’re getting ahead of ourselves. And given this is our jumping-out-of-the-cake and saying Hey to the World Domination tribe writ large, perhaps we should back up a tick with this introduction of ourselves.
Where we were 3 years ago
Three-ish years ago, one of our current co-leaders came across NP – likely when Andrew brought it to Edmonton and news of the tribe first hit the Canuckistani airwaves – and thought: (1) “Fuckyeah”; (2) “Shit, if the Edmontonians are doing this inside their Deep Freeze, someone damn well better pull it off in Victoria (where we’re consistently told we’re the fittest city in Canada, and we sure as hell have the outdoor “gym” and climate most conducive to getting your asses outside in the morning)” and (3) “But that someone definitely isn’t me (an introverted non-morning-person if there ever was one)”.
Where we were 3 months ago
Then, that same fella met the leadership ladies at Lululemon Victoria and got to talking story and sharing ideas. NP came up in the conversation. That time, armed with the support of one of those ladies in particular, plus a rad dude personal trainer at a community-centric gym, the now-co-founder-fella recalled Edward Abbey in Beyond the Wall: “Sentiment without action is the ruin of the soul,”said “To hell with it,” and figured he’d run with fake it (the extroversion and hugs) till you make it. So on September 2nd the three folks from a little town looking to be part of a big deal threw out an invite to friends, went to Victoria’s iconic Beacon Hill Park in the dark, and waited to see what would happen. Fifteen people showed up. We called ourselves The Victoria Sweat Project. And we were off, setting a goal of being #novemberprojectbynovember.
Where we were 1 week ago
We figured the goal was a good thing. We believe in setting goals. We all really love crushing goals. But, sadly, we didn’t achieve our goal. Because on December 2nd, the Killer Bs (Brogan and Bojan) flew into our little town and surprised us with an NP stencil and a Positivity Award. Two days late. November Project by December. Damn. ‘S’alright, we’ll do better next time. Buuuuut, in all seriousness, HOLY SHIT were we pumped, was that an amazing morning, was it an incredible sight seeing 150 fierce friends and strangers appear from out of the dark and into the community, was it a mad horsepower boost to what we’re working to build, and were we mad chuffed to be part of this family. So mad thanks to Brogan and Bojan and Casey from Seattle for coming up last week, catalyzing our stuff, setting a tone and setting us off into the NP stratosphere. We have no shortage of Olympians and high performance athletes in Vic and in our tribe, but we think it was our first-timer friend, April, who best described our vibe in a FB post post-workout. (Click through for the read – it’s a little bit of awesome.)
Where we are today
Seven days post pop-up, your blogger, the fella, now converted to throwing out hugs and shouted Hellyeahs like they’re going out of style, ran from his house towards the park at a little after 6 a.m. Storm after storm has been hitting the Vancouver Island coast, and this morning the wind was blowing at 50 miles per hour (converting for our American hosts), lashing rain like razorblades horizontally into my eyes. I had the same experience as Casey described from across the water in Seattle this morning: I wondered how much momentum we’d carry from last week; I wondered how many folks would see the rain and forget about #weatherproof, choosing comfort instead; I wondered who would show up. At the meeting point first Mike showed up, his first time. Three sets of lights blinked off in the parking lot, more sets of lights rolled in. A group of 3 ran up. A group of 6 rolled over. 20. 40. 70. We were on. Shannon, Jason and I unzipped our jackets and showed off our #grassrootsgear. We bounced. We hugged. We got down to work. We were #victorious.
We’re gonna run with that vibe. We’re gonna take that description folks throw around given our climate and a few other quirks of statistics. We’re gonna prove we earn it. We’re gonna own it. We’re gonna be Canada’s Fittest City. And we’re gonna charge to be NP’s Fittest Tribe. That’s gonna be our identity. We will be #victorious.
Where positivity will get you
If that’s our identity, it’s exemplified by Paul Seier, recipient of our first #positivityaward. Paul was one of the bodies appearing from the dark that first morning three months ago. It was a hard, cold-forged body. It was clad in a November Project Winnipeg top, earned in the city at Canada’s cold heart, where 40 degrees below zero is the temperature they warm kids school classrooms UP to so they’ll be comfortable. That morning, Paul drove 30 miles to train with us, then 30 miles home. He’s done that every single week since. And every single week he’s been a quiet leader. He’s not a 20-something university varsity athlete charging off the front, but he goes to his limit, every time. He finishes every rep. He defines our ethos. And we couldn’t be happier he joined us to spell it out, and prouder that he’s the first to head home with a wooden oar handle with November Project and Victoria, BC spelled on it.
So that’s where we’re at. And that’s who we are. Every damn one of you should come for a visit, or if you’re close-by, stay, and join our tribe in this kickass family.
WE will be #victorious.