Trail Running

November Project

Here’s what I know

The November Project was started in Boston to keep Bostonians in shape during the winter. This free fitness movement Is meant to hold each other accountable and motivate one another. It doesn’t matter your skill level, your size, what matters is that you want to be there.

The who

My first November Project I was invited by Kailee. I knew Kailee during my short time as the NAU women’s volleyball student athletic trainer.  Kailee is a favorite athlete of mine and I admire her drive to succeed at what she loves.  Her volleyball skills impressed and awed me, because I have none! Despite her hurdles it’s her heart the made her a fighter.

I was surprised to get the invite from Kailee because we had not spoken since  my sophomore year of college and our relationship has been merely through the eyes of Facebook.  I took note to her adventures throughout the years.  It tickled me that she thought of me to add to the list of people to invite because that meant she had noted my outdoor adventures.

My Experience

I pull into the lot of the drop pin that Kailee sent me.  I see a Crisis Response van and I think to myself, my goodness what has Kailee gotten me into?!  Eventually it rolls away and a big relief is lifted off of my shoulders. Like most events that I show up to alone, I’m typically timid and shy.  I try not to embarrass myself too much, but I should realize now that it’s bound to happen whether you know people or you don’t so rather be embarrassed decide to EMBRACE it.  I get the parking lot and I see a few people gathering.  I walk over to them and ask them if they are here for November Project, strike one for possible embarrassment so I let them go on their merry workout way.

More people begin to gather and I find a couple people who know the founders of the Phoenix tribe that’s trying to pledge in July.  A 6ft+ muscular man comes up to me and starts the morning off with a hug.  This could be very uncomfortable for some people but it really broke me in and settled me into the group. This man was one of the founders of the November project in Boston, Brogan. We take to the trail and start up with some 10 sec icebreakers to get you comfortable with the people around you. Then it’s 30 minutes of stairs (stairs that are bigger than I am).  Periodically he has us turn to our neighbor and tell them they are amazing and give words of encouragement. We dig deep to challenge ourselves, but are lifted up by strangers.  This group first is about being kind to one another and second working out.


The Take Away

Here is what I got out of this morning. This is a fun encouraging group of all different levels. I did not feel intimidated because no one was here to judge, they make you feel like your success is what matters most. I encourage you to come to the next one!

Brogan was a great motivator to help me dig deep and push me.  He won’t be at the next one, but i have no doubt that Jackie and Trevor will be just as inspiring. Phoenix November Project Pledge is Wednesday mornings at the Papago amphitheater.  Meet at 5:50 526 N. Moreland St. Phoenix, AZ 85008.

Invest in a stranger


  Photo credit to November Project Brogan Graham

See more photos from today’s workout here.

Thanks for the invite Kailee!  Until the next great adventure!

Cheers! Maria


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