Los Angeles is a beautiful and terrifying city of lights and highways and poverty and glamour. People swarm here from all over the world to fulfill their dreams and realize their potential. Everybody is trying to make something of themselves. It can be so easy to get caught up in the chaos and to feel lost – to feel like an insignificant little human in the mob of millions. In this wonderful but sometimes impersonal city, Los Angelites need a place where they can go to interact on a genuine level with other people. We need something to remind us that we’re all connected, and we’re all here in this life, struggling and thriving through the same things together. November Project is that something for me.
In 2011, two friends in Boston, Brogan Graham and Bojan Mandaric, made a pact with each other to meet every day during the month of November at 6:30 AM in the morning to work out. Thus, November Project was born. What began as two friends motivating each other to work out through the coldest winter month became dozens of people meeting up once a week and encouraging each other to work hard. From there, November Project expanded and grew and is now a free fitness movement with groups (called “tribes”) meeting in 31 different cities all across the world every single Wednesday of the year.
The unique and beautiful thing about the November Project is that although it is essentially a platform for people to have challenging, fun workouts, it is also so much more than that. When I arrived at the November Project at the Hollywood Bowl for the first time, it was my first week living in Los Angeles and I was still feeling intimidated by the fervor of the city. That morning, I saw a different side of L.A. I was greeted with hugs from everyone I encountered, encouragement, and the most genuinely welcoming and enthusiastic community that I have ever witnessed. I felt it; These are my kind of people.
It’s impossible to properly describe the energy of the November Project. It is a truly incredible group of exuberant, loving, encouraging people. It is a group that forces you to push your physical limits. It is a safe haven and a strong community for anybody who makes the effort to show up. It is the perfect pocket of positivity and authenticity within the crazy Hollywood world.