November Project reflects on growth as it nears two-year anniversary

November Project participants complete the bridge challenge, one of the group’s SUPPLIED / NOVEMBER PROJECT

November Project participants complete the bridge challenge, one of the group’s SUPPLIED / NOVEMBER PROJECT

The end of November will not mark the end of the November Project, contrary to what the name suggests.

The pending cold weather won’t even end the Winnipeg workout group’s weekly sessions.

Now that the November Project is approaching its second official anniversary, its members have had time to reflect on how the group has grown.

It began in June of 2014, when Rick Duha and Thomas Hall debuted the group under the name “Winnipeg Gone Rogue.” To obtain official November Project status, they had to complete an eight-week pledge process to demonstrate Winnipeggers’ interest and commitment to working out at 6 a.m. in the morning. The first Winnipeg Gone Rogue session had just eight participants.

The number of participants in a popup session on Nov. 11 totalled nearly 100.

Before the Nov. 11 workout, participants greeted each other with good morning hugs and a loud, profanity-fueled group chant. While two people raced each other in a full-out sprint, two other participants helped someone do their very first burpee.

“If you find that you’re not in shape, that’s okay. You just go at your own pace,” said November Project participant and RRC grad Amie Seier.

The workouts include cardio and high-intensity interval training, which includes planks, burpees, and running, but everyone goes at their own pace.

Oh, and it’s free.

Participants just have to be willing to make it to The Forks by 6:15 a.m. on Wednesday mornings.

“Nobody’s a morning person. It’s not a thing. It’s actually a myth—it doesn’t exist. But the best thing you could possibly do for your day is to get up and workout,” said Duha. He explained working out in the morning gives people more energy, prepares them for the day, and helps them burn more calories after the workout.

Seier said the 6:15 a.m. start gives students the chance to join since classes don’t start until 8 a.m. It’s an opportunity she wishes she’d taken advantage of when she was in college.

“It’s helped me out exponentially because I have so much more energy and I can think more clear,” said Seier.

More information on the November Project can be found online at on Facebook at November Project Winnipeg.