#GROWvember State of Mind


As a kid, Thanksgiving and Christmas were just times of year you could “feel”. There was an air of peace and happiness at Frank and Christine’s, and even though times could be tough on occasion, there was always love in abundance. There was football and incredible food and late night debates that would rage into the wee hours. It was brick cold on the coast of the Atlantic Ocean, but it was always warm where it mattered most.

From the time I was 16 and began working at the Brigantine Fitness Center (now WOLF Fitness Brigantine) I’d always sign up for the shifts around the holidays. Well-rested and well-fed, I’d head to the gym with my boys and we’d have the place to ourselves. The workouts were both intense and fun, there was a sense of camaraderie and playful competition, and the climate for growth was ideal. Magical conditions in which to make quantum leap progress and to fall in love with the process. It is from this mystical, palpable spirit that #GROWvember was born.

For the month of November, we cast aside the showier aspects of the subculture. Don’t worry about your hair or your matching outfit or your tan. Your fresh kicks or tracking your macros or the lighting for your locker room selfies. Tis the season for hoodies and black bandanas. For work boots, winter beanies and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches before bed. It is the time to train heavy, eat big, and to once again have fun in the gym.

In an attempt to promote this vibe and these values to the broader culture, as is our brand mission, we will be here to provide tools to empower. Tricks and tips. Ideas and ideologies. Rhetoric and recipes. Life hacks and hack squats. All designed to help you GET YOUR WEIGHT UP.

As I told you years ago, “the difference between the freaks and the flock is the fucking fork.” So get ready to clean your plate and come back for seconds. You are what you eat, you become what you consume most, so while quantity becomes important, quality is still key. Sneak in an extra FEAST shake. Fire up the grill in the cold for some homemade burgers. Make Taco Tuesday a tradition. But any way you cut it, you’ve gotta strap on the feedbag if you’re gonna get big. Don’t make a chore of eating. Learn to love wholesome, nutrient dense, hearty homemade food again, and you will grow as a result. We will be there to provide guidance and encouragement, all along the way.

Don’t overthink the iron, either. Stick to the basics. Keep it old school—heavy and hard. Be efficient. Get in and get out and keep it fresh. Keep researching and learning and experimenting—try something new with your training. Be open-minded and get excited about your workouts. This is a labor of love, not something you have to do. It is a pursuit both productive and fun. Therapeutic and gratifying. Challenging and rewarding. Remember that.

Life’s too short to be small and weak—both literally and figuratively. Use #GROWvember to rekindle your passions and invest in yourself. To once again enjoy the process in all its purity and to celebrate what made you love lifting and the lifestyle in the first place. Grow, beyond just your mortal shell, but remove the confines that hold you in, the shackles that hold you back. Grow inside and out–mind, body and soul. Train, eat, love, learn, read, teach and help a friend in need. Expand your horizons, be the bigger man and live large. Because after all, if you’re not growing physically, intellectually, emotionally and spiritually, make no mistake, you are dying. Rejoice, #GROWvember is here again. Let’s get HUGE.