February 27, 2022
Every Tuesday and Thursday morning at 5:30 am, a group of men gather to workout at Victory Park (101 Lockville Road).
“Rain or shine, cold or heat – we’ll be there working out,” said Timothy Thurston, the group organizer.
The group is part of F3 (Fitness, Fellowship, Faith).
“It is a worldwide network of men with over 3,000 locations and over 40,000 members,” Thurston said. “Always free!”
F3’s mission is “to plant, grow and serve small workout groups for men for the invigoration of male community leadership.”
F3 Columbus has locations in New Albany, Columbus, Dublin, Marysville, Grandview and Lancaster.
“I showed up for my first workout and loved it back in Nov 2021,” Thurston said. “I quickly realized these are both workouts and social gatherings. For me, the group keeps each other accountable. We rely on the camaraderie to make us stronger and that keeps me coming back.”
F3 is open to all men, regardless of ability level.
“We believe ‘iron sharpens iron,’ so long as the individual has a desire to work out, they are welcome,” Thurston said. “We had a father bring his 11-year-old son the other day. I know regulars who are in their late fifties and others in their mid-twenties.”
If anyone wants to join the workouts, they should just show up – no reservations required.
“We like to tell guys to just show up, don’t over think it,” Thurston said. “Occasionally, cinder blocks, kettlebells, or rucks are used during the workouts. Most often, it’s just you versus your body weight.
Dress for the weather. Wear whatever is comfortable. For example, today we worked out and I wore two t-shirts, two long sleeve shirts, a pull-over, winter hat with face cover, neck gator, tennis shoes, and gloves. Temperature was 13 degrees Fahrenheit.”
The workouts vary depending upon who is leading that day.
“It will be mostly body weight exercises mixed with some type of cardio (short runs, burpees, hill runs, jumping jacks, et cetera),” Thurston said. “We are not professionals. No certification or licenses are needed. We are a group of men helping each other to be better. We believe in helping each other become better leaders which is why the workouts are peer led by the men who attend. Simply sign-up to lead a workout and we’ll show up to support. Leadership personified through sweat equity.”
A Sample Workout:
Warm-up: 20 jumping jacks; 10 squat jacks; squat hold 30 count; squat position to plank 10 counts back to squat position x4; plank (alternating between high, low and side left/right) 60 counts; slow push-up three count down/one count up x10; arm circles forward x10 and backwards x10; 1/8-mile jog.
Workout: Do 25 reps of exercise one; run 25 yards; do three burpees; run back; continue reps for exercise one; follow pattern until exercise one is complete then move to exercise two and so on. Exercises: 1. 125 curls; 2. 125 squats; 3. 125 kettlebell swings; 4. 100 push-ups; 5. 75 thrusters; 6. 50 jumping lunges; 7. 25 manmakers.
“Circle up at the end for three minutes of abdominal work, talk about any announcements, any prayer requests, then close in prayer,” Thurston said. “The third ‘F’ stands for ‘faith’. The point is not what you believe in, as long as you believe in something beyond yourself.
All men, regardless of religious beliefs, are welcome. There is no proselytizing. We believe as men give selflessly to something beyond themselves it creates growth of character, leadership, and inner strength.”