“Networkingout” combines networking, fitness and fun
Detroit’s riverfront is the gathering spot for a new program that’s quickly growing in popularity.
Run This Town is taking a foothold in the motor city.
It’s group exercise on the Riverwalk – and more.
Co-founder Shawn Blanchard says “Networkingout is basically fitness through networking and networking through fitness.”
He says, “All fitness levels can come and enjoy, meet people and sweat
Two times a week people of all shapes and sizes– from the city and suburbs– meet at Rivard Plaza.
They power walk along the Detroit River and climb the steps at Joe Louis Arena. Others run for miles through the city. And there’s circuit training for all. The goal is to combat obesity and promote healthier lifestyles while building connections and friendships.
According to co-founder Terrence Thompson “A lot of people will think about going somewhere new, and they’re like, ‘okay, I don’t know anyone there.’ But once people come out here they enjoy themselves, they enjoy the camaraderie, and they love the energy.”
There’s plenty of energy expended, including the support expressed in victory lane as runners and walkers finish their journey.
What had its start with just a small group of friends has grown into something of a health movement. And everyone seems to have their own reason for taking part.
Kaitlyn Simmonds told us “I just moved downtown and I have a couple of friends from Wayne State that come here regularly and they had me come one day and now I’m hooked. I love it.”
Doug Williams is another participant, “It’s not competition, it’s collaboration and there’s a lot of young guys, so I’m trying to keep up with them and they actually are pushing me to run faster than when I run by myself.”
Lauralyn Taylor says, “It’s this wonderful spirit that you can’t get in the gym, you can’t get when you work at say, a club, you just can’t find it anywhere but here and the diversity here is so incredible, it makes you enthusiastic and want to do it week after week after week.”
The group will continue to meet and work outside through the fall and then find an indoor venue to stay active through the winter months.