For Suburban Texas Men, a Workout Craze With a Side of Faith

Article here. Nice to see this. Excerpt:

'This is F3 — that’s fitness, fellowship and faith — a fast-growing network of men’s workouts that combine exercise with spiritually inflected camaraderie. Founded in 2011 as a free, outdoor group workout, its popularity exploded during the pandemic, expanding to some 3,400 groups across the country from 1,900, aiming to solve, as John Lambert, a.k.a. Slaughter, the network’s chief executive, put it, “a problem that society at large and men definitely didn’t even know they had: middle-age male loneliness.”

In Katy, a booming upper-middle-class suburb just west of Houston bursting with office parks, new housing developments and the most expensive high school stadium in the nation, the F3 model has thrived. The former railroad town now has 18 workout locations, compared with four in Houston proper.

I first heard about F3 through a few acquaintances in Texas, men who spoke about their local groups with the zeal of evangelists. It reminded me of how urban women would talk about SoulCycle in the early 2000s, only these guys were suburban fathers.

Its no-frills formula inspires fervent devotion. “F3 has changed my life,” Mr. Ayala said. He first attended last year, when a friend repeatedly nudged him to try it — or in F3’s baroque jargon, put him in an “emotional headlock.” He was hooked immediately. About a year ago, he got an F3 tattoo on his chest.'

Like0 Dislike0