COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) - One Columbia weekly workout is giving some Midlands men a lot more than a healthy lifestyle.
The group F3, Focusing on Fitness, Fellowship, and Faith, has been in the Midlands for more than three years now and has more than 100 workouts a week that bring men together from all walks of life.
"F3 workouts are designed so no matter who you are, we don't leave anybody behind," said F3 member Sean Rankin.
That goes for the workout and in life. Almost a year ago, Rankin reached out to the Oliver Gospel Mission in hopes of creating a partnership with its residential recovery program.
Last March, F3 launched the group called "The Mission" at Finlay Park. It includes men from all over the Midlands, in addition to men who are in Oliver Gospel's 6-month recovery program that aims to help men with drug and alcohol addictions.
"F3, for me, it lets me I know I have friends," David Bryant, who joined the F3 group three months ago when he started in the residential recovery program, said. "It's a time in my life when I thought I had no friends. Let's me know there's people out in the world who care about me enough to want to see me succeed. That means a lot to me."
Rankin, who launched the F3 group, says that's at the heart of why the group is so important.
"I've seen what alcohol and drugs can do to people's lives, and how it can destroy men's lives, and I feel like we're called as men to reach out and help other men who are going through tough stuff," said Rankin.
It's Rankin's heart for his fellow man that led one of his own to nominate him as a WIS Community Builder in partnership with Mungo Homes.
"The goal of F3 is to build leaders, and we encourage men to go in their own communities and find opportunities where they can have a high impact," Flynn Bowie, the F3 member who nominated Sean, said. "That's exactly what Sean did at 'The Mission.'"
As part of the award, Rankin receives a check for $1,000.
"Well I'm going to have to figure out where that will go," Rankin said.
After that moment, it was back to work for the men of F3's "The Mission" who, every week in the shadow of the Capital City, serve as a light to each other and those around them.