Presidio Meet Up For Exercise and More

| December 31, 2013 | 0 Comments
Tara Fulkerson leads the Presidio meet up at Presidio Park on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 9 am.  She invites anyone to come and participate!  Please bring a mat, towel, water and/or weights.

Tara Fulkerson leads the Presidio meet up at Presidio Park on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 9 am. She invites anyone to come and participate! Please bring a mat, towel, water and/or weights.

by Dove Kirby

If you happen to drive by Presidio Park on Tuesday or Thursday morning and see a group of people exercising, give them a shout out—rest assured they are pushing themselves. But they’re doing more than just working out their bodies, they’re giving back to the community by supporting a great cause.

This is Tara Fulkerson’s Presidio Meet up, a bi-weekly workout not for the faint of heart. Tara, with her charming Mississippi accent, shouts words of encouragement when the group is feeling the burn. She knows how to inspire and has an arsenal of creative, butt-kicking moves to make her attendees sweat. But what makes it extra special is why she’s doing it.

First, let’s talk about the workout itself. The first time I attended, I was a little cocky. I’ve been a gym rat for over twenty years, and felt pretty confident about my abilities. Halfway through the class, I was struggling to keep up with the moves Fulkerson was inflicting on us. The next day, I could barely walk—and I realized I was hooked. A class setting will always push us more than we push ourselves, and this was just what I needed to give my exercise program a boost. Fulkerson is an exceptional instructor and amazing motivator. I would expect to pay top dollar for this type of training.

But here’s the twist: Fulkerson doesn’t accept payment for her tush-tightening regimen. When asked why she teaches for free, she responds, “I teach because I love exercise, I enjoy empowering other people and showing them how strong they really are, and what they can do.”

She adds, “I think it is especially important to remind women, as we get older, that we can still do it, that we still have it. Everyone can do this workout at their own pace, but they are doing it, and you really are stronger than you know.” She is also a runner, and says that this type of high-intensity workout enables her take her running to the next level. “I had to make it work for me too!”

It’s also about community, she says. “My kids go to school here, I work here, I get my hair done here. Mission Hills is my life, so I want to give back.” She cites the many friendships that have developed because of the workout, and says, “I am energized by being together, by getting to know people and bringing them together in a healthy environment.”

When she began leading the workout, she found that people would offer to pay for it, and when she declined, they would look for other ways to repay her for the service she was providing. Though she appreciated the gestures, Fulkerson says, “I didn’t want it to be about me. I wanted it to be going to something good.”

The Daisy Miracle Fund is a local charity started by Bill and Lauri Brennan, close friends of Fulkerson’s, in memory of their daughter, Daisy Miracle. Proceeds benefit the UCSD Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, which provides critical resources to thousands of newborns in San Diego. The answer came to Fulkerson while running one day: If people are inclined to compensate her for the workout, she would encourage them to donate instead to the Daisy Miracle Fund, and now, that’s exactly what she does. More information about The Daisy Miracle Fund can be found at www.daisymiracle.com; donations can be made directly from the site.

Fulkerson truly is providing a priceless gift to our community and facilitating the support of an amazing cause at the same time. She often will remind her class to let go and laugh more. “I have to remember that too. It really is important to slow down and live in the darn moment, and exercise helps us do that.” Classes are wrapped up with affirmations and positive messages. One of my favorites is “Smile at everyone!” And on the days that I work out with Fulkerson, I find I’m more likely to do just that.

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Category: Health & Fitness, Local News

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General articles by the Presidio Sentinel and Associated Partners.

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