Our staff has found that getting employees moving can be difficult. It is very often that our members speak of a variety of barriers that prevent them from exercising. We have all experienced hectic schedules that interfere such as work meetings and events, overtime, family events such as a child’s activities. It’s our job to help our members find ways to fit it in to their schedule, make time for themselves to live a healthier lifestyle. Be Active Be Fit is a program that was developed to encourage participants to strive for 150 minutes of physical activity a week for 8 weeks. Participants are encouraged to count any time they are doing physical activity no matter what the activity. Whether you prefer to bike or run, maybe you walk or swim, right down to mowing the yard and cleaning the house with reasonable effort can count.
This program was implemented at a couple different client locations earlier this year. One staff member implemented an intranet site to better reach employees who don’t visit the fitness center to allow them to participate. Sixty percent of participants surveyed post program stated that they liked being able to view the program online. Also implemented were weekly challenges to encourage members to strive to try new things. This staff member provided educational pieces to help his members better understand portion sizes and caloric intake. One challenge educated participants on how to establish their estimated target heart rate, 34% indicated this was something they learned due to the program.
The simplicity of implementing and participating in this program really helped with its success. Members entered their weekly minutes via a survey where the staff could export the weekly results for quick access to the program data. This program successfully encouraged people to be more active with 55% indicating that Be Active Be Fit helped motivate them to continue with their program.
Consider these simple steps when implementing a wellness program similar to NIFS Be Active Be Fit:
- Establish a goal – what are you wanting members to achieve and how do you plan to reach your goal? Establish what you want to achieve and outline what you can do to best implement and achieve the results you are hoping for.
- Educate participants – use this opportunity to educate your employees about health and wellness. Establishing an educational component further delivers the message you are trying to deliver about the importance of a healthy lifestyle.
- Promote and encourage – make sure you are spreading the word about the program. Use all of your resources to best introduce the program and increase awareness. Incorporating weekly reminders help keep them going and improve the success rate of the program.
- Evaluate the program – survey your participants post program. This will help you better understand the needs of your members as well as better understanding success rate of your program.
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