Have you heard of the new “norm” in America? It is called OBESITY. If you take a look around your office or the general public, what do you see? Does it seem that most of the people are overweight and out of shape? There is a good chance that many of them are. The obesity epidemic is growing due to sedentary jobs, easy access to vending machines, office celebrations and no movement. If you are an employee of a company or the CEO of one, what can you do?
The answer is simple: promote physical fitness and healthy choices in the workplace. There are many health benefits to the employees and employers by incorporating a worksite wellness program. Employers will benefit from lowered health care costs, increased productivity, reduced absenteeism, and decreased rates of illness. Employees will see lower stress levels, better self image and more energy.
May is National Physical Fitness and Sports Month. The goal of this month long initiative is to generate awareness of a healthy lifestyle and encourage everyone to become active in their everyday lives throughout the workplace and our communities.
If you have been meaning to jumpstart your own employee wellness program or get back on track with your own fitness routine, mark May 18th on your calendars. May 18th is National Employee Health and Fitness Day. On this day, employers are invited to participate and challenge their employees to get active. You can easily join the movement by having a companywide walk during your lunch break.
Join this initiative and continue long term with some of these other inexpensive ideas.
- Provide healthy breakfast or snack items for employees
- Post fliers around the office with healthy tips
- Start a weight loss campaign for your office
- Promote taking the stairs and parking further away
- Offer healthy options in vending machines
We have heard over and over again what the benefits of being active are. Now we need to create awareness and market the idea. “America has more bats, balls, playgrounds, trainers and coaches than any other country in the civilized world.” says James M Liston, Jr., executive director of The National Association of Governor’s Councils on Physical Fitness and Sports (NAGCPFS). “Yet, we still lead the world in preventable disease. Something’s not right.”
Taking interest in employee health makes good sense and is a win-win situation for all. It does not take hours a day to gain the benefits of being active. It only takes 30 minutes a day, which can be broken up in 10-15 minutes increments, to see an improvement in one’s health. So let’s challenge ourselves and create a new norm in America.