The arrival of spring means it is time for Vanguard Direct’s annual wellness contest. The wellness contest is a company-wide competition designed to promote healthy eating habits and lifestyles among employees. The idea of the contest is not only to lose weight, but to develop healthy habits that can improve all employees’ health over the long term.
For the competition, Vanguard was split up into 34 teams with 3 members each. On February 23, an initial weigh-in was held. For the next 5 months, each team will be developing its own strategies for losing weight. On June 23, a final weigh-in will be held to determine the winning team. The winning team will have the biggest drop in the total weight of the team (based on the percentage of initial weight lost).
While the weigh-ins provide measurable results, the competition is not all about weight loss. Dropping a few pounds is rewarding, but learning about healthy habits and maintaining them for the long run is the main focus of the contest. This year, to assist in learning these habits (and ultimately lowering the dial on the scale), Vanguard brought in a professional nutritionist to speak to employees.
The nutritionist reinforced to our teams that quick weight loss is not the answer for healthy long-term living. She stressed the importance of eating a big breakfast and small meals throughout the day to keep our minds fully functioning at work, and at home. Here’s one health tip she passed on to us: cereal is a great meal or snack to eat anytime during the day, but make sure your cereal has at least 10% of your daily recommended fiber, watch out for high sugar content, and make sure the first ingredient listed is a ‘whole’ grain.
No matter the results on June 23, Vanguard Direct’s employees are learning the benefits of living healthy, active lives. What is your organization doing to promote employee health?
Authors: Stephanie Huston & Dustin Hill