Your Monthly Check-Up: A New Way to Walk

Beginning in mid-June, Hinda launched its first-ever walking challenge sponsored by the Wellness Committee. The walking challenge is the first official Beta CarrotTeam event – which is Hinda’s recently formed wellness program. More than half of Hinda’s employees signed up to compete in this eight-week challenge.

After being issued pedometers, measuring stride length and participating in a weeklong trial run, employees were divided into 10 groups of six or seven participants each and the competition began. The idea is to wear the pedometer at all times and check in twice a week with designated team “secretaries” who record and save the steps using the pedometers’ included software.

Not only are there prizes for the winning walkers at the end of the challenge, but there are opportunities to win weekly if specific goals are met. For example, during Week 1 the daily step goal was 5,000 and everyone who hit that goal each day during that week was entered into a drawing. Week 2’s goal was 6,000 steps per day, with all walkers with over 42,000 steps for the week entered into a drawing for $20 in Hinda points. Each week, the step goal increases, the challenge gets harder and the prizes get better. The best part is that there is an equal opportunity for each walker to win.

When the competition wraps up mid-August, each participant of the winning team will win $75 in Hinda bucks. The second place team will win $50 in Hinda bucks for each walker. To win, each member of the team must have completed all eight weeks of the program and logged his or her steps on time. The two winning teams will have the two highest total combined steps.

Prizes for individuals include Top Performer – most steps taken of all participants; Most Improvement – highest percentage of steps from Week 1 to Week 8; and Challenge Champion – a random drawing of participants who completed all eight weeks. We will keep you posted on the big winners in a few weeks!

While it may sound simple and straightforward, this challenge is certainly not without its, well, challenges. A big one is remembering to wear your pedometer each day. Another is to remember to take it off before you do laundry or hop in the pool. Unfortunately, some of us had to learn these lessons the hard way.

But overall, the walking challenge thus far has been a success. Employees are coming together to share strategies, compare steps and commiserate over a low-step or forgotten pedometer day. And the most important thing is that people are finding ways to get up and moving throughout the day, which we desk jockeys all know is key.

Hinda’s Credit Manager Connie Iglesias says, “What’s great about the walking program is that, since teams are made up of people from different departments, it gives participants the opportunity to work with people who they don’t normally work with on a daily basis.” In this sense, it fosters a different kind of teamwork and strengthens the Hinda community as a whole.

Does this sound like a program that could be implemented at your office? Do you have a wellness initiative in place? What kinds of things does your office do to promote wellness and exercise? We’d love to hear your ideas and stories in the “Comments” section below!