Wednesday, June 29, 2011

A Culture of Wellness

I seem to be the go to fitness girl at work.  Maybe it's because I'm always in running shoes...

...or maybe it's the marathon training schedule and 26.2 sticker taped up in my office...but people often want to talk to me about health and fitness.  I love that and will stop pretty much anything I'm doing to chat about recipes or workouts.

Sometimes people want to talk about all the great stuff that they are doing for themselves.

Lately though, the conversations have focused more on the struggles.  The struggle to lose weight or feel better.  The struggle to stick to a healthy diet when people keep bringing unhealthy food to work.  So many people in one workplace who are struggling with the same issues.  And yet they all feel very alone.

Alone in their struggle.

Alone in their depression.

Their frustration.

Their guilt.

It got me thinking about our running group.  The group is made up of people of all shapes and sizes.  All ages.  All levels of fitness. All economic levels and all different stages in life.  We about bound together by a common goal - to run.  The reasons why we run are as numerous as the people themselves. And we've all discovered that it's easier to do it with a group of like-minded people.  They motivate us when we need it and we motivate them back when it's our turn.

That's what I want to create at work.  A place where the default lunch at meetings isn't pizza and croissants.  A place where people feel motivated and empowered to start a walking group and where people feel confident enough to join the group.  Where people want to sign up for the dragon boat team.  Or any other countless number of things that gets people moving, motivated and eating better. 

I want to create a place where making time for health and wellness is the norm - not the exception.

I'm just not sure how to do it.

Does anybody out there have ideas or suggestions of how to create a culture of wellness at work?

Today's blog was inspired by Michelle my workplace wellness guru who asked me one simple question on Monday that has had me thinking ever since. Damn you!


  1. This is a fantastic idea. I have avoided it by always bringing my own lunch. I also use my gluten-free diet to avoid things like cake and donuts. But that's just me.

    Most of the time people are open to healthy suggestions so I'd give it a go.

    It all starts with one person... you!

  2. I'd like to figure this out too. I've tried a yearly biggest loser contest, often focusing on healthy eating and exercise. But that never seems to work as everyone just stops afterwards (if they ever even start) and gains the weight back and loses the motivation. I shake my head as where i work (a cube farm) we all sit at our desks all day so everyone is large and inactive. How do you reward your employees for great work, here's donuts, pizza, more crap. What?? Let's make matter worse? I dunno how to steer folks into the light.