Wellness in the Workplace

By Alicia Ambrose, Marketing Associate

In every aspect of life one can only perform to the best of one’s ability when all aspects of the mind, body and spirit are nurtured. Today’s forward-thinking companies understand this and realize their strength is found in their team. The happier and healthier, both physically and emotionally, the team members are as individuals, the more productive the company will be as a whole.

Workplace wellness activities are proof that companies care about their employees. However, workplace wellness should not only consist of flu shots and blood pressure readings. That’s why our company has initiated a number of unique strategies to benefit our employees this year.

STAND UP FOR YOUR HEALTH

Our brand-new office space within Bell Works came complete with standing desks, a perk most of us had never seen or had before. According to an article in a Harvard Health publication, studies show that after a meal, blood sugar levels return to normal faster on days people spend more time standing. And standing, rather than sitting, may reduce the risk of shoulder and back pain. Other potential health benefits of a standing desk are based on the finding that long hours of sitting are linked with a higher risk of obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, cancer such as the colon or breast cancers and premature death, the report states.

We have over 65 on-site employees in our office. Many are also taking advantage our building’s enclosed perimeter which allows them to walk on their breaks and lunch hours no matter the time of year or the weather. Employees who take these daily walks can add 2,600 steps and 1.16 miles to their day!

FEEL THE BURN

In January we partnered with Arrival CrossFit based out of Newark to bring strength training classes to our office. They offered twice weekly workouts with their coaches after work on the building’s large indoor turf area. They brought all the equipment necessary for a great work out: medicine balls, dumb bells, jump ropes and kettle bells. They took us through an hour-long full body strength training workout. Participants were able to scale the workout based on their level of fitness.

NAMASTE AFTER YOUR WORK DAY

We also partnered with Jennifer Hansen, a local yoga instructor whose company Metta Yoga NJ brings fun yoga classes to unique spaces. We incorporated an hour-long, weekly yoga class combined with guided meditation. These classes were done on the indoor turf after work, allowing participants to refresh and revitalize after a day spent at their computers.

WISHFUL SHRINKING

In February we initiated an 8-week nutrition challenge with a local gym in Colts Neck called Aspire Fitness. There were 23 employees from our office who participated. Participants had to keep weekly food diaries, accounting for everything they ate each day which were then evaluated weekly by our fitness and nutrition coach who gave suggestions on making healthier food choices and menu planning.

We held weekly “Accountability Meetings” with our coach, where we met as a group to discuss anything nutrition and fitness related. We shared our triumphs and struggles from recipes, to the most efficient way to meal prep to the healthiest, best tasting cauliflower pizza crust.

To add a quantitative factor to our challenge, the participants were weighed at the start, midpoint and end of the nutritional challenge using an InBody scale which provides a total body composition analysis, something that is essential to completely understand a person’s health and weight. Traditional methods of assessing health, such as BMI, can be misleading. Going beyond your bathroom scale, body composition analysis breaks down your body into four components: fat, lean body mass, minerals and body water.

We turned our challenge into a bit of a competition; who was able to lose the most amount of body fat without losing muscle mass. When our challenge ended, combined we lost a total of 106 pounds of fat! The winner of our challenge only had a 1 pound difference on their bathroom scale. Which proves the point we’ve all heard before: bathroom scales don’t tell the whole story!

A HEALTHY CONVENIENCE

Our company has also partnered with FitFoodNJ, a company based in Spring Lake, who stocks our refrigerator weekly with fresh, healthy, home cooked meals which employees can purchase. The meals are prepared with fresh ingredients from local farms and serve as a great convenience in our office.

All of our work wellness initiatives have given our employees an opportunity to take ownership of their health and has helped to boost employee morale. Having these programs accessible and available at work is an immeasurable benefit. After all, the greatest wealth is your health.

 

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