How to create an office fitness challlenge
Health and Wellness

5 Steps for Creating the Perfect Office Fitness Challenge

black woman on stationary bike
(Image: Thinkstock)
black woman on stationary bike
image: ThinkStock

The most arduous task of getting in shape is finding motivation to start and complete goals. Finding distractions is much easier than finding motivation to stay on track- especially at the office. Happy hours, vending machines and office parties don’t do much for healthy habits. However, you can beat the temptation by presenting a friendly office challenge.

Having an office fitness challenge can be a fun and motivating way to get fit in a group setting. You and your co-workers can offer each other support, while making the challenge a friendly competition.

1. Seek permission. Supervisors will not mind because healthier employees will produce more efficient work. Explain to him or her benefits of this challenge. You can use stats from the Center for Disease Control to further prove your cause. Here’s an interesting fact: according to the CDC, a review of 42 studies found that worksite health promotion programs can reduce absenteeism, health care, and disability workers’ compensation costs by more than 25% each.

2. Organize. Schedule a time, date and place for the first meeting, weekly meetings and weekly weigh-ins. Send a company e-mail and or post a flyer on the company’s bulletin where easily accessible. Be mindful when organizing the meeting. Weight loss and fitness can be very uncomfortable subjects so don’t force anyone to join or slight anyone that may want to join. Remember everybody’s level of fitness and understanding of healthy living varies. You want everybody to join without feeling intimidated.

3. Devise the rules and guidelines. Every successful challenge must have structure, tips and guidance. Set a time frame (6-12 weeks is recommended). Weigh in everyone and take their “before” pictures. Ask everyone his or her weight loss and or fitness goals in the first meeting. Whoever comes close to goal within the time frame will be the grand prizewinner. This is the time to structure the program. As mentioned previously, everyone’s understanding of healthy living differs. Set a list of dietary guidelines and fitness routines that most people can follow. Use reputable sites like The Mayo Clinic, The Center For Disease Control and Prevention and for dietary and exercise recommendations.

4. Award Prizes. Arrange a grand prize for the “most improved” winner in your group. The prize can range from a spa day to workout gear to cash prizes. Ask your boss for a prize donation. Or during the organization meeting, bring up the idea of a registration fee and weekly dues and use that money for the grand prize.

5. Have fun. Make this challenge, friendly, resourceful and successful.

Dietary tip: Start with foods that should be omitted when planning the dietary guidelines i.e. soda, white grains, coffee, fast food and junk food.

Exercise Tip: Encourage your peers to exercise at least three times a week for 30 minutes.

Things You’ll Need

  • Bathroom scale
  • Flyers (optional)
  • Large poster for weight loss chart
  • Meeting space
  • Prize
  • Dietary/fitness tip sheet

Coach P. is a Holistic, Nutrition and Green Living Coach. She is the chief editor of  Lavish Green Life. In 2013 she founded Herbalosophy101– A holistic health and wellness practice that specializes in nutrition coaching. Follow her on Twitter @CoachPCare