Fitness and nutrition are hot topics these days, due in part to a soaring obesity rate in the United States, and workplace wellness is no exception.
Why? Healthy employees are more successful and of greater benefit to an employer, not to mention happier and often less costly in terms of health care. Your school or district may already include incentives for employees to get or stay in shape.
"When an employee is well and focused on [his or her] job, the productivity and quality of the work increases," says workplace wellness professional Rob Davenport.
Davenport says their wellness program, a concept becoming more common by the day and even endorsed by various Centers for Disease Control and Prevention initiatives, is one of the most comprehensive in the country. High-risk areas for their employees are low nutritional status and excess weight -- the same as most Americans -- so their curriculum includes an annual health risk assessment, wellness walks, and programs like a grocery store tour and restaurant lunch outing designed to help employees learn to make more nutritious choices.
Here, to help you improve overall health and perhaps even ward off the flu so you don't lose a second of hard work, are some of Davenport's recommended lifestyle changes:
Change your perception. The largest perceived obstacle to getting fit is time, especially for those working full time, but it's really just a matter of prioritizing your health, Davenport says. "People who rate personal health high will make time to work out, meditate and do things that are conducive to leading a healthy life."
Put it on your calendar. Schedule your workout like you would a meeting, and pick times when you're always available so you can be consistent.
Strive for balance. Davenport says people who are truly well live their lives in moderation. That means if you can't fit in a solid 30-minute block of exercise, three 10-minute increments, such as three short, brisk walks during the day, can still improve fitness.
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