Founders’ Focus on Vitality
Here at Founders, we embarked on a workplace wellness program at the start of the year called Humana Vitality. You know those great Facebook quizzes that ask you questions and tell you your age based on your answers? Well, it’s kind of like that except it’s based on your lifestyle habits.
All our employees started out at a Bronze level and then had the opportunity to do a wellness assessment that asked questions – from whether we eat a lot of fried food to if we smoke and how often we exercise. Based on our answers, we were given a Vitality age. Some of us were disappointed it didn’t match our Facebook quiz scores for how old we act but generally, the higher risk our behaviors are, the higher our vitality age.
Based on each of our assessments, we were given customized goals, which varied from weight loss to diet changes to increasing our exercise. What’s really great about the program is that we aren’t competing against each other and we don’t see each other’s specific points, just our levels, so it creates a safe environment to focus on getting healthier individually and collectively.
For those of us that need a little extra push (ahem), there are different challenges along the way that we can participate in, such as a diet challenge to learn to eat more lean and avoid processed foods. For folks that are trying to quit smoking, there’s a program that teaches tips and tricks for smoking cessation. For each of these challenges and the initial assessment, we’re awarded points that can help us get out of the Bronze level and head toward Silver (5,000 points), Gold (8,000 points) and Platinum (10,000 points). For all the overachievers, the points are limited to 18,000 each year but it doesn’t stop some of us from continuing to implement walking meetings every chance we get.
It’s also great that our fitness devices link into the program easily, so if we’re able to get a quick power walk in over lunch or log 10,000 steps, it counts as a verified workout that also generates points. In addition to getting points for the initial assessment – we also get larger point values for going to preventative visits – physicals, eye exams, the dentist – as well as getting our blood work done and being within the target glucose levels, cholesterol numbers, etc.
Our points accumulate in a database throughout the year-long program and we’re able to trade them in for everything from gift cards to a Fitbit and all the way to a bicycle (24,000 points). Our points reset each year but can stay active for trade ins for up to three years. While it may seem simple, we truly have to sweat for every point and, ironically, the point levels for things like exercise, steps and diet changes generate smaller points than the doctor visits and blood work, making it challenging to jump from Silver to Gold and Gold to Platinum.
But we are still stepping up to the challenge. In fact, we’ve been collectively tracking everyone’s steps at Founders since we started the program and, as of mid-April, we have enough steps to walk to Las Vegas! And while they may call it Sin City in part because of the decadent fried foods and lavish lifestyle, if we make it there, you can bet we’ll be sure to order our egg white omelets and green juice.
It’s not just about losing weight and trading points for gift cards, this wellness program is about being healthy and learning simple and easy ways to stay on track with diet and exercise. If you have the opportunity to set up or be part of a wellness challenge or program – we highly suggest you do it – and it’s actually FUN!