Healthy employees are happy employees! That’s why many businesses are taking on the role of promoting wellness programs to their employees. Not only does it create a happier and healthier workplace, it also helps keep a higher bottom line. But how do you get everyone on board?
Enter, the health challenge. Health challenges are a fun way to encourage everyone to make healthy choices while having some friendly competition. Additionally, the social support and camaraderie that can come from participating in a challenge with colleagues provides a sense of accountability and encouragement. Finally, the recognition and rewards for achieving goals is a powerful motivator for employees to continue their healthy habits beyond the challenge period. Here are some health challenge ideas that you can implement at your company to get everyone participating.
1. Steps Challenge
The goal of this challenge is to encourage employees to take more steps throughout the day. This is a great way to get your employees moving more and sitting less. Provide each employee with a pedometer, smartwatch or fitness tracker and encourage employees to increase their daily step count by setting a collective goal for the team. For example, challenge employees to collectively walk a challenging yet achievable amount of steps every day for a month.
2. Healthy Eating Challenge
The goal of this challenge is to encourage employees to make healthier food choices during the day. Create a healthy eating challenge where employees earn points for eating fruits and vegetables, nuts and seeds, healthy proteins, and whole grains. You can even provide healthy snacks in the break room, such as fresh fruit, veggies or low-fat yogurt to give everyone a head start.
Here is a list of some healthy eating challenge ideas for workplace wellness:
- Meal Prep Challenge: Encourage employees to plan and prepare healthy meals for the week ahead. The employee who preps and eats the most nutritious meals each day for a set amount of time is the winner of the challenge. The prize could be a healthy meal delivery service subscription or a cooking class.
- Fruit and Vegetable Challenge: Encourage employees to eat a certain amount of fruits and vegetables each day or week. The employees who reach their fruits and vegetables goals within the timeframe wins the challenge. The prize may be a gift card to a local farmers market or a healthy cookbook.
- Healthy Snack Challenge: Encourage employees to swap out unhealthy snacks for healthier options. The employee who makes the healthiest snack choices consistently for a set amount of time will win the challenge. Some prize ideas are gift cards to a health food store or a fitness class.
- Nutrient Density Challenge: Encourage employees to eat foods that are high in nutrients, such as leafy greens, berries, whole grains and lean proteins. The employee who consistently chooses the most nutrient-dense foods for a set amount of time could win the challenge. The prize could be a health and wellness consultation or a gym membership.
3. Water Consumption Challenge
The goal of this challenge is to encourage employees to drink more water throughout the day. Dehydration can lead to a lot of health problems, especially in sedentary office environments. Provide each employee with a water bottle and challenge them to drink a certain number of ounces of water each day. Employee winners are those who are able to drink their recommended daily amount of water for two weeks, including weekends.
4. Fitness Challenge
The goal of this challenge is to encourage employees to participate in regular physical activity. This can be done in a variety of ways, such as starting a lunchtime walking club, organizing a company softball league, or providing deep discounts on gym memberships. Employees can participate in this challenge to improve their fitness level by completing a certain number of workouts or exercise sessions in a week or month. Additionally, consider incorporating a deskercise challenge, encouraging employees to stay active during work hours, by setting a daily deskercise goal and tracking progress. For example, challenge employees to do five minutes of deskercises every hour.
5. Healthy Habit Challenge
Challenge employees to adopt a healthy habit, such as practicing meditation, journaling, or stretching every day for a month. Don’t forget to offer resources and support to help employees develop and maintain these healthy habits.
Implement Your Health Challenge Ideas
So what do you say, are you ready to take your employee wellness program to the next level? Introducing health challenge competitions is a fun and engaging way to motivate your team towards a healthier lifestyle! Not only do they create a buzz in the office, but they also promote healthy habits and team bonding, resulting in a happier, more productive workplace.
Consider trying one of the health challenge ideas listed above, and see what kind of impact it can have on your company culture. Your employees will thank you for the opportunity to prioritize their well-being while having a blast!