by Annie Lovering, R.N.
Health 1st Employee Wellness Program
An eight-year study of 13,000 people conducted at the Institute for
Aerobics Research found that those who walked at least 30 minutes a day
(total) had a significantly lower risk of premature death than those
who rarely exercised.
A regular walking program can help reduce blood cholesterol; lower
blood pressure; increase cardiovascular endurance; boost bone strength;
and burn calories and keep weight down.
A walking program is easy to begin. All you need are comfortable
clothes and shoes. Begin each workout by warming up and stretching.
Walk for a few minutes to get the blood flowing to your muscles before
Start with a five-minute stroll and gradually add more distance and
time. Don’t worry about your speed. Walk at a comfortable pace making
sure your head is lifted and shoulders are relaxed.
Breathe deeply and let your arms swing naturally. If you can’t talk,
you are walking too fast. Walking is one fitness activity that provides
flexibility. Once you can walk a few miles with relative ease, start
varying the intensity. Walking up hills or on an inclined treadmill is
a way to add intensity and tone your legs. Be sure to end each walk
with a few minutes of stretching.
Tips for engagement and progress
Listen to upbeat music for motivation.
Walk with family and friends. Having to stay accountable to someone else will keep you on track.
Monitor your progress. Keep an exercise log and write down how long and far you went each day.
Walk 30-60 minutes all at once or break it up by taking two or three
walking breaks throughout your day. You’ll find that by writing it down
you’ll be more aware of how it best fits in your schedule.
Call 792-1245 or e-mail email@example.com to learn about the Wellness
Teams Competition among employees. Each team consists of up to 10
members, and each member receives a pedometer and log book.
Health 1st sponsored events
- Circuit Training
Class—Learn how to create a 30-minute circuit. Upcoming class is from
12:15 to 12:45 p.m. April 30. Call 792-9959 or e-mail
firstname.lastname@example.org to register.
Screening—Get this thorough, preventive health screening April 23 at
Harborview Office Tower and May 28 in the University Hospital, 2 West
Classroom. This screening, valued at about $250, is available for $15
for employees who subscribe to one of the state health plans, or $42
for others. Spouses and dependents can participate as well. Call
792-9959 or e-mail email@example.com.
- Farmer’s Market—Get
fresh fruits and vegetables at the MUSC Farmers Market. It takes place
in three locations from 7 a.m.- 3:30 p.m. every Friday in the
Horseshoe, behind McClennan Banks and next to Ashley River Tower and at
Cessation-Ready to quit?—If you’re interested in a series of six free
classes call 792-1245. You will receive a free medical consultation and
prescriptions for any approved smoking cessation medications.
- S.C. Foreclosure Task
Force—This agency provides free counseling services for persons whose
mortgage payment is either late or nearing default. Even up to a
foreclosure, task force members will help homeowners stay in their
homes. Visit http://www.fsisc.org.
- Mammogram van—Looking
for a convenient, easy way to have your mammogram? The Hollings Cancer
Center van will be available June 17 from 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. next to the
Basic Science building loading dock. Call 792-0878 for an appointment.
Friday, April 17, 2009