So this post is inspired by one of my clients, Wendy A. Hi Wendy 🙂 Earlier this month, I gave Wendy a suggestion to help reinforce a new habit; X’s on the calendar. I explained how this was effective for me when I was breaking a habit.
So Wendy has been doing this with daily exercise and I ask her every Monday and Wednesday how its going, and shes still doing it.
Wendy ALSO told me about something she was doing back in June with a co-worker. They would take turns bringing lunch to work. I think this is a fantastic idea. Many of my clients are co-workers and I think doing this is a great way to make the workplace healthier. One of my besties, Sarah B., started a walking program at her work. I believe they are tracking steps on a pedometer. I have 2 clients that work at Canadian Tire who are keeping each other accountable with food journals and discussions. They also were planning to walk together on their lunch break.I have another couple clients, Natasha and Elaine who are both helping each other be accountable. I have a client Jenny, who has a co-worker who also eats healthy at work and thats a motivating force for her.
Back when I was at PaleoFx in Austin in March, there was a discussion about kids birthdays at school and how people were bringing in cupcakes. And since birthdays are frequent in classrooms, that can end up being a lot of treats for kids and for the teacher. I think more and more often people are becoming more conscious of trying to be healthier and I think getting others involved is a fantastic way to do that. Encompass it in the workplace.
1) If there is a candy jar – ask if that can be replaced with unroasted, unsalted nuts. I know you can get a big container of mixed, unsalted nuts from Costco for around $10.
2) What about “Fruit bowl Fridays” – Have everyone in the workplace bring some cut up fruit and mix it together and have that for dessert at lunch? Take a look at your weekly flyer – see what fruit/vegetables is on sale and cut some up.
3) I love the concept of a work walking group. This can be done before/after work or on your lunch break. Here is a website that you can use to track distance: www.mapmywalk.com I know they have a free app in the iTunes app store that you can also use to track distance. Many co-workers have joined my bootcamp program together and come together after work.
4) What about finding someone at work and alternate bringing in salads for lunches. http://www.pinterest.com/katieeweinberg/paleo-salads/
5) Food Journals is a great way to keep each other accountable. Pick a day of the week and keep it consistent. Revealing to someone else what you are eating may mean the difference between eating McDonalds and not eating McDonalds. Here is a copy of the food journal I designed. NewFoodJournal
6) Do you drink coffee at work? Instead of coffee that is unpalatable without tons of cream and sugar – why not bring in DavidsTea? Brew your own – save some $ instead of a Tim Hortons run. (No affiliation – just love the company)
7) Sit all day: Find someone to complain to about getting a standing desk. Mark Sisson has a great video about these: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6j6ms3NtvjI
Social situations don’t have to be centered around alcohol or food. Maybe instead of meeting up for coffee, you go for a walk instead. Instead of going out for dinner for a birthday party, maybe go rock climbing or bowling. One of my highlights this summer was when one of my friends wanted to do Stand Up Paddleboarding for her birthday. Meet your friend at the local farmers market on a Saturday morning. Sarah B’s little girl Kaz, who is 8 years old, had her birthday party at our local CrossFit box.
I hope this information is useful. If you would like to contribute, feel free to do so in the comments section. A healthier workplace can start with just one person and it can spread fast and the more people involved, the better support system you will have.