Kloeckner Metals is firmly committed to encouraging good employee health. Beyond the commercial benefits of healthy employees, such as having less sick days, there are countless benefits of good health to the employees themselves. For these reasons, Kloeckner encourages health awareness in a variety of ways.
“At the end of the day, we believe a healthy employee is a happy employee,” said Rick Gruca, Director of Safety, Health, Environmental and Sustainability at Kloeckner. “From the moral perspective, I think we need to provide the opportunities for employees to consider health.”
The largest way Kloeckner encourages good health is to make information about healthy habits readily available. Health Advocate sends out regular emails to Kloeckner Employees with health tips and tricks. Cigna, Kloeckner’s health insurance partner, also has a multitude of resources online.
“I think it is important, giving employees programs, training and education regarding the health of their bodies,” Rick said.
In addition to spreading awareness, Kloeckner also holds events to encourage employee health. Recently, Kloeckner held its own “biggest loser” competition where employees tried to see how much weight they could lose over a two month period. First prize was $3,000 awarded to both the man and woman who lost the most weight. A smaller reward was provided to the top 11 men and top 15 women. A half day of paid time off was awarded for every 10 pounds lost for those who didn’t get a top reward.
“One of the nice things that came out of this was that on Yammer, they started their own page for the ‘biggest loser’ contest,” Rick said. “They were sharing recipes and how to cook and prepare meals ahead of time.”
To help you get started, here are some helpful basic tips on how to begin living a healthier lifestyle.
Regular exercise is absolutely essential to maintaining a healthy body and mind.
Walk. You don’t need to run marathons to stay healthy. Walking can serve as a good aerobic exercise which helps you burn calories and maintain cardiovascular health.
Get into an exercise routine. Making a habit out of exercising and making it a part of your regular routine makes it more likely that you will keep with it.
Parking further away from the office is a fast way to get a little bit more movement into your daily routine.
If you work at a desk, take regular, hourly breaks to walk around the office a bit. Just getting your blood flowing can serve as a mini-aerobic workout, and the break also provides mental health benefits.
Proper nutrition is essential for maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Whether you’re trying to run marathons or are just trying to maintain a reasonable weight, the things you eat will be a major indicator of your success.
Avoid processed foods. As a general rule of thumb, processed “snack” foods usually are less healthy than fresh meals that you prepare yourself.
Cook meals ahead of time. Preparing meals in bulk for the entire week reduces the urge to reach for quick, processed foods which are usually less healthy.
Drink plenty of water. Not only is it important to stay hydrated, but water will fill you up so that you end up wanting to snack less.
Eat breakfast. Breakfast increases the body’s metabolism, making it easier to maintain a healthy weight. In fact, the National Weight Control Registry reports that 78% of its members who are able to maintain weight loss eat a balanced breakfast each day.
Getting the proper amount of sleep every night, around 8 hours for adults, is essential to maintaining good health. Proper sleep also makes it easier to maintain a healthy weight.
Set a sleep schedule. Going to bed and rising around the same time each day allows your body to get into a routine, making it easier to get a full night of sleep.
Relax before bed. Giving yourself time to unwind in a quiet environment, free from distractions and stimulation helps to quiet the mind and prepare the body for sleep.
Keep your bedroom cool. Quality sleep usually occurs between 60 and 67 degrees Fahrenheit, according to the National Sleep Foundation.
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