A healthy diet and regular physical activity are major factors in promoting and maintaining good health. According to the World Health Organization, an unhealthy diet and the lack of physical activity are two primary risk factors for high blood pressure, raised blood glucose levels, abnormal blood lipids, overweight/obesity, and for major chronic diseases such as cardiovascular diseases, cancer, and diabetes. Did you know that overall,
With a little creativity and planning, even the person with the busiest schedule can make room for physical activity. For many folks, before or after work or meals is often an available time to walk, cycle, swim or simply play. Think about your weekly or daily schedule and look for or make opportunities to be more active. Every little bit helps. Consider the following resources:
For on-the-job fitness convenience, look no further than St. Paul’s North Campus, site of the Anderson Athletic and Recreation Complex. This 180,000 square foot facility contains a fitness center, weight and aerobics rooms, aquatic center and much, much more. Work out on your own or enroll in one of the different fitness classes that will be offered such as yoga, spinning, aerobics or boot camp.
All medical-benefits eligible employees have a great incentive to “join the club.” Each month that the facilities are used 12 days or more, you will get a rebate of that entire months’ membership fee (currently $30/month).
Medical costs for the university and insurance premiums for individuals and families continue to increase at double-digit rates on an annual basis. This new building allows faculty and staff unparalleled access to outstanding facilities and the opportunity to improve their health and mitigate expected increases in medical costs for the university and their own health-care premiums.
The McCarthy Gym, located on the South Campus of the University of St. Thomas’s St. Paul Campus, is a multi-purpose gym facility intended to support the recreational, intramural and athletic activities of the university community. The McCarthy Gym facility was remodeled in the summer of 2010 to offer:
The facility is free and open to all St. Thomas students, staff and faculty. A valid St. Thomas ID, which will be swiped through a card reader at the gym’s front desk, is required for each visit. Staff and faculty do not need to purchase a membership in the Anderson Athletic and Recreation Complex to use McCarthy Gym. However, a visit to either facility will count toward the 12 necessary for the membership-fee rebate for qualifying employees. A card can be swiped only once per day at either facility to count toward the rebate.
Beginning in January 2011, an even bigger incentive is in the works. For those employees who workout elsewhere, we will offer a fitness center discount through Blue Cross Blue Shield of MN. This plan will allow employees covered on the St. Thomas health plan and up to one eligible dependent the opportunity to earn a $20 rebate per month on their regular fitness center costs. To qualify for the monthly discounts, employees must use their fitness club membership at least 12 days or more per month.
There are over 700 participating health clubs in this program, which will make it easy to find one convenient to you. Stay tuned for more details on this long-awaited employee perk!
St. Thomas' Wellness Center offers programs, resources, and educational materials on health promotion and illness prevention as well as classes on kickboxing, Pilates, and yoga.
If you could do with some companionship in what is otherwise a solitary sport, join this group of runners to help get you motivated. The group gets together for occasional training runs as a group and members find other times to meet on their own. There are opportunities for races each year, including the Ragnar Relay each August. For more information, or to get on the distribution list, contact Dan Gjelten.