July 23, 2015
AIKEN, S.C. – Savannah River Remediation (SRR) employees are reaping the benefits from the Biggest Winner health competition, collectively losing over 1,200 pounds.
Employee participants competed for a chance to win a treadmill, elliptical, stationary or mountain bike, all while improving their health and fitness. While the prize equipment made for motivating incentives, said Patricia Allen, SRR Environmental, Safety, Health and Quality Assurance and Contractor Assurance Director, the results proved far more valuable than the exercise machines.
"The results our employees have achieved in just six months are life altering," Allen said. "What began as a challenge at work transcended to improving the quality of life for many of the SRR Biggest Winner participants."
By entering the Biggest Winner challenge, SRR employees committed to losing either five or 10 percent of their total body weight, or maintaining a healthy weight and fitness level in six months. In addition to body weight, SRR evaluated employee's Body Mass Index (BMI), blood glucose (sugar), total cholesterol and blood pressure. With hard work and perseverance, employees lost a total of 215 BMI points, 1,365 cholesterol points and blood glucose was reduced by 457 points.
From January 2015 to June 2015, participants attended lunch and learn wellness sessions to learn how to improve in areas of diet, exercise and overall health to keep on track throughout the competition. Staff members worked hard to encourage and support each other's goals. Many worked in teams, because they felt the support and accountability made them work harder.
Penny Miller, a participant in the challenge and host of a lunch and learn health session said she was told by her doctor that she needed to lose 120 pounds. Without SRR's Biggest Winner Challenge, she wouldn't be as successful in that journey as she has been, she said.
"I think that eating right wasn't so much about understanding as it was preparation," said Miller. "I have 50 more pounds to go, which seems like a lot; but when you compare it to how far I've already come in the last year, it no longer seems impossible."
Celebrations were in order on July 16 when participants shared their success stories with SRR employees and the program sponsors University Hospital, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Cyclesport Bicycles and Fitness, Academy Sports + Outdoors of Aiken and Fleet Feet. Six lucky employees were randomly selected to receive exercise equipment which will help them continue the journey to a healthier lifestyle.
SRR is the liquid waste contractor at Savannah River Site, which is owned by the U.S. Department of Energy. SRR is a team of companies led by AECOM with partners Bechtel National, CH2M and BWX Technologies Inc. Critical subcontractors for the contract are AREVA, EnergySolutions and URS Professional Solutions.
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