Teachers hold healthy competition

Teacher+Jennifer+Palmer+works+out+at+a+Farrell%27s+Extreme+Bodyshaping+kickboxing+class.+Palmer%2C+along+with+other+teachers%2C+are+in+the+middle+of+their+third+week+of+the+fitness+challenge.+

Olivia White

Teacher Jennifer Palmer works out at a Farrell's Extreme Bodyshaping kickboxing class. Palmer, along with other teachers, are in the middle of their third week of the fitness challenge.

Olivia White, Staff Writer

A new fitness challenge created by teachers has recently been established for all staff members looking to enhance health and beat out fellow co-workers in the process. Teacher Jennifer Palmer, along with 27 other staff members, took on this new fitness challenge.  “I am the co-chair at the high school for our Wellness Committee and each year I like to do something with getting fit,” Palmer said.

This challenge is for any of the staff at the high school who want to be healthy and make healthier choices. “The daily goals consisted of drinking 64 oz of water, eating three servings of vegetables, two servings of fruit, no sugary snacks, contact your buddy, exercise and other healthy activities,” physics teacher Brad Jacobson said. Each teacher receives one point for talking to another teacher about their goals, who is considered their buddy.

There are several different parts to the challenge. The parts consist of journaling about what they eat and how much they work out. The second part to the challenge is the actual weight loss. “This part is based on percentage of weight loss,” Palmer said. “Now not everyone in the challenge really needs to lose weight, so for those who do not need to lose we have a maintenance piece.”

There will be six final winners at the end of the competition and the top three winners will receive a cash prize. At the end of the challenge, there are two categories that teachers can win which are weight loss and healthy habits. The winners are based off of the points they earn. Maintaining a consistent body weight results in five points. If someone loses 2% of their body weight they receive an extra 20 points, because each percent is worth 10 points.

The teachers are in the process of their third week of the challenge. Everyone involved in the challenge put in $10. Each week completed will result in a weekly winner, who will receive $5. The first week winner was Jacobson. “I was able to earn all of the daily goal points and I earned points for my weight loss for the week,” Jacobson said.

The cash prize aside, teachers seem to be enjoying this new way of getting fit. “Right now everyone seems to be excited about the challenge and we are having fun encouraging each other,” Palmer said. “Well, sometime badly encouraging others to eat sweets so that they lose their points for the day.”

Although the main goal of the challenge is to become fit, each teacher has their own personal reasons to do this challenge. “I wanted to be in the fitness challenge to encourage me to eat healthier, exercise more and to feel better physically,” special ed associate Amanda Rynning said. “Plus I want to be around a long time for my daughter.”

Teachers say being involved in this competition is different from just working out alone. “I chose to participate because having positive peer support helps me consistently make better choices for myself,” guidance counselor Julie Fulton said. “Ultimately better choices equate into a healthier me.”

Many teachers are involved for own personal reasons as well. “I decided to get involved because I set some wellness goals for myself this year,” Jacobson said. “I also like the idea of group accountability. For me, I knew I needed to change some of my habits and this coincided with changes I was already starting to make so it served as a great motivator and a jump start to my wellness goals.”

The challenge runs for eight weeks and ends in early April. “The goal in the end is to be healthier physically and to be able to maintain the healthy habits after the challenge is over,” Rynning said.