Wellness at Work


At the end of May I got a job at Montana State University that included benefits. The Montana University System (MUS) provides benefits to a great many people across the state and, of course, they have an interest in keeping those people as healthy and productive as possible. One of the things (among many) that I’ve discovered the MUS Wellness program does is host monthly challenges–one centered on fitness and one centered on food.

At the end of June I hit a point where I decided to do something about my slowly increasing weight. I was precariously close to being unhealthy and I was certainly uncomfortable. I joined the campus gym, set a weight-loss goal and started watching what I ate very, very closely with the help of my smartphone. A couple of days into July I got an e-mail message advertising the wellness challenges for the month. The July food challenge was to eat two servings of fruit and record it for 26 days of the month. I though, “Hey, this sounds easy and delicious!”

It was.

Did you know a whole cup of blackberries has just a few more calories than 12 small jellybeans? Yeah. And guess which snack is more filling? Uh huh, the blackberries. The challenge made me reach for fruit first to fill my quota for the day and ignore the junk because I actually felt decently full.

By the beginning of August I’d lost 14 pounds and I’m sure the MUS Wellness challenge helped. Plus, I was entered into a drawing because I completed the challenge and I WON.

Bring on the challenges, MUS Wellness!

This month the challenge is to eat one new vegetable each week. I’ve tried a lot of veggies in my life, so this one might be a little tricky. They did say you could try a new variety of a vegetable you’re familiar with–I might have to do that. To the farmer’s market!

I love a good, fun challenge, don’t you? I know you probably can’t get entered in any drawings for completing this challenge, but do you wanna do it anyway? I’d love to compare new veggie notes with my friends!


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