HR offering opportunities for self-improvement, renewed health

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2013 brings a wealth of opportunities for self-improvement, renewed health and wellbeing. Many of us know there may be room for improvement. If you are looking to make positive health changes this year, the upcoming programs being offered through the Office of Human Resources may be of interest to you.

Weight Watchers

U.S. News & World Report rated Weight Watchers the best weight loss diet for 2011, 2012 and 2013. HR wants to create a convenient onsite setting in a supportive environment to help participants reach their weight-loss goals. Weekly meetings (for both men and women) offer the advantage of group motivation and support with coworkers.

Weight Watchers provides practical guidance from an experienced leader who has lost weight with the program. To generate additional motivation and help subsidize the cost of $156 (which includes 14 weeks of free e-Tools), HR will offer raffles and incentives to participants who regularly attend meetings and reach milestones. An information and registration meeting will be arranged once the required minimum number of 15 participants is reached. If you haven’t already done so, contact HR at Ext. 3160 if you are interested in participating.

Yoga and Pilates

Yoga, svaroopa yoga and Pilates are open to all faculty and staff. Classes meet on campus and employees may join the full session or participate on a walk-in basis. Yoga with Christine Reed meets from 5:30-6:30 p.m. Tuesdays in the Ochre Court drawing room, svaroopa yoga with Julie Barry meets from 12:15-1:15 p.m. Tuesdays in the Antone Academic Center dance studio and Pilates with Ellen Weaver Paquette meets from 11:45 a.m. to 12:50 p.m. Mondays in the Rodgers Recreation Center, Rooms 030-031. A Zumba class is also being planned for the spring.

Newport Athletic Club/Newport County YMCA

The Newport Athletic Club offers a 25 percent discounted rate for individual membership for Salve Regina employees. Also, the University is now participating in the corporate discount program with the Newport County YMCA. When you present your Salve Regina ID, the YMCA will waive the joiner fee, apply a monthly discount (up to $50 off your yearly membership) and provide all member benefits, including group exercise classes, pool time, basketball gym, locker rooms, sauna and steam room. If you currently have a Newport County YMCA membership, be sure to check with them to adjust your membership level to the corporate discount program.

Quitting Smoking

If you are trying to kick the habit, remember that the University actively supports employees wishing to quit using tobacco products by reimbursing them up to $50 per month for up to three months for the use of approved smoking cessation products, prescriptions or programs. Other programs, such as United Healthcare’s “Beat the Pack,” have been held on campus in the past to assist employees with quitting smoking. Please let HR know if you are interested in participating in a smoking cessation program so that arrangements can be made to bring the program back to campus in the near future. In addition, employees who attest to having been smoke-free for at least four months prior to the benefit open enrollment each year receive a health care discount (20 percent off the individual payroll contribution rate). Please note that March 1 is the four-month mark this year.

Healthy Eating Workshops

United Healthcare will offer a Food 101 workshop from 11:45 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 20 in the Ochre Court breakfast room. The presenter will share nutritional information and provide attendees with the opportunity to sample some tasty and nutritious treats. As an added incentive, the names of attendees will be entered in a drawing to win a $25 Stop & Shop gift card. In addition, Sodexo executive chef John Brando will host a healthy eating workshop from noon to 12:45 p.m. Friday, March 22. Brando will prepare healthy chicken and spinach flatbread and cranberry turkey burger sliders, and will provide nutritional information, recipes and prizes. Due to limited seating, there is a 20-person maximum for each workshop (first come, first served).

Be sure to check out the monthly HR newsletters for helpful information on nutrition, exercise and wellness. Additional wellness programs for 2013 will include workshops on nutrition, mindfulness and meditation and homeopathic remedies, a walking challenge, CPR/first aid certification training and EAP lunch and learns. Be on the lookout for added incentives to attend the wellness programs.

HR would appreciate receiving your ideas for future wellness activities and programs and is eager to publicly recognize the wellness achievements of faculty and staff. If you have a personal success story or are aware of the accomplishments of other faculty and staff, don’t hesitate to let us know so that we can highlight the successes in upcoming newsletters and perhaps inspire others along the way.

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