June 9, 2020
St. Peter’s Health is inviting the community to participate in the local health care system’s second annual 60-Day Step Challenge. The 60-Day Step Challenge is hosted by Healthy Wage and is made possible in part from a grant from Blue Cross Blue Shield of Montana. Registration is open now and the challenge officially starts June 18 and ends on August 16. Registration costs $35 per month for two months, or $70 total per participant. Participants register first by downloading the Healthy Wage SmartPhone app and searching for “St. Peter’s Health Step Challenge”, entering in their information, and then connecting to a compatible tracking device. Compatible devices include FitBit, Garmin, AppleHealth (iPhone) or Google Fit (Android).
While teams of two to six are encouraged, you are competing against yourself. The goal is to increase your average steps by 25 percent if you have a compatible tracking device and have at least a 45-day step average. 10,000 steps on average per day is the goal for anyone who does not currently track their steps. “To make it fair and motivating, this challenge is focused on competing against yourself,” says Jaime Larese, RDN, LN St. Peter’s Health Wellness Promoter. “This is a fun way to get out, get active, push yourself and maybe even win some money.” All registrants who successfully complete the challenge will win back their registration fee as well as additional funds from the overall “pot” of funding. St. Peter’s Health does not receive any funding from registrants. Instead, registration fees are placed into a pot of funding that is divided among participants who successfully reach their step goals.
According to the Mayo Clinic, adults should aim for at least 30 minutes of physical activity each day. Walking is a good, low-impact option for many. “With the recent stay-at-home orders, and let’s face it, wintertime in Montana, many of us haven’t been as active as we would like. Now is a great time to get out and enjoy our local neighborhoods, parks and trails while boosting our immunity and improving our overall health and wellbeing,” said Larese.
While friends and families of St. Peter’s Health employees have been encouraged to participate in the past, the organization is inviting the entire community to join the challenge. According to Larese, “We wanted to invite the community to participate this year because it’s as important as ever for us to get out and get stepping. With more people comes more motivation, more people realizing their health goals and more money in the pot.”
St. Peter’s Health also received positive feedback from the employees that participated in the 2019 challenge, including Environmental Services Director Bruce Tyler. “I thoroughly enjoyed the challenge…it made me very aware of the amount of steps I was taking during my normal work day and exercise times. I am also a little competitive and trying to keep up with my co-workers was fun,” said Tyler.
Interested community members can register for the challenge by downloading the Healthy Wage SmartPhone app. Once the app is downloaded, they can search and register for the “St. Peter’s Health Step Challenge.” Questions can be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 888-636-3832.