Schedule Exercise Into Your Working Day

Schedule Exercise Into Your Working Day

Finding the time, energy and motivation to exercise is one of the great challenges faced by the busy office worker. I've found that juggling work, family and social commitments with your health goals requires dedication, planning and preparation. I haven't discovered a 25th hour in the day but there are some simple tactics that I employ to find the time to exercise during my working week.

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3 Things That Must Be In Place BEFORE Commencing a Wellness Programme

3 Things That Must Be In Place BEFORE Commencing a Wellness Programme

Last week I wrote about where to get started with a wellness programme for the workplace. The response has been fantastic so it's clear there is genuine interest in this area at present. In keeping with this theme and understanding that not everyone has time to read a full article I've put together a short video that reiterates the 3 key takeaways from the article.

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Workplace Wellness: Where Do We Start?

Workplace Wellness: Where Do We Start?

There’s quite the buzz about workplace wellness at the moment. Organisations of all sizes are switching on to the fact that healthy and happy employees have a positive impact on company culture, morale, engagement and productivity. Ensuring the wellbeing of staff can increase employee attraction and retention, reduce levels of absenteeism, improve team spirit and reduce costs. Why then are so many companies reluctant to start a wellness programme? And for those that have started, how come so many of them have been unsuccessful?

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Why Is Wellness So Important?

Why Is Wellness So Important?

An overview of Irish demographics tells us that the average age of Ireland’s population will increase significantly over the next 20 years (by as much as 85%). It is projected to be the fastest increase in Europe. Add to this the projected upturn of 40% in the incidence of chronic disease between 2007 and 2020 (cancer is now categorised as a chronic disease). This will result in increasing healthcare costs and significant impacts not just on the healthcare systems but also for our health in general.

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Workplace Wellness Ireland

Workplace Wellness Ireland

Health promotion in the workplace has come a long way in Ireland in recent years. The vast majority of employers that I work with now appreciate the fact that a yoga class and a lunch and learn here and there does not constitute a wellness programme.

The reason why organisations introduce wellness initiatives is slowly changing too. Historically the end goal was simply to save money; to minimise absenteeism rates and to reduce health insurance premiums. Cost benefit is still a factor for many and a properly executed wellness programme WILL deliver long term savings but I don’t believe this is the main driver any more.

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Workplace Wellbeing Certification - The KeepWell Mark

Workplace Wellbeing Certification - The KeepWell Mark

It’s an exciting time for workplace health promotion in Ireland. Businesses are coming around to the fact that healthy workers are happier and more productive. This trend has not gone unnoticed by a number of organisations. Ibec, the business and employer association, launched a national workplace wellbeing accreditation called the “KeepWell Mark” late in 2017. Later this month the team behind Great Place to Work are launching a new programme called “Healthy Place to Work” and the government body Healthy Ireland are working on a project called the “Healthy Workplace Initiative”. So within a 12 month period it looks likely that we will have gone from no recognised certifications to three separate bodies offering an award for workplaces with a real heath focus in Ireland.

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Radio Interview - Health and Wellness in the Workplace

Radio Interview - Health and Wellness in the Workplace

It was a real pleasure to chat with Mary Mullins from the In Business show on Radio Kerry during the week. We spoke about the role employees and employers have to play in making workplaces healthy places to spend time in, we discussed the recommended physical activity guidelines for healthy adults and we even had time to consider what the office of the future might look like with Fitbit's Dublin offices providing the inspiration for that.

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The 5 Building Blocks for a Healthy Day at Work

The 5 Building Blocks for a Healthy Day at Work

It’s important to lay a solid foundation to give yourself every chance of having a healthy and a productive day at work. There will always be factors that impact our day that are outside of our control. How we deal with these unplanned issues and events is important and the more prepared we are the better chance we have of hurdling them successfully without allowing them to negatively impact our day.

There are 5 areas that are fully within our control that I always try to stay on top of. They are the building blocks of my day and lay the foundations for my most productive days at work.

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Healthy Snacking in the Workplace

Healthy Snacking in the Workplace

When I hear the word “snacking” mentioned it often comes with a negative or unhealthy connotation. This should not be the case. Snacking is great way to support a balanced diet and should be encouraged. During a busy day at work, good quality snacks can help get you through the long mornings until lunch and over the final furlong in the afternoon before dinner time. Of course from a nutrition and health perspective, it’s really important to pay attention to the snacks you’re consuming.

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4 Alternative Employee Benefit Ideas

4 Alternative Employee Benefit Ideas

Working in an office can be hard work and can be hard on your body. Sitting in front of computer screens for the majority of a 40-hour workweek can cause health problems of many varieties if these problems aren’t in some way mitigated. The good news is there are plenty of things that employees can do for themselves in their offices to head off some of the common health risks, some off their own initiative and some at the suggestion or urging of management. Health insurance benefits on the other hand can be a catch-all for employee health risks at the office, giving employees a way to handle issues as they arise.

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