By Coach Nathan

There are two players in the wellness program game. There are the employers who invest in programs that focus on improving the health and wellbeing of their employees and the employees who may or may not choose to participate in the program. As an individual most of us understand the importance of maintaining our health through training and diet. It doesn’t matter if you are performing manual labor in construction, managing corporate accounts, or moving your children from dance to soccer – your body is a tool and properly maintained tools work better longer. For instance, my health and fitness allow me to do my job at a level that benefits my employer and I’ve still got plenty of juice in the tank to do things that I enjoy (CrossFit, pinning bugs, binge watching shows on Netflix and YouTube, etc.). That’s why we should each worry about our personal wellbeing: we do it to feel good, we do it to look good, and we do it for our family. So, why does your employer care about your fitness?

t just so happens that many expensive studies conducted in corporate America show that having healthy and happy employees increases productivity and profits. Quite a lot actually. A recent ROI (return of investment) study found that for every $1.00 invested there was a $3.27 return on their investment. So what is it that drives this process? Now, wellness programs are as diverse as the companies that implement them, but some of the common denominators are that wellness programs can foster more of a team mentality among co workers leading to greater improvement of their physical fitness and more positive interactions among colleagues thus improving their mental health. Here’s how physical fitness and mental health are tied to a company’s profits. These programs have been shown to reduce absenteeism and presenteeism. Absenteeism is when an employee is too physically ill or feels too poorly to come to work and presenteeism is when we manage to drag our carcass to work but are too mentally exhausted to do much good. We’re disengaged and end up streaming videos on YouTube until it’s quitting time. Both situations take huge bites out of productivity and profit either through paid sick leave or paying an employee who has been zombified by mental fog. Well implemented wellness programs have been shown to improve both. On average, employees that participate have shown improvements in blood glucose levels, blood pressure, and cholesterol. Now instead of dreading the work day, they are a member of a team working toward a common goal, feeding off of their coworkers energy, and vice versa. Employees actually want to be at work.

The results are a win for both parties. Employees get healthy and employers reap the benefits of a healthy and happy workforce. In order for a program to be effective it must first exist and then be utilized. As employers it pays to be concerned with the health and wellness of your employees. As an employee considering participation, I won’t go so far as to say to that you owe it to your employer to be healthy but you do owe it to yourself to be the best you can be and that can be achieved through committing to a well designed wellness plan.

At CrossFit West of the River, we partner with corporations in many different ways. From hosting team-building events to going on-site for personal or group training, to nutrition challenges and private employee-only classes at the gym – we are here to help your employees get healthier, happier, less sick, and more productive! For more information on our Corporate Wellness Programs email julie@crossfitwestoftheriver.com