I recently returned from an installation training for a corporate wellness program where the company chose to incorporate our ONBOARD 101 platform as part of their overall strategy.
What was most interesting to me, since this was my first installation of this size and scope, was WHAT this company was previously using for protocol.
But, they are not alone.
The Never Ending Battle
Let me get right to the point. It never ceases to amaze me how many corporate wellness programs incorporate “restricted calorie dieting” into their overall wellness protocol.
I understand that many people are overweight because they eat too much. But, simply restricting caloric intake in NOT the answer.
In fact, the outcome of this protocol slows the metabolism and results in employee fatigue and a measureable decrease in productivity.
Just the opposite of what most companies want.
Why They Continue to Do It
Yet, most companies do it.
Because they’ve been convinced that it’s the right thing to do. The big commercial weight-loss companies, who also sell corporate programs, are excellent marketers with huge “brand recognition.”
This gives an HR person or other staff confidence that they are implementing a good corporate program – one that is “safe” and “effective.”
And, besides, they don’t really have time to determine whether or not it’s physiologically sound. They already are are overwhelmed with HR compliance issues.
Nonetheless, I am personally and professionally amazed that the big commercial weight loss companies get away with the faulty protocol they peddle to corporate America as “safe” and “effective.” It’s just not true.
It Gets Worse
In addition, many of the corporate wellness weight-loss programs implement a “Point A” to “Point B” type strategy where there’s an actual “Finish Line” at which point everyone is weighed and “Winners” declared.
And, of course, this type of program is reinforced by the reality TV shows that demonstrate some of the most dangerous weight-loss protocol, ever!
Ultimately, a restricted calorie protocol coupled with a point A-to-point B mindset is the ultimate YO-YO diet. And, it sets people up for failure over and over again.
The Enlightened CEO
Luckily, in my case, the CEO is a marathon runner and an expert in human physiology. That’s why he chose us to be part of his overall wellness program.
The good news is that there are more and more enlightened corporate professionals who know the difference between weight-loss and fat-loss. They understand that long-term weight-management and overall health is the result of “lifestyle choices.”
These choices typically include healthy eating, increased activity, rest, stress relief, etc. all of which are behavior patterns that can be addressed with education and positive, motivational coaching.
And, as opposed to restricted caloric intake, a healthy lifestyle increases metabolism through frequent eating and snacking.
Increased metabolism also leads to energized employees, higher productivity, less absenteeism and a host of individual benefits experienced by those who start making healthier lifestyle choices.
The Bottom Line
It’s pretty simple. Long-term, permanent weight-management starts in the BRAIN. And, by that, I mean EDUCATION.
The sad fact is most people know more about how their mobile devices operate than how their own bodies actually function.
Weight-management is the perfect setting for this old adage: “Knowledge is Power.”
It’s Getting Better
So, while millions of people will continue down the wrong path the trend is pointing toward a new direction.
People, especially men and women age 35+ are becoming more “health aware” through self-education.
Their interest in weight-management and overall health is not as cosmetic as it is about feeling good.
It’s a good trend especially for health and fitness professionals like YOU.
If you offer credible weight-management services, I urge you to start communicating with local companies — no matter how big they are — and start showing them the difference between what YOU have to offer and all other “phoney programs.”
Get the conversation started with:
- Introductory Letters to HR Directors
- Lunch & Learn Seminars at Local Companies
- Speaking at Business and Networking Organizations
- Targeted E-Mail Campaigns
- Media Releases to the Business Editors (Employee Fitness)
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