Workers get up and moving

Published 9:28 pm Thursday, February 26, 2015

A new Suffolk on the Move program is getting people up and moving at offices and churches across the city.

Deborah Nadell, the new coordinator for Suffolk on the Move, which is a Suffolk Partnership for a Healthy Community program, started the initiative after starting her new job. She aims to make it “turnkey” for businesses, churches and other organizations to be able to bring in the program, decide on their incentives and get the ball rolling immediately.

Several workplaces are now on board and seeing results through motivated employees, Nadell said.

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Those participating in the program said they’ve enjoyed it.

“It definitely has a positive impact on our health and well-being, so I think it’s very worthwhile,” said Linda Burrus, operations manager for Suffolk Insurance.

The office on Market Street has been participating for only about three weeks, but Burrus said employees are already enjoying it.

“They like seeing their progress on the chart that we keep,” Burrus said.

Suffolk Insurance employees aim to walk at least 3,600 steps per workday, Burrus said.

“If we do not make our goal in the five days of the week, we have the opportunity to make it up on the weekends,” Burrus said.

She said the employees plan to increase their achievement in the coming weeks.

“We just need to up our goal now that we’ve gotten in the groove,” she said. “We feel like we’re doing something good for us.”

At Birdsong Peanuts, Carol Warren also said employees have been trying to walk more — through taking the long way to the copier, walking to a co-worker’s desk instead of calling her extension, and simply taking walking breaks.

At Suffolk Insurance and Birdsong Peanuts, employees who meet their goals are entered into drawings for gift cards to local businesses.

At Rose & Womble’s Harbour View office, Lori Gomoke said most of the 42 agents were excited to participate.

“It was a really great push to get people motivated, even though it’s cold outside,” she said.

The agents set a goal of moving at least 30 minutes a day, five days a week.

“We actually have a little incentive plan for everybody who meets the goal we set for the week,” Gomoke said. “We’re moving into Phase 2, where everybody wanted to up the ante a little bit.”

In the second phase, agents are setting personal goals and will let Gomoke know whether they met their goals.

“We’re hoping to build it up to where we have people who are moving so much they may be entering into the Shamrock 5K or something like that.”

The energy was even contagious in the building, Gomoke said — employees at Advance Title and Abstract, a separate company with its office in the building, also started participating.

“I’m just glad they started it up and wanted us to be a part of it,” Gomoke said.