Office of the Vice President for Global Communications

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Record Update First

Employee exercise program a losing success

In April 2008 University Housing Facilities launched an exercise pilot program for facilities employees working in the South Quad residence hall.

Most of the employees who joined the South Quad Squatters are still with it today. Robin Campbell is one of them.

When her co-workers started the exercise program, Campbell, a custodian for Housing Facilities for approximately three years, decided to join in.

The program was inspired by the larger MHealthy initiative and driven by University Housing’s Occupational Safety and Environmental Health Representative Patrice Berlinski.

A year later the South Quad Squatters have inspired the start of facilities staff exercise groups at several other residence halls and Housing facilities locations.

Campbell says she enjoys the exercise. “It gets my blood pumping in the morning, gets me motivated to stretch out and work,” she says.

Her health and fitness level improved. “I’m not exhausted at the end of the day as I used to be. It motivated me to eat healthier. I used to drink pop every day and now I don’t. I cut out little things including fast food.”

Campbell lost 50 pounds, which she attributes to the exercise program and improving her eating habits, as well as shifting to a more physical work routine. Having started at a 16-hour week, she increased her work schedule to 32 hours and eventually 40 hours a week as opportunities and her fitness allowed. She used to have knee problems. Now at the end of a day, her knees don’t hurt and her feet don’t either.

“Just recently I started working out at a gym, as a New Year’s resolution. I’d lost 50 pounds but was just staying there,” Campbell says. “I’d like to lose more weight, but I’m not setting any goals — just going with the flow.”