American Fidelity is dedicated to the health and wellness of our Colleagues and that’s why we offer opportunities for them to get up and move. Just last week the AF Wellness Team put on a wellness carnival, Spring into Wellness. More than 200 Colleagues joined us on our outdoor property at 9K for a quick, fun, healthy break in the afternoon. Colleagues participated in a scavenger hunt where they took a walk around our walking trail and played ping pong, musical chairs, basketball and catch. Some Colleagues took the relaxing route and painted a spring picture while sitting on the patio. Healthy snacks were also offered for Colleagues. Check out some pictures from the event. Would you like to join our team? Check out our OKC job openings and our field sales positions and apply or share with your network.
Our Colleagues enjoy participating in community wellness activities. And when those activities also have a charitable aspect, the appeal is even stronger!
This weekend, Colleagues will participate in two separate activities that promote both: The Redbud Classic and the Heart Walk.
Colleagues have been forming a team to support the Oklahoma City Heart Walk for several years. This year’s event is Saturday. Funds raised will help support the American Heart Association’s mission to raise awareness of the dangers of heart disease, to change behaviors that impact heart disease and to fund research for treatment options.
Each year, a grassroots team of Colleagues dedicated to the cause spearheads the efforts. A new T-shirt design is created and offered for sale with all proceeds going to the American Heart Association.
The event includes a 5K walk as well as activities to encourage kids to get up and get moving.
The Redbud Classic is a two-day event on Saturday and Sunday. It includes cycling, a 10K run, a 5K run, a wheelchair race and a kids’ fun run. The event culminates with the Redbud Bash.
In addition to promoting physical activity in a fun environment, proceeds from Redbud entry fees are donated to a different charity each year.This year’s recipient is Pepper’s Ranch, an organization dedicated to supporting short-term foster care solutions that strive to keep siblings together.
Do you participate in events that combine wellness and charitable goals? Tell us about it in the comments!
Each month AF spotlight’s a Colleague who has made lifestyle changes to be healthier, or a resource that helps our Colleagues do that. Do you live in the OKC metro area and looking for resources in the community to help kick start your wellness journey? Are you thinking about relocating to our growing city? Here’s a list of wellness resources available in the metro, and reasons you should want to join us in OKC!
- Total Wellness is a program that provides free interactive weight loss classes for Oklahoma County residents to help prevent diabetes and heart disease. Learn more and register.
- Integris Community Wellness offers programs for the young ones in our lives. Programs include Move for Life, Positive Directions Mentoring Program and more. Learn more about the programs offered and see what’s available for others.
- The Oklahoma City Parks & Recreation Department provides free fitness and nutrition classes to seniors.
- Metro Tech hosts fitness classes that are free to the public at Springlake Campus.
Looking for opportunities to get moving with others in the community? Here are some great ones!
- Mesta Festa is held at the historic Mesta Park and usually features free yoga for adults and outdoor games for children.
- Open Streets OKC closes a busy street to vehicular traffic for a day to encourage walking, biking and other physical activity.
- Shop Hop on Auto Alley is held every third Thursday of each month and encourages visitors to park their cars and cruise on foot to enjoy open house events at shops, live music and entertainment. They are also encouraged to participate in physical activities, learn about healthy eating and more.
Alejandra W., Recruiting Specialist
American Fidelity’s recruiting specialist Alejandra Wilson leads a healthy lifestyle through her eating and exercise habits and she uses AF resources to help!
Alejandra began focusing on her eating habits just a few years ago and started with eating more “whole foods” and less processed foods. Soda was one of the first things she cut and now she doesn’t crave it at all.
After graduating college she realized she needed to be more proactive with her exercise and decided to sign up for a 10k.
“Through the training process I learned to love running,” Alejandra says. “I’ve completed a couple of races including a half marathon. I plan to improve my training and continue to make exercise a part of my daily routine.”
Alejandra and her husband plan their meals a few days in advance and keep a really good grocery list to stay on track. They don’t buy things that aren’t on the list, so they aren’t tempted at home.
For exercise she runs six days a week and walks or attends yoga classes at work. Alejandra uses the on-site fitness center in the mornings to run or to walk on the treadmill during lunch.
“Jessica is a great resource for motivation and to bounce ideas off regarding training. I always enjoy meeting with her!”
She loves the on-site grill and will opt for salmon or chicken with veggies when she doesn’t want a salad. Alejandra is on the American Fidelity Active 365 team and consistently has one of the highest numbers in steps from the group.
“Active 365 has made me more aware of my steps and habits.” Would you like to work at American Fidelity, where your health and wellness goals are important to us? Check out our OKC job openings and our field positions.
Lee L. (far right) with his AF Jingle Jog Team[/caption] Do your heroes motivate you to be a better version of yourself? For one of American Fidelity’s Group Product Management Colleagues, that’s what Mr. Rogers and the Ultimate Warrior have done! Lee Lerner’s two childhood heroes have inspired him to be a nice person and to be strong. “I’ve become a very nice person, but I’ve yet to lift a 300 pound man over my head,” Lee said. That statement, his dad’s poor health and a disappointing Health Assessment score prompted Lee to start working out. For about a year now, Lee has been working out in American Fidelity’s on-site fitness center, trying to lift heavy things and move around quickly. “Throughout the year the things I’ve lifted have gotten heavier and I’ve gotten quicker.” Lee loves the healthy options at the on-site cafe, especially the vegetables and pork loin! With everything right here at work, Lee can exercise and then grab something to eat very quickly. Over the year Lee has noticed that when playing ultimate Frisbee he doesn’t feel like he’s dying nearly as much, some of his tighter pants have grown recently and his Health Assessment score has greatly improved! The Health Assessment is taken by Colleagues who wish to participate in American Fidelity’s wellness incentive program. “I like exercising at work because it is a very social thing. My friends here have held me accountable for keeping up my healthy lifestyle. If I was going to some outside gym, and I started not showing up, I wouldn’t have someone questioning me in an afternoon meeting, “Where were you today?” Words of wisdom from Lee (stolen from a corny wedding toast): “The greatest gift you can give your family is a healthy you.” Do your upcoming New Year’s resolutions include getting healthy? How about a job search? Check out our openings, apply and maybe you too can get healthy with American Fidelity!
The holidays are upon us and that means it’s a busy time for everyone. From work to family gatherings and school functions to cooking, life is busy. At American Fidelity we want to help make things a little easier for our Colleagues by bringing a few simple conveniences to them! & Just last week we held our AF Turkey Trot. Colleagues gathered together for a healthy one-mile walk and a chance to win a gift card. Colleagues were able to get away from their desks, have a little social time and get in some exercise for the day. & This week and next week we are bringing the Books Are Fun book fair to work so Colleagues can conveniently make purchases without leaving the office. The book fair will be on-site today and next Wednesday and Thursday. & These are just a couple of things going on that in a small way help make things a little simpler for our Colleagues. Come back each week to see what else is going on at American Fidelity. & Would you like to join the American Fidelity family? Check out our OKC job openings and our field sales positions and learn about our hiring process. &
Tammy T., Marketing Systems[/caption] What does it take to make you decide to make a change for the better? For Marketing Systems Colleague Tammy Townsend, the threat of heart attack or stroke wasn’t even enough to get her attention. But, when she found out that she could possibly go blind, her ears opened up! Tammy has been taking AF’s Health Assessment since it started. Her results have never been perfect, but they were never to the point that she had a sense of urgency to do something. Then, she went for an eye check-up and found out she had busted blood vessels. Her doctor began questioning her about the possibility of being diabetic or having high blood pressure. “Since I had taken the Health Assessment, I had answers for him,” Tammy said. “It’s not high, just borderline.” At that point she was told if she didn’t get her blood pressure under control, she could go blind. “The threat of a heart attack or stroke was not enough to get my attention. But going blind – OH NO, THAT IS NOT GOING TO HAPPEN!” Tammy started blood pressure medication immediately, but it was hard just to find the right medication and dosage. The side effects of the medicine made her miserable, so she decided she was going to do what she needed to get off that mess. A fellow Colleague told Tammy about My Fitness Pal and she began using it to track her eating and exercise. Anytime she wanted to eat something she shouldn’t, she’d just ask herself if it was worth going blind and that took the temptation away. On her days at the office, Tammy would walk on the treadmill in the fitness center and that prompted her to purchase one for her home as she is a multi-day telecommuter. Encouragement from fellow Colleagues really kept her going. “I was really focused on saving my eyesight and didn’t even think about looking and feeling better. That was an added bonus.” She’s now lost 30 pounds and doesn’t have to take blood pressure medicine. She recently visited her retina specialist and he was excited to see her improvements and released her from his care. He noted that had she not made improvements, she would have been unable to drive within three years. “There are so many benefits to being healthy and I’m sure you’ve heard them all. Yes, it takes time to notice a difference, but keep in mind, time is going to go by whether you make a change or not. You can either not make the change and look back in six months and wish you had, or you can make the change and look back in six months and be so proud of yourself for your accomplishments. For the first time, I’m excited to get the results from my next Health Assessment!”
Last week about 200 of our Colleagues attended kick-off parties for our Active 365 pilot program. The program was opened up to the first 200 Colleagues who signed up and will last for a full year. Participants each received a free Jawbone UP Move fitness tracker, T-shirt, calendar with monthly challenges and salad shaker. The Jawbone tracks number of steps, workouts and sleep and eating habits. American Fidelity cares about our Colleagues and their health. The Active 365 pilot program will help AF’s Wellness Team determine whether having something on hand will keep Colleagues more accountable for their health than if they don’t have anything reminding them to get up and move. Each month participants have a challenge to work to complete and they can compete with fellow Active 365 group members anytime they want. The device doesn’t just track, it gets to know each individual and sets goals accordingly. We just got started, but we will keep you updated on how it’s going! If you had a Jawbone telling you it was time to get up and move, would you? What things keep you accountable for living healthy? Let us know in the comments! If you’re interested in working for a company that cares about you and your health, be sure to check out our OKC job openings and our field sales positions.
Tiffany Lindsey and son, Elijah[/caption] About a year and a half ago American Fidelity Colleague Tiffany Lindsey decided she couldn’t ignore her poor health any longer. Feeling uncomfortable in her own skin, she was fed up and ready to get her body back. Tiffany started her wellness journey with a visit to her doctor who referred her to a nutritionist. They adjusted the quality of foods she was eating and gave her a calorie goal. She began tracking her food with the My Fitness Pal app. “Food tracking was so important to me during this entire journey,” Tiffany said. One of the fun things she has picked up is reading labels and trying to find new, healthy options. She likes to share her new discoveries with people! For exercise, she started walking two or three days a week and after a couple of months she began a class at the YMCA one day a week. Tiffany started with the Boot Camp class and loves it for the variety of exercises and ability to modify and go at her own pace. “I couldn’t do half of what they did in twice the time they did it, but I liked the class and the people so I stuck around and started going three days a week.” She’s been going three days a week since June of last year and has even recruited a couple of friends to go with her. Earlier this year running was added to her routine and she is training for her first half marathon in November. Tiffany runs on the trail at AF’s new location when she can. She’d much rather be outside to run than on the treadmill. Tiffany has lost over 100 pounds, was released from her nutritionist in July of this year and no longer takes medication for high blood pressure. She wants to continue to get stronger and live healthy through a good diet and regular exercise. “The one thing I want people to know is that it’s a marathon, not a sprint. Don’t look at how far you have to go, just start moving. There are going to be days you have cake and that’s okay. Don’t let it ruin your goal, your week or even your day. Have your cake and move on…just don’t do it every day.” One of the most important things Tiffany has learned is to try to always be prepared. She always carries a health bar in her purse or car so she’s less likely to be derailed when she’s out and about and needs a little pick-me-up. She tries to plan her day ahead of time to make sure she gets a balanced diet in for the day. “Start with small changes and small victories and if you stick with it, they will turn into big changes that can last a lifetime. It’s all about an overall lifestyle change. There is no quick fix, just hard work and determination.”