Article and photos by Harvey Morrell, Bridge to Wellness Challenge program director
On March 3, the Stockbridge Area Wellness Coalition launched a 15-week “Bridge to Wellness Challenge,” hoping to bring a more active and healthy lifestyle to area residents.
With the support of 5 Healthy Towns Foundation and other area businesses and organizations, the program was offered free of charge to all residents ages 18 or older in the Stockbridge school district.
The challenge has been an astounding success so far, with 109 active participants.
Through March, participants recorded 18,825,040 steps, which equals 8,913 miles—more than a 1,000 miles more than the distance from Lansing to Hong Kong. In addition, the group as a whole lost more than 258 pounds.
“The enthusiasm, excitement and progress is very contagious and inspirational,” Morrell said. “It makes me very proud to be a member of such a great community.”
As part of the program, fitness trackers and food journals help the participants become more aware of their lifestyle. Each challenger earns points for step tracking, food journaling and participation in challenge-sponsored events. They also earn points for both weight and body fat losses.
The goal is to surround the participants with resources, motivation and education. The program provides this through a community of encouraging participants, educational speakers and community exercise events.
Track the progress of the challenge and learn of upcoming free community events on Facebook @bridgetowellnesschallenge.