Last updated: April 08. 2014 10:11AM - 863 Views
By - mflomer@civitasmedia.com

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Walmart doesn’t brand itself as a company where employers facilitate healthy workplace conditions.

The corporate culture of this big box store doesn’t include gyms and sauna showers nestled in the back rooms, or smoothie bars or even walking tracks outdoors. But if you live in Richmond County, you will find a dedicated team of 12 Walmart employees who know the company supports their efforts at being healthy.

In March, Walmart of Rockingham signed up for RichmondFit, a workplace wellness competition launched by the First in Health Richmond County 2020 Task Force.

RichmondFit’s goal is to encourage people to get up and move, be more physical and track their steps and activities through April 30. The program offers a team-oriented challenge in which groups from local businesses are judged solely on the average number of steps per team member.

The concept is simple. Each team The top three teams in both the large business and small business categories will be recognized, as well as the top three individuals.

Rockingham Walmart community coordinator Jean Fletcher is proud of the number of steps team members have logged.Through late Monday morning, Walmart is sixth among the top 10 teams with 218,507 steps. Fletcher, who is also on the team, hopes its accomplishments will help break through some of the social stereotypes people have about retail workers’ “poor health habits.”

“People don’t understand how much we move during a regular workday,” she said. “Doing your daily routine, you have to stay on top of everything. We have so much stuff to do that we run out of time. But I do a lot of walking to get steps in and I feel better. It’s just good all around for everyone involved.”

As of Monday morning, the combined efforts of all participants in RichmondFit have yielded more than 41.3 million steps, or 18,390 miles.

The four-person team from Unimin Corporation in Marston remains in first place with an average of 652,983 steps per teammate. Richmond County government (305,187) remains in second place and Discovery Place KIDS jumped up to third place (246,227) from fifth place.

Rounding out the top 10 teams: The Richmond County Daily Journal (243,169), City of Hamlet (235,924),Walmart, Fidelity Bank (182,428), Rockingham Housing Authority (157,672), FirstHealth Richmond Memorial Hospital (128,129) and Richmond County Health Services (104,402).

The most popular activities recorded include quick pace and leisurely walking, housework, and playing with kids.

The program began Mach 3 and runs through April 30. Due to high demand, coordinators have re-opened registration to individuals or teams wanting to participate.

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