Treadmill Champs | VideoAlan Miller | 2/23/2013
On a treadmill, you can go nowhere fast. Yet it`s a key to cardio fitness. It`s also the inspiration for the Treadmill Challenge, a friendly competition among six North Dakota hospitals. St. Alexius hospital won the inaugural contest by logging the most miles from 6:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
"It was a good day to bring awareness to cardiac disease and the importance of exercise in preventing cardiac disease," said Taija Bohn, an exercise physiologist, as well as a member of the winning team. "This is something that I do daily, so it was a good day for me, too."
The 30 or so team members were all hospital employees, and they took 20 or 40 minute shifts. But it didn`t just include runners. There were walkers as well, and their contributions were just as important. Not just for the numbers, but for their own health.
"I just have a new granddaughter who was born February 10th, so I want to make it a lifestyle change so I can be there for my grandchildren and enjoy my retirement," added Laurie Hatzenbuhler, a walking member of the team and also the Director of Volunteer Services at the hospital.
The coach encouraged the runners and walkers all day. She was pleased with the victory, and she`s also happy that the message is getting out.
"What`s interesting is that research has shown that 56 percent of women now will identify heart disease as the number one killer of women versus cancer," says Judy Myers, the coach and the Cardiac Rehab Coordinator. "So, we have a ways to go but we`ve made progress."
Of course, they`d also like to know the whereabouts of the traveling trophy. They earned it, but it hasn`t arrived yet. Judy says so many employees wanted to participate this year that they needed two treadmills. Next year, they`re already preparing to use three or more of them.