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Over 200 employees from all University of Wisconsin Oshkosh campuses stepped up to the challenge of getting active this summer with a University-wide collaborative step program. 

This five-week, team-based program put in place by the UW Oshkosh Office of Human Resources (HR) required participants to log their daily individual step counts and report them weekly to their team leaders for submission. The goal of the program, called the Step It Up Challenge, was to encourage participants to be active by providing incentives. 

Anthony Xiong, wellness student intern, said employee participation in the challenge was better than expected. With 42 teams and three to six people on each team, there were a total of 209 employees counting their steps for the challenge.

“Many of the teams did great,” Xiong said. “The Step It Up Challenge definitely fired up many of our participants and created a much livelier environment.”

While many of the participants reached their new personal bests during the challenge, there was only one team that stood out above all the rest. With an average of 767,002 steps, team No Regrets was crowned the champion for summer 2019.

The individual who won the Press On Award by having the most steps at the end of the challenge was Ann Doro with 1,283,527 steps total. Other awards included the Feet On Fire (the most steps in one week), The-Need-to-Speed (the individual with the most improvement between two weeks) and Participation awards that allowed for a variety of winners weekly.

While the challenge invited participants to become more active and healthier versions of themselves over the summer, it also was meant to inspire those that partake to continue to carry on a healthier lifestyle for years to come. 

“The goal of this challenge was to motivate our staff, faculty and employees to have a friendly competition for fun in hopes of improving their state of wellness,” Xiong said. “I believe it was a success.”

Overall, Xiong said the Step It Up Challenge was a positive experience and HR plans to have another challenge in place early next year.

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