Wellness In The Works: Meet Our Be Well Champs

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Sunday, December 13, 2015

Anne Nierer, an 18-year veteran Lehigh staffer, is a busy woman. In addition to her position as graduate coordinator in the Department of English, she is studying for her bachelor’s degree at DeSales, works a part-time retail job, and is on the tail-end of raising two kids. Though she has every excuse not to participate in the Be Well: Mind Body Spirit program at Lehigh, Anne is actually a super-user. She’s one of this year’s Be Well champions, having surpassed 5,000 points in the online program.

“I always took advantage of HealthScan, so it was a natural to sign up when Be Well started,” Anne said.

Anne says Be Well keeps her disciplined. “It tells me ‘you have to do this,’” she noted. “When we had the brown bag challenge I brought my lunch all the time to get those points. It’s a little crazy, just that little bit of motivation of getting the points can really change my behavior.”

Anne Nierer (above left, bib number 3010) stays active despite a hectic schedule.

Exercise classes played a key role in attaining the pinnacle of Be Well success for Anne. She registered for group classes at the Welch Fitness Center and has enjoyed them immensely. “I’ve tried spin, core strength and booty camp for the first time,” she said. “I like that I could go down there and do classes I’d never done before and I didn’t feel out of place. I felt comfortable.”

Anne uses the Fitbit she earned to track activity and food. She says since joining Be Well, her clothes are looser and she feels better. She’s seen positive changes in her HealthScan blood work. And there’s a psychological benefit as well.

“One way to get steps in is walking with friends at lunch,” she suggests. “After stepping out and getting fresh air, when you get back to the office, it’s like you’re starting a whole new day.”


"It Felt Like Lehigh Cared"

For Phil Ingle, audio coordinator at Zoellner, treating his health like a video game has been the key to his Be Well success. “I earn points toward levelling up like my favorite games,” he said. “It gives me something else to focus on while I’m doing the right things.”

Phil is relatively new to Lehigh, having joined the art center’s team last year. He signed up for Be Well as soon as he could. Managing to eat healthfully it a particular challenge for everyone at Zoellner as they juggle a busy performance schedule. Be Well helped Phil stay on track. “The challenges to eat more fresh fruit and veggies helped me make my homemade lunches healthier,” he said.


Phil Ingle (above) says Be Well has helped him
feel more connected to the Lehigh community
as a new employee. 


Even though Zoellner employees can cover as many as 40,000 steps on a show day, Phil says the staff wanted to be more conscientious about their wellness. They formed “Team ProZAC” and joined the good natured healthy fun of group challenges. “It’s great to earn points by motivating your colleagues to earn points as well,” he said. “Once we get to the point where we know we’ll get the points, the competitive drive kicks in and we want to beat other teams from across campus.”

Now that Phil has turned his diet around, his goal this year is to lose weight and get stronger. Yet for him, the health benefits are just part of what is special about Be Well.

“Jumping into Be Well right after I got here, it felt like Lehigh cared, that Lehigh is committed to making sure their employees are happy and healthy,” he said. “That felt good.”


More Challenges Coming

Keep checking in on Be Well: Mind Body Spirit for new challenges. We’ll be adding more great points earning opportunities soon. In January, be sure to watch for your chance to win a Be Well prize for submitting a challenge of your own to the program.

As always, if you have any questions about Be Well, please contact Mary Jo McNulty via email or at extension 83894.