VIEWS: Happy Environment - Happy Employees

Dispatch by SSC Intern Crystal Kirsch

One of the main reasons I choose not to bike my way from home to school or work is because I don’t want to show up all sweaty and exhausted from my ride. So what options do I have if I want to be healthier and keep the miles off of my car and the environment? I started thinking about my morning routine and considered the following: my typical complaint is that if I take all of my time to get ready in the morning, why don’t I just ride my bike earlier to the gym at my university? Instead of getting ready before I leave, I should get pack my hair and makeup supplies into my school bag and take them with me on my bike ride. Then, I could bike to the gym, shower at the facilities and then walk or ride just a short trip down to my classroom.

But what am I to do when I’m on my way to work? Many offices, even the large companies, do not have shower facilities in their buildings, so what options are out there for people who would like the opportunity to ride in but have no facilities? Consider asking your boss to work with a local gym that is close to your office in allowing employees to use the shower facilities or – better yet – find out if the gym would be willing to offer a low rate for the office to become members. Not only could you ride into work on your bike, but you could even go earlier in the morning so that you could bike in and work out at the facilities.

Your boss may even consider paying the fees for all employees who work out a set number of days a month as a part of an office health plan. Employees who work out more often are less likely to become sick which means fewer employees needing the assistance of the company’s health plan. Preventative measures are the best way to avoid disease and injury as employees who are fit and healthy have a healthier immune system and are less likely to incur everyday injuries. Another important fact is that exercising makes people happier and improves focus since it feeds our body natural endorphins that make us happy and, therefore, more productive in the workplace. In the end, both you and your boss win because it makes you healthier, happier and more productive.