Wellness Team Challenge – The Results Are In!


Congratulations to the members of West Springfield’s “Team James” and their captain Nydia Ruiz, who logged in an average of 680,103 steps (more than 8 miles) a day, and took first place in May Institute’s 2015 Spring Wellness Team Challenge!


Members of Team James, the winners of the Spring Wellness Challenge include (l to r): Megan Martin, Vicky Hatcher, Sarah Jackson, Crystal Rodriguez, Glorymar Villodas, Nydia Ruiz, Hayley Lataille, Gloria Spear and Kathy Montanez. The photo was taken on the night they celebrated May Institute’s 60th Anniversary.
The “Step It Up” team (captain: Alexandra Abuhoff) from Randolph was in second place, averaging 626,580 steps, or approximately 7.5 miles a day, and Randolph’s “Reservoir Dogs” team (captain Melissa Scarry) came in third with an average of 611,079 steps, or about 7.3 miles a day.
“The response to and participation in the Wellness Challenge were absolutely amazing,” said John Zamagni, May Institute’s Director of HR Operations, and Chair of the Wellness Committee. “We had a total of 365 participants and 27 teams*.”
Team captains received $50 gift cards, and the first 150 employees who signed up received a Fit Bit Flex to track their steps. The first place team members all received $50 American Express gift cards; second and third place team members received a choice of a T-shirt, water bottle, baseball cap, pedometer, or flashlight.
All participants were winners because they reaped the health benefits of increased exercise and developed closer relationships with their fellow team members.
“We in Brockton really came together during the Wellness Challenge,” said Meghan Elliott, Director of Community Living for the May Center for Brain Injury and Related Disorders, and Captain of the “Mighty Mighty Brocktones” team. “Everyone was buzzing about their steps, healthy choices, and activity ideas. People were pushing themselves to be more active by walking around our parking lot, taking students out for frequent walks, leaving work to walk in local parks, working exercise in while they watched TV at night, and keeping their bodies moving during normal daily routines (walking around the field during kids’ practices, moving around on shift, using residential treadmills, etc.)
“We especially loved having weekly salad bar lunches where everyone brought in and shared an ingredient or two. It created a fun lunch group of staff from different departments that normally wouldn’t stop and enjoy lunch together. One staff member reported losing 10 pounds during the Challenge and others talked about having more energy from increased activity. 
“The point of the Wellness Challenge was to make a commitment to our health by making small changes. We succeeded in doing that, and the Challenge created an encouraging support network for all team members.”
Bridget Anderson, Director of Family Support Services at the May Center School for Autism and Developmental Disabilities in Randolph, and Captain of the “We Like To Move It, Move It” team, reported, “We participated in Zumba at the school every Tuesday and kept each other motivated through weekend and weekday step challenges through the Fit Bit app. We took water breaks and long walks around the school any chance we got, and celebrated together when we hit our 10,000 step mark for the day. Having friendly competitions within our team and with other teams kept it fun and interesting and motivated us to keep going.”

*Other “winning” teams and captains included:
4th: Mayhem, Team Captain: Laura Rogers
5th: We Like To Move It, Move It, Team Captain: Bridget Anderson
6th: Wacky Wellness Wolves, Team Captain: James Sherman
7th: May Birds, Team Captain: Colleen Finn
8th - May Madness, Team Captain: Grazel Svenson
9th - Mighty Mighty Brocktones, Team Captain: Meghan Elliott
10th - The Revere Rockstars, Team Captain: Anthony Garofalo
11th - Zero2649, Team Captain: Sarah Swain
12th - Walk-A-Holics, Team Captain: Alan Anselmi
13th - Shaping Our Behavior, Team Captain: Molly McGinnis
14th - Wicked Wayward Walkabouts, Team Captain: Kim Higgins
15th - West Street Warriors, Team Captain: Lisa Cook
16th - TGF, Team Captain: Robin Haynes
17th - Too Inspired To Be Tired, Team Captain: Nicole MacDonald
18th - YAY-B_A, Team Captain: Sharon Barrett
19th - T & D's Cluster of Fit & Fab, Team Captain: Traci DeMarco
20th - Mission Slimpossible, Team Captain: Trista Commeau
21st - Buzz Kill, Team Captain: Mary Keach
22nd - Slayer, Team Captain: Kristen Molinski
23rd - Western MA Children's Program, Team Captain: Nancy Lunden
24th - Thundercate, Team Captain: Shawn Parker
25th - We're not gonna bake it, Team Captain: Lynn Demers
26th - The COOP, Team Captain: Margaret Lynch
27th - Easthampton Day Program, Team Captain: Philip Sharples

Wellness Committee Members:
Tania McAdams, HR Mgr.
Serra Langone, Dir. Ed Services
Crystal Kimmett, Coord.
Rob Savino, Program Specialist
Dalila Santos, HR Coord.
Marcia Galavotti, Dir. Day Services
Sarah Swain, HR Coord.
Dennis Orsinger, VP Finance
Tina Lopes, Director Safety/Healthcare Mgt.
Nathan Habel, Clinical Director
John Zamagni, Director HR Operations
Lauren Solotar, President and CEO