Faculty/Staff Wellness

Be Well at Work homedisability management servicesemployee assistanceelder careergonomicsoccupational healthwellnesswork life

Healthy Holiday Challenge

Healthy Holiday Challenge

Nov 5 - Dec 16; 6-week online challenge

Give yourself the gift of healthier habits this year with the Healthy Holiday Challenge. This 6-week program begins in early November and ends just before the holiday break in December to support you with small, healthy steps you build on each week and can keep going through the new year. You will receive a weekly newsletter with a different step each week, tools for support and motivation, including weekly prize drawings and a grand prize. Other perks include starter kits and an exciting kick-off event, free workshops, a special walking group week with prizes, and Rec Sports perks!

This challenge includes:

  • Kickoff at the Tang Center

  • Healthy Holiday Challenge Starter Kit

  • Weekly newsletters with resources, recipes, and weekly challenges

  • Rec Sports perks - free 6-week membership, BodPod discounts, free WorkFit week, and RSF orientation!

  • And more!


Registration closed on Fri, Nov 9 at 5pm. 

How the program works


Each Monday morning, you will receive a newsletter through email to help you stay on track. The Healthy Holiday Challenge newsletter will include a weekly challenge with supporting tools and tips.

It's up to you how you would like to participate to get the support and motivation you need from the program. You can do any of the following:

  1. Read the newsletters for motivation and reminders.
  2. Report your participation each week (to be eligible for the weekly prize drawing).
  3. Track your progress on your Personal Success Tracker and keep it with you to help you stay on track.
  4. Share tips you have found to be successful with fellow participants. Tips will posted online.
  5. Post on social media a photo of you working on your challenge or share a tip with #bewellatwork to receive an extra entry into the special Healthier Together prize drawing. Your profile must be public for the post to be found. Max extra entry: 1 per week. If you don't have a facebook, instagram, or twitter, feel free to send your photos or tips to jenniferguerra@berkeley.edu
Healthy Holiday Challenge Starter Kit 
All participants receive a Healthy Holiday Challenge Starter Kit. The kit includes:
  • "Please Don't Tempt Me" Table Tent to place in a visible place in your workspace to politely let co-workers know that you are working hard to not over indulge in holiday sweets and goodies.
  • Healthy Holiday Challenge Pledge - Choose your favorite design, print and post in a visible spot to remind you of your commitment

  • Personal Success Tracker - track your participation in the weekly challenges and record your weight . Tracking habits is a proven method to support success. Choose from the printable PDF or the word document to save on your computer.

Starter Kits can be picked up at the Kickoff. If you cannot make it, you can pick up your starter kit:
Where: Education Center (1st floor) at Tang, Class of '42 room
When: Tue, 11/6 12-2pm; Thu, 11/8 11am-12:10pm; Tue, 11/13 12-1pm
Rec Sports is partnering with the Healthy Holiday Challenge to offer BodPod - the most efficient and accurate information on fat and lean mass, resting metabolic rate (RMR) and total energy expenditure (TEE) - services to UC Berkeley staff at the discounted rate of $40 (originally $80), with Cal ID.
Rec Sports Membership
Rec Sports is offering a FREE 6-week membership to Healthy Holiday Challenge participants! This is for UCB employees and non-RSF members only. 
To participate, you must:
1. Already have provided your staff ID number in the Healthy Holiday Challenge registration
2. Complete the RSF waiverPrint, sign and return your waiver to Rec Sports customer service and bring your Cal ID. 
Register for the Healthy Holiday Challenge by 9am on Nov 2 to take full advantage of the membership, which begins Mon, Nov 5. Those who register late (after 9am on Nov 2 - Nov 9) will not be able to start their membership until Mon, Nov 12. 
RSF Orientation

RSF Orientation
Tuesday, November 6, 12:10-12:30pm
Main weight room, RSF
Led by Rec Sports Fit Staff - in yellow or blue polos or fleeces

Offered this year based on feedback from Healthy Holiday Challenge 2017!

This orientation will be a 20 minute tour and talk orienting members to the RSF weight rooms and cardio areas. This includes a walk through tour of the following: the three weight rooms, the atrium with cardio equipment, the exercise courts/ racquet ball courts/ group exercise courts, the basketball courts, and the second floor cardio equipment and massage chairs. Included will be a brief review of weight room guidelines and recommendations of the best times to work out in regard to room populations. The orientation will be conducted by fit staff members, which are the weight room staff that are on duty to answer questions.

WorkFit Week
In addition to a membership to Rec Sports, WorkFit will be offering a free week to try out WorkFit classes. Faculty and staff can take advantage of over 50 classes per week offered across campus at convenient times. Certified fitness instructors lead a variety of classes including circuit training, Zumba, yoga and more. 
If you would like to participate, make sure to sign up for classes in the Google Sheet provided in the confirmation email and week 1 newsletter. You chose your free week in the Healthy Holiday Challenge registration.
Sign this waiver and bring it to your first class.

Weekly challenge:

  • There will be a new simple challenge each week. If you're ready to make the challenge more difficult, increase the duration or frequency. 


Monday, 11/5 | 12:10-1pm | Tang Education Center
Get excited to start the Healthy Holiday Challenge with fellow participants to learn more about the challenge, participate in fun activities, find others with similar goals, and win prizes!

There will be giveaways for all attendees, along with raffle prizes for attendance. You can also pick up your starter kit, full of fun goodies to help you success! You will also have the opportunity to meet other participants that work near you, potentially finding a buddy for weekly check ins, walking, sharing healthy meals or recipes, or exercise!

Bring your own lunch. A scale will be available for anyone that would like to check their weight.

How to win prizes

Weekly Prize Drawing
We are giving away raffle prizes each week!

To be eligible, report your participation for the previous week by completing a quick survey in the Monday newsletters.

The deadline for reporting the previous week's participation will be Tuesdays at 9am unless otherwise noted in the newsletter. Winners will be announced Tuesday afternoons. Please note: Week 1 participation reporting deadline will be moved to Wednesday, Nov 14 at 9am due to the Veteran's Day Holiday. 

Winners will be announced Tuesday afternoons. 

Healthier Together Prize
Earn a raffle entry for a special grand prize by posting a social media photo of you working on your challenge or share a tip with #bewellatwork. If you don't have a facebook, instagram, or twitter, feel free to email your photos or tips to jenniferguerra@berkeley.edu
The deadline is also Tuesdays at 9am. The winner will be announced at the end of the challenge.
Note: Limit 1 entry per week. Profiles must be public for the post with the #hashtag to be found.

How to win the grand prize

Grand prize is a FitBit Alta donated by Kaiser Permanente. To be eligible for the Grand Prize drawing, you must do both of the following:
  • Complete the program
    Submit the final program reporting form. A link to the form will be provided in the newsletter. You need to report that you participated in the program for the 6 weeks.

  • Complete the program evaluation
    Submit the online program evaluation. We will ask for your name but it will not be associated with your answers.


The Hunger-Satiety Scale

Hunger Satiety Scale

Managing Holiday Stress:

Managing Holiday Stress Worksheet


These testimonials were submitted by 2017 participants after successfully completing the 6 week program.

"I definitely recommend the Holiday Challenge, because usually I gain about 5-6 pounds during holiday season, but not this year. I lost over 10 pounds by having daily workout, following breathing technique 4-4-8, practicing mindfulness, and watching my portion size of my meals. Thank you for inspirational program - it helped me and many other co-workers on campus! Happy Holidays!"  -Ellen Chmakov

"I was shocked to step on the scale and realize that I had lost weight these last few weeks! I went from 135 at the beginning of the Healthy Holiday Challenge and weighed in this morning at 132 lbs. The holidays are always a struggle for me- what with holiday gatherings and so many good foods to enjoy- but this year I was able to maintain awareness as I snacked and socialized. I feel extremely happy to be ending 2017 leaner and healthier than I started!"

"I did the bod-pod body fat content test at the RSF. It was quite a wake-up call! With aging, even though my weight hadn't changed very much, my composition had. I look forward to re-testing in a few months."

"I regularly exercise but this program gave me the motivation to start involving my coworkers in my weekly exercise schedule - e.g. I've met people from other departments as we now go to a weekly circuits class together (enabled through the free 6 week trial offer). I've also gotten to know my coworkers better and in a different environment, and I've had FUN! My coworker and I are now meeting at the weekend to work-out. So, not only has this program been an incentive to maintain my activity levels, it's been great for helping me to find new friends!"