Grab your scarf, gloves and workmates! Join our Step Count Challenge to walk more and feel the difference this autumn.
If anyone is considering joining a walking group my advice would be not to be frightened and to come along and give it a go.
We've tidied up the Step Count Challenge League Table and added a few late entries and you can download it here Step Count Challenge League Table - Final
We'll have a proper round up of the challenge soon. In the meantime, enjoy a musical interlude and have a listen to one of our walking themed Spotify playlists...
We have spent a long time sifting through and deliberating over the many nominations for Step Count Champion and choosing just one winner was a tough task.
There are clearly lots of really motivated people out who are getting their colleagues to walk more and feel the difference and we were moved by some of the nominations.
However, we had to choose a winner and the Step Count Champion for 2013 is Catherine Bertuccelli from The Bean Counters at East Renfrewshire Council. Catherine was nominated by a number of her colleagues and it was clear that she kept her team on their toes with her emails, Monday morning texts, progress charts and stickers for reaching goals and personal achievements. Catherine’s approach to success hasn’t been to get her team to go on hikes or climb mountains but to encourage small changes here and there like walking to work.
Her colleague Graham D’Arcy said “I have never taken exercise seriously. During the eight weeks with Catherine’s motivation and the Step Count Challenge, I have become fitter, healthier and more conscious of my lifestyle. I have lost 11lbs in weight and feel in much better shape. Catherine also presented me with blister plasters and a new pair of socks at the end of the challenge. My normal step count before the challenge on a daily basis was roughly 2,000 and during the challenge my average daily count was 13,412.”
We all felt that Catherine was a worthy winner. She will receive a digital camera and a £25 Schuh voucher.
Step Count Champion Runners-Up
Alongside our winner we also had 2 runners-up who each win a £25 Cotswold Outdoor voucher.
Susan Allan is our first runner-up. Susan is the Team Captain for the Plan Bees at NHS Borders. Susan’s teammate April wrote a really moving piece about how Susan had supported her in the challenge. April said “I am not a great walker but decided to give it a go and be part of the team. I was very disappointed in myself when I saw my results at the end of the first week compared to everyone else in the team, I felt like I was letting the team down and thought “I can’t do this”. Susan was very positive, saying it wasn’t a race and the whole concept was to increase your steps and keep going.
“If it hadn’t been for her I really think I would have given up. Not only has she motivated me during the challenge but she has motivated me to improve my lifestyle and she has done it with understanding and without judgement. She is unaware of how much she has actually done for me and it has all been from being her normal caring self.”
Our second runner-up is Julie Stewart from These Feet Were Made for Walking at EDP Renewables. Julie was nominated by her colleague Mary Horsburgh who described how Julie had gradually increased the team’s activity during the challenge by keeping goals realistic and achievable.
Mary said “Julie has encouraged lunch time walking (instead of sitting at desks), walking to work (instead of public transport), walking the 4 flights of stairs to our office (instead of taking the lift) and walks after work to de-stress after a hard day in the office.” On top of all this, Julie has also been studying for her accountancy exams.
What a star!
We can now announce the winners of the Step Count Challenge Prize Draw.
First Prize of a £50 Cotswold Outdoor voucher for each team member goes to:
The Green Goddesses from First Nursery Ltd
The following teams win a £25 Schuh voucher for each of their team members:
Team Alex (Alex Begg & Co)
Lena’s Ladies (NHS Lanarkshire)
Nuts and Bolts (Ondeo Industrial Solutions)
Plexus Plodders (Plexus Ocean Systems Ltd)
Sgioba 1 (Sabhal Mor Ostaig)
The Credit Crew (LS Starrett Company Limited)
The following teams win a Pocket Mountain easy walks guidebook for each of their team members:
Walk It Like It's Hot (Aberdeen International Airport)
The Rowdy Ramblers (Ayrshire Chamber of Commerce)
Spring in Our Step (Community Pharmacy Scotland)
Honey, I Shrunk the Gut (Dundee City Council)
The Walkie Talkie Blister Sisters (Job Centre Plus Helensburgh)
Steps - The Reunion (Edinburgh Leisure)
Witness the Fitness (Fife Council)
Shug’s Squad (Flourish House)
Northern Delights (Hardies Property and Construction)
The Sensational Strathy Striders (The University of Strathclyde)
Prizes are in the post. Well done to everyone and keep walking!
We'll announce the winner of the Step Count Champion competition later this week.
We asked Elaine from the Teasles who have been at the top of the League Table over the past few weeks to let is into the secret of their success. Here’s what Elaine had to say:
“My name is Elaine Stakim and I am team captain of the fabulous The Teasles. My team mates are; Margaret Worrall (auld stoat), Ian McCrae (fit), Arlene Brown (reasonably fit) and Ann Watson (super fit). As for me, I just plod along looking the part.
“We all work in different departments (Embroidery, Weaving, Finishing & Warehouse) at Alex Begg & Co who have been making luxury cashmere scarves since 1866. This was also the inspiration for our team name as a teasle is a dried plant that is imperative in the finishing process of our beautiful cashmere scarves!
“The challenge itself started when the three teams, The Teasles, Team Alex and Team Begg signed up for the Step Count Challenge. We originally decided to have an in house competition but that was quickly pushed aside when ‘the enemies’ knew they had no chance! The REAL challenge for our team was maintaining our position at the top of the Step Count League Table, that was enough motivation to keep us all on our toes and do as much walking as we could, from getting our feet out of bed in the morning, to walking at work as well as after work.
“There were huge benefits from doing the challenge, not only the fitness side of things but getting to know our team mates better. It’s easy to say “hello” or “good morning” to a colleague in the passing, but realising we’ve got walkers, runners, swimmers, hula hoopers and dancers amongst the teams it was quite an eye opener to say the least. It’s been a very good challenge, especially for the three teams in the workforce, who are now going to keep up their good work and keep the walking going, no enemies this time!
“Now that it’s over, our boss is taking us all out for a meal and cocktails (he’s such a lovely man). Who knows what will happen next year, hopefully we will get another team together and do it all again. BRING IT ON!!!”
So there you go, the secret is a bit of team spirit, mixed with some healthy competition, don’t sit down and the promise of a free meal and cocktails at the end and top spot on the league table is yours!
So, the challenge is finished and we've hung our pedometers up for another year. We're busy tying up the loose ends and will provide a more comprehensive overview of the challenge in a couple of weeks. For now, here's the latest news...
Week 8 Step Count
We still have a few more step counts to come in, but the week 8 step total currently stands at 127,879,176 steps (63,940 miles). This takes our grand total to 1,103,195,482. Over a billion steps in 2 months. That’s over 500,000 miles. Well done everyone, what a tremendous achievement!
We’ll give you the final totals in our challenge round up.
Well, The Teasles from Alex Begg & Co have managed to retain their lead for another week and have come out top of the league. Well done to them and everyone who has taken part in the league table, there have been some amazing step counts recorded in the past 8 weeks. Here’s the final top 5:
1. The Teasles (Alex Begg & Co) 6,069,159 steps
2. Lost in Pace (NHS Health Scotland) 5,661,807 steps
3. One Step Beyond (NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde PHRU) 5,324,712 steps
4. Gastronomic (NHS Borders) 5,202,042 steps
5. A Million Again (Glasgow City CHP - North East Sector) 5,053,635 steps
Prize Draw and Step Count Champion
We’ll announce the prize draw winners and the Step Count Champion next week. There have been some brilliant nominations for Step Count Champion and we’ll share some of our favourites in next week’s update.
Rory Gillies and his team the Shetland College Allstars sent us this note on how they marked the finish of the challenge with a scenic walk at Lunna Ness on Shetland.
“On Sunday 9th June some of the members of the seven Shetland College Step Count Challenge teams got together for a final group walk at Lunna Ness, near Vidlin on the east coast of the Shetland mainland. The 8km route started off with an easy walk along some beautiful coastline in perfect walking weather, to the picnic stop at Lunna Holm.
“After well-earned refreshments the route took us through the Glachon valley with its inland cliffs, then the challenging Ward of Outrabister, an 80m climb over soft heather and moss. The views from the top were stunning with everyone agreeing it was worth the effort!
“From there it was a fairly easy walk down to the mysterious “Stanes of Stofast”, a group of huge boulders dumped by receding glaciers after the ice age. One of the stanes resembles a sphinx staring out to sea as if guarding the coast.
“The last leg of the circular route took us along the shore of Fugla Water, and easy going 1km back to the car park. All in all a great day out and enjoyed by all. The weather was great, and the step counts were up for the last day of the challenge.”
Unsurprisingly the Shetland College Allstars posted a personal best with the final week’s step count.
Here we are at week 8 and there's only a few days left to cram in some more steps to finish your virtual journeys or climb an extra place or two in the league table. Luckily summer has arrived, so there's no excuse to get out for a walk!
Our week 7 total is currently at 119,775,973 steps, 59,888 miles. Our grand total is well on the way to a billion steps and is 953,903,767, just short of 500,000 miles.
Here's the Step Count Challenge League Table - Week Seven
Lots of teams seem to be finishing off virtual journeys and celebrating with meals out, walks in the sunshine and special lunches! Here’s a few team updates that we’ve received so far…
Veronica Tyre from NHS Lothian sent us this report, “the Handling with Care team are pleased to have achieved their objective of walking from Paris to Barcelona having fun on the way! We have been sight seeing in Geneva, skiing in Chamonix, relaxing in the cafes of Nice, dancing sur le pont d’Avingnon and are now having tapas and sangrias in Barcelona. We’re off to see more of Spain soon. Here’s a photo from a walk a lot nearer to home. Taken from the Black Rock on the Firth of Forth at low tide. It is located about half a mile out on the sands from the prom at Burntisland and Edinburgh is in the background.”
Helen Guthrie from let us know that “the Budget Walkers and Path Pounders are setting aside all their rivalry and joining forces to celebrate the end of our stepping adventure. We are off to lunch next Thursday to mark all the effort everyone has put in. Thanks for supporting us for the last eight weeks!”
Nancy Greig from the Alliance sent in this photo of “members of rival teams Team Commonwealth and Team Olympians feeling on top of the world at the dizzy heights of Glasgow’s Park Circus this week.”
Keep your updates and photos coming in and let us know how you are marking the end of the challenge.
Seven weeks down, one to go!
We're almost into the final week and the finish line is just round the corner! Let us know if you and your team are marking the end of the challenge. Perhaps you're having a celebratory lunch or a prize giving event for your teams, whatever you're doing drop us a line or even better send us a photo and we'll share it here on the blog!
This week's total is 124,824,383 steps or 62,412 miles. That brings our grand total to 819,102,309 steps or 409,551 miles. Fingers crossed we get some blue skies and sunshine for our last week of step counting!
Here’s your Step Count Challenge League Table - Week Six
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