It’s time to dust off your kicks and get ready for the first-ever Arizona Walking Challenge, a business-to-business competition designed to encourage employee wellness throughout the state. 

Powered by 100-year-old Terryberry, the Arizona Walking Challenge inspires “everyday movement for virtually anyone,” explained Alex Allion, western U.S. manager, based in Terryberry’s Phoenix office.

Terryberry has been part of the greater Phoenix business community since 1981 and currently serves more than 300 organizations across the state including Leslie’s Pool Supplies, CopperPoint Insurance Companies and the Phoenix Zoo. The company’s headquarters are located in Grand Rapids, Mich., and the global business serves approximately 25,000 organizations with recognition programs, services and products.

Dozens of Phoenix-area companies have already signed up for the Walking Challenge including Arizona Helping Hands, the United Dairymen of Arizona and the Make-a-Wish America organization.

The Arizona Walking Challenge will run from Oct. 1 through Nov. 11, with winners being named at an awards celebration on Nov. 16.  Awards will be presented to the businesses that have the best participation, most creative social media posts, the highest number of average steps per employee, and more. Enrollment is underway now. 

“This program is about building a culture of wellness that transcends to all aspects of an individual’s personal and professional life,” said Mike Byam, fourth-generation managing partner of Terryberry. “Through both our wellness program and similar efforts at companies we work with, we’ve learned that employees who exercise regularly improve both a company’s bottom line and its culture and now we’re hoping to see that trend spread across Arizona.” 

Terryberry began the workplace walking challenge in 2016 in Grand Rapids, Mich. with a handful of wellness-minded organizations. In 2017, 52 West Michigan companies participated in the 6-week challenge with 2,635 participants walking over 499,494 miles – further than a trip to the moon and back!  Participants walked an average of 66,726 steps per week. It’s anticipated that the 2018 event will include more than 75 companies who will lace up for the popular 6-week challenge.

“Lots of people already track their steps through things like cell phones and high-tech wristbands so this modern technology makes it easy for companies to take part and track how many steps their team is taking,” Byam added.