EveryMove blog

Wearable Tech and Healthcare Week in Review -- Week of 8/24/15

By Russell Benaroya

How Wellness Programs Must Evolve
Summary: Last month a diverse group of experts gathered in New York for a roundtable discussion on “redefining workplace wellness.” The group spanned academia, the health professions and corporate America and while their conclusions weren’t necessarily groundbreaking, they were nonetheless insightful and thought-provoking. The Global Wellness Institute organized the meeting and they’ve just released a report summarizing the discussion. Andrew Mcilvaine includes some of the highlights in his blog, including the impact and future of wearables and health technology.

Fitness Trackers: Trend or Tool?
Summary: Move over, wristwatch, there’s a new accessory in town and it’s sleek, functional and wildly popular. Wearable fitness devices—think FitBit, Garmin, Jawbone, Apple Watch—are strapped around the wrists of people everywhere, tracking their every move. University of Rochester’s Lori Barrette’s discussion with UR Medicine family physician Dr. Michael Mendoza, she asks if they’re a trend, a status symbol, or a useful wellness tool.

NeuroMetrix's forthcoming app may require FDA approval
Summary: The Food and Drug Administration has said it doesn’t want to get involved with health-related apps. A forthcoming product from NeuroMetrix, the maker of the Quell device, might change that. Quell, an over-the-counter device that uses electrical nerve stimulation to manage pain. More details in this article from Erika Morphy.

Digital health: Moving toward a healthcare revolution
Summary: Runners were the first to discover the potential of wearable devices several years ago. They started using watches and pedometers to measure steps, location and heart rate. As technology became increasingly sophisticated, early technology adopters and fitness enthusiasts followed suit. Today, nearly 75 percent of adults are using a fitness tracker. And, it is projected that about 120 million wearable devices will be sold by 2018. The eventual future of healthcare is one in which most patients will be hyper-connected to a network of devices and generating an astounding amount of data. More details in this article from Ryan Beckland.

Apple Debuts at the Number Two Spot as the Worldwide Wearables Market Grows 223.2% in 2Q15, Says IDC
Summary: In its first appearance in the wearables market, Apple finds itself within striking distance of the established market leader, Fitbit. Anytime Apple enters a new market, not only does it draw attention to itself, but to the market as a whole. The article from BusinessWire provides more details on the current trends and market share in the wearables industry

Can digital fitness trackers get you moving?
Summary: The study’s researchers wanted to see if digital fitness trackers would increase physical activity among older women. Heidi Godman discusses the results of this study by American Journal of Preventive Medicine (AJPM).

Wearable devices pose data security problems
Summary: While wearables have become quite popular, they do pose some risk to employers regardless of the company’s stance on wearables. If an employer will issue wearables to some or all employees, questions are being asked on what they plan to do with the data that is collected and how will they keep it secure? Jeffrey Labarge with Rochester Business Journal discusses this in more detail.

Posted on September 1, 2015 03:46 PM


Wearable Tech and Healthcare Week in Review -- Week of 8/17/15

By Russell Benaroya

Novant Health Connects Patients and Doctors Through Wearable Technology
Summary: Beginning this month, Novant Health patients will be able to share data from their fitness tracker with their doctor through Novant Health's electronic patient portal, MyChart. Novant Health's more than 430,000 MyChart users will be able to submit data from personal fitness devices, such as smart scales and wearable fitness trackers, directly to their doctors. More on this from Novant Health

Fitness Wearables are taking off across the globe, but for how long?
Summary: Fitness wearables are in the news with the success of Fitbit’s IPO, which launched on June 18th this year at USD20 per share and reached nearly USD48 per share by August 3rd. Is this really the valuable market that many people obviously believe it to be? It’s certainly crowded, with a range of products at all price points. Margaret Ranken discusses more on this in her article.

Wearable market to see most growth in North America
Summary: The global wearable technology market was worth US$749-million in 2012, according to Hexa Research, and is expected to grow in coming years at the CAGR of 40.7% from 2012 to 2018. Working with synchronization of human actions, wearable technology is growing rapidly due to increase in market of various applications such as advertising, cycling, running, surgery, remote patient monitoring, sports brain and project planning. In 2018, the wearable technology is expected to reach around US$5-billion globally. More details in this article from Stephen Law.

The Latest Campus Fashion: Wearable Technology
Summary: As wearables hit the mainstream, campuses discover more than one way to tap the devices’ potential. Tarleton State is one of many higher education institutions that are taking advantage of wearable technology as a way to give students and employees better — and more healthful — experiences both in and out of the classroom. Read more in this article from Karen J. Bannan.

Why data protection will be key to wearable tech success
Summary: The next generation of health-focused wearables could revolutionise the way people live, but only if consumers can be certain that their data remains confidential. The author from AFP Relaxnews shares the industry facts and concerns around data protection.

Wellness programs will spur wearables adoption in workplace
Summary: A new Tractica report projects more than 75 million wearable devices will be deployed in enterprise and industrial environments between 2014 and 2020, with smartwatches leading the way. Judy Mottl gives more details on this report in her article.

Posted on August 24, 2015 03:25 AM


The Times They Are a Changin’ and We Need to Rethink our Jargon

By Russell Benaroya

The Times They Are a Changin’ said Bob Dylan on his 1964 album and there is no better example of that than in healthcare today.   The tectonic plates are shifting and everyone is a little unsteady as they seek to find solid ground.  Consumer, employers, physicians, hospitals, and health plans are all trying to find that magic synergy to bring the universe into order.  But at the epicenter of all of this change is the most fundamental force of all….the role of the consumer.

Many of have experienced our changing role, moving from a position on the fringe of healthcare (things happen to me and I have no clue how my care works) to the center (things happen because I make informed decisions based on data that is transparent and readily available).  Oh my, that is a change and all of us need to be ready for it. 

There are a number of examples here but consider services like telehealth that will give you immediate provider access for a small fee, price transparency that will help you see what services will cost, and even fitness apps and devices that will help you manage/monitor your own wellness.  These aren’t just “neat” advances.  They are fundamental imperatives because over the next 5 years, it is expected that 35% of us will have what are called consumer directed health plans (CDHP’s) and value based benefits (VBB’s) to help reward our smart choices?

“Consumer directed” what and VBB who?  Okay, now we’re getting to the heart of this article.  Unless we make it abundantly clear what is happening in the healthcare consumer transformation, we will continue to walk in a haze of lingo confusion.  We need to simplify our healthcare jargon in a way that is understandable to the consumer so they “get it”.  I’m not suggesting individuals aren’t smart but the most savvy media companies understand that they need to build content targeting an 11 year old education.  We like it simple and easy to understand.  Let’s get there in healthcare.

Well since I threw out the jargon, let me clarify those two terms. 

Consumer Directed Health Plans are simply health insurance products that require the individual to pay a lot more out of pocket before insurance kicks in.  It makes the cost of insurance less but it requires that individuals better manage their health because otherwise they will suffer higher up front out of pocket costs.   Many of these products are accompanied with a health savings account (a what?) or HSA which is a fancy term for a retirement account that can be funded pre-tax by an employer and be used to pay for these out of pocket costs. 

VBB  (Value Based Benefits) is another really good one.  VBB or VBID (value based insurance design) has been around for a long time.  The concept is that health plans want to direct and promote high value services to individuals that will lower healthcare costs (makes sense).  These are services like getting your physical, filling out a health assessment, getting a biometric test, being active, etc.  VBB is massively antiquated in its delivery and majorly underutilized because the technology delivery is poor and no one gets it.  Do you even know what benefits are available to you with your insurance?  I doubt it.  What we need to do is bring VBB into the consumer spotlight.  Give individuals an easy, engaging and fun view to see their benefits, how to achieve them, and the associated incentives.  And please, please don’t call it VBB.  Call it member rewards or consumer focused care benefits. 

I’m no naming expert but you get my point.  If health plans are truly going to embrace the consumer then we must stop with the antiquated jargon (I don’t even want start talking about ACO’s) and get a marketing agency to help develop better language that will not only help the health plan better connect with the individual but will also help the individual better connect with their health.

Posted on August 19, 2015 04:42 PM


Premera Blue Cross and EveryMove -- Creating a Win/Win/Win Through Embedded Wellness

By Russell Benaroya

I have republished portions of an article that ran last week in the Alaska Journal of Commerce talking about a modest rate rise from Premera in Alaska compared to the rest of the market. Much of that progress they attributed to their innovative programs around well-being embedded inside of their small group product.  Specifically they talk about the EveryMove program that provides a value based incentive to both the employee and the employer.  It is a powerful product because the incentive is designed within the plan itself so the member has immediate access without needing to have a "wellness" program rolled out to all employees.  We believe Premera is pioneering a future where insurance products embed programs designed to encourage individuals to access high value services that will reduce costs for all parties.  It seems to be working and we're excited to be a part of it.

Premera files for 4.4% increase in small group plans

Published: 2015.08.06 01:50 PM
Republished with relevant sections by EveryMove 2015.08.10

Premera Blue Cross Blue Shield, the dominant firm in the state’s health insurance market, has filed for a relatively modest 4.4 percent increase for its small group plans in 2016, which is down from the 5.26 percent increase filed last year for 2015.

The modest increase in small group premiums contrasts sharply with a major 37.8 percent increase requested for individual health insurance policies sold through the federal Affordable Care Act exchange for Alaska, but the individual insurance market has been affected by unusual factors, Coon said.

Meanwhile, the modest rise in premiums for group plans this year is a success story that reflects efforts of Alaska employers to control health costs, and that is at least partly related to the aggressive adoption by employers of wellness programs to promote health among their workers, Coon said.

Alaska is leading other Pacific Northwest states in the number of employers promoting wellness programs to control health care costs, and in fact may also be leading the nation, she said.

Premera Blue Cross and Blue Shield also sells in Washington state and in Oregon under another company in the Premera group, LifeWise Health Plan of Oregon, so the company has good comparative data on employer wellness initiatives and preventative care, Coon said.

Meanwhile, “Our Alaska market has definitely been the leader for the rest of Premera as it relates to embedded wellness products,” or wellness programs encouraged by employers, Coon said.

“Other markets are starting to catch up in engagement (of wellness) but they lag behind Alaska,” she said.

That’s because wellness initiatives got started here earlier but also because the program have embraced by Alaska employers who were moving aggressively to control health costs, she said.

Premera promotes the programs with its customers and offers discounts of up to 7 percent to 10 percent on group health premium costs depending on how many employees sign up for the wellness initiatives. 

Groups that are not affiliated with an Affordable Care Act plan, those sold in an ACA insurance exchange, can get up to a 10 percent discount. Groups in one of the ACA metallic plans can get up to 7 percent off on premiums, she said.

“Currently we serve more than 1,000 employer groups in Alaska and approximately 25 percent of these participate in the wellness program,” Coon said.

This amounts to about 30 percent of the total number of employees in the plans, she said.
Premera is now stepping up its initiatives with a new program launched in July: the “Activity Challenge.”

Until now Premera’s wellness programs have been focused more on promoting periodic health screening and checkups, with biometric screening, blood pressure and weight monitoring, but the new initiative is aimed at promoting more physical activity, which has been shown by data to be linked to improved health, Coon said.

“Physical activity is the fastest and most proven way to improve one’s health and health outcomes,” Coon said, and encouraging activity among employees can be a key driver for employers to manage their health costs.

To promote this Premera is now offering “Fit Bit Zip” tracking devices to large group employees and the program may eventually expand to small group plans.

“These are wearable trackers that clip onto clothing and tracks steps, distance, calories burned and active minutes. People can sync their Fit Bits wirelessly to their computers or smart phones to see all their activity stats and chart their progress,” Coon said.

Premera’s “Activity Challenge” campaign allow employees in large group plans to earn points by having their physical activity tracked on the Fit Bit, and logging their activity through “EveryMove,” an online application that compiles the data from the tracking device and can transmit to the employee’s iPhone or computer.

In the contest, “if employees log 750 points in a month, or 30 minutes of activity five times a week, they get to keep the Fit Bit device and earn a $100 Visa gift card,” Coon said.

The activity data remains confidential to the participant but EveryMove does keep track for Premera of how many employees are participating and when enough activity has occurred to get the incentive card. The challenge goes through September.

Posted on August 10, 2015 03:00 PM


Wearable Tech and Healthcare Week in Review -- Week of 8/3/15

By Russell Benaroya

Summary: Wearable tech increasingly provides health conscious a wealth of data and direction. With Jawbone, FitBit, Apple Watch, and smartphones making it easier for people ditch gyms, where does that leave the personal trainer? Read more on this article from Sean Hutchinson.

Summary: As the mobile health field continues to advance, there are a variety of new devices and applications that are impacting the market as well as the healthcare industry in many ways. Read more on wearables and remote monitoring in this article from Vera Gruessner at HitAnalytics.

Summary: Those wearing the FitBits, Jawbones and Apple Watches are a generation of people who expect these devices to be the panacea that will improve their well-being – the way that other devices have accelerated conveniences in our lives. Ameeta Soni  talks about various applications and trends in wearables.

Summary: Consumers expect wearable health technologies to be engaging, intelligent, and integrated into their daily activities, just as mobile technologies have helped transform how we socialize, shop, and bank. But can it deliver to the hype? Brian Williams from PwC Health, discusses this and how it’s affecting medtech companies.

Summary: The fitness and wellness tracking capabilities of wearables have been promoted as a way for people to improve their health. But, doctors find little value in the way fitness activity data from patients’ wearable devices is presented to them now. In fact, far from improving patient care, the data deluge makes doctors feel “overwhelmed” and prevents them from getting key, helpful information. More on this article from Fred O'Connor.

Summary: Transparency Market Research, a leading U.S. based market research and analysis firm, has released a new report on the global market for wearable technology. The 2018 value of the global wearable technology market is expected to be US$5.8 billion, a jump of close to 800% on its 2012 value. More details on the report in this article at Marketwatch.

Posted on August 9, 2015 05:10 PM


Wearable Tech and Healthcare Week in Review -- Week of 7/27/15

By Russell Benaroya

Wearable technology: will legal issues spoil the party?
Summary: The legal issues surrounding wearables are huge. How will data protection and privacy issues impact the future of such devices? Read more on this article from Ben Rossi

Summary: Nearly half of people who use fitness devices or health-related mobile apps are worried their data could be stolen, a recent survey by Healthline reveals.  More on this survey in this article from David Mills

Summary: According to Telehealth and mHealth experts, providers can achieve ROI in the wearable health technology market. This news analysis from Shaun Sutner examines the issue.

Summary: The mobile health technology field has been expanding throughout the entire medical care industry within the United States. As mobile health technology continues to advance, new developments are uncovered such as smart glasses, wearable monitors, and new telehealth solutions. All this is leading to more data to analyze and a way of staying healthier. More on this article from Vera Gruessner.

Summary: Last October, PriceWaterhouseCooper’s health research institute released a study that said one in five Americans owned a wearable device — about the same percentage of people that owned tablets back in 2012. But just how accurate are these devices when it comes to gauging how much we exercise? Read more on this article from Knowledge@Wharton.

Summary: According to the American Society of Interior Designers green design and wellness are the new black, resilient design is on the rise and sitting all day at your desk is starting to look like the “new smoking.” Read more on this from Tina Perinotto.

Summary: From watches and apps that measure users' heart rate and fitness goals to contact lenses that monitor glucose levels and hats that monitor calorie consumption -- new wearable gizmos have caused shades of gray within the world of cybersecurity regulation. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration recently released two sets of guidelines to help clarify which devices it will regulate from a cybersecurity perspective. Read more on this article from Helen Christakos.

Posted on August 3, 2015 02:30 PM


It’s Not About Wellness vs. Disease Management – It’s Way More Personal

By Russell Benaroya

One of the problems that we have in healthcare is that we love labels (probably not restricted to healthcare).  Labels are easy because it allows us to classify groups of things without individual nuances.  That works for things like blocks (square blocks vs. rectangle blocks) or for technology (smartphone vs. tablet vs. desktop) but it’s really hard in healthcare to apply that to people.  But that’s what we have done.

We have created these very ambiguous silos in healthcare to help people better manage their health when they are not in a clinical setting (which most of us aren’t that often).  We call it wellness or disease management.  Unfortunately wellness gets assigned to people that are generally in a state of good health (let’s keep it that way) and disease management is about people that are in a state of bad health (let’s fix you).  Hmmm.    It’s just simply not that black and white.   The problem is even worse in that wellness tends to be an “employer” program and disease management tends to be offered by health insurance companies.  Hmmm.  It’s just not that disconnected.

The Affordable Care Act and Technology are converging these two disciplines into a single purpose:  PERSONALIZATION.

Let’s discuss how and why:

With outcome based reimbursement, physicians are motivated to keep track of patients that aren’t adhering to a course of prescribed care.  How are physicians going about doing that?  Well, they aren’t doing it that well.  Once the patient leaves a clinical setting, the data feedback loop that helps a physician intervene when there is an exception is far and few between.  Yes there is population health software that helps identify patients but the programs that actually activate and engage?  Not happening. 

Many patients don’t have a costly disease yet (a few risk factors maybe) but it might be incumbent upon the provider to recommend continued engagement around movement and nutrition.  Maybe one person also needs a bit of coaching support because they respond well to that.  Maybe one individual has a significant financial burden and would benefit from connecting to an advisor that could work with them.   We know that stresses in other areas of life can have a dramatic impact on health.  So what label would you place on these people?  Wellness or Disease Management?  Neither….it’s called PERSONALIZATION.

Health Plans
Health plans are also really motivated by personalization.  They have mandates through Medicare (STARS) to deliver individual programs that if not delivered effectively could threaten their status as a Medicare Advantage provider.  They also have ratings they are driving like HEDIS (Health Effectiveness Data and Information Set) which have a big impact on their marketability to employers.  Putting the right program in place for the right person at the right time (so that they actually use it) is essential.

Consumer Technology
Technology is also driving the benefits of personalization.  Millions of us are carrying around smartphones or wearable devices tracking certain health statistics (steps, heart rate, miles, etc.).  This technology is by no means limited to the wellness or disease management label.  The data is about each individual person, where they are in their life, what success looks like for them, and what value they receive from their progress. 

"Our personal health is not about living in labels."
Russell Benaroya  

Our personal health is not about living in labels.  It is about how my state of health is being supported by the connections around me (my family, friends, employers, health plan, provider).  What we need is convergence point (we call it a hub at EveryMove) where individuals are at the center and connected parties can participate/support at different stages of health.  Then we can get away from wellness vs. disease management and get to what really matters – a personalized prevention experience.

Posted on July 31, 2015 03:00 PM


How I Move -- The Stories of People that Move us to Better Health -- Dan Price (Entrepreneur of the Year 2014)

By Russell Benaroya

photo credit:  Jose Mandojana

Sometimes a unique opportunity comes along that reinforces that strong link between a healthy body and a healthy mind.  Dan Price symbolizes that synergy as the leader of a high growth financial services technology company and national recognition as an entrepreneur making an impact.  

Dan Price founded Gravity Payments from his dorm room in 2004 and today serves over 12,000 clients across the nation with credit card processing services.  In 2010 Dan was recognized by President Obama as the Small Business Administration Entrepreneur of the Year and in 2014 he was on the cover of Entrepreneur Magazine as the Entrepreneur of the Year.  

Dan lives his philosophies on his sleeve and doesn't back away from sending a strong message for what is right.  His honesty and transparency is infectious.  In fact, in April of this year Dan made a bold move to pay all of his employees a minimum salary of $70,000 over the next three years because emotional well-being rises with income (up to approximately $75,000) according to a well regarded Princeton Study.   Now that is impressive. 

For Dan, being active and healthy fits into leadership in such a core way.  Being active is what Dan does when he's not working at Gravity.  His hobbies are about getting out and moving, whether hiking, playing soccer or going for a run.  Learn more about Dan's approach to physical activity in this week's edition of "How I Move". 

Thank you Dan.

What do you do to stay fit?
I love variety, so I’ll do anything to stay fit. I’ll do something as normal as going for a run or a bike ride, or something as crazy as jumping out of a helicopter and snowboarding down thousands of feet in the Alaskan wilderness. I love anything hardcore and extreme that challenges me. A great fitness accomplishment of mine was completing what has been considered “the most dangerous hike in the world” – a 26-mile hike on the Napali Coast of Kauai.

Why is it important to you? 
Health has become a huge part of preparing for those crucial moments in life you cannot control or predict. When I am working or living my life, the stakes can feel high. I know I can only do my best when I perform at the top level. When those critical moments finally arrive, if I’ve exercised, ate and slept well, I am ready to step up to the plate and face whatever obstacles or challenges present themselves.

Do you have any fitness goals in your sights?
First and foremost, I want to focus on having fun. I do not have any specific goals I’d like to achieve, other than being able to enjoy the process. I want to push myself as hard as I can every day (or at least every other day) while limiting injuries where I’ll be able to recover within weeks instead of months.

How do you track your workouts?  Do you use any apps or devices?
At different times in my fitness journey, I’ve tried some apps and devices. Currently, I am not using anything, but I am a prime candidate if anyone has any recommendations. I think I would enjoy my workouts even more if I did start to use a tracking mechanism. Right now, everything is very spontaneous and fun.

What does Gravity do to promote health and fitness at the Company?
A great program we’ve set up is the “Good Health Challenge”. Every two weeks, our team elects to fill out a survey about healthy choices they’ve made. This includes abstaining from tobacco, drinking eight glasses of water per day, sleeping at least seven hours a night, and putting in at least 140 minutes of exercise. For every good health choice, they receive a bonus in pay for that pay period.

We also offer subsidized health club memberships, a fully stocked kitchen with “better-for-you” snacks and beverages, and a weekly running club. Every Friday, our team, is excused to go on an organized run around the neighborhood for an hour. We find this helps clears minds, increases camaraderie and provides a mental break.

One of the biggest mental health perks we offer is unlimited vacation days. This allows our team to take a break when they need it instead of working long stretches of time to save up for one big trip. We’ve found people come back with a renewed sense of energy and an increase in productivity.

How does your commitment to health help you at your job?
It gives me perspective and clarity amidst pressure and high stakeswhile providing energy and endurance to put in the type of effort I can be proud of.

Any advice you would give people that are trying to be more active?
Just enjoy it and have fun. There is a goal-orientated piece to fitness, but if you can do something you get much joy out of with people you love spending time with, that is a great place to start. Then if you want to commit to a goal, be very clear on what it is, get committed and then start working backward until you figure what steps you are going to take to reach your ideal end result.

Posted on July 30, 2015 05:53 PM


Wearable Tech and Healthcare Week in Review -- Week of 7/20/15

By Russell Benaroya

Summary: Although golf may not be as far ahead of the curve as running or cycling when it comes to available technology, golfers still have more tools, data and information at their fingertips than ever before. Check out this article from Brett Zika.

Summary: Tracking fitness levels is not a new concept. It has just become easier and more high-tech. In fact, it has become quite the rage. See how the technology is improving fitness awareness in this article from Jill Starbuck.

Summary: The recent launch of the Apple Watch generated huge amounts of media hype, suggesting that a growing number of organizations could be playing host to wearable devices over the coming months and years -- if they aren’t already. More in this article from Sean Ginevan (@sginevan).

Summary: Wearable devices are expected to represent the next wave of m-health solutions and will potentially act as the gateway to the connected health world says a report from Frost & Sullivan. More details in this article from IT-Online.

Summary: But as the development and use of smartwatches, smartphones, and digital and wireless technology increases, it could enhance traditional patient/physician communication, improve patient adherence to medication regimens, and ideally lead to better health outcomes. More details in this article from Jim Butschli (@PackagingDr).

Summary: There are a growing number of companies spending on wearable technology to encourage its staff to lead a more active lifestyle. They provide staff with a pedometer as part of its corporate wellness programme, taking the view that having healthier, more active workers is good for productivity. Read more on the trend in this article by Emily Young (@EmilyLYoung).

Summary: Doppel — a gadget using award-winning technology has a double beat pulse inside of the user’s wrist to control various aspects of life, More information on this and other applications in this article from Susmita Baral (@sushbaral).

Posted on July 27, 2015 03:00 PM


How I Move. The Stories of People that Move us to Better Health -- Russell Benaroya (CEO, EveryMove)

By Russell Benaroya

Well this week for How I Move I’m going to profile someone that I talk to often, who frustrates me at times and every so often bats a single of two.  Russell Benaroya is the CEO of EveryMove, a company on a mission to improve the lives of 10 million people in 10 years.  We are doing that by delivering technology that helps individuals track their prevention activity and align it with financial benefits from employers and health plans.  Movement is a cornerstone of prevention and we take wearable devices and applications and make them purposeful in people’s lives. 

Here are my answers to the weekly “How I Move” Questions:

What do you do to stay fit?
I am an avid trail runner.  I started running on trails about 7 years ago because it always looked fun.  I had a friend who was experienced and he took me under his wing.  I went from running a few miles on a trail to last year running a 75 mile stretch of the Pacific Crest Trail in 24 hours.  It’s where I find my happy place.  During the week I also do some short, high intensity workouts at home (home dvd’s) because I don’t have a lot of time. 

Why is it important to you?
Oh, let me count the ways.  Building a company is hard.  It’s stressful.  Trail running for me gives me time alone to think, to be out in nature.  I am able to approach problems with more patience.  When work is tough I always feel better that I’m investing in my health.  Health is a competitive advantage in business and I’m going to realize it. 

Do you have any fitness goals in your sights?
Funny you should ask.  I’m heading out today to run the White River 50 Mile (www.whiteriver50.com).  It’s a 50 mile trail run in the Cascade Mountains.  Next month I am planning to run around Mt. Rainier (93 miles) in 30 hours.  We’ll see. 

How do you track your workouts?  Do you use any apps or devices?
I use a Garmin Vivosmart and Apple Health for my daily steps.  I use a Garmin GPS watch for my trail runs.  If I don’t have the watch I’ll usually use MapMyRun or Runkeeper. 

What do / did you do to promote health and fitness at your Company?
EveryMove attracts a pretty active employee already.  We run challenges on our platform and that can spark some good friendly competition.  We’re all active users on EveryMove so the conversation is very often around fitness and what great adventures people had on a given weekend.  It's inspiring to learn from others and we promote that conversation.  All employees receive a Fitbit when they join and we also pay for people to enter organized events throughout the year.

How does your commitment to health help you at your job?
Like I said, health is a competitive advantage.  Being active and fit definitely reduces my down days of being sick.  I’m more alert, energized and willing to take on the next challenge without freaking out.  My job is also my passion so I like that I’ve married my profession with what’s important in my life.

Any advice you would give people that are trying to be more active?
Talk to other people about it.  Socialize what you’re trying to accomplish and get others involved and encouraging you.  It might be your spouse, relative, coworkers or other group of friends.  The #1 thing you can do is enlist peer support.  People love to talk about their fitness.  

Posted on July 24, 2015 06:56 PM