Wisetail Hot Lap Program: Bringing Beer and Exercise a Little Closer Together
By Ben Fuller | 4 min read
Free Beer for Exercise
Has there ever been a better incentive to exercise? A lot of races offer finishers a free beer at the end of a race. At Wisetail we’ve taken it a step further. Not only do employees get a coaster redeemable for a free beer or coffee for each 10K or 5K they complete on local trails but we also make a donation to the Gallatin Valley Land Trust.
True to our Bozeman roots, everything from walking and running to biking and cross-country skiing counts. What really matters is that people get outside, move around, and we chip in to help everyone to enjoy the area trails (GVLT is a nonprofit dedicated to conserving open space and expanding community trails). Additionally, the coasters create an opportunity for employees to get to know each other better outside of the office.
People can participate in the Hot Laps program during work hours or on their own time. This gives our employees flexibility to take the time to focus on their health, both mental and physical because we know a healthy team is the foundation of a prospering company.
We work to design programs that fit different lifestyles and encourage employees to participate. After all, no single wellness program is ideal for everyone. But why do we care so much about our employees’ health and well-being?
A recent study shows that when people get at least 150 minutes/week of physical activity — described as anything that increased heart rate and brought on a sweat — they’re half as likely to experience mental health issues like burnout and depression. Another study shows that employees who exercise regularly have better job performance and less absenteeism.
Of the many reasons why we live and work in Bozeman, one is the opportunity to do so amid the sheer grandeur of the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. And since Wisetail is fortunate enough to have Bozeman’s Main Street to the Mountains trail system start less than 100 yards from our office, it just made sense to launch a program to support it.
For every lap completed, Wisetail donates $1 to GVLT and the local vendor also donates $1 when the coaster is redeemed. In 2018, Wisetail Employees completed 950 laps, equaling a donation of $1900 to GVLT.
Wisetail L&D Lead, Courtney Fitzpatick out for an afternoon bike ride on Peet’s Hill
Each month we have group hot laps where we separate out into walkers and bikers, and those who prefer either a short loop or the long loop that day. It’s always during the workday, for a few reasons.
One, we want as many people as possible to have the chance to join in. Two, we don’t want to impose on employees’ private lives. Not least of all, group hot laps are an opportunity for Wisetail to show, in an official capacity, that it understands healthy employees make a healthy organization — that employees truly are encouraged to get out on the trail and take advantage of the Hot Laps program.
Employees are encouraged to get out and connect with their peers in other departments. It’s a great way for new employees to get acquainted and for veteran employees forge stronger relationships.
Plus, everyone who participates gets that free drink coaster. Which, naturally, offers a great reason for employees to pick their conversations back up during walk down to Treeline for a midday pick-me-up, or a beer after work at the Bozeman Taproom.
BY BEN FULLER
Ben is on the marketing team at Wisetail. An avid Hot Lapper, he also works to share Wisetail’s story with the world