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Thousands of people complete the 2022 Blue & You Fitness Challenge

Each year, Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield, the Arkansas Department of Human Services and the Arkansas Department of Health host the Blue & You Fitness Challenge, a fun competition encouraging people to be more active.

This year, 4,023 people finished the three-month challenge. Together they earned more than 109 million points for counting their steps and other activities, like strength training, meditating and watching educational webinars. They also completed 239,504 healthy behaviors like drinking water and getting at least 7 hours of sleep.

"Staying active is vital to your overall health, whether you enjoy going for a swim, taking a walk or hitting the gym," said Kristen Lippencott, Arkansas Blue Cross manager of health and well-being and Challenge administrator. "Physical activity can boost your mood, reduce stress and improve your mobility."

Participants signed up as teams, made up of businesses, governmental agencies, schools, hospitals and community organizations.

“Those of us at the Arkansas Department of Health look forward to the Challenge every year as a way to jump-start our physical activity routines for the year,” said Renee Mallory, interim secretary of health. “We are seeing more participation than ever, and that shows the Challenge is an engaging way to start or maintain a healthier lifestyle. I encourage everyone to participate next year!”

“When we started the Challenge almost 20 years ago, we knew it had the potential to have a lasting impact on the physical health and activity of participants,” said Curtis Barnett, president and CEO of Arkansas Blue Cross. “As the Challenge has grown and evolved over the years, we see that activity having an impact on emotional and mental health as well. In its history, the Challenge has engaged tens of thousands of participants on their journey to better health and well-being."

Winners were named in each size category and are being presented with trophies and treats this month by Challenge volunteers. Among the founders of the Challenge, the Arkansas Department of Health took first place, followed by DHS and Arkansas Blue Cross.

“The Arkansas Department of Human Services is proud to be a part of this competition. There are so many health benefits to staying active and keeping fit, and it’s great to be encouraged to do so in a fun way like the Blue & You Fitness Challenge,” said DHS Secretary Cindy Gillespie. “DHS employees alone logged more than 22,000 miles of steps, which is truly a phenomenal achievement. While we are disappointed not to take first place, I do want to congratulate the Arkansas Department of Health – and let them know we’re already gearing up to take back the title in 2023!”

Other winners are:

SMALL TEAMS (2-25 participants)

  1. Lake Area Fit, Heber Springs
  2. The Law Group of Northwest Arkansas, Fayetteville
  3. Democrat Printing & Lithographing, Little Rock

MEDIUM TEAMS (26-75 participants)

  1. K&K Vet Supply, Tontitown
  2. Flower Shop Network, Paragould
  3. Mountain Home High School, Mountain Home

LARGE TEAMS (76+ participants)

  1. Arkansas Tennis, Little Rock
  2. Unity Health, Searcy
  3. USA Truck, Van Buren

About the Blue & You Fitness Challenge

The Blue & You Fitness Challenge, founded in 2004 and hosted by Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield, the Arkansas Department of Health and the Arkansas Department of Human Services, is a free three-month fitness competition in which participants exercise and log their activity. The Challenge is held March 1 through May 31. Companies and organizations participate in the event as part of their wellness programs, while friends and family use the contest to focus on fitness goals, infuse new energy into their routines, remain connected and have fun! Points gained from logging activity lead to contest recognition and rewards. But the best bonuses are better health and fitness.

For more information, contact:
Kerri Nettles: 501-658-9230 cell, 501-378-3287 office, [email protected]
Gavin Lesnick: 501-320-6228, [email protected]
Meg Mirivel: 501-554-6666, [email protected]