Go Go Go 150 celebrates fitness and Sesquicentennial

Amy Layton
Go-go-go contest

About 250 participants, representing some 1,100 participants on more than 162 teams, joined Cornell’s Wellness Program in Ives Hall March 13 to kick off the “Go Go Go 150” challenge. The contest spans over six weeks and encourages teams to engage in at least 150 minutes of physical activity per person per week. Those who attended received rubber bracelets for themselves and their team mates. The bracelets remind members to go, go, go!

Wellness switched gears this year, moving away from the concept of dieting and weight loss to living a healthier, more active lifestyle. Ruth Merle-Doyle of the Wellness Program says the intention is for folks to “choose a healthy behavior ... Activity made sense, and based on our contest’s participation, it seems to have resonated with the Cornell community.”

Teams consist of four or more people, complete with a team captain and official team name. Cornell staff, faculty, retirees, spouses/partners began their fitness journey on March 16. Wellness program membership is not needed to participate, and teams hail from the main Ithaca campus, Weill Medical in NYC, Geneva, Seneca Place and the East Hill area.

Activities vary depending on fitness level and interest. Many teams intend to walk together daily, while others will jog or visit the gym independently. Other fun ideas include walking tours of Cornell’s gardens, ice skating, dancing and enjoying the climbing wall. The Wellness Program offers a plethora of fitness classes for registered Wellness members, ranging from Zumba to yoga. “Pop-ups” will be sprinkled throughout the challenge weeks, encouraging participants to get to know campus and increase their fitness minutes. Some examples include “Lunch Walk with Guthrie Docs,” the Clock Tower climb and exploring East Hill Rec Way.

The contest will also offer three team challenges over the course of six weeks. Those participating will be entered to win free movie tickets. Three grand prizes will be awarded through random drawings. To qualify for the maximum number of drawing entries possible (12 for the grand prize random drawing), members must meet their goal of 150 minutes of activity and log them in via Qualtrics, and encourage their team mates to do the same. If every team member reaches their goal for the week, every person will receive an extra prize drawing for that week. Prizes are valued at $100 - $150.

For some teams, individuals are spread over campus and locations, making it difficult for them to all meet. But this does not stop the encouragement. Many have team Facebook pages to offer support, propose activity ideas and encourage each other to meet their goals. Sometimes it is a family event – sisters Brianne Rockefeller and Kyle Page are taking the journey together. “Whenever you can get your family on board when you are making these lifestyle changes, it makes a world of difference,” says Rockefeller. Page agrees, noting that “It adds another level of accountability to the program.”

The challenge officially ends April 26. The finish date intentionally ends on the Charter Day celebration honoring Cornell’s 150th anniversary.

Amy Layton is the assistant to the facilities director, Weill Hall Facilities.