BOISE – After two sessions in the cramped capitol annex, legislators are back in the Idaho State Capitol building for the 2010 session, and that means more room to move.
It also means more opportunity to rack up steps in the Regence BlueShield of Idaho Move It legislative challenge.
The company’s fifth edition of its Move It legislative challenge begins today and continues for one month. The competition encourages legislators to wear Regence-issued pedometers to record the number of steps they take during four weeks of the legislative session.
“Obesity follows only smoking as the leading cause in preventable deaths each year,” said Sen. Shawn Keough (R-Sandpoint). “As leaders we are called to set a positive example by participating in healthy activities.”
Keough and District 1 counterparts Rep. Eric Anderson (R-Priest Lake) and Rep. Eric Anderson (R-Dover) won the contest in 2008.
Similar to past years, legislators team up with colleagues from their own districts. The top three best-performing teams earn money for schools in their districts. The prizes are $5,000, $3,000 and $2,000. The money is earmarked for health-related purposes.
“The program has proven to be incredibly popular among Idaho legislators, and it’s all for a good cause,” said Regence BlueShield of Idaho President Scott Kreiling. “As a result, several legislators and their staffers have commented that they are moving more and eating less.”
Additionally, Kreiling has invited Regence employees to walk or run with him weekly for better health.
“Everyone can benefit from a little more exercise, especially during these winter months,” Kreiling said. “I invite Regence employees to walk or run with me every week, as I do my best to ‘Move It’ as well. Encouraging healthy behaviors is up to all of us, and we hope to continue to raise awareness about the importance of increased physical activity and how it can make a difference in Idaho’s health.”
Regence began the program because of the rising rate of childhood obesity. The U.S. Surgeon General reports that approximately one third of all adolescents do not get the recommended amount of physical activity. Studies suggest that time spent watching television, playing video games and using computer has contributed to this decrease in physical activity.
About Regence BlueShield of Idaho
Regence BlueShield of Idaho is a leading health plan in Idaho with more than 210,000 members, offering health, life and dental insurance. Regence is the largest health insurer in the Northwest / Intermountain Region, serving more than 2.5 million members as Regence BlueShield of Idaho, Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Oregon, Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Utah and Regence BlueShield (selected counties in Washington). Each plan is a nonprofit independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. Regence is committed to improving the health of our members and our communities and to transforming our health care system. For more information, please visit www.regence.com or www.twitter.com/RegenceIdaho.