COLUMBUS, Ohio -- One healthy habit a week for six weeks -- that's the cornerstone of a "Kick Off the Pounds" online email challenge sponsored by Ohio State University Extension Aug. 27 through Oct. 9.
Participation in the challenge is free, and anyone with an email account can register, said Michelle Treber, OSU Extension educator who is helping organize the challenge.
"It's the end of summer and people are getting back into a routine," Treber said. "It's good timing to encourage people to adopt new, healthy habits and really incorporate them into daily life."
To sign up, contact Treber at firstname.lastname@example.org or 740-474-7534 by Aug. 21.
"People who sign up will receive email messages twice a week from Extension educators who will share tips, recipes and research-based information," Treber said. Participants will get ideas to engage in healthy behaviors, such as increasing physical activity, drinking more water, watching portion sizes, and eating more vegetables and fruits.
"We'll also have a Facebook account to let participants interact and share ideas," Treber said. In addition, Extension educators will post related messages on their Live Healthy, Live Well blog (http://livehealthyosu.com) during the challenge.
Participants will also have a chance to win incentives in drawings that will be held throughout the challenge. About 900 people participated in a similar challenge in the spring, Treber said. "People appreciate how easy it is to participate."
Participants will have to sign a consent form, and will be asked to complete a daily log and anonymous online pre- and post-surveys to help organizers measure the program's success.
"Writing things down also helps keep you accountable, and increases your chance of actually adopting healthy behaviors," Treber said.
The challenge is sponsored by OSU Extension educators in Family and Consumer Sciences.