Refocusing Your Focus

by Danielle King

We hope you are staying safe and healthy during these unprecedented summer months! The COVID-19 pandemic has certainly taken a toll on our daily lives and many things have changed . You may be caring for children navigating distance learning, or assisting parents, grandparents, and neighbors who may not be able to carry out tasks such as grocery shopping. Some of you have moved your office to your home, while others have continued to work on campus, taking on new job responsibilities or working closely with patients affected by the virus. No doubt, your plate is full, and it’s easy for physical, mental, and emotional well-being to be pushed to the back burner! Yet, refocusing your focus for making healthy lifestyle changes can help you regain control.

We understand that it may not be possible to pursue the original diet and physical activity lifestyle goals you set for yourself. It is okay to shift the focus of your goals to accommodate the changes in your lifestyle or start fresh and set new goals for yourself. For example, suppose you had originally set the following SMART (specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, timely) goal:

“I will go to the gym for 45 minutes every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday after 5 pm.”

You may find yourself not only unable to access a gym at this time but may be struggling with an adjustment of time to your workday and other household responsibilities. Don’t be afraid to scrap this one and set a new SMART goal that allows you to incorporate 150-minutes of physical activity into your “new normal.” Some ideas might include:  walking in your neighborhood, virtual live exercise classes such as yoga or Zumba, exercise YouTube videos or DVDs, and using resistance bands or other exercise weights/machinery you may have at home.

If you have found yourself losing track of your progress, first be kind to yourself and realize that refocusing your goals and weight-loss intentions may be the boost you need to resume a healthy routine. Revisiting your group session packets and previous food tracking journals may help you brainstorm ways to include more physical activity or healthy food choices or plan to put your refocused goals and intentions into action!

We will get through this together! Please do not hesitate to reach out with any questions or concerns going forward. Remember, you have the knowledge and tools to put your goals and intentions to action!

Tips for Staying Healthy:

  • Enjoy healthy food options
  • Hydrate healthfully
  • Stay active and engaged
  • Make mental health a priority
  • Have fun in the kitchen!

Additional Resources:

For more tips about food safety concerns and food access due to COVID-19, visit:

For more information about free virtual fitness classes offered through OSU, visit:

For information about mental health and wellness services offered through OSU, visit:

Spring/Summer 2019 Edition


Nutrition Label Changes

In case you haven’t heard,  there are some changes coming to the Nutrition Facts Label. Some companies have already made the changes and others are in the process of meeting the new label requirements by 2021. Some of the changes will include serving size, larger font size to identify calories and added sugars. Remember to use the calories and total fat grams information when tracking your food intake.

To learn more about the new nutrition label and what it will look like visit the link below:


Farmers Market Guide for 2019


Last year around this time we listed resources for local farmers markets. These markets are a great resource for fresh produce and local goods. See below for a listing of 2019 markets. We hope you get a chance to explore the many available options throughout the city! See the recipes below or click on the Recipe Archive tab for ideas on incorporating summer’s bounty into your meal plan.


Orange, Asparagus and Avocado Salad (

Summer Fruit Smoothie  (

Black Bean and Corn Salad  (

Earning YP4H Points for Study Participation


Did you know you can receive 500 YP4H points by participating in our study? Our study falls under the Healthy Lifestyle Programs in Your Plan for Health. In order to receive the points you must attend 13 of the 16 weekly sessions and 6 of 9 biweekly and monthly sessions. If you missed sessions but made them up, that will count towards your attendance. You can gain additional points by participating in other Healthy Lifestyle programs.

You will need to complete a Healthy Lifestyle Verification Form at the end of your group meeting sessions.  We can provide you with this form and you will fill it out and send it in. We will verify your participation and attendance with the Health Plan. You can visit for further information.

To learn more about this year’s Incentive Program under Your Plan For Health visit

A Season of Change

Fellow Ohioans. We may not have mountains or ocean, but we do have autumn. With crisp air and beautiful changing leaves, our state puts on a show for several spectacular weeks. It is a time of change, as nature begins to slow down and let go, getting ready for the long rest of winter. It is also a great reminder for us to think about our own lives, and consider how we can incorporate rest as the days grow shorter and the season transitions. What things do you currently do to encourage rest in your life? It could be getting plenty of sleep at night, meditating, taking a walk, listening to music, being in nature, reading a good book, taking a hot bath, getting a massage. Rest comes in many forms. Explore some ways that work for you!

Being in nature is a great way to rest the mind and body, whether it’s taking a hike or just basking in the sun. The link below can help you keep up with the foliage changes in Ohio and discover some places to view this beautiful, Ohio autumn. Get out and enjoy!


Nourish yourself with some seasonal recipes! (Courtesy of Cooking Light)

Sweet Potato and White Bean Soup

Pumpkin-Apple Soup

Autumn Glow Salad

Enjoying the outdoors on campus

As we soak up these last days of summer, it’s a great time to enhance our wellness goals by connecting with nature and enjoying the beauty of the season. Did you know that OSU has 60 acres of nature waiting to enhance your wellbeing right here on the Columbus campus, and it’s free to visit? Chadwick Arboretum and Learning Gardens is a wonderful place to take time to reconnect with nature, take a walk, or just take a break from the busyness of life.  The gardens also house a 12,000 square foot rooftop garden and a labyrinth garden (a path designed to promote contemplative walking which helps quiet the mind and slow the breath). Check out the link below for more information as well as links to a Walking Tour app. Enjoy!


Eating Healthy on a Budget

Sometimes, implementing the wellness goals we have for ourselves can be tricky, when we look at how to fit them into a busy schedule, budget, etc. One question that frequently comes up is “how can I make eating healthy work within my budget?” Meal preparation, identifying low cost meals and learning to navigate a grocery store in order to save money are just a few things that can help us eat healthy without breaking the bank.

One good resource to help you: . You’ll find great tips on everything from planning your weekly meal and saving more at the store to kitchen timesavers and cooking for your family.


Additionally, from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, a couple more helpful links:

Get to know your parks!

We are fortunate in Columbus to have an excellent, extensive park system, making it possible for so many of us to connect with nature, retreat from our busy lives and get some physical activity in as well! Whether you’d like to reacquaint yourself with our parks or are just learning about them, the link below is a great resource for all the Columbus Metro Parks. Here you can locate the park nearest to you, discover a new one, or learn about upcoming events. Enjoy!

Healthy Restaurant Options

Eating out can be tricky when we are trying to find healthy choices and stay aligned with the wellness goals we have set for ourselves. Luckily, Columbus has quite a few healthy restaurants options, whether we are rushed for time or just treating ourselves to something yummy! While this is not a comprehensive list, the link below will at least help you get started on locating healthy options for yourself and family!


Your Plan for Health Rewards

Did you know that you can earn rewards through your Virgin Pulse account that can give you discounts on fitness equipment? Visit the Your Plan for Health website at

Click on the Visit Rewards link to find out more details. You’ll find out how you can earn PulseCash and what items are available to help you on your health journey!



Fresh and In Season!

While still a few weeks away from summer, the beautiful bounty of the season is appearing at Farmers’ Markets around Central Ohio. With quite a collection to choose from, markets operate throughout the week and provide a wonderful way to access fresh, in-season produce and other goods produced locally. You may go looking for a particular item, or find ways to incorporate something you’ve never tried before (“what to do with that Swiss Chard?”). It’s also a great way to get outside, enjoy the warm weather and meet others in your community (plus you get a little walking in too)!

Not sure where the nearest Farmers’ Market is? Check out the link below for a listing of Farmers’ Markets throughout the Central Ohio community. You’ll be sure to find one in your area!

2018 Guide to Farmers Markets in Central Ohio


What to do with all those fresh market veggies! Here are a couple recipes courtesy of Diabetes Forecast

Garden Chicken Kabobs

Sun-Kissed Health Salad