Exercise is a Good Fit for TLS Portland Associates
May 21, 2012
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Stretch Goals – TLS Portland installer Curt McDonald joins co-workers for a workout in the Vehicle Distribution Center. Photos by Oua Anderson
The production shop serves as a gym, and flattened cardboard boxes double as stretching mats. There’s no need for a running track; associates simply jog through the building.
At the Portland Vehicle Distribution Center, Toyota Logistics Services (TLS) associates are getting fit while thinking lean.
“Everyone is being inspired to become healthier, to eat better and lose weight,” says Oua Anderson, Human Resources administrator. “It’s becoming the culture at TLS Portland.”
It began in January with two installers: Boun Meunesaveng and Curt McDonald. To relieve aches and pains, Meunesaveng began exercising at his work station.
“During my break, I stretched and did a little workout, like jumping rope and jogging around the shop,” he says. “Then Curt joined me, and we did it together on our lunch break. Later, more and more people joined us.
Fitness Center – Exercising their prerogative to get healthier are TLS Portland installers Curt McDonald (red shirt), Boun Meunesaveng (burgundy shirt) and Beau Harrison (black shirt).
“We share our success stories, like losing weight, feeling healthier and sleeping better,” he continues. “Of course, we have to exercise at home and eat healthier to get the success, but the workout at work gets us started.”
Today, about 10 associates exercise during their 30-minute lunch break, which begins at 10 a.m. because their shift starts at 6 a.m. They eat light meals or snacks during their two 15-minute breaks at 8 a.m. and 12:30 p.m.
Even associates who haven’t joined the group have been inspired. “It’s contagious,” Anderson says. “It motivated me to look at myself and ask what I could do. On nice days, I take a walk with three or four other people. I’m working out regularly, and I’ve lost 10 pounds.”
McDonald has lost even more: 26 pounds in three months. “I have more energy, and I look forward to working out with my peers at work and with my wife at home,” he says. “It helps to keep one another motivated. We share our progress and weight loss results.”
His ultimate goal? “To have a long healthy life, and to look and feel better,” McDonald says. “It’s also good for the company to have healthy workers on the job.”
By Susan Pack