by Najwa Sharyoufi

Biggest Loser Contest D&WO Health Awareness Campaign
The journey toward well-being for the D&WO Gas Team started following the department’s annual meeting.

Abqaiq — As we hustle through daily life, pursuing our goals and ambitions, our health seldom comes up in the priority list. But if we really think about it, health should be our top priority in our daily to-do list.

So, to celebrate health and promote a healthy lifestyle, the Gas Drilling Engineering Department (GDED) recently recognized two employees who achieved the best results in its “Bigger Loser Contest.”

The winners were Husain Buwaidi, who lost 40 kilograms (kg) in a one-year period, and Tarab Ali, who lost 28 kg in the same period. The two were recognized at the Drilling and Workover (D&WO) Gas Team’s annual meeting, which was attended by D&WO vice president Abdul Hameed A. Al- Rushaid, chief drilling engineer Khalid A. Al Abdulgader, and D&WO Operations general manager Omar S. Al Husaini, as well as managers and the staff members from various departments.

In Pursuit of Physical and Mental Well-being

A healthy lifestyle doesn’t only benefit the individual, but also their families, co-workers, and society at large. Those who eat healthy foods, exercise regularly, and avoid harmful habits generally fulfill their duties at home, at work, and in society as a whole. Well-being is more than merely the absence of disease or infirmity. It is a resource for everyday life.

One of the most effective guides for individuals to achieve a healthy lifestyle and well-being is by maintaining the recommended body weight in alignment with an individual’s body mass index (BMI). However, even as fitness plans, diets, and meal programs are ubiquitous, shedding extra pounds can be difficult, especially for those juggling a busy career and family.

Biggest Loser Contest D&WO Health Awareness Campaign
Husain Buwaidi
Biggest Loser Contest D&WO Health Awareness Campaign
Tarab Ali

A Journey Toward Well-being

The journey toward well-being for the D&WO Gas Team started last year, following the department’s annual meeting in January. Ali, one of GDED’s drilling engineers, bravely spoke of his personal struggle to maintain a healthy weight, and his story prompted a discussion with all agreeing that a healthy workforce should be part of D&WO’s initiatives moving forward.

At the suggestion of GDED manager Faisal N. Al Nughaimish, a department level contest was organized, giving the employees an opportunity to compete at achieving their desired weight goal safely and in alignment with their individual BMI.

Starting in February 2018, more than 60 enthusiastic employees based in ‘Udhailiyah, Abqaiq, and Dhahran enrolled in the competition titled the “Biggest Loser Contest.” Weight measurements were recorded on a weekly basis to track progress.

Participants were advised that the approved methods of losing weight were the safe methods of healthy choices in both food and exercise. The tracking sheet was shared among the participants to encourage competition and support within the group.

Group Therapy

Participating in a group challenge has advantages. The American Psychological Association has shown that social support from a peer group can help individuals lose weight, as a group setting provides greater support and encouragement among members, sharing of information to enhance progress, a feeling of shared purpose and commitment, and the lifting of individual spirits through role models.

This aspect helped some participants achieve their desired weight goal in a healthy and safe way. The combined weight loss for the department was more than 200 kg. Apart from the weight loss, the participants encouraged each other to exercise together and lead a more active lifestyle — both at work and home.

The Way Forward

The GDED healthy lifestyle and well-being contest showed the potential of achieving optimum health goals in a safe, encouraging, and fun way — especially when everyone joins together as one team.

With the success of the GDED program in 2018, D&WO responded to a call by Al- Rushaid to expand the contest to all D&WO departments, as employees again compete with each other while adopting optimum fitness regimens and healthy lifestyles.

Healthy living shouldn’t be a lonely pursuit. It is better together, as last year’s contest proved.