Spotlight on NO-vember Winners

We are pleased to feature participants in this year’s NO-vember effort who have taken the time to share some of their goals and successes here. So, please read their stories and be inspired!

November, for me, was about discipline. I set out to improve upon both my physical and mental health this November. I seem to go through periods of intense focus, when I am drinking enough water, exercising regularly, and making the time to plan and prepare meals, and then (longer) periods when my focus is shot. Of course I sleep, feel, and think much better when I am active and sticking to a plan to make the healthiest choices, but it’s so difficult to restart once I miss a day or two, and then I spend weeks (or months!) upset with myself for not having the time or discipline to start again. In November, I made a conscious effort to get outside when the weather was nice; I set up a treadmill in my bedroom so that I’d see and use it every day; I bookmarked my favorite online workouts at the top of my browser so I’d see and click them often; and I made the time to plan ahead so that I had ingredients on hand and could prepare the healthiest meals.

Also, outside of my job at Webster, I am a working writer, and since finishing an intense MFA program last summer and telling myself I deserved a “short” break, I’d been out of the habit of sitting down at my writing desk every day after putting in full days at Webster. For a creative writer, not-writing for long periods of time becomes sort of a torturous state of existence. So this November I committed to National Novel Writing Month, which is basically a beast of a writing commitment, wherein participants commit to completing the first (usually very sloppy) draft of a 50,000+ word novel. Every few years I’ve signed up to do NaNoWriMo, even though I’ve only ever been able to finish an entire first draft of a 50,000-word novel one of those years. Still, the public commitment to complete such a huge project in a span of 30 days is a great motivator to jump-start my creative habits and restore the discipline it takes to sit down every single day and make the time to write. After all, 2000 words a day aren’t going to write themselves! I did not finish a new draft this November, but I wrote much, much more than I would have had I not committed to the project, and in the process of sitting down to write more often, I began thinking of other new projects I’d like to begin.

— Tanya Seale, Administrative Assistant, Enrollment Management



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Participants Say ‘Yes’ to Return of NO-vember

NO-vember has come to an end! Each week of this new Webster Wellness initiative, participants received a success tracking survey via email. In the final NO-vember survey, 100% of participants said they were at least somewhat successful in reaching their goals and 30% felt that they were definitely successful. Healthy habits included running a 5K, tracking food intake with an app, delegating duties, putting their cell phone down at a certain time each night, and keeping a gratitude log.

Each week, participants were asked to list their biggest success. A few of the comments are listed below:

  • I lost 2 pounds, I look better, and I feel better!
  • I didn’t eat any Halloween candy!
  • I decreased my mile time.
  • I’ve stayed optimistic during tough times and I’m ahead on my homework.
  • No Starbucks this week!
  • I do Not feel rushed or anxious.
  • I lost weight even during Thanksgiving week.
  • I woke up without my alarm clock.
  • I walked away from a difficult situation.
  • Putting myself first.

Participants were entered in a drawing each time they completed a success tracking survey. Therefore, some participants were entered 4 times!  Webster Wellness purchased a variety of prizes to award the Webster community for their dedication to NO-vember.  Winners were drawn on December 1st!  Congratulations to those who won a prize and Congratulations to EVERYONE who worked towards their wellness!

  • Cheryl Kennedy – Webster University Cold Towel
  • Robyn Kriesel – Webster University Cold Towel
  • Maureen Weil – Webster University Cold Towel
  • Collette Cummings – Farkle Dice Game
  • Carmen Hall – Flavor Infuser Pitcher
  • Dawna Moore – Massage Therapy Roller
  • Tanya Seale – HoMedics SoundSpa

100% of participants think that the Webster Wellness Committee should offer NO-vember again next year. Participants suggested that the committee share more information about what others’ goals are, having a kickoff event, creating teams, making it longer, adding webinars, and getting more frequent reminders. Webster Wellness will take all of this into account and hopes to host an even better NO-vember in 2018!

Watch for an upcoming feature story about some of our NO-vember participants!

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NOW is the Time for NO-vember

Webster Wellness recently launched, NO-vember, an initiative that aims to help students, faculty, and staff be more mindful of their wellness. NO-vember encourages participants to try and say, “no” to bad habits in one or more categories of wellness, such as physical, emotional, spiritual, intellectual, environmental, occupational, and social.

For example, the Webster community could try to say no to certain foods, smoking, stress, or their own more specific goal. Then, they were encouraged to make a specific plan and to track their progress through their own means as well as weekly surveys.

The Webster Wellness Committee is thrilled with participation in the first ever NO-vember! The 70 total participants consisted of 75% staff, 18% faculty, and7% students. Each of the seven categories was selected by participants, but the most common selections were physical (40%), emotional (21%), and spiritual (11%).  More specifically, the Webster community wants to try and say “no” to inactivity, depriving themselves of adequate sleep, unhealthy food, excessive social media use, and stress or anxiety inducing situations.  Some more personalized goals included saying “no” to overspending, depriving self of time for writing, skipping dog walks, and putting off cleaning.

Most participants planned to make their goals a reality by keeping a journal, making themselves accountable, and determining an appropriate reward for their success. Others mentioned that they would find an accountability partner, or adjust their routine.

The main reason for participation in NO-vember was to improve health and wellness. However, many also felt that it would make them feel better and improve their quality of life.

Each week throughout NO-vember, participants received a follow up survey that asked about their progress. Webster Wellness also provided tips and insights.  Each time participants fill out a survey, their name is entered into a prize drawing that will occur at the end of the month!  The most recent survey even asked participants to rank a selection of prizes.  Webster Wellness will use the data to choose the most desired prizes so that students, faculty, and staff can be rewarded for their dedication to NO-vember and to the improvement of their wellness!

Participants were asked to share advice and encouragement with others. Some of the best comments are listed below:

  • “ Try hard, but forgive yourselves for mistakes.”
  • “Take it one day at a time. This is a marathon, not a sprint.”
  • “You can do anything you decide to make priority!”
  • “Just remember, you deserve to live your best life. We only have one.”
  • “It’s always a good idea to try to do better and to be better.”

It’s not too late to join NO-vember! Sign up here and work towards your wellness goals in the remaining half of the month!  You can still earn 2 entries into our prize drawing and you can still become the best version of YOU!

The Webster Wellness committee hopes to make NO-vember an annual event and that it will become bigger and better each year.

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NO-vember Wellness Promotion

Webster Wellness Committee invites Students, Faculty, and Staff to participate in NO-vember 11/1/17—11/29/17! NO-vember is where you set personal, realistic goals and track your progress over a four-week period.  You can focus on anything from smoking less to changing a negative attitude!

Enroll by taking the survey here. Each week, you will receive a link to report your progress and receive helpful information and encouragement. All responses will be entered into a drawing to win prizes at the end of the month. Also, two to three NO-vember participants will be featured on the blog!

Be mindful of the habits you want to improve while helping to enhance your wellness! So, say ‘yes’ to NO-vember!

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6th Annual Webster Wellness and Student Success Fair

The 6th annual Webster Wellness and Student Success Fair was held on Wed., Sept. 13th in Grant Gymnasium. There were over 250 people in attendance including students, faculty, staff, volunteers and vendors. Much was shared and experienced – healthy smoothies, food, back massages and great information on wellness and student success. On behalf of Webster Wellness and First Year Experience & Undergraduate Persistence, THANK YOU to everyone who participated and made this a great event. See the list below of the Grand Prize winners:

Madison Brown – UHC Bear & Blanket
Kathleen Crabtree – Title Boxing bag
Jaclyn Crow – Faster Fitness personal training & heart monitoring device
Abby DePew – Yoga Mat w/bag
Jim Gallogly – Certificate for Glasses
Michelle Kimbrel – Ninja Master Prep Blender
Jenna Rodriguez – Sports bracelet

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Webster University receives Honorable Mention for Wellness

Webster University has received Honorable Mention recognition in the UnitedHealthcare 2016 Well Deserved Award.  The Well Deserved Award recognizes organizations that motivate and empower their employees to improve their health and well-being through the creation of a culture of health at the workplace.  See the announcement at this link:

Congratulations to Webster University and all those who support and encourage wellness at Webster!

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Destination: WELLNESS Final Results & Grand Prize Winners

The 2017 Destination: WELLNESS had nearly 50 participants. We are pleased to announce that 98% of participants indicated that they achieved at least one of their wellness goals.

Destination: WELLNESS focused on a holistic approach to wellness in consideration of the 7 aspects of the wellness wheel: social, emotional, intellectually, environmental, spiritual, physical and financial.   60% of the participants set multiple goals in two or more of the wellness aspects.

On behalf of Webster Wellness congratulations and way to go!

The eleven winners of our random prize drawings are as followed:

Tamara Gegg-LaPlume (Staff), Water Bottle w/ kickstand

Gabrielle Halley (Staff), Water Bottle w/ kickstand

Katie Ervin (Staff), Adult Coloring Book Set

Elissa Marsh (Staff), Cooking Book Set

John Link (Staff), Starter Gardening Kits

Maggie Laur (Staff), Knitting Kit

Linda Walker (Staff), Sodexo Golf Theme Basket

Natalie Wagner (Student), Sodexo Mindful Theme Basket

David Handrahan (Staff), “$100 towards a health program/membership/activity”

Kim Bohnert (Staff), Anytime Fitness Personal Training Sessions

Dina Sallam (Student), Heart Monitoring Device w/ personal training sessions from  Faster Fitness

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Webster Wellness 1st Annual Indoor “Try”-Athlon Results

On the behalf of the Webster Wellness Committee, congratulations to ALL 22 participants of the 2017 Webster Wellness 1st Annual “Try”-athlon.

The “Try”-athlon took place on April 17-23, 2017 in the University Pool & Fitness Center where participants competed against fellow members of the Webster community in one of the three divisions (All-in-a-day, One-Week Format and Team).

All participants are invited to the Final Celebration on April 28, 2017 @ Noon in the Library Conference Room. The top 3 in each division will receive awards and all participants will receive wellness bling and be entered in a drawing for a chance to win a grand prize.

The final results are as followed:


     Name                         Swim Time          Bike Time          Run Time       Total Time

Jonah Munzer                      7’16.67″                   17’27.32″              14’23.52″              0:39:07

SwimBikeRyan                     6’29.76″                   17’10.15″                16’00”                0:39:40

Becky Wheeler                      8’42.87″                  30’47.24″              19’09.77″            0:58:41

Nicholas Nesbitt                  13’47.02″                 29’29.31″               15’46.87              0:59:03

Vicki Coopmans                    9’10.12″                   30’47.24″              21’56.05″             1:01:53

John Link                                    X                          20’10.6″                17’25.98″             0:00:00


     Name                         Swim Time          Bike Time          Run Time        Total Time

Maggie                                   8’46.65″                    21’48”                 22’04.26               0:52:39

CFritz                                     10’55.38″                  21’28”                  25’35.57                0:57:59

Elissa                                       9’26.53                   24’33.09                 26’25”                 1:00:25

Karen Wakeland                  12’46.65                    44’33”                  35’30.36               1:32:50

Kim B.                                    15’09″93                   44’56”                    32’59”                  1:33:05


     Name                         Swim Time          Bike Time          Run Time       Total Time

The Ol’ College Try              7’40.78″                  19’28.11″              24’58.80″            0:52:08

#Shepersisted                       9’04.38″                 28’22”                  22’17.03              0:59:43

Gorloks of Wellness            16’43.82″                 26’45”                  18’58.70               1:02:28

Unicorns C.A.N.                   9’18.33″                 30’38.85″              25’32.04″             1:05:29

The Troublesome Trio       6’08.22″                 32’37.50″                     X                    0:00:00



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Destination: WELLNESS

             Destination: WELLNESS

                      ** (The Enhanced Mindful Mile Marathon) **

                     “Let’s take a holistic approach to wellness through
                    Destination: WELLNESS from March 22- April 26.”

Destination: WELLNESS is a 5-week challenge open to ALL students, staff and faculty at all campus locations. Focus on your health and wellness from the inside out, based on your personal goal(s) that you set in one or more of the following elements:

Wellness Wednesdays:
Make wellness FUN and holistic by participating in our events such as yoga, interactive games, financial seminars, etc. during our weekly Wellness Wednesday events.
• Week 1: Kick-Off— Wednesday, March 22 @ Noon (CST) in Presentation Room
• Week 2: Wednesday, March 29 @ Noon (CST) in Sunnen Lounge (YOGA)
• Week 3: Wednesday, April 5 @ Noon (CST) in Sunnen Lounge (MEDITATION & KNITTING)
• Week 4: Wednesday, April 12 @ Noon (CST) in Sunnen Lounge (FINANCIAL SEMINAR)
• Week 5: Wednesday, April 19 @ Noon (CST) in the Presentation Room (WELLNESS LEVERS)
Final Celebration: Friday, April 28 @ Noon (CST) in the Library Conference Room

Wellness “bling” will be given ALL participants and there are several opportunities to increase chances to win a grand prize throughout the 5-week challenge.

Look for weekly emails to keep you motivated and on track!

Register online:
Online registration is available at
Registration will be accepted through March.
To get an increase chance of winning our grand prize, pre-register by the Kick-Off (Wednesday, 3/22).

Extended Sites:
Weekly meetings are available on WebEx. Go to , click on “Meeting Center” and search for “wellness”. Password is also “wellness”. This will permit live access to all our events during Destination: WELLNESS.

Questions? Contact

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Swim (Splash). Bike (Mash). Run (Dash).

The “Try-athlon” will be held April 17-23, 2017 in the University Pool & Fitness Center for new and veteran triathlon participants. Part of our spring “wellness challenge” event, we offer this for anyone in our Webster University community interested in competing, a challenge or just for seeking new ways to move more and gain new heights!

Event distances:
Swim: 400 yards — Bike: 10 miles — Run: 2 miles

Participation divisions:
• Individual “All in a day”: individual entrants complete all 3 events at one time (by appointment)
• Individual one week format: individual entrants complete all 3 events in one week
• Team: 2 or 3 individuals register as a team and complete their event(s) in one day (by appointment) or over the week

Register online:
Individuals register HERE
Teams register HERE
Registration is Wednesday, Feb. 1 through Tuesday, Feb. 28.

Wednesday, February 1
Sunnen Lounge @ Noon

Available for participants who want support for any of the three events, swim – bike – run. You will get tricks and tips for training, outside resources and on-going help from our champion advisors Ryan Elliot, Myrna Homm & Julie “JP” Palmer.

All workshops will meet in the UC Conference Room
Swim – Tuesday, February 7 @ Noon
Bike – Friday, February 10 @ Noon
Run – Monday, February 13 @ Noon

FREE Registration
FREE Workshops
Prizes & Giveaways

Questions? Contact


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