Dave – an inspirational buddybooster

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Dave Hunt, Stagecoach. Aged 32.

After 8 years of doing no exercise, eating too much and doing sedentary jobs, Dave’s weight had gone from 13 ½ stone to over 19 stone. During the pandemic, his family situation changed and, in his own words, he ‘was in a pretty bad place physically and mentally.’ He knew he had to do something, but kept putting it off. Dave’s employer Stagecoach signed Dave and his colleagues up to the buddyboost challenge in May 2021, Dave’s enthusiasm and motivation shone throughout the challenge so we caught up with him to find out how he found the challenge.

The benefits of buddyboost amongst colleagues

Dave saw buddyboost advertised on his company’s message board and saw it as the opportunity to get him started. He loved the idea that he wasn’t going to have to go it alone and that, even as someone ‘who was a heart attack waiting to happen’, doing just 26 minutes a day would be do-able for him.

Once he got going, there was no stopping him. Even on the days that he wasn’t feeling that great mentally, he was determined not to let his buddies down and get his minutes in. And what he really loved, was the community feed – the way everyone was posting what they were doing; sharing their ups and their downs; giving out hints and tips; and, most of all, giving each other their daily boosts. Dave has always loved working for Stagecoach, but buddyboost really highlighted for him what a big family they all were and through the app he’s met new people and made great friends.

More than just 26minutes

As well as doing his daily 26 minutes – and helped by advice from colleagues in the buddyboost community feed – Dave also started to eat more healthily, cutting out energy drinks and resisting the lure of the vending machine. At the time of writing (late June), Dave is down to just under 16 stone (from 19 stone).

But Dave hasn’t just felt the physical benefits of being more active. He now feels ’10 times better all round’, he’s got more energy and is a lot happier. One beneficiary of all this extra energy is his 8-year old son, who now gets a lot more dad-and-son play time than ever before.

colleagues buddyboost stagecoach wellbeing

Dave’s goal now is to make sure that he stays active and his new buddyboost pals have all formed a group together. ‘I’m just happy that I’m feeling so much better and am still losing weight. The thing is, it’s not rocket science.’

Dave’s advice to other people who are struggling to get active?

‘Don’t push it, keep it simple. And join buddyboost. I’m not joking. It really works.’

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Dave’s employer Stagecoach Group has had a tough pandemic. Not only did its business face huge financial uncertainty when people stopped using buses and coaches overnight, many employees quickly became ‘front line key workers’, keeping essential transport services running and dealing with extremely challenging working conditions. Meanwhile, many colleagues worked from home and others were furloughed. These ingredients created a very demanding environment for Stagecoach and its 25,000 employees.   

Against this background, Stagecoach wanted an employee wellbeing intervention, but also something that could help staff engage in a positive and fun way. That’s why buddyboost was perfect to help bring together employees from over 20 different locations across the UK.  

The challenge was a huge success not only on an individual level for those like Dave but also for the company as a whole with 100% of participants saying it helped them to be more active an average enjoyment score of 9/10 and a strong desire to do the challenge again later in the year.

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