Clark State Community College launched a Fitness Challenge Tuesday, September 5 for faculty, staff and students.

“We wanted to do something that would bring good health to our students and employees,” said Justin McCulla, director of athletics and student life for Clark State. “We thought it would be a fun competition for everyone.”

Clark State continues to build on their health initiatives, which have recently included a free outdoor fitness park – The Clark State Fit Stop - constructed on the main campus in Springfield.

The Clark State Fitness Challenge encompasses two challenges: Overall Fitness (based on weight loss percentage) and the Step Challenge.

“Participants will need to come into the Wellness Center on Tuesdays for a weigh in and to show their step count,” said McCulla. “Most of our participants have indicated they have a step count app on their phone or have a Fitbit that tracks their steps.”

Weekly weigh-ins and step-count reporting will be held from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. in the Wellness Center through November 28.

Tracy Yates, manager of Clark State’s Hollenbeck Bayley Creative Arts & Conference Center, will be participating in both challenges. “I am mainly going to focus on the step challenge,” she said. “But I am going to use the fitness challenge part as motivation.” 

Yates said she has been doing her own challenge with steps and was excited when Clark State announced the Fitness Challenge.  “I think this is a great opportunity for us as employees to get out on our breaks and lunches and get those steps in,” she said.

Yates believes the campus-wide Fitness Challenge will help everyone encourage each other to become healthier. Her personal goal for this challenge is at least 7,000 steps a day. “I would also of course like to lose pounds and inches,” she said. “I always say to myself, ‘this is the work out plan I have for this week,’ but it is hard to do when you’re doing it alone.”

Clark State dean of student engagement and support services Nina Wiley will participate in the Overall Fitness Challenge in honor of her 45th birthday. “I made a commitment to myself to lose weight and incorporate exercise into my daily routine,” she said. “By participating, I am showing my support for Justin McCulla and the student life programming on campus. I have encouraged my colleagues to participate!”

Wiley said ideally, she would like to lose at least 10 pounds and fit into a few dress suits that have been hanging in her closet. “I also plan to eat healthier and actually use my gym membership to Planet Fitness,” she said. “I hope this Fitness Challenge will help me maintain a healthier lifestyle.”

McCulla said he is hoping this event will spark an interest in personal health for Clark State students and employees, and more of them will be seen in the Wellness Center, “This is a great event to get people started in the right direction to make sure they are staying healthy.”

A total of 35 faculty, staff and students have registered to participate in the Fitness Challenge. Registration is ongoing. Employees and students interested in participating must contact Justin McCulla at 937-328-7819 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Weekly prizes will be awarded and the overall Fitness Challenge winner will receive a $100 gift card.