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Would you lose weight for 60 bucks? How about $100?

Maybe the question should be what would you do for $60?

Not much. Hmmm, tie my shoes, get out of bed, be nice, do the laundry -- basically what I normally do and just maybe a little more. Even for a $100 bucks I'm unlikely to tax myself or do anything unpleasant.

So when a study released earlier this month (published by the National Bureau of Economic Research), found that money had very little effect on people's weight loss motivation, I thought well NO KIDDING given the paltry sums involved.

Who in their right mind is going to give up their favorite treats and start sweating for a measly 60 to 100 buckaroos? One of the study's authors is cited (in a NYT article) as commenting that "money was ineffective in these cases." THESE CASES. Well duh? He goes on to say that "some amount" would surely persuade people to lose weight.

I don't watch much TV, but I'm very familiar with the show, The Biggest Loser. The contestants on this show stand to gain $250,000! I'm sure there is a lesser amount that would likewise do the weight-loss motivation trick...and I'm guessing that it is a nice multiple of 100.


* I was unable to read the full study. A WSJ blog has a nice discussion on the topic.

** I recognize that the study was part of a workplace analysis. We applaud any work-life and wellness program that attempts to get workers fit and healthy. Research demonstrates that companies can save huge amounts of money if their employees are healthy AND that healthy employees are more productive -- AND THAT EMPLOYEES WHO EXERCISE WHILE TRAVELING FOR BUSINESS ARE MORE PRODUCTIVE -- which is a driving force behind Athletic-Minded Traveler and a reason we license our content to corporations and offer programs to help traveling professionals.

Bottom line: There is no easy solution to getting people fit, but financial incentives are surely a useful tool and should NOT be overlooked.

If you'd like more information about our corporate wellness and work-life solutions and/or research about the benefits of exercise for traveling professionals, email us at info@ our domain name.

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