How to Participate in the Healthy Monday Campaign

Healthy Monday[1] is a national non-profit public health campaign associated with Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health. The campaign encourages people to use Monday as the day to focus on health and prevention. Instead of waiting until New Year’s, your birthday, or an anniversary to make a healthy change, use Monday. That way, you will have 52 opportunities make those changes you have been trying to make. It is time to let all health break loose!


  1. Image titled Participate in the Healthy Monday Campaign Step 1
    Choose a campaign or a focus for your Monday health changes. The Healthy Monday campaigns cover a wide range of "wellness initiatives". The idea is for people to join and start the week off in a healthy way by choosing a particular campaign that you are committed to. Alternatively, you could combine several campaigns or even make your own. The campaigns you could choose from include:[2]
    • Nutrition: Meatless Monday
    • Exercise: Move It Monday!
    • Stress reduction: Mindful Monday
    • Preventative Screenings: Man-Up Monday
    • Smoke Cessation: Quit & Stay Quit Monday
    • Your own choice or a combination of these choices.
  2. Image titled Participate in the Healthy Monday Campaign Step 2
    Understand the beauty of choosing Monday. Research performed by The Monday Campaigns movement shows that we already treat Monday like a fresh start day, a day dedicated to health and a day most favored for getting your act together.[3] This happens to be a phenomenon cutting across cultures. It is also a day with negative connotations if you are not enjoying the way you are living your life, so this makes it another good reason to overcome the reasons for the negativity. Dedicating a specific day to health provides both a call to action and a way for people to increase compliance and impact.
    • We organize our lives around the week, starting with Monday. Monday is the day to set goals, refocus, and recommit and it is the day to trigger and sustain healthy behavior.
  3. Image titled Participate in the Healthy Monday Campaign Step 3
    Limit your saturated fat intake by going meatless once a week. Meatless Monday at is a project associated with the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health. This project is about encouraging you to give up meat one day a week and to cut your intake of saturated fat by 15 percent. Doing this can reduce your risk of developing heart disease, diabetes, obesity, and certain types of cancer. That is a great promise for a new habit this Monday! Here is how to get involved:
    • Visit and; also check out MyPlate at for nutrition recommendations.
    • Follow Meatless Monday on Facebook and Twitter.
    • Pin up Meatless Monday posters at your school or workplace; start a campaign[4].
    • Collect pledges from others in your school or workplace to join in Meatless Monday (a pledge sheet can be downloaded from the Meatless Monday site).
    • Try a new meatless recipe (or recipes) every Monday.
    • Spend some time reading nutritional guidelines suited to your age and gender; learn about the nutritional needs of your household or family and share the information with everyone
    • Add Meatless Monday recipes to your website with the Meatless Monday recipe widget.
  4. Image titled Participate in the Healthy Monday Campaign Step 4
    Start exercising. The CDC recommends doing 2 1/2 hours of exercise minimum each week.[5] The benefits of exercise include improved health, longer life and a boost for your brain power. Use Monday as the day to commit to an exercise routine. Start walking, join a gym, enroll in a fitness class, or plan physical activities for the week and stick to them! Things you can do participate:
    • Decide which activity you'll start doing regularly[6]
    • Create Monday Mile Maps and markers to help others know how far they're exercising; place these on tracks, paths and other exercise areas designated for Move-It Mondays[7]
    • Encourage others to join in by starting a walking group or fitness class at your workplace or school
    • As a family, get out and exercise together by taking walks or hikes, cycling together, doing indoor sports activities or joining a sports club together; help enthuse one another to be active regularly.
  5. Image titled Participate in the Healthy Monday Campaign Step 5
    Quit smoking. Not smoking is one of the healthiest things you can do for yourself. As soon as you stop smoking, you will start seeing and feeling the effects. However, it can be hard to get started and commit. That is why the Healthy Monday Campaign recommends that you try to quit on Monday. Instead of waiting until New Year's Eve, your birthday or anniversary, having a weekly opportunity to recommit to your goal is more likely to succeed. Some things to do include:
    • Read the American Cancer Society's Quit Guide[8]
    • Call 1800-Quit-Now[9]
    • Re-introduce yourself to people you know as a non-smoker - the new and healthier you
    • Encourage others to quit smoking; add banners to your website, for example.
  6. Image titled Participate in the Healthy Monday Campaign Step 6
    Begin the week determined to reduce stress in your life. Focus on having a Mindful Monday and bring more relaxation into your life:
    • Meditate - meditation can clear out the negative thoughts and worrying clutter in your mind, allowing you to focus clearly on what you want in life
    • Stay calm – when everyone else is panicking, a calm head will win the day
    • Learn how to self soothe – getting upset may be a habit but it's a bad one that prevents you from remaining calm and focused; learning to self soothe can help you to overcome panic, anxiety and negative thought processes
    • Familiarize yourself with assertive approaches to dealing with conflict and "difficult" people – this will ensure that you can stand up for yourself and not feel victimized
    • Practice deep breathing techniques – this helps with calming, soothing and focusing yourself
    • Visualize a stronger and more fulfilled future for yourself.
  7. Image titled Participate in the Healthy Monday Campaign Step 7
    Keep updated about Healthy Monday initiatives in general. There are a few ways you can stay updated about the campaigns, such as signing up for Eater’s Digest, a free weekly online newsletter that delivers meatless recipes, health and nutrition news, and a health tip on Mondays. You can also just sign up for Healthy Monday tips.[10]
    • Put Healthy Monday tips on your website to help others learn about this initiative[11]
    • Follow Healthy Monday on Facebook and Twitter
    • Call your doctor for a general or specific check-up, including a check-up for prostate cancer, breast cancer and reproductive cancers. For men, join in Man-Up Mondays.[12]


  • If you are interested in starting a Meatless or Healthy Monday chapter at your school or in your local community, take a look at what others have been doing.
  • Get the kids involved with cooking and nutrition understanding through The Kids Cook Monday at
  • Think of interesting ways to combine the Healthy Monday campaigns. For example, if you're stressed and reaching for sugary snacks and burgers all the time, use this as a chance to implement Move It Monday, Mindful Monday and Meatless Monday all at once, to achieve a healthier, calmer and fitter you.

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