Americans celebrated the first Earth Day on April 22, 1970. While we’ve come a long way (shout out to the EPA), we still have a lot of work to do. The good news is that small, daily efforts really can add up to some big, impactful changes. The even better news is that most of these efforts are just as good for your body as they are for the planet. Below are five fun and fit ways to go green for Earth Day.
If you usually hop on the treadmill to complete your miles, head outside instead. You’ll increase your Vitamin D while decreasing your energy consumption. Using less electricity can help lessen pollution, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and reserve non-renewable energy sources. There are other swaps that work well too. Ditch your car for your bike, or play a pick-up game of basketball instead of watching it on television. Anything goes!
The first time I read the word plogging, I’m pretty sure I laughed out loud. After reading more about this fitness craze, I realized it was more than just a silly headline. Essentially, plogging is the Scandinavian trend for picking up litter while jogging, running, or walking. If you’re already heading outside to log some miles, why not volunteer to pick up trash along with way? I’m all for it, but I might just call it something else when I take part.
Time to clean out the closet, guys. Most runners and fitness enthusiasts I know have multiple pairs of shoes collecting dust in their closet. From shoes that didn’t fit just right to shoes whose mileage was all but maxed out, they all deserve a second chance. Like-new shoes are perfect for donating to someone in need. Even if your old shoes are well past their prime, they still may be recycled into running tracks or playgrounds.
If you’re in the market for some new gear, head straight to a local thrift store or yard sale. You can find great deals on fitness essentials like dumbbells, weight bench sets, activity and GPS trackers, and gently used clothing and shoes. Many of the items I’ve seen while thrifting are like new and being sold for well below retail value. You know what they say, one gym buff’s trash is another gym buff’s treasure. I’m pretty sure that’s the phrase.
Buying seasonal, local food is one of my favorite ways to go green. Buying local meat and produce cuts back on the impacts of transportation and packaging, supports small growers and farms, and ensures that your food is as fresh as possible. One of the best ways to find awesome, local food is to hit up the farmers market or sign up for delivery through a CSA in your area. If you really want to go wild, take the time to plant your own garden and reap the rewards all year long.