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Greening Your Fitness Routine

In an effort to maintain a healthy lifestyle, many people make physical fitness a part of their daily routine. As exerciseenthusiasts have discovered, staying active benefits both the body and the mind, improving their strength and boosting their moods. Going green with your fitness routine helps develop a healthier environment, paving the way for future fitness devotees to thrive. Creating an environmentally-friendly exercise regimen is simple and can make your workout even more rewarding.

Walk, run or ride to the gym.
Exercise doesn’t necessarily have to start inside the gym. For those who live outside of major cities, a trip to the gym usually involves driving. Before your next workout excursion, consider walking, running or riding your bike to the gym. You’ll reduce fuel consumption and emissions, and get a head start on your daily cardio. All three eco-friendly options get your heart rate pumping and reduce the time dedicated to the treadmill or elliptical.

Exercise in the great outdoors.
Eco Trek operates on the notion that there’s really nothing better than using your outdoor environment as your gym. Variety is the spice of life with Eco Trek workouts, which are held at various outdoor spots throughout Michigan no matter the weather. Founded by Cari Draft 10 years ago near Grand Haven, her business has brought outdoor adventure workouts, as well as Eco Trek Fitness Bars, to thousands.

Replace running in place on a treadmill with running through a park or on a beach. Take the free weights outdoors to the backyard on nice days, allowing Mother Nature instead of the electric company to supply the lighting.

Workout with sustainable, ecofriendly equipment.
Before selecting a gym or renewing your current membership, inquire about the kind of equipment that is provided. More and more gyms are taking steps toward sustainability by using biodegradable cleaning products, installing low-flush toilets, faucets and shower heads and utilizing user-powered cardiovascular machinery that consumes less energy than traditional machines.

“I’m happier and a better person when I work out, especially if I work out outdoors.” – Amy Jo Martin

Shop Green.
Browse environmentally-friendly workout accessories that don’t leave large carbon footprints. Instead of purchasing plastic water bottles, opt for a stylish, reusable one made of recycled materials or dress to impress with organic workout gear. Check out your local sporting good stores or retailers that cater to outdoor fanatics. If you own a Patagonia product that’s well beyond repair, they can recycle it into something new or repurpose what can’t yet be recycled. Drop it off at your nearest Patagonia retail store or mail it to them. Since 2005, they have recycled over 95 tons of clothing.

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