Wednesday, September 19, 2012

‘Greening’ your exercise routine

We all know that exercise is a crucial part of a healthy lifestyle, but little do we realise that in trying to keep ourselves healthy we pose numerous threats to the environment in which we live in. We exercise to keep ourselves fit and healthy, but how do we expect to be perfectly healthy if our surroundings are polluted? Being eco-friendly is more popular and well-accepted now than ever before in history. But not everybody knows exactly how to take the concept of going ‘green’ into their daily exercise habits. Here are some ways you can become more environmentally conscious and make your exercise routine ‘greener’.

Tips to green your exercise routine

• Get to the great outdoors

Electrically powered exercise machines require a lot of power and energy to operate. The average treadmill consumes 1500 watts of power. During a 30 minute workout on such a treadmill, 75 kilowatt-hours of energy is used. The equivalent amount of energy can be used to light up a Christmas tree for almost six hours. So, consider using your own muscle power and take your workout into the great outdoors instead.

• Burn calories, not petrol

Instead of driving (which produces significant CO2 pollution) to the gym, run or walk there for a great (cheap) warm-up. If the gym is too far, try cycling or sharing a ride with a friend. Also, keep your workout clothes in your car to cut down on extra stops and petrol. Cutting car time ultimately reduces pollution.

• Try use re-usable water bottles

Staying hydrated is important when you exercise, so instead of buying a pack of bottled water and creating more plastic waste, how about using a stainless steel or recycled water bottle that you can wash and re-use again. Bottled water creates 1.5 million tonnes of plastic waste per year. Of course, you can easily recycle plastic water bottles through most local recycling programmes, but it’s always environmentally preferable to reduce waste before recycling it.

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