Being a running is great, especially if you are able to run outside and enjoy the good old outdoors. Because the environment is being devastated by pollution and overpopulation, many environmentally conscious people are taking steps to reduce their carbon footprint and help save and protect the environment. As a runner, there are steps you can take to be more eco-friendly.
- Use Eco-friendly Apparel and Gear – Did you know that some fabrics and materials are more eco-friendly than others? Find a brand that is eco-friendly in the materials it uses and the way in which it creates its products. You will want to find brands that use sustainable fabrics, like organic cotton and hemp. Unfortunately, synthetic microfibers, which are not eco-friendly, are ending up in the oceans because they are being transported from washing machines during the draining process. When caring for your clothes, you can be more eco-conscious by washing your clothes less often (or doing larger loads to save water) and air-drying them instead of using the drier.
- Avoid Prepackaged Items – A more eco-friendly, and often healthier, an option is making your own homemade fuel instead of purchasing pre-packaged items. By making your own bars or other food items, you can control what goes into them, opting for organic options, and reduce waste from wrappers. If you do purchase prepackaged fuel, choose companies that offer recyclable packaging, then recycle.
- Carry Responsibly – In addition, use reusable bags instead of plastic bags when transporting food items. There are even companies who make backpacks and other items from recycled materials, like tires, or sustainable fabrics, like hemp. You should also use reusable water bottles instead of plastic bottles. If you do end up using a one-use plastic bottle, recycle it when you are finished instead of simply throwing it away.
- Toss the Right Way – Do not throw your trash on the trails. If you see that other users have, pick it up! If you go hiking, carry a small trash bag with you so you can safely dispose of your trash. You can also join or even organize a “trail clean up” with your running group. In addition, you can gift your best running friend a reusable water bottle so they are more eco-friendly, too.
- Rethink Your Commute – Instead of driving yourself to work each day, consider carpooling with coworkers to decrease emissions. If work is not far from your home, you can also walk or ride your bike. Combining your commute and daily exercise is a great way to multitask!
- Reuse or Donate – When it is time to get new running shoes or other apparel, do not throw your old stuff out. Instead, wear the items when doing yard work or other messy activity, or donate them to a charitable organization. Some organizations will recycle the items for you, or even redistribute donated items to those in need. When you recycle or donate your old shoes and clothing, you will keep them out of our overflowing landfills.
There are many simple things you can do to help our environment. If you are a runner, you obviously care about your body and health. It makes sense to also care about the environment, so you will continue to have a safe and clean place to enjoy your runs. Make the important decision to go eco-friendly today.
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