Sustainable fitness begins with creating habits that last. Training irregularly will never yield the same results as consistent, disciplined workout routines will.
Green gym strategies not only make sense from an environmental viewpoint, but can also save your facility money on energy and maintenance expenses over time.
Take Your Workouts Outside
As we increasingly make eco-friendly decisions when it comes to our food, clothes and beauty routines, exercise may have fallen through the cracks. Yet you can still build an effective fitness regimen even with basic equipment.
Outdoor environments provide an ideal setting to test out your body in a new and fresh setting while offering you the chance to breathe some fresh air.
Outdoor workouts will help reduce emissions by cutting down on travel to and from gyms. Terra Hale in London is one such sustainable space; members use their wattage to power cycling and training sessions with any excess power donated back into the grid.
Look for Sustainable Fitness Equipment
Integrating eco-friendly fitness equipment into your gym can make an enormous impactful statement about its commitment to sustainability. Look for equipment made of recycled materials or carrying a sustainability certification mark.
Some equipment manufacturers, like WaterRower and Germany’s NOHrD, have begun producing wooden gym gear sourced from forests certified as FSC, using biodegradable glues that do not pose health hazards to users.
Consider purchasing used fitness pieces. Doing so reduces waste in landfills while saving materials needed to manufacture new pieces; additionally, this method often means more locally-sourced pieces that require less shipping costs, thus further lowering carbon footprint.
Opt for Second-Hand Fitness Gear
When purchasing workout equipment, opt for second-hand items to minimize their environmental impact. Furthermore, opt for materials made from sustainable sources whenever possible – Girlfriend Collective uses recycled materials and eco-friendly dyes in its leggings for instance!
Making your gym more eco-friendly can not only benefit the planet, but it can also save money. Energy-efficient appliances will result in lower utility bills; paperless check-in systems will reduce paper waste; investing in a reusable water bottle will help avoid plastic waste – these changes could all save your gym money!
Avoid Single-Use Products
Single-use products and packaging (such as plastic bags, straws and stir sticks ) create waste which pollutes ecosystems and communities with toxic chemicals, while endangering wildlife who mistake them as food and can choke or become sick from eating plastic waste.
An effective way to reduce single-use items is to bring reusable water bottles and shopping bags. When possible, try cooking more frequently so as to limit disposable takeout containers.
For workout clothes that support eco-friendliness and sustainability, look for organic fabrics as well as brands with certifications from organizations like GOTS or Fair Trade. There may also be eco-friendly pieces made from recycled plastic bottles; this option makes eco-friendly fitness fashionable!
Use Reusable Water Bottles
Reusing water bottles is an easy and eco-friendly way to lower your impact on the planet, with bamboo, recycled polyester or organic cotton options providing even greater benefit.
Outdoor fitness facilities offer effective, affordable, and eco-friendly workout options that may work better for you than gyms indoors. If switching entirely isn’t possible, consider decreasing energy use within fitness facilities by decreasing energy use in them instead.
Locate equipment that requires minimal energy usage, like rowing machines or energy generating attachments such as the SportsArt ECO-POWR machine which generates electricity back into the power grid. Though costly, such innovation could help the fitness industry reach sustainability.
Support Local Businesses
An exciting trend of sustainable workout products and equipment is emerging. Many local companies provide reusable resistance bands and yoga mats while others operate their businesses sustainably while contributing to sustainable causes.
Choose workout clothing made of natural fabrics like organic cotton and recycled polyester (look for GOTS and Fair Trade certifications), bamboo viscose and nylon made from plastic bottles for optimal results.
Apart from using eco-friendly fitness equipment and avoiding single-use materials, support local gyms that practice sustainability. A flagship Gold’s Gym in Berlin uses solar panels and an energy generating system derived from the spin bikes and ellipticals during workouts to power their multimedia systems and power them with renewable energy sources such as the Sun.