It’s kind of astonishing just how many ways there are for the average person to green their routine in this day and age, what with alternative energy options, electric vehicles, and a growing market for organic goods. But you might wonder how you can take an eco-friendly approach when it comes to visiting your gym facility. So here are just a few options for going green when it comes to your personal fitness.
Skip electric machinery.
While an argument could be made that the manufacturing of gym equipment is the most harmful aspect of the industry, from an environmental standpoint, the truth is probably that the energy draw required for machinery is far worse considering that electrical equipment (treadmills and such) is plugged in around the clock, especially in 24-hour facilities. So if you want to keep a clear conscience, simply refuse to support the inclusion of such machinery, or at least unplug the equipment when you’re finished using it.
Use a gym that conserves energy.
Many gym facilities are starting to adopt conservationist policies, probably as a way to save money and cater to a healthy, green demographic, but perhaps also because they are gaining awareness of environmental issues and striving to operate more responsibly (let’s hope). In any case, some have implemented changes like low-flow toilets and aerated sinks and showers in the locker rooms, while others are finding ways to cut back on electrical usage by turning off lights and unplugging machinery during off hours. These are the types of facilities you’ll want to support in your area.
If you notice that machines are plugged in day and night, even when not in use, talk to a manager at your gym about posting notices that ask patrons to unplug machines when they finish using them (provided others aren’t waiting for them). This will not require any additional work for the staff and it could help to save the gym a ton of money on their utility bill. You might also suggest turning off some or all of the lighting during the day if the windows provide ample sunlight for exercising patrons.
Find a kinetic gym.
Believe it or not, there are gyms springing up that use movement to power their facilities. With machinery that runs on kinetic energy, the user (you) actually supplies the energy needed to show digital readouts during the workout. And often, additional energy created is fed into the power supply for the building, helping to run lighting and other electronics (at least in part). So you’re not only doing something good for your body, but you’re also helping your gym to operate in a sustainable manner with every move you make.
You have no control over the products your gym facility uses, but you can definitely make your own choices when it comes to the gear you bring with you. If you’re not quite sure how to go eco-friendly here, check out environmental data resources that let you know what to look out for when it comes to textiles and plastics, for example. This could help you to find workout clothes, shoes, and even water bottles that are better for the environment and for your personal health.