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Natural Awakenings Charlotte

Eco-Workout - Easy Green Tweaks Save Money

by Linda LaRue

We all agree that we need to do a better job of conserving our planet’s limited resources, so why not try these simple suggestions to green your workout routine? These eco-friendly tweaks to what you already may do take little effort and save both time and cash.

Curb consumerism. Buy less brand-name active wear, expensive running shoes and faddish workout gizmos, which are not quick fixes for proper exercise and diet.

Recycle water/sports bottles. Buy a reusable water bottle, which is far better for the Earth than any plastic, single-use beverage container (even if you recycle it). Outrageously overpriced sports drinks are unnecessary because you can obtain all the vitamins and minerals you need by eating a sensible diet and taking a daily multivitamin.

Use biodegradable body products. Buy biodegradable body wash, shampoo, lotion and laundry detergent in large sizes to save money and decrease material use. Then, use them to fill smaller, travel-size, reusable bottles.

Patronize a workout center that’s within walking distance. You’ll not only boost your workouts, you’ll be supporting the local economy while reducing car emissions and potential parking fees.

If the weather is fine, walk outside—it’s free. Did you know that of all motorized fitness equipment, treadmills use the most energy?

Use towels made from organic cotton, bamboo or reclaimed fabric. Discount retailers often sell eco-friendly towels made from such natural materials. Bamboo towels are particularly soft, luxuriant and absorbent. Watch for store coupons.

Buy recycled and/or natural fitness products. Fitness product manufacturers are beginning to make and promote items using recycled materials.

Choose eco-friendly organic and/or recycled active wear. Today, there seems to be an overabundance of green materials being made into clothing. Time will tell what materials consumers like best, due to price, performance, look and feel. Options include organic cotton and soy fiber blends, seaweed blends and recycled polyester active wear for men and women that can be form-flattering, comfortable and enduring; trend watchers have even spotted a biodegradable athletic running shoe.

Try shopping upscale thrift shops. The best days to find great clothes are Mondays and Tuesdays, after folks have dropped off their clothing over the weekend. Thrift shops are a hit-and-miss proposition—you may need to visit them more than once.

Buy used workout DVDs. Great quality, popular, used, home workout DVDs are available online and at some thrift facilities and used book stores, often for half-price or less.

Core performance guru Linda LaRue is a registered nurse, athletic trainer and creator of Crunchless Abs, and the eco-friendly Core Transformer low-impact, 360° resistance workout. Visit

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