We’ve heard about the numerous health benefits of exercise, but have you also considered how getting fit can benefit the environment? When you start changing your lifestyle habits, take into consideration how they can also benefit the planet, then embark on your journey to become a more sustainable fitness fanatic.

Here are five surprising ways that getting fit can help the planet:

1. Walking

Walking is a great and simple exercise that everyone should take advantage of. Walking for just thirty minutes a day can improve your fitness and can also give you a bigger energy boost than a coffee. However, did you know that walking more can help the environment? Go the extra mile and embark on a walking holiday in your home country; you’ll get to explore some areas of natural beauty and you won’t contribute to the toxic air emissions that result from flying across the country. 

2. Ditch the car

Driving is an incredibly useful and affordable way to get from point A to B. However, as a society we have become too reliant on our cars, using them to travel even short distances. However, if you’re really focused on getting fit, you’ll take every opportunity to get active and ditch the car during those short trips. Biking is a great method of transportation; it can get you where you want to go quickly and it doesn’t produce any emissions that contribute to global warming.

3. Eating more sustainable foods

Fitness and diet go hand in hand and when you’re focusing on improving your health, you really start to question the food you put in your body. Many people adopt a more plant-based diet because it gives them the nutrition they need in the most efficient way; most importantly, their diet doesn’t contribute to the pollution crisis. Many scientific studies highlight the detrimental environmental impact of meat consumptionand even say it’s a prime contributor to the current sixth mass extinction. Vegetarianism isn’t for everyone, but cutting down your meat consumption can do wonders for the planet. 

4. Eco-friendly clothing

Your choice of workout clothing is an important one and is often the first step towards becoming a more ethical consumer. A lot of exercise clothes are made from non-biodegradable materials like polyester and you should try and avoid these where possible; cotton is a more sustainable choice. When it comes to ethical clothing, you should also purchase from companies that treat their workers fairly as the people on the planet are just as important as the planet itself; more than 20.9 million people are affected by modern slavery each day, so you need to invest in a company with a more ethical code of conduct. 

5. Eliminating plastic

Hydration is an essential part of fitness, as a lot of water is lost during exercise. If you’re consistently working out, you’ll realise just how many water bottles you’re using during each session and how they can build up in your recycling bin. For a more eco-friendly and affordable solution, invest in a reusable water bottle instead of purchasing disposable ones.