Guest post by Janene from One Run at a Time
Earth Day is a great celebration, but environmental issues don’t disappear once the day ends. In both healthy and green living, we sometimes wonder what one small action can really do. Fortunately, as healthy living buffs, we know that the only way to progress is just that – one smart decision at a time. One workout alone doesn’t make you healthy, but hundreds and thousands of workouts over the course of months and years certainly does. This same principle applies to green living!
I could list the tried and true “reduce-reuse-recycle! Compost! Turn off the faucets while you’re brushing your teeth! Flip the switch when you leave the room!” but most of us are already rocking those green living actions. Instead, here’s a different take on celebrating Earth Day year round:
Spend Time Outdoors! As an outdoor educator, it’s my life’s passion to engage others in outdoor activity. I firmly believe that the more time we spend in nature the more likely we are to protect it and our lives become richer because of it. Outdoor experiences prompt us to learn more about the places we choose to recreate in and that can open up so many conversations about nature and the environment. Beyond that, studies show that time spent in nature relieves stress and can make us heal faster! With summer just around the corner, you can easily green your fitness routine by enjoying your time in nature with a walk, run or bike ride. Camping and racing season is upon us so remember to only back what you need to minimize waste. For information on how to enjoy the outdoors responsibly, visit Leave No Trace.
Find Something That Ignites Your Passion! The good thing about the green movement is that it’s so diverse. You can tackle it from so many different angles: sustainable food, greening your cleaning routine, reducing waste or energy consumption and so on. This is also the downside of green living – it’s so diverse, that it can be overwhelming! The key to getting fit is to find something you like and, likewise, the key to making a difference for the environment is the same. You don’t have master every green action at once. Find what speaks to you and strive to improve it.
Never Stop Learning and Sharing! Many environmental issues are exceedingly complex – few, if any, are black and white. Dig a little deeper into your favorite issues. Research other viewpoints online, at the library, in community meetings and through open and honest dialogue with those who might see it differently.
Volunteer! Once you find a cause that you can really sink your teeth into, get into the community and devote some time to it. Concerned with food security? Find a local farm, co-op or food pantry and spend a weekend helping out. Is biking to work your thing? Join a group that encourages, promotes and educates about alternative transportation. The options are endless and many organizations appreciate every helping hand they can find.
Earth Day is a wonderful way to come together as a community to celebrate our successes and continue moving forward, but let’s not forget that it is only one day of many. Good decisions day after day, month after month, year after year, will make our world better.
Read more from One Run at a Time.
Earth Day is on Sunday, April 22nd. What are your plans? Share them below!
Janene, I loved your post! I am an outdoorsy girl and I have a passion for the beach and your photo made me want to do some beach camping again. When I was in college I spent four months in Greece and we often camped on the beach. Those were some good days. Every beach is different and different wild-life inhabits them. That is why it is so fun to go to beaches all over the world. Of course, I live in the Pacific Northwest so I am within a few miles of a beach wherever I go. My earth day is spent at the beach, always! Thanks for sharing. Jana
Thank you so much, Jana! That photo is from one of my favorite trips – 10 days of sea kayaking in the Outer Banks! It was a blast, and I loved learning about the history and wildlife of the area. There was so much waiting to be discovered. I can’t wait to go back someday! Enjoy your Earth Day at the beach – I’m jealous! 🙂
Ditto on what Jana said! I am so fortunate to live in Southern California where the beach, desert, forest, and mountains are all a short drive away! My appreciation for the Earth started at a young age and has only grown since I’ve gotten older. I’m the “hippie” amongst most of my friends – and proud of it.
Thanks for the easy tips to share!
Thank you, Sabrin! My love for nature started in the North Woods of Wisconsin, where my grandmother had a cabin. We’d spend our summers there, fishing, hiking, boating, and cooking over the fire. It was the best way I can think of to spend a childhood, and I credit that early experience outdoors with driving me to become an outdoor and environmental educator! Hope you had a wonderful Earth Day – I’m the “hippie” among my friends, too! 🙂