Get ready to do the ‘running’ of a lifetime, but incorporating a novelty: include in your equipment a garbage bag and at the same time, take care of the environment.

They say the Nordic countries are always a little more advanced than the rest of the planet. In Scandinavia, for example, care for nature is paramount, and plogging proves it. In Sweden, they know how to care for and protect the environment, or at least they try their best: they purify the water until it is drinkable, they recycle everything, and they have managed to reuse 99% of their waste. The degree of prevention and awareness is such that only there could an initiative like plogging emerge.

What is Plogging?

The word plogging comes from fusing jogging with the Swedish expression plocka upp, which means ‘to collect’. It’s as simple, but beneficial to you and nature, as running while picking up the dirty rubbish you find along the way. In order to do this, you have to carry a garbage bag (or several) in which to store the garbage and then take it to its corresponding container.

When you run with this objective in mind, the marks of the race are no longer so important, but the sum of your physical effort and help to preserve our environment as best as possible. Thus, combining the care of your body and nature, the taboo of thinking that you are collecting garbage disappears: you are preserving your health and the planet on which you live. It also has the advantage that it can be practiced by anyone, whatever their age, whoever wants to take a jog and take care of the environment at the same time.

Running is Not The Only Option

Plogging is not just about running. Any outdoor sport, on land or at sea, can be used to practice it as long as the collection of waste is present. So you can walk, cycle, hike, water sports, etc, and carry your bag with you ready to fill it. As a result of this initiative, different associations have been set up that collaborate with the cause by sharing a multitude of online resources to make it easier for ploggers to collect waste.

An Increasingly Widespread Practice

Plogging was born in 2016 in Stockholm and soon spread throughout the country. However, it is now beginning to cross borders and has already reached more than a hundred countries such as England, Spain and the United States. The concern about the invasion of plastic in the oceans is growing and has a greater scope, so these types of initiatives are increasingly widespread.

Is It Effective As a Sport?

Ploggers say it can be more effective than just running, as you can burn up to 300 calories in just 30 minutes of practice. The reason is that running is combined with squatting every time you pick up waste from the ground and can incorporate jumps when you get up. 

The groups that practice it share in nets images of their races and give tricks to collect more garbage in less time and increase the effectiveness of the physical exercise. Small team competitions are also proposed that combine speed and the amount of garbage collected.

You can also take a look at Instagram hashtag #plogging, where the ploggers proudly display their garbage bags to visualize the phenomenon and raise awareness of the importance of caring for the environment.

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