Apr | 20
Running Tips, Shoes & Gear

Happy Earth Day! Three Ways You Can Run Green

How do you run green? Photo via NASA on Flickr

How do you run in an eco-friendly way? Photo via NASA on Flickr

In celebration of Earth Day, Brooks put together a list of a few ways runners can reduce their environmental impact. For those who are less familiar, Earth Day is held annually on April 22 to increase the awareness of and celebrate Earth’s natural environment. The name and concept of Earth Day was first established by peace activist John McConnell in 1969, around the same time the modern day environmental movement was gaining momentum. Over the last 30 years the movement has grown and is now celebrated in over 175 countries.

To learn more about Brooks’ green initiatives, visit Running Responsibly.

1. Reduce Your Impact

Brooks BioMoGo

Brooks BioMoGo midsoles biodegrade 50x faster when disposed of than traditional shoe materials.

Just like you can reduce the impact on your joints through training and by making adjustments to your running form, you can reduce your impact on the planet by making smart choices when you run. Headed outside of town for a run with friends?  Don’t drive alone. Instead, carpool to the trailhead or race with your fellow runners. This saves you gas money, reduces pollution and gives you more time to chat about running (a favorite pastime of ours).

One helpful refueling tip to consider is swapping your energy bar with running snacks that don’t require a disposable container like apples or an energy drink in a reusable bottle. This will keep your energy high, your run fast and your impact on the Earth low.

Another option is running in shoes that reduce your impact on the planet. We are proud of our BioMoGo, a special midsole material that is integrated into our Green Silence shoe and PureProject line. This technology includes a non-toxic, natural additive that encourages anaerobic microbes to munch away and biodegrades 50-times faster than traditional midsoles once the shoes are disposed of. The Green Silence is also made with soy-based inks and 75% recycled materials. All this adds up to a smaller impact on the planet.

Brooks Green Silence running shoe.

Brooks Green Silence running shoe.

2. Reuse Your Shoes

A beautifully colored shoebox by runner Caroline Kellner.

A beautifully colored shoe box by runner Caroline Kellner.

After training and running hundreds of miles in your Brooks shoes, don’t just throw them away. Find another use for your kicks. When I’m done running in an old pair of Cascadias, I use them for trail hiking and for work around the house. This reduces the amount of running gear I throw away.

You can reuse the Brooks shoe box too. Fans use our boxes for photo storage, art projects, and as a backdrop for pet photos. And by the way, our shoe boxes are eco-friendly, too. Here are a few green facts about Brooks shoe boxes:

  • 100% PCR paperboard
  • Use non-toxic water-based inks and adhesives
  • Include just one piece of chlorine-free, 100% PCR tissue paper
  • Contain a label 40% PCR shoe box label printed with soy-based ink, affixed with water-based adhesive

3. Recycle Your Shoes

After a shoe is done running, it might still have plenty of life. Consider donating the shoes to a non-profit like Soles4Souls.com

After you are done running in a shoe, it might still have plenty of life. Consider donating the shoes to a non-profit like Soles4Souls.

Brooks collects and donates product samples and gently worn shoes and apparel from staff to give to those in need through Soles4Souls.

Over the past two years we have donated over 175,000 items to this non-profit! To find out how you can recycle your shoes, visit www.soles4souls.org.

Donating your shoes is a great way to run green and give back!

Do you have a tip on how to run green? Add your ideas below!


About Joel
I am a runner in Seattle, Washington. When I'm not at work, I enjoy camping, running trail races and exploring the outdoors.
  1. Amickeyg

    I found most Converse and Nike stores take worn out running shoes (or any all-rubber sneakers) and recycle them for playground materials. Great program for me, since my shoes are never”gently worn”when I am done!

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