Picking up garbage is not only cool, it's great cross-training.
When you see someone pick-up trash, not their own, you think 'hey that's pretty cool' right?
What if that 'cool' act could be turned into a great cross-training activity? Well it can, I've tried it, and I hope I can inspire you to try it too.
I was driving home one day and while stopped at a red light I observed an old man running down the roadside trail in a rather odd way. He would run, bend down, then continue running at random intervals.
As he came closer it became evident what he was doing. His "run, squat, run" routine was the result of picking up trail trash. He was very clearly not a homeless person, not some bum looking for a meal in the ditches. He was an eldery gentleman, notably a seasoned runner, happily running along picking up garbage as he went.
“THAT is just so cool” I thought to myself "what a fantastic idea."
I was training for a marathon at the time and part of the program included 'easy run days' when all you have to do is plod along at an easy pace for a recommended amount of time. Most running programs have them. They're the perfect kind of scheduled run to bring along a plastic bag and do something good for the planet.
So I did, and I discovered two things.
1. It is FANTASTIC cross-training, especially if you focus on squatting correctly as you pick up the pieces, and to hell with those who would judge you for looking ridiculous, just think "bikini, bikini"...
2. People suck. There is SO MUCH trash on the trails and in the ditches. Who?! Why?! Ugh! WHAT IS WRONG WITH HUMANITY? I didn’t make it beyond the first ditch before my bag was full. FULL. EXPLODING. I couldn't even tie the handles together.
On that note runners (and walkers) I challenge you to become less desensitized to the garbage around you and to do something cool about it. Pick. It. Up.
The world can be changed when a group of like-minded people take it upon themselves to make a difference. Imagine if a runner picked up one bag of garbage every week during a 16 week training program. That's 16 bags of garbage. Not a small amount. Not a world changing one either.
Now multiply that runner by the 5,000 participants in the last race you ran and that's 80,000 bags of garbage. That's impact. That's making a difference.
It's not realistic to expect every runner to take part, but if I can influence a few and you can influence two more, and so on and so on, together we can make picking up garbage something all the cool runners do.
Please lace up your sneakers, grab that bag and get outside. You honestly never know who will see and become inspired.
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