We are loving 'conscious training' - there is understandably a big focus nationally and internationally at the moment on ways we can improve our carbon footprint, reduce single-use plastics and generally be kinder to our planet not only for ourselves but importantly, for future generations. We have noticed a huge increase in the number of opportunities presenting themselves in the health & wellness industry for consumers to fully embrace this movement.
Here are a few of our favourites:
There are so many brands that are focussing on greener production of their clothing, making style more sustainable.
H&M have their well established Conscious line which is full of fashion-led items - all of which must contain at least 50% sustainable materials, such as organic cotton and recycled polyester. Thankfully, some of their sportswear is also included in this range, for both men and women. There are some great value, long-wearing pieces here especially the tops, we have quite a few of these and they are really good. You can have a browse here: https://www2.hm.com/en_gb/search-results.html?q=Conscious+sports
Selfridges are now stocking Girlfriend Collective, who produce beautiful high waisted gym leggings and shorts which are made from recycled plastic bottles. Selfridges itself says it is "committed to ensuring that 50% of our products are better for people and the planet by 2022."
Sweaty Betty are another brand on a mission to make the planet a better place. They have pledged to transition to using recycled yarns for all of their leggings over the next 1-2 years, meanwhile, for those who are mindful of the impact their sportswear has here and now, they can choose high-end products such as the Super Sculpt Leggings which are made from 17 recycled plastic bottles.
Patagonia have been leaders in the ethical fashion sphere, with the adventure and outdoor brands' mission statement to “build the best product, cause no unnecessary harm, use business to inspire and implement solutions to the environmental crisis”. They are committed to using as many recycled fabrics as possible as well as rejecting fast fashion by creating high-quality, long-lasting products, and offering a repair and reuse programme.
We love their Black Hole Bags, these are made from recycled plastic bottles: https://eu.patagonia.com/gb/en/recycled-black-hole-bags.html
Adidas - we love you! Our go-to for great quality sportswear, Adidas now have the fantastic 'Parley' range, a collection of footwear and sportswear that is made from plastic rubbish collected from the remote beaches and coastal communities. You can shop the entire collection here: https://www.adidas.co.uk/parley
We specifically love the Ultraboost trainer for running, and now there are over 20 designs for both men and women:
Some highlights for the boys https://www.adidas.co.uk/ultraboost-shoes/F36156.html and https://www.adidas.co.uk/ultraboost-20-shoes/FV8450.html
For the girls we love these https://www.adidas.co.uk/ultraboost-20-shoes/EG0716.html and these by Stella McCartney, queen of ethical fashion https://www.adidas.co.uk/ultraboost-t-shoes/EF2132.html
Whilst we're on the subject of Adidas, we also admire their FutureCraft concept, the first 100% recyclable high performance running shoe - the idea being that you wear it and when its time is up you return it to Adidas who will grind it down and remake it for you. So clever! These are on track to launch in 2021 - https://www.adidas.co.uk/futurecraft - we'll be keeping an eye on these.
Veja is another favorite of ours and they have recently launched the Veja Condor, the brand’s first sport shoe that’s 53 percent bio-based and recycled, available for both men and women.
We love this colourway for the girls https://www.matchesfashion.com/products/Veja-Condor-Alveomesh-running-trainers-1285834
Here are the men's offering: https://www.veja-store.com/en/251-condor
Merrel - Vegan-friendly footwear from Merrell, they have you covered if you are into trail running or hiking: https://www.merrell.com/UK/en_GB/womens-vegan-shoes/
There are a few other areas you can look into aside from just what you are wearing:
Only 31% of plastic bottles are recycled! Eliminating plastic bottles is a really positive change you can make quite easily to your everyday lifestyle.
There are so many beautiful reuseable bottles on the market now, and a wealth of refill stations and businesses participating in the 'Re-Fill' scheme to help reduce plastic pollution. The London Marathon trialed bottle belts last year made from recycled plastics and even provided edible seaweed capsules of water along the course to reduce the plastic bottles used.
Don't forget you can purchase our Tom Johnson Lifestyle stainless steel bottle here - https://tom-johnson-lifestyle.myshopify.com/collections/merchandise/products/tom-johnson-lifestyle-reuseable-water-bottle - great for taking around with you each day and refilling as you need, available in Black or Grey.
Bags For Life / Tote Bags
"A plastic bag has an average “working life” of a mere 12 minutes, and once it’s thrown away, that bag can take up to 1,000 years to decompose. Worldwide, an estimated 1 trillion single-use plastic bags are produced every year, and less than 1% of those are recycled. Millions end up in the ocean." - Adidas Sustainability Programme.
Another easy way to reduce your plastic consumption, get involved with bags for life and do away with plastic bags. Get a good quality bag for life, and use it for everything!
We use ours for gym kit, carting the kids swimming gear around, trips to the supermarket, the beach and to contain muddy shoes when out and about in the car. Thinking about it, it's one of the most used items in our house with two small children and a lot of food and equipment to carry around!
We sell our own version here for £6.99, https://tom-johnson-lifestyle.myshopify.com/collections/merchandise/products/totebag - made from 100% Natural juco but you can pick these up in most supermarkets and lots of other wonderful retailers depending on what design you fancy!
Charity Miles Apps
We absolutely love this concept! You can this App download (for free!) and use it to monetize your workout/movement with the proceeds going to a charity of your choice - you can choose from a wide range of different charities including Stand Up To Cancer, WWF, Alzheimers Association, Save The Children, Crohns & Colitis Foundation and Red.
You can track pretty much any movement - cycling, running, walking, jogging, dancing, even skipping. So far the app members have earned over $2.5 million for charity - amazing stuff. This is a great way to tap into exercise or movement that you will be doing anyway, safe in the knowledge that you are not only benefitting yourself but also raising money for extremely worthwhile causes- what an added motivation.
These suggestions are just a few of our current favourites, there are so many options out there and it's great to see so many brands embracing more sustainable ways to produce their products and thinking outside the box. Let us know if you know of any additional great brands or initiatives as its always good to hear of more!