14 Mar

Plog On!

A new craze has swept the running world and it brings together exercise and the environmentally-friendly in a match made in green heaven. Plogging might sound like the type of thing a plumber with some pipes to fix would do.

But instead, it is a blend of ‘jogging’ and ‘plucking’ – as in plucking litter off the ground. The trend began in Sweden and has quickly gathered pace with individuals and groups in UK, Ireland, France, Thailand, Australia and USA latching on to the eco-friendly activity.

The news eases running back into a positive environmental light, coming hot on the heels of several races in the UK coming under fire from nearby residents after empty water bottles were left strewn across courses after races.

There were issues at tthe Brighton Half Marathon earlier this month, where organisers felt the wrath of local residents whose elected MP is Green Party leader Caroline Lucas. Plogging puts runners back on a firm footing on the side of environmentalist causes.

Founded by Stockholm-based Erik Ahlström, the activity has seen runners armed with disposable gloves and a black bag collecting litter as they weave through the city streets, eventually depositing their full bags into a recycling bin.

The multi-tasking has fired the imagination across cultures and taps into the same strength of feeling against plastic waste polluting the seas, powerfully articulated by BBC’s Blue Planet.

Given their close connection to the natural world and its trails, beaches, hills and mountains, it’s likely that runners feel stronger about the environment than most. So, even if you think plogging is a rubbish name, for runners, its cause is not.