On the Treadmill and Off the Grid

This is such a great idea I wonder when they’ll adapt it for home use…

The Green Microgym in Portland, Ore., has all the usual stuff you’d expect – sweaty people, thump-thumping music, sleek exercise equipment – but it has some extras as well. Everywhere you look, there are power cords. And these aren’t the typical kind that let you surf the Web while you slog away on a spin cycle or elliptical machine – although you can do that too. The gym uses specially configured exercise equipment that captures the energy you create while pedaling, converts it into electricity and channels it into the power outlets.

I was riding my bike to the gym where I have a membership. It’s not a bad ride or I wouldn’t do it. Now that it’s cold I’m keeping a gym bag in my car, since I’m often driving by there.

Exercise used to be integrated into daily life– walking to the bus stop, walking up stairs. If you think about the carbon impact of your daily life you are likely to find ways to save energy and burn calories. If, like me, you struggle to find motivation, this might just be enough to get you off the computer. Bye now, got to go to work.

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2 responses

  1. I’ll bet that the extra CO2 that the gym folks put out by breathing is more than the offset… It’s really hard to get electricity in any appreciable amounts from people.

    If anything, this is more about ‘awareness’ than actually getting something meaningful done.

    (and by the way, I made changes to the computers at work that should save $60K-ish and keep hundreds or thousands of tons of CO2 out of the atmosphere each year going forward, so I’m hip to the cause)

  2. that’s great. it’s good working on the macro level. i’m so glad you can do it. one of the mysteries of the universe is why ‘green’ stuff costs so much and conservation isn’t used more just to save on energy bills.
    today i decided to go to the gym on the way home from work instead of going home first and driving back to Pawtucket. i probably wouldn’t have gone anyway if i’d gone home first.

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