Plog

Doubling That Endorphin High

Michelle Parkes and her friend Dermot have set up an eco-fitness community based in London. Deriving from the Swedish craze of plogging, the pair have started organising events where people pick up rubbish whilst running at the same time. We asked Michelle to tell us more about it:

I doubt you’ve popped over here unless you’re interested in running in any of its guises! From 2k trots to ultra marathons; we love that endorphin high that results in a good race. What if I told you that we can double that high?!

My friend Dermot and I went for a run together at the beginning of 2018 and were sadly blown away by the amount of rubbish we found littering our streets, green spaces and waterways. Then on subsequent plogs I couldn't stop seeing the rubbish everywhere and both of us found the huge scale of littering very upsetting. From plastic bottles to cans and cigarette butts; it was everywhere.

So Dermot and I decided to set up Plogolution almost a  year ago as an eco-fitness community interest company. We've combined two passions of ours which is fitness and looking after the environment, and jumped on the Swedish craze of plogging which means to run whilst picking up rubbish at the same time.

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Over the last year we've been overwhelmed by the support we've received and run plogs all across London and beyond. We've picked up 1000s of bags of rubbish, much of which we could re-direct for recycling and also given people the opportunity to give back to their local communities. We've also run an 'Ultra Plog' where a small team of us plogged the entire length of the Thames Path from source to Thames Barrier. Thats 184 miles and we did it in 6 days collecting all the rubbish we could. The stats spoke for themselves; 1,107 plastic bottles, 931 cans, 489 glass bottles and 44 huge bags of general waste.

Our plan for the future is to have monthly plogs all over the country, with small communities getting fit and making a difference. We are focussed on ensuring that it doesn't matter your fitness level or age - we always run a 2k walk and a 5k run version so anyone can be part of this.

We are so much stronger together and what can seem like an impossible task is much easier in a group. Can't see a plog in your area? Let us know if you're keen, especially if you're interested in becoming a Plog Leader. Your planet really does need you.

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Find out more at www.plogolution.com

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