Meet "Plogging," the New Swedish Exercise Craze

It's good for you and for the planet.

Given that it's the perfect civilization, it's no wonder that Sweden is the source of so many amazing things. First they gave us IKEA, to help us fill our home with cheap things, and then they gave us Swedish Death Cleaning, to help us get rid of them. Now, they've brought their decluttering ethos to a fantastic new fitness trend known as "plogging."

Quite simply, "plogging" involves picking up trash while jogging, so that you can save the environment and burn calories at the same time. The word is a combination of "jogging" with "plocka upp," which means "pick up" in Swedish.

Apparently, it's been all the rage in Scandinavia for a while, but it's just starting to pick up steam over in the US.

Washington, D.C. resident and plogger Emily Wright told The Washington Post that her partner always used to tease her for collecting all sorts of garbage while running by the waterfront, until one day she came home and he said, "'The Swedes have a name for your trash runs!'" (After all, "plogging" sounds so much trendier than "trash runs.")

While the #plogging hashtag has been around since 2016, it really ramped up in America last month, when the environmental organization Keep America Beautiful  teamed up with Lifesum to get more people involved in this exciting blend of fitness and activism.

In addition to cleaning up the streets, "plogging" also gives you a better workout than a regular run, because of the bending over you have to do at various intervals. According to the Swedish-based fitness app Lifesum, 30 minutes of "plogging" will burn around 288 calories versus 235 for jogging alone.

If you're collecting the rubbish in a trash bag, however, it is important to switch sides as you run, in order to avoid causing an imbalance in one arm versus another. And for more great fitness advice, Here's the New Science-Backed Workout That's Extending Elderly Lives. 

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Diana Bruk
Diana is a senior editor who writes about sex and relationships, modern dating trends, and health and wellness. Read more
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