We're all for companies adding eco-friendly gear to their lines, but what makes us really happy is when a company commits itself to the environment by adopting a sustainable business model. Because, let's face it, caring about the planet involves much more than offering one organic shirt in your line. From where they source their materials to the kind of energy their buildings run on, here are five companies that we already love for their athletic gear, but who impress us even more for the eco-friendly ways they run their business.
Shoes listed clockwise starting at the top left:
- This "http://www.patagonia.com/us/product/patagonia-footwear-womens-bly-hemp-all-terrain-shoe?p=79671-0-016">Bly Hemp Shoe ($110) by Patagonia is great for light hiking and trail running, and it's made from super durable, super green hemp with some Nubuck suede accents. The laces are 100 percent recycled polyester, the footbed is made of 70 percent recycled materials, and the lining is made with 40 percent recycled goods.
- "http://www.rei.com/product/811418/chaco-zx2-yampa-sandals-womens">Chaco ZX/2 Yampa sandals ($95) are a perennial fave with the river hiking set. Not only are they comfy, but you can also clean them with environmentally friendly baking soda. More importantly, you can resole the ZX/2s so they don't end up in a landfill after one season.
- Perfect for strolling about town on your rest day, the "http://www.keenfootwear.com/blog/index.php/tag/santiago/">Santiago ($50) by Keen will be available May 1, and greenies everywhere await this shoe's debut. Handmade in the Dominican Republic, the Santiago sole is made with locally sourced rubber, skipping adhesives altogether. A percentage of profits from the shoes will benefit the micro-loan organization Kiva.
- Perfect to slide on postworkout, the "http://shop.oceanminded.com/crocs-tamaraok/OM206,default,pd.html?cid=001&q=tamaroak&prefn1=refinementColor&prefv1=Red|White|Black">Tamaroak ($65) from Ocean Minded is the most comfortable flip-flop we've worn, and it just might be the greenest. Made with less toxic water-based adhesives, the toe post and webbing are recycled PET, and the midsole is 25 percent postindustrial recycled foam.
Clockwise from top left: Brooks Epiphany Stretch II Running Shorts in Wasabi ($20); Nike Tempo Track Shorts in Concord/Green Apple/Spark ($28); Gap Fit Ruched Running Short in Summer Azalea ($20); Zobha Hot Short in Purple Punch/South Beach ($56); Patagonia Women's Multi Use Shorts in Chamonix Floral Ultramarine ($45); Athleta Breeze Short in Garden Green ($44).
Happy New Year! We hope that you're as excited as we are to start a fit and healthy 2011. We know that many of you have resolutions centered around healthy living, and we've got faith that you'll be able to cross each and every one off of your list. Here are a few items that will make it easier for you to accomplish all of your healthy goals this year.
Sarah Jessica Parker and her girls know how to take advantage of a break in the Winter weather! The trio, along with a nanny, spent yesterday afternoon wandering around their shoveled-out West Village neighborhood in New York City. After passing by Magnolia Bakery, where Marion and Loretta's mama famously ate a cupcake during the third season of Sex and the City and set off a national bite-sized cake craze, the mom and tots stepped into Little Marc Jacobs for a little retail therapy to kick off the year. To ward off the Winter chill, the 1-year-old tots wore different versions of Patagonia's warm Reversible Tribbles Jacket ($90). Their fashionista mom has taken to dressing the twins similarly but not identically in different patterned outfits throughout the year.
Instead of throwing that gear out, check out where OnSugar blog The Green Life goes to recycle her old mats, shoes, and workout clothing.Workout wear gets beat up and worn out quickly. Follow Women's Health's recent tips on giving your gear a second life:
Recycle your shoes through Nike Reuse a Shoe program.
Recycle any Patagonia clothing.
Recycle or donate yoga mats through the Recycle Your Mat initiative.
Go green. It does a body good.
I was lucky enough to hit the Reel Rock Film Tour — an annual showcase of the best new films about climbing — when it passed through San Francisco this weekend. Highlights of the festival include the world premiere of Progression and a preview of First Ascent, a new series for the Nat Geo Adventure Channel.
Climber or not, the Reel Rock festival is a must see for adrenaline junkies, outdoor enthusiasts, film lovers, and those seeking some kick ass motivation. Beautifully shot in locations around the world like Patagonia and Yosemite, the films follow the emotional and physical journeys of the sports' top athletes as they push themselves to the extreme. There were definitely more than a few heart stopping moments where I stared at the screen mouth gaping in disbelief of what I was watching.
To see clips from the films, read more
We all know it's impossible to reverse the damages done to Mother Earth, but there's always room for improvement. That's why an increasing amount of manufacturers and retailers are stepping up to fight global warming and climate change. Stats show an increase in the amount of companies taking interest in learning how to conserve energy, finding ethical sourcing partners, and educating consumers about the benefits of sustainable methods. We're ecstatic to see big companies, such as Target with it's Loomstate line, step up to the challenge.
To read about what some retailers and designers are doing to lessen their carbon footprint, read more
End of season sales usually happen mid-season and when it comes to cold weather gear this timing is great. You can get new Winter gear and use it for a couple of months before storing it for next year. Patagonia, known for its excellent snow apparel and base layers, is having a huge sale with items reduced 40 to 60 percent.
The sale items run the gamut, from snow jackets to wicking panties, from ski pants to cozy base layers. If you're planning on Spring skiing, now is the time to get some snow gear. I am digging the wind resistant fleece R3 Jacket (now $105, originally $175). Another great steal is the triple threat Micro Puff Hooded Jacket (now $135, originally $225), which is lightweight, wind proof, and water resistant.
Patagonia also has some cute shorts and sun dresses on sale too. So you can prepare yourself for the sunny months ahead too. The sale ends on February 19, so shop soon.
See some of my sale picks when you read more