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Your fat can be biofuel. Well, not exactly— but the energy that you produce when you are trying to get rid of this fat can help power your gym studio.  The idea is that fitness machines are equipped with generators that turn your exerted force into electricity. Hip Prenzlauer Berg in Berlin is home to one of these “green gyms”. Ran by René Eick, “Green Gym Berlin” offers the infrastructure for users to power their phones and MP3-players with the energy that they produce as they work out. Interestingly enough, Eick retrofitted the whole studio only with the help of his father— on top of being a fitness trainer, he is a mechanical engineer and his father an electrical engineer.

The world’s first green gym was opened in 2008 in Hong Kong. While there are an ever-increasing number of green gym facilities around the world, there are still several hold-ups to widespread implementation. The main deterrent is cost; green gym equipment is expensive. But that could be offset by electricity savings, right? Well, not really— unless the green gym machines are in use 24 hours a day the entire year, the payback period is fairly long. However, they can be very effective tools to raise awareness and make people more sensitive to where their energy is coming from, so it is still worth considering depending on what your goals are.

Sources:

Cho, V. (2012, February 17).  Human-Powered Gyms: For a Healthier You—and a Healthier Earth. Eco Hearth. Retrieved from http://ecohearth.com/eco-zine/travel-and-leisure/930-human-powered-gyms-one-workout-at-a-time.html

Kutschbach, T. (2014, November 6). Berliner Fitnessstudio erzeugt Strom aus Muskelkraft. Berliner Zeitung. Retrieved from http://www.berliner-zeitung.de/berlin/green-gym-berlin-berliner-fitnessstudio-erzeugt-strom-aus-muskelkraft,10809148,28955398.html

Patterson, K. (2013, July 23). The Rising Current of Green Gyms Around the World. Renewable Choice. Retrieved from http://www.renewablechoice.com/blog-green-gyms-13-07-23.html