Thanksgiving: My View of Food and Fitness During the Holidays

I headed into Thanksgiving as part of a couple for the first time in nearly 7 years and I could hardly wait for 4 days off with my favorite person, not to mention all the yummy holiday food in my future.

As it worked out, it would just be the two of us for the big meal. I knew we were going to be on the same page when it came to the menu and also for how we would kick off the day.

First things first, a workout!!! Coming off of race week (5k for me, 13.1 for him) we settled on a hike through our favorite park. Aiming to eat in the afternoon, I knew we had plenty of time to tackle the trails in a leisurely fashion…or so I thought. I quickly realized that while we were on the same page for exercising, we had different ideas of the pace. He’s a power hiker! Or as I found out, his friends lovingly tease him….a forced marcher. Before long I found myself running ahead and slightly teasing him to “come on!” The 5 mile hike was a blast. We charged the hills, took in wonderful views, and enjoyed plenty of photo worthy scenery. We even ran into a few friends, literally. We mastered the route and a few hours later we mastered our first Thanksgiving and the first time making a turkey.

Here are a few of the recipes I crafted up.

Full recipes on my Pinterest holiday board.

One of my favorite things about a long weekend is the extra time I get in my morning. Room for workouts that aren’t limited by time or space. No work on Friday meant time for a new workout in a new spot. Stadium miles were on deck and when I mentioned my idea to the BF he was totally onboard. Just another reason he’s my #solemate.

Stadium mile: laps around a stadium track while including the up and down of the stadium stairs on each lap.

A nice little challenge to shake up our usual run. No surprise, we prefer to attack the stairs much like the hills in the park…charge it! We kept the laps easy and opted for burst of speed up the steps. This created an interval environment which is ideal for fat burning post turkey day.

By Saturday we needed time on the water. The sun was shining which made the river clear enough to enjoy views of the bottom. We took the boards out for just over an hour.

During a leisurely paddle boarding session,  you can burn between 300-400 calories per hour. That is a bit more strenuous than a brisk walk and a lot more fun. We rewarded ourselves by picking up the most perfectly petite tree.

Small Biz Saturday at McDonald Garden Center

Sunday was back to basics. I woke early and tossed any remaining and tempting leftovers into the trash. I filled the kitchen with fresh fruit and simmered a large pot of turkey vegetable soup. I always find that when I allow myself to enjoy and indulge, I come back around to my healthy habits on my own time.

The long weekend brought a new repertoire of exercises. I like these types of workouts for the variety, the change of scenery, and the chance to work my muscles differently as well.

You may be thinking of trying to loose weight going into the holidays. I prefer to go with the maintenance mindset. Maintain motion! Maintain movement! The movement doesn’t have to be strenuous and it doesn’t have to be time consuming. It just has to be movement. This is the time of year to splurge, not derail but splurge. Live a little! It’s a time of celebration of/with/and family and friends. Sure, there are more opportunities to sip a cocktail or savor that homemade dessert.

The Bee’s Knees Cocktail, Venuto

I say go for it…but forgo the guilt. Stay off the scale, but more importantly stay active this season!

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