The Active Times Thanksgiving

TheActiveTimes.com

Whether we're training for a race, aiming to lose weight or working at improving our eating habits, for the most part, we all go into the holiday season with the intention of sticking to our fitness goals.

But as Thanksgiving creeps closer and closer, more and more obstacles begin to pop up in our paths. Pumpkin and apple pies here, a few parties that get in the way of your workout schedule there. We trust you know how it goes: We've all been there before. It’s easy to fall off track. And then of course, there's Thanksgiving Day. You want to enjoy your favorite foods but you also don't want to go overboard. Just thinking about how to find that balance is stressful for many, and actually implementing a strategy that allows you to do so can be difficult too.

There's really no reason to stress over your food intake on Thanksgiving Day, though. Even if you do go a bit overboard in a single day, your goals won't be entirely sabotaged. Georgie Fear, a registered dietitian, pro nutrition coach and author of Lean Habits For Lifelong Weight Loss, shares 10 simple and practical tips you can implement on Thanksgiving, all through the holiday season and beyond.

Fitness Hacks For Thanksgiving

It's just one day.
 

It's just one day.

"Remember that Thanksgiving is a day," Fear explained. "You don't want to get into 'Thanksgiving Break' mode for four ...

It's just one day.
 

It's just one day.

... or five days if that means overeating for that stretch of time, and shelving your physical activity habits."

Ditch the diet versions.
 

Ditch the diet versions.

"You don't have to convert your festive dishes to bland 'diet versions' to make your meal significantly healthier," Fear said. “"f you want real butter and whole milk in your mashed potatoes, use them! Just taste them as you go, adding a little at a time, and stop once it tastes ...

Ditch the diet versions.
 

Ditch the diet versions.

... good. You might add a lot more calories and fat if you just drop a whole stick of butter in at the start."

Spend time outside.
 

Spend time outside.

"Use the extra time off to do something fun outdoors with your family," Fear suggested. "Go for a hike together and you'll not only burn some calories and boost your heart health, it's a great way to spend time together, enjoy nature and have a conversation. If you have ...

Spend time outside.
 

Spend time outside.

... small kids, consider bringing a wagon along so they can hop in and ride when they get tired. They'll think it's fun and you'll get an ever better workout!"

Give back.
 

Give back.

"Volunteer to help sort food at the local food bank," Fear said. "In a couple hours you'll move around a lot, meet some new people and feel ...

Give back.
 

Give back.

... feel good about helping out others who are less fortunate."

Make grocery shopping more productive.
 

Make grocery shopping more productive.

"Do your grocery shopping on foot. The key to making this a pleasant workout and not a backache recipe is to invest in sturdy, reusable grocery bags (the plastic handles on the free ones are much less comfortable to grip) and to load two of them equally," Fear said. "Carrying one on the left and one on the right turns ...

Make grocery shopping more productive.
 

Make grocery shopping more productive.

... just another errand into a farmer's carry!" Fear also noted that dividing the bags and carrying one on either side is a smart strategy in general since carrying weight on one side can worsen lower back pain.

Take part in a turkey trot.
 

Take part in a turkey trot.

"Enter a turkey trot in your town to see if you can beat your old PR in the 5K or 10K," Fear said. "If you're not a runner but your spouse is, consider walking or volunteering. After a race, I always make a point to help out by picking up some of the ubiquitous paper cups that are often ...

Take part in a turkey trot.
 

Take part in a turkey trot.

... littering the ground. Besides lightening the cleanup task for the volunteers, it reminds me to stretch out my hamstrings and walk around a bit, before plopping into my car seat."

Add more veggies to your meal.
 

Add more veggies to your meal.

"Add extra vegetables to your Thanksgiving feast to keep the spread interesting and also add nutrient-dense options to balance out the more indulgent fare," Fear said. "Roasted or baked winter squash has half the calories of the same amount of ...

Add more veggies to your meal.
 

Add more veggies to your meal.

... sweet potatoes, and can be substituted in many recipes."

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For the complete list of Healthy Hacks To Stay On Track Of Fitness Goals During Thanksgiving, go to TheActiveTimes.com.

More From The Active Times:
-- Bad Habits That Cause Weight Gain (And How to Break Them)
-- Trainers Share the Worst Fitness Advice They've Ever Heard
-- How to Build Healthy Habits that Will Last for Life
-- Healthy Eating Hacks for People Who Don't Have Time

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