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3 Ways to Add Physical Activity to Your Thanksgiving

September 29, 2016 by Normand Richard, Certified Exercise Physiologist

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Fun things to do for a happy Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is my favourite holiday. To me, it means spending time with family and friends, eating good food, and having fun over the long weekend. There’s no to pressure buy gifts; instead Thanksgiving is all about being grateful. It’s about giving thanks and can even be about giving back.

Now, I won’t be covering the good food part in this post (but I’m guessing you have many a memory enjoying the feast!). This year, make some memories beyond the table. Try these ideas:

  • Help out. Have you heard the saying, “many hands make light work”? Get inspired by the giving spirit of Thanksgiving and lend a hand to your host or others in your community. In the past I’ve been part of a group that helps the host and it certainly was rewarding. The beauty is that everyone has something they are good at so there’s no job too big or too small. Help with chores like:
    • Yard work that needs to be done before winter, collecting leaves, closing the garden, or helping with firewood.
    • Bigger chores like painting or building a shed that would take a while to do alone, but can be done more quickly with a group.
  • Break the ice. For times when socializing and catching up is key, instead of sitting around the living room watching the fireplace (ok that does sound nice, just sit for a little while!) there are many activities you can do to get the group moving, chatting and laughing. Lawn sports are a classic at gatherings. If you’re feeling more ambitious, set up a net for a game of pickle ball. Bad weather out? Try a game of charades; acting out and being goofy will help the group connect.
  • Work up your appetite. If you’re like me, you like doing a workout before eating a big dinner. For the outdoorsy crowd, consider a day hike in one of BC’s beautiful provincial parks. On the other hand, if you’re in an urban area, set up your own adventure race; it will create memories and provide loads of fun!  For those with a sense of competition there is usually a “turkey trot” (a 5-10 km running race) on Thanksgiving weekend.

You may not have time to do all of these if you only get together for an afternoon or evening. But can you squeeze at least one or two activities in before loosening the belt? If you’re with family for the entire weekend there’s plenty of time to try out being active together. All it takes is a little initiative and the fun times will follow.

Happy Thanksgiving!


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Thanksgiving Weekend in 5 Easy Steps
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