On Thanksgiving day, the healthiest thing you can do is relax and enjoy a delicious meal with your loved ones. This year, we want to share our favorite tips to make the most of the holiday while still feeling your very best!
Get moving. Your goal should not be to burn off the day’s calories, but instead to move your body with an activity you enjoy. Whether that means heading to the club for your usual group exercise class, joining a local turkey trot, or spending the day on your feet in the kitchen, make sure you get some movement. Sluggishness begets sluggishness. If you spend the entire day vegging out on the couch, you won’t have the energy to truly enjoy the day.
Don’t skip meals. The classic mistake is to try to eat very little early on Thanksgiving day, or even the days leading up to Thanksgiving. This is not a good idea. You can’t “save” calories for later. Instead, stay on track with your regular meals and snacks to stay satisfied. You will be far less likely to go completely overboard at dinner and make yourself sick.
Drink up! Make a concerted effort to get plenty of extra water the week of Thanksgiving. You will be enjoying rich foods with a lot of sodium, and maybe some alcohol as well. Stay hydrated if you don’t want to wake up feeling awful on Black Friday. Drinking water is also a helpful tool to keep your appetite level in check. Sometimes we feel like eating when we aren’t really hungry. Reach for a glass of water before you go back for another round of appetizers. You may find that you’re actually satisfied once you aren’t thirsty anymore.
Avoid eating because it is there. Many people fall into the trap of eating everything in sight on Thanksgiving because you only get ONE DAY to enjoy it, right? Wrong. It is easy to get caught up in the mentality that this is your only opportunity to enjoy these foods that you love. But, chances are, you will have leftovers in your fridge for another three weeks. If you think you may be on the verge of the “eating because it’s there” trap, reach for that water again. If you still want it after hydrating, then enjoy every bite.
It’s all about the bounce back! Even if you overdo it on Thanksgiving, remember that Thanksgiving is just one day. It isn’t possible to make any real negative impact on your weight, let alone your health, with one day of indulging. Just like you can’t make a positive impact with a single day of healthy eating! The real trouble comes in when we follow Thanksgiving dinner up with a month of holiday overindulging. We can’t stress this enough: skip the scale for a few days after Thanksgiving (water retention can cause the scale to shoot up), let go of any guilt, and jump right back into your normal, healthy routine.
We hope these tips help you enjoy every minute of your Thanksgiving. We certainly know what we’re thankful for– all of our wonderful members at Annapolis Athletic Club!