Too often on Thanksgiving, people turn into couch potatoes after the big meal. Instead of succumbing to the couch and zoning out in front of the TV, why not try doing something fun and active? Better yet, encourage your family to join you—then you can all reap the benefits of physical activity! Try these fun, simple ideas:
- Make cleanup a group effort. One easy way to get everyone up and moving is to have the family help with Thanksgiving cleanup. Assign everyone a task, like clearing plates, taking out the garbage, loading the dishwasher, or putting away leftovers.
- Take a post-meal walk. Go walking with the family after the big meal. It gets you out of the house and helps you burn calories, too.
- Traveling for Thanksgiving? Be sure to park at a few rest stops along the way to stretch and walk around. This is a great way for everyone to release some energy and fit in some exercise.
- Go play outside! There are many games you can play outdoors in the fall, like flag or touch football or ultimate Frisbee. You could also try a simple game of tag, going geocaching, or organizing a scavenger hunt.
- Play inside, too. Instead of parking in front of the TV, invite family members to play a game that gets them on their feet, like charades.
- Try a craft. Make something that lasts! Buy and bring some supplies to make holiday ornaments, decorate plant pots, make beaded jewelry, create holiday cards, or any other creative activity. Invite family members of all ages to participate.
- Say cheese! Thanksgiving is an ideal time to take family photos. Get everyone up and walking around by taking photos in different locations—for example, gathered in front of the fireplace, the backyard, or in the foyer.
- Early snowfall? If you get a white Thanksgiving, go out and play in the snow, build a snowman, go sledding, or shovel the driveway.
- Do something kind for others. Before or after your family’s big meal, consider volunteering at a local shelter or soup kitchen to help make someone else’s holiday a little brighter.
There are so many fun ways to stay active on Thanksgiving! We hope you have a happy and safe holiday with your family! If you’re a Health Advocate member with access to the Wellness Coaching component of our Wellness Program, reach out to your coach for more ways to stay active during the holidays.