Thanksgiving is one of our favorite holidays because it doesn't center around gifts or commercialism, it's all about family and food. Everyone spends the day together playing board games, watching football, and of course, eating all day long. Between appetizers, turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, and dessert you can easily double or triple your calorie intake on Thanksgiving. In fact, according to the Calorie Control Council the average Thanksgiving feast is an impressive 4,500 calories!
Although you could counteract your Thanksgiving Day meal with an evening gym sessions, let's be honest, you're going to be too full to do anything Thanksgiving evening, and most gyms are probably closed. With that in mind, here are 5 fun ways to burn off your Thanksgiving calories instead of shopping on Black Friday.
Forget fighting the crowds at the mall on Black Friday, grab your favorite hiking socks and hit the trail for some calorie burning solitude. To optimize calories burned, find a trail with plenty of elevation gains. The added work will burn more calories than on a flat trail and you will likely earn a breathtaking view at the top.
Leftovers:pack a turkey sandwich for the trail. Just don't go overboard!
If we aren't out hiking, you can probably find us on our mountain bikes. Black Friday is the perfect time to hit your favorite trails. Normally crowded trails will hopefully be deserted because everyone will be at the mall. To maximize calorie burn opt for a day of cross-country riding on a moderate to difficult trail, the more climbs the better!
If you live in an area that already has snow grab your snowshoes and get out in the backcountry. The added difficulty of slogging through snow combined with the cold temperatures make snowshoeing a great way to burn off those extra Thanksgiving calories. Be sure to check the weather and avalanche reports before you go, and avoid areas where avalanches are possible unless you have the proper gear, training, and are in a group.
If you're new to Snowshoeing checkout our tips for a successful snowshoe trip.
A kayaking trip is perfect for burning off those Thanksgiving calories. Seriously, some of our favorite adventures have included our kayaks. Consider planning a two-stage adventure that involves kayaking out to an island that you can then hike around.
Leftovers: a kayak has plenty ofroom to pack an epic leftovers picnic!
Skiing or Snowboarding is a great way to burn off those extra Thanksgiving calories. Like with snowshoeing, your body is going to burn extra calories to stay warm out in the cold. Every year we hope our favorite resorts are open by Thanksgiving so we can hit the slopes on Black Friday. Sure the resorts will probably be packed, but if we have to wait in line it's going to be the lift line and not at the mall!
Source for average calories burned: www.health.harvard.edu/diet-and-weight-loss/calories-burned-in-30-minutes-of-leisure-and-routine-activities
Planning a Winter Camping or Backpacking Trip? Read our 11 Tips for Winter Camping and Backpacking.
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Austin lives in the Pacific Northwest where he enjoys hiking and backpacking in the Olympic and Cascade mountains.
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