Get out the door & stick with it.


How I Avoid Thanksgiving Guilt

You know what I want for Christmas this year, another notch in my belt. After Thanksgiving this is the most appropriate present for yours truly, because when it comes to Thanksgiving—I get down at the kitchen table. The moment I smell that turkey getting carved, it’s time to light some candles, dim the lights and get real intimate with some stuffing and gravy.

That said, my love affair with thanksgiving doesn’t mean I’m wreckless and abandon all healthy eating habits. Over that past couple years I’ve been able to put together some tips that have kept me in check and allowed me to enjoy Thanksgiving without feeling the guilt that can be associated with the holiday.

Eat a Healthy Breakfast

Your appetite is going to be your biggest enemy of the day, and when entering the coliseum of turkey, hanger pains can be your greatest downfall. Go into your Thanksgiving meal with a little less extra space in the tank, and it’ll be easier to not overeat. I personally like to whip up some banana pancakes, and if I’m feeling wild—sprinkle some cinnamon on those flap jacks.

Avoid Finger Foods

Managing what you eat at the dinner table is one thing, but accounting for all the appetizers and drinks beforehand is damn near impossible. My rule of thumb is if it’s in a candy or snack dish—hair flip that temptation away, you got bigger and better things coming on the menu.

Make a Big Dish

When sitting down to eat finally, don’t assemble a small plate of food that inevitably leads to a series of small plates being assembled one after the other. The mental gymnastics we perform to convince ourselves we’re eating less, actually leads to us eating more most of the time. Go big or go home with your first and only plate.

Start Your Day With a Run

Every year I run my hometown’s turkey trot, and it’s one of my favorite events. I would encourage everyone to sign up if they’re hometown is having one. If not, or maybe you want to participate in two races at once—join the Thanksgiving Beast Challenge in the Runkeeper app sponsored by our friends at Epson! If you join and track a 5k on Thanksgiving you’ll be entered to win an Epson ProSence GPS Running watch! Learn more about the ProSense series of GPS running watches here.

Don’t Worry, Eat Happy

Honestly, at the end of day Thanksgiving is about being with the ones you love and enjoying some food. Sometimes we get so wrapped up with health and fitness we forget how important it is to just sit back and enjoy life. This day should be a celebration of all the things you love. For me, it’s running, stuffing, gravy and wrestling my uncles after a few too many.

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Hopefully these tips help and allow you to enjoy Thanksgiving without feeling guilty about straying away from your routine. Also, I hope to feel those running vibes coming from wherever you’re slaying pavement that morning as you crush the Thanksgiving Beast Workout in the Runkeeper app!

Ken Vetrano

About the author:
Ken Vetrano

I’m not a nutritionist or a personal trainer, just a former fat guy with a lot of size 44+ pants in his closet. That’s not just a tagline I use, it’s the truth. My posts represent an individual experience that might not work, or be appropriate for everyone. But my hope is that the journey I’ve taken can jolt people into realizing it’s never too late to make a change and get healthy.