Thanksgiving Weekend: Fight the Bulge with Healthy Family Activities

After filling up on turkey, green bean casserole, stuffing, and pumpkin pie, it is easy to want to lounge around for the next few days doing nothing but nibbling leftovers. This year, fight the urge and get active on the weekend after Thanksgiving. Burn some calories while bonding with the family over the holiday weekend by trying out these fun, healthy activities.


Fall is the perfect time to take a hike. Make a trip to mountains or a state or national park near you. Talk to a ranger or look online to find hiking trails appropriate for your family’s age and health levels. Bring along some water, snacks, and a camera or two to document the family outing.


Football goes hand-in-hand with Thanksgiving, with games shown on Thanksgiving day and on the weekend. Get out and play your own game of football with friends and family. Teach the younger kids the rules and bond with this full-family activity. Afterward, go to a local football game and enjoy the tailgating and sense of community at the game.

Corn Maze

Cornfield mazes are great fun and require you to use your mind. Often, the mazes provide you with a map so that you are able to find your way through if you do not get too disoriented. The mazes also supply groups with flags or other implements to signal they need help to those managing the maze, so have no worries about getting lost. This is a great activity if your family is not prepared for strenuous exercise.


Take a weekend camping trip. Get away from all of the leftovers and into nature instead. Go fishing, walking nature trails, and maybe even do a bit of rafting if the weather is good enough. Cook your meals over an open flame or bring a crock pot to cook healthy chilis or soups as you go about your day.


Bonfires are common in the fall as the weather cools off. During the day, go out and gather wood or split firewood. This gets the family active and involved in creating the event. That evening, roast foods over the fire, but substitute healthy veggies or lean meats for fatty hotdogs and sugary s’mores.

Apple Picking

Winter and fall are perfect for apple cider, pies, butter and other delicious apple delights. Visit a local orchard and pick a bushel or two for use in the kitchen or fun harvest decorations. Spend the next few days or weeks spending time as a family in the kitchen experimenting with different tasty and healthy apple recipes.

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