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November 21, 2016

How to Burn 1,500 Calories on Thanksgiving Without Even Trying

by Amanda MacMillan

Turkey Day is almost here! You’ve probably heard a lot about how many calories we all put away on Thanksgiving, between the gravy-heaped potatoes and the pumpkin pie. And it’s true: Holiday dinners typically aren’t great for our waistlines. What they are perfect for, though, is spending quality time (and enjoying delicious food) with friends and family -- something that can’t be measured in numbers on a scale.

So instead of worrying about the calories you'll consume on Thursday, enjoy this list of all the ways you’ll burn them -- without even thinking about it. Staying active throughout the day (and keeping your overindulging to just one meal) will help you pack in Thanksgiving memories instead of packing on Thanksgiving pounds.


Shopping for last-minute ingredients, 30 minutes 82 calories*
Raking leaves before guests arrive, 20 minutes 91 calories
Vacuuming and sweeping the house, 40 minutes 158 calories
Making the guest bed, 10 minutes 39 calories
Chopping, sautéing, cooking, and baking, 2 hours 473 calories
Laughing around the table, 10 minutes 12 calories
Getting into a heated (but civil!) political discussion, 20 minutes 42 calories
Clearing the table and doing the dishes, 30 minutes 118 calories
Playing tag or hide-and-seek with your kids or grandkids, 30 minutes 125 calories
Cheering on your football team, 60 minutes (come on, get into it!) 236 calories
Walking the dog, 30 minutes 107 calories
Building a fire after dinner, 10 minutes 30 calories

*Estimates based on a 150-pound person.