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To Our Health: More Running and Less Stuffing

The average American consumes between 3,000-4,500 calories on Thanksgiving Day, and roughly 45% of those calories are directly from fat. So naturally, there is an increased risk of having a heart attack on Thanksgiving. While this may not be a concern for high school students, many cities host organized runs, with distances ranging from 250 meters for youngsters and up to 3-5 miles for adults.

These events are a great way to bring together communities and promote a healthy lifestyle on one of the nation’s holidays that is notorious for overeating to the extent of discomfort.

Two popular events that were held this year were the Chase Thanksgiving Day Turkey Trot and the Thanks for Giving 4-Miler.

New Albany resident and fitness enthusiast, Kasey Kist started the Thanks for Giving 4 Miler four years ago as a family-oriented way to exercise on Thanksgiving, and the only entry fee was to bring canned food for donations. Although only 30 people participated in its first year, more than ,1700 people showed up on Thanksgiving morning for this year’s race.

Instead of paying a registration fee, people were encouraged to make a charitable donation when signing up. 100% of this race’s proceeds go to support the Mid-Ohio Foodbank, Lifecare Alliance, and the Thanksgiving Fund at the New Albany Community Foundation. This year, $50,000 was raised, with $22,500 going to both the Mid-Ohio Foodbank and Lifecare Alliance, and the remaining $5,000 to the New Albany Community Foundation. With one dollar providing seven meals to those in need, each donation goes a long way.

While some viewed the event as a competition, plenty of people were leisurely walking the course. All of the participants were better off for having walked/run four miles before their feasts.

When asked about the importance of exercising on Thanksgiving, Kist said, “Everyone knows they are going to overeat on Thanksgiving, so it really makes sense to make a concerted effort to go out and exercise that morning. You can then eat that extra piece of pumpkin pie and not feel as guilty about it.”


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